I am sure there must have been some highs from using you, something akin to witnessing an actual wedding or road trip or birth or sunset or a new poem taking shape or a really great poem by a friend. It’s just that I only remember the lows. My general feeling of inadequacy, lack of beauty, and wit, all fueled by endless and instant comparison with others in the broad daylight of numbers of likes and comments. So, in secret, I unfollowed every single one of my friends, and kept only the newsfeeds of the papers and blogs and websites I felt I could trust to give me an honest account of what was happening in the world.
So if you constantly feel busy and distracted, it’s not your fault. But there is something you can do about it: You can change the defaults of distraction and busyness by reconfiguring your technology. Let’s get real: If you want to reclaim control of your time, it’s your responsibility. No digital wellbeing feature or anti-technology manifesto is going to undo these defaults. And nobody cares more about your time than you do… But you can’t wait for tech companies to give you back your time. It’s on you.
Critics say the search giant is squelching competition before it begins. Should the government step in?
But on Google, Foundem had effectively disappeared. And Google, of course, was where a vast majority of people searched online.
The Raffs wondered if this could be some kind of technical error, so they began checking their coding and sending email to Google executives, begging them to fix whatever was causing Foundem to vanish. Figuring out whom to write, and how to contact them, was a challenge in itself. Although Google’s parent company bills itself as a diversified firm with about 80,000 employees, almost 90 percent of the company’s revenues derive from advertisements, like the ones that show up in search. As a result, there are few things more important to Google’s executives than protecting the firm’s search dominance, particularly among the most profitable kinds of queries, such as those of users looking to buy things online. In fact, at about the same time the Raffs were starting Foundem.com, Google executives were growing increasingly concerned about the threats that vertical-search engines posed to Google’s business.