Brent Lang explains why for The Wrap:
They’re supposed to be the good guys, right?
No longer. Over the past year, several technology giants have begun to shed their status as white knights. And it’s precisely because they’ve been held to such a high standard that when they behave like the multi-billion-dollar corporations they are, their image takes a shellacking.
Move over, MIcrosoft. The tech triumvirate of Google, Apple and Facebook have surpassed even that longtime evil empire to become the new villains of New Media.
“These companies have wrapped themselves in a lot of the idealism surrounding the web, but their business realities are beginning to be in conflict with the rhetoric they use to promote themselves,” Nicholas Carr, a technology writer and the author of “The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google,” told TheWrap.
By failing to live up to their lofty talking points — Google’s corporate philosophy states “you can make money without doing evil” — all three have suffered serious public relations hits.
- Apple’s troubles are linked with the iPhone 4 roll-out this summer. And it’s not just the engineering problems: The company’s (read: Steve Jobs’) combative response to customer complaints created enormous friction. That was on top of its decision to call for a police raid on a Gizmodo.com editor’s house after a prototype of the phone leaked.
- Google has presented itself as defender of net neutrality. Last week, however, the company backed away from that stance by entering into a joint agreement with Verizon on a policy for handling internet content. This plan could lead to movie studios being charged extra if they want to deliver high-quality downloads of films, as well as medical companies, sports and gaming.
- Facebook found itself embroiled in a debate over privacy concerns earlier this year. News that a loophole in the service’s privacy settings allowed advertisers to access user identification and personal information prompted a massive backlash…
[continues at The Wrap]