Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Dave Winer: Google's toolbar and content modification

Dave Winer: Google's toolbar and content modification All the arguments against Google AutoLink in one handy summary. Winer actually says something nice about Microsoft ("Microsoft's Smart Tags provided an opt-out in the form of an HTML meta tag") ... a couple paragraphs before he jumps on the Microsoft = evil bandwagon ("If Google goes ahead with this feature, it seems then that Microsoft will argue that if Google can do it, why can't they?"). Pretty deeply nested, since Winer was also one of the people who (armed with all the facts or not) fueled the controversy about smart tag technology in 2001.

FWIW, BTW, I suspect Microsoft ultimately backed down on smart tag technology in IE during 2001 because the opportunity cost, relative to appearing to capitulate to the controversy at the time, was low -- that is, I suspect Microsoft didn't think it was all that big of a deal -- primarily because they were trying to support smart tags in Office documents published to the web (not exactly the primary Office usage model, then or now) and not, as Winer and others asserted, trying to subvert the Internet by redirecting every page request to MSN.
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