German media mogul says people 'afraid' of Google

By Kyle Johnson,

A media mogul called out Google in a German newspaper, accusing the tech company of essentially having become an overgrown monopoly.

Matthias Dopfner, the CEO of German publisher Alex Springer SE, wrote an open letter in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Feuilleton titled "Why we fear Google."

Tech Times reports that the open letter was a response to Google chief Eric Schmidt, who wrote about the relationship between the two companies as they looked to work together in a "profitable partnership."

Schmidt argued that Google is a beneficial company for the world, looking to help those in media move forward, but Dopfner feels otherwise, saying that Google has grown quite large quickly and holds sway over others, such as directing people through search results to its own products over other potentially superior services or products.

Springer SE is a large publisher that requires a large Internet presence and so agreed to work with Google, as Dopfner explains it, with little choice. "We know no search engine alternative to increase our online reach," he said.

Dopfner also said Google's business model would "in less reputable circles would be called extortion."

He notes that Google is such a large part of the Internet, that in any other business, it would more or less be considered a monopoly. "Google is to the Internet what the Deutsche Post was to mail delivery or Deutsche Telekom to telephones. In those days there were national state monopolies."

Dopfner is also worried about privacy due to Google's size and expansion, such as the recent acquisition of Titan Aerospace and looking into driverless cars, as well as owning a top email service (GMail) and video hosting site (YouTube). "We are afraid of Google," he said, because the tech company is much more powerful than people realize, something the German CEO notes Schmidt has previously said himself.

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