The two guys who started Dodgeball leave in a hissy fit. Google bought Dodgeball in mid-2005.
Dodgeball was the pre-cursor to Twitter and Jaiku (albeit a bit more focused on just cell phones than either of those newer services are). Last summer it was the rage with many of the San Francisco cool kids, er, influencers. I remember Irina and Eddie using it almost non stop on our trip to Montana.
So, why didn’t Google get it enough to give these two more resources? Easy. Same reason I couldn’t convince Microsoft to buy Flickr before Yahoo did.
It’s a small thing. A stupid thing. A lame thing.
Big companies have trouble grokking small things like Dodgeball. Heck, how many of you have called Twitter “really lame” in the past two months? Tons!
More evidence that Google is having difficulty getting small things? I heard a rumor that Google executive Marissa Mayer almost killed the Google Reader team because she didn’t think it would get popular. Feed readers are still “small things.” Seeing business value in them is difficult.
It seems that management is trying to get a handle on the chaos that is Google but in doing so is removing some of what made Google attractive to entrepreneurial developers.
What are you hearing from your Google friends?
On my Link Blog there’s a post by Loke Uei about Silverlight (Microsoft’s new Media Platform) comparing it to other platforms. The post is in Google Reader, but has been removed from his blog (I’m in the middle of a link blog posting frenzy, so the post in question has already moved to the second page).
That behavior always gets me to focus in on what got removed.
Loke: I’d recommend putting the post back up or, at minimum, put up a new post on the same URL that explains that the first post was removed.
Remember, once something gets posted on the Internet is CAN NOT be removed.
I was just reading TechMeme, saw that Microsoft and others want us (the government is us, remember) to look into Google’s acquisition of DoubleClick.
That made me remember back to 2000 when Microsoft would send MVPs like me constant pleas to help out in its fight against the government. “Keep innovation free” the pleas used to say. Microsoft was under attack by the DOJ and wanted us to write letters to editors, tell our friends all about how Microsoft was being persecuted. Etc etc etc.
I was sympathetic to Microsoft back then. I thought it was under attack from competitors who had sour grapes cause they had — to put it politely — had their asses kicked in the marketplace by a smarter, stronger, faster, competitor.
OK, OK, I can hear some of you calling “shill, shill” right now, but sit down and wait for a second before you throw more tomatoes at my screen.
Isn’t it funny how there’s been a total turnaround at Microsoft in just six years? Instead of asking us to help poor old persecuted Microsoft out now we’re being asked to have the government look into the business of Google.
Now, you might not agree with me about either case, but I’ll be consistent at least. I was in Microsoft’s side against the government last time (they asked nicely). But I’m in Google’s side this time. Sounds a lot like Microsoft is now the company who had its ass kicked in the marketplace and is running to government regulators to get some relief.