Paul Jacob stresses an amusing little point about one of the things that makes capitalism great, as applied to Google.
Here I am, using Google for free. I've contributed nothing to its effort . . . unless curious well- and ill-wishers looking my name up on the search engine counts.
I couldn't be happier. I get a great service. And Google makes money . . . off of other people.
So, when I hear someone complaining about big, greedy companies, I shake my head. There are a number of companies I get free goods off of all the time. And, unlike the government, they don't come knocking on my door demanding payment just because I get some benefit….If Google were a government service, I'd be called a "free rider." My very existence would be something of a scandal to political philosophers and economists.
Slackers and freeloaders and Subgenii everywhere can delight even more in great public benefits, such as YouTube or MySpace, that actually are so far merely losing big money for the big money boys while providing, at least for now, a delightful public good.