There’s a lot of jokes flying around about the Google pot calling Microsoft’s kettle black. Some wonder why it is ok for Google to set defaults, whilst Microsoft can’t. Given the power Microsoft has on the desktop, and the companies’ less-than-stellar history when it comes to competitive practices, Google do have a point, but it makes for some amusing commentary nevertheless:
“If Google wants to fully live up to its ideals – to really give primacy to the goal of user choice in search – it should open up its home page to other search engines. That would be easy to do without mucking up the page or the “user experience.” You could just add a simple drop down menu that would allow users to choose whether to do a search with Google’s engine, or Microsoft’s, or Yahoo’s, or one of the other, less-well-known engines that now exist”.
“The short version: the search box in IE7 is not Microsoftâ€™s. It belongs to the user. Our guiding principle for the search box in IE7 is that the user is in control. ….The typical default when users install IE7 on their Windows XP machines will most likely be their usual search engine. Despite claims from some people around the web, MSN is not â€œThe Default.â€
Never a dull moment in search.