Why Google is More Jewish Than Facebook

February 8, 2012 12:41 pm 3 comments

Robert Scoble (left) and Mark Zuckerberg (right) at F8. Photo: Brian Solis.

After filing to go public on the 1st of this month, Facebook’s highly anticipated offering is expected to be the largest in history, as the company is valued at up to $100 billion. The largest tech IPO since Google, market and technology focused outlets have been buzzing with comparisons between the two goliaths of the web and their ever heated competitiveness. But how do they match up when it comes to Jewish sensitivities?

Writing for CNN Money, Miguel Helft and Jessi Hempel wrote about Facebook and Google that, “In the long history of tech rivalries, rarely has there been a battle as competitive as the raging war between the web’s wonder twins.”
Their opposition to each other is played out in the public’s day to day online decision making. Many web users have at some point considered if enough of their friends are on Google+ to justify managing a second social media account, or, now that Facebook has an email function, should they shut down their gmail account and exclusively communicate though Facebook?

Keeping a close eye on the web traffic statistics of our site algemeiner.com, Google slightly leads Facebook, as our greatest traffic source, but both significantly dwarf all other sources. To a large degree our web strategy is built around our awareness that most internet users begin their daily information consumption routines at one of these two portals.

Helft and Hempel claim that the result of the struggle between the companies will ascertain our future direction online, writing, “these companies are fighting to see which of them will determine the future of the web — and the outcome will affect the way we get information, communicate, and buy and sell.” It is more likely however, that the reverse is true. It is the evolution of our habits that will give either company the edge over the other, as Facebook and Google respectively represent opposing modes of intellectual modus operandi. The future will be determined by the consumer, not the techies.

In Google’s web, the journey of discovery begins around a question, an idea, a thought or a project. A favorite of the intellectually curious, Google’s home page is completely blank, thus the individual must take the initiative and direct the page’s population with content. “Everything starts with a search…..If you want to learn about a medical condition or decide which television to buy, you search,” the CNN article explains.

The path to Facebook on the other hand often begins in a vacuum and is essentially the refuge of the intellectually lazy or becomes our destination during our intellectually lazy moments, as the article continues “rather than search for a news article, you wait for your friends to tell you what to read.”

Writing for the Wall Street Journal, anthropologist Lionel Tiger argues that indeed Facebook’s appeal is to our most primal selves. He writes, “Mr. Zuckerberg has re-primatized a group of humans of unprecedented number, diffusion and intensity…..And why? Just because we’re primates with endlessly deep interest in each other, with a knack and need to groom each other—either physically, as monkeys do, or with “What a nice hairdo/dress/divorce/promotion!” as Facebookworms do.”

Google however represents a stark contrast. In the book ‘Start up nation,’ Yoelle Maarek, head of Google Israel’s research and development center explains the Jewish roots of ‘search,’ saying, “As Israelis and Jews, we are the people of the Book. We like to consult texts. We like to search.” The authors also point out that, “In 2008 Google Israel sold $100 million in advertising, about double the previous year and 10 percent of the total advertising market in Israel – a higher market share than Google has in most countries.”

Throughout history, intellectual rigor and tireless exploration of the world we live in, have been qualities that Jews have striven towards. As such, whilst both Facebook and Google are creations of young Jewish whiz kids, Google is the platform that should appeal most to the aspirational Jew within.
The Author is the director of the Algemeiner Journal and the GJCF and can be e-mailed at defune@gjcf.com. Please visit www.algemeiner.com for more information.

3 Comments

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Blogs 10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    10 New Hollywood Movies That Aim to Show Support for Israel (SATIRE)

    Ten major film studios are currently in production on projects that promote a decidedly pro-Israeli narrative. In famously liberal Hollywood, such a development has left mouths agape and set tongues a wagging. Since the Jewish State began defending itself from the thousands of rockets that Hamas has hurled at it – as well as ongoing terror attacks and murders, the overwhelming number of Tinseltown’s producers, directors, actors, and studio moguls have remained indifferent to the plight of millions of Israeli [...]

    Read more →
  • Featured Israel Sports So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    So Close: Israeli Judoka Loses Crown in World Cup Final, Finishes With Silver (VIDEO)

    Israeli Judoka Yarden Gerbi (63kg), 25, of Netanya, on Thursday lost the final round at the Judo World Cup, and her world title to Clarisse Agbegnenou of France, at a match held in Russia. “I have mixed feelings,” Gerbi told Israeli Army radio. But, “I shouldn’t assume that I’d win the world Judo championship twice in a row,” she admitted. Gerbi won gold in Rio De Janeiro last year. “When I made my decision, I knew it was going to [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Jewish Identity Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    Surviving the Holocaust by Hiding Their Faith (REVIEW)

    “Jews Out!” was just the name of a child’s game that three little girls played in World War II Europe. But all is not as it seems because the three girls were Jewish, but hiding their true identities. In award-winning author R. D. Rosen’s riveting non-fiction work, Such Good Girls, “Jews Out!” wasn’t a game; it was a struggle for survival. The girls, Sophie, Flora, and Carla, grew up at a time and a place that did not allow them [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    Twenty Years On, the Real and Radical Legacy of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach

    JNS.org – “He was part hippie, part yippie, part beatnik, and part New Age,” wrote Elli Wohlgelernter in a Jerusalem Post eulogy in 1994, following the Oct. 20 passing of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. Twenty years later, more robust accounts of Carlebach’s life have come to the surface. Earlier this year, Natan Ophir published the book Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach: Life, Mission & Legacy. This past summer, Rabbi Shlomo Katz’s The Soul of Jerusalem hit the shelves. But even the authors will admit [...]

    Read more →
  • Blogs Music Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    Beatlemania Invades the Gaza Strip (SATIRE)

    As Hamas loses its grip on power in the Gaza Strip as a result of war, poverty and disillusionment, the Islamist terrorist group has developed an ingenious way to raise the moral of the 1.7 million Palestinian Arabs it was elected to serve. While currently focused on delivering a rocket into every Israeli home, Hamas has not left its own people behind. To gently wipe away the tears of children strategically placed inside kindergartens as human shields, the Hamas Interior Ministry has [...]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Spirituality/Tradition Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    Removing Jesus’ Jewish Identity From Artwork

    In a strong statement that challenges the historic divide between Christianity and Judaism, Pope Francis recently proclaimed, “Inside every Christian is a Jew.” But if you look at Renaissance artworks that depict Jesus, you will not find any evidence of a Jew inside the Christianized Jesus — even though the Gospels in the New Testament tell us that Jesus was Jewish to the core. Getting that point across to the public is a daunting task, as I learned in interviews I [...]

    Read more →
  • Music Personalities Recycling His Roots

    Recycling His Roots

    JNS.org – Having started his career playing on his family’s pots and pans, Jewish musician Billy Jonas has maintained this homemade performance ethic while spreading his messages of simple living and environmentalism to a shared home throughout the world. After beginning in the kitchen, Jonas soon moved to the music room, where he picked up the piano, guitar, and trombone. These days, the multi-talented multi-instrumentalist plays on with pretty much anything he can find, including cans, bottles buckets, and other recycled-object [...]

    Read more →
  • Book Reviews Personalities Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living

    Jewish Renewal Movement Founder’s Insights Form a New Guide for Senior Living

    JNS.org – Sara Davidson’s The December Project is a new book that should be read by all senior citizens, and by those who hope to live a long life, for it raises a question that most of us have not been taught how to answer: What should we do in that final stage of our lives? Many of us continue working past the traditional retirement age of 65, not because we need the money and not because we find the [...]

    Read more →



Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.