Saturday, September 04, 2004

*Ø* Google World? Nup

While I'm at it, I must mention I'm a bit fed up with Google News's presentation of what's going on in the world.

The tragedy in Beslan is a huge thing happening in the world, and top of the headlines worldwide, but Google News (which is otherwise a great service) today has headlines like

Bush Opens 11-Point Lead Over Kerry at Convention, Poll Shows
Bypass surgery among most common in USA
Cardiologist: Clinton's outlook good
A warning from Intel sets stocks tumbling

You have to scroll down for World News, which is always below news from the USA.

Memo to Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin: There are 190 countries out here. Cumulatively known as "World". We love the USA as much as any of them, but ... hey, fellas, give us a break.

Granted, Google is an American company, and they can do any damn thing they want. (Why not, we may ask, all the other American companies do.) But the Internet is used by the people of the planet. Isn't it about time that Google's owners acknowledged that their own wealth comes from the people of a world, not just a nation? And even if most of their trade is domestic, perhaps they might allow internationalism to transcend parochialism.

I'd urge Google to put world news at the top, above any individual nation's local concerns. Sure, it's not very difficult for the rest of us to scroll down past Oprah Winfrey's's facelift or Edward Kennedy's grumbling gallbladder, down to "The Rest of You", but the symbolism of placing six billion people below any one country is rather telling and, quite frankly, insulting.


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