Top 20 reasons google sucks

19 min

-1 points

Google has so deeply permeated our collective psyche, it’s been linguistically transformed into a verb – the concept of navigating our daily tasks without the facility to ‘swiftly Google’ any given topic is a notion beyond our comprehension.

This corporate behemoth is reminiscent of an iceberg – we interact with the visible segment above water almost daily, yet there’s an enormous hidden part submerged beneath the surface, engaging in numerous activities unbeknownst to most of us.

Top 20 reasons google sucks
Top 20 reasons google sucks

Indeed, the ubiquity of Google in our collective consciousness is such that its transition into a verb reflects an irrefutable reality – a day without the capability to ‘promptly Google’ various aspects is simply inconceivable.

But what don’t we know about this shady behemoth? And, is it time to become Anti Google? ????

Important disclosure: we’re proud affiliates of some tools mentioned in this guide. If you click an affiliate link and subsequently make a purchase, we will earn a small commission at no additional cost to you (you pay nothing extra).

  • It Takes Income Away From Writers ????????
  • It Follows You Around ????????‍♀️
  • It Rewards Rip-Off Content ????
  • It Squashes Its Competitors ????
  • It’s Horribly Litigious ????
  • It Really Sucks At Innovation ????
  • Google Doesn’t Protect Their Users’ Privacy ????
  • It Controls Your Mind ????
  • It Restricts Access To Information ????❌
  • It Was Going To Literally Kill People ????
Issue Reason
Privacy Concerns Some people believe that Google collects too much personal data.
Data Monopolization Google is seen by some as having too much control over data and information on the internet.
Search Result Bias There are claims that Google’s search results are biased politically or commercially.
Ad Overload Some users feel overwhelmed by the number and intrusiveness of ads on Google’s platforms.
Google Ecosystem Lock-in Some users find it difficult to move away from Google’s suite of interconnected services once they start using them.
Censorship Concerns Some believe that Google engages in inappropriate censorship in some of its services.
7. Discontinued Products Google has a history of discontinuing services, which some users find disruptive.
Lack of Innovation Some argue that Google isn’t as innovative as it used to be, especially in certain areas.

It Takes Income Away From Writers ????????

Most of us accept the way that Google works because it’s so omnipresent in our lives.

We use it constantly to access the content we like. So why is that a problem? Well, under the old model, information was largely contained in books and newspapers.

They charged a flat price, and a portion of that money found its way to the writers.

Now, Google links you directly to articles that it hasn’t written itself, and yet it earns huge amounts of advertising revenue from this practice.

The same logic applies to Google-owned platforms, such as YouTube, YouTube Red, or YouTube Music.

These allow people to access music and other creative output for free, meaning they aren’t buying albums anymore.

Some academics have suggested a 50/50 revenue split model, where Google would share profits and bring much-needed financial support to journalists, musicians, and creatives, but there is no sign of that.

It Follows You Around

A wide range of people now have several Google-enabled devices in their homes.

You may have an Android phone with embedded Google tools (Google Chrome, Google Navigation, Google Play Services, Google Play Music, Google Store, and more), a laptop running searches, a smart TV, or a voice assistant in your home (Alexa Google).

And all the information collected seamlessly by these devices is used to turn your life into big data.

Now, if Google thinks you’re interested in something, it will relentlessly follow you around the web with advertising content related to those topics.

So, if you once happened to search for something slightly embarrassing – it may still be floating around in your advertisement cookies, ready to pop up in a work meeting or when the in-laws have come around.

And the privacy policy settings for all this data are cleverly hidden away where most people wouldn’t think of deleting them – not that it would stop Google from storing what they already know about you.

It Rewards Rip-Off Content

Of course, verifying the source of all content on the World Wide Web is a pretty impossible task, but as de facto gatekeepers of almost all the content and knowledge online.

Google isn’t doing a particularly great job of safeguarding genuine content sources.

The problem is, when you run an operation entirely governed by algorithms, there will always be ways for unscrupulous people to leverage those rules to their own advantage.

It’s near impossible to achieve a top ranking for your content without having very deep pockets.

A lot of people think that search indexing is an unbiased process – but that couldn’t be further from the truth. Information on domains ending with .edu, .gov, and .org, or with backlinks from these domains, are given a privileged ranking.

A higher quantity of material is also seen as a good thing – which means websites that rip off content from other sources, but have a high publication rate, can rise up the rankings, just through the virtue of publishing three times a day.

Spam reports are not actioned and are dealt with a lot of the time due to the lack of resources in this area. And so rip-offs and politically motivated content are allowed to rise to the top.

It Squashes Its Competitors

When you are the size of Google, apparently you get to set a lot of your own rules. It might have the motto ‘Don’t Be Evil’, but some of Google’s tactics are highly questionable.

It Squashes Its Competitors
It Squashes Its Competitors

Don’t forget this is a body that almost entirely controls one of our most precious resources – knowledge – and yet is very opaque about its motivations, doesn’t answer to any regulatory body, and is staffed by a board that is not democratically elected.

Google is basically above the law or any ethical control

And part of the reason that Google stays at the top is its less-than-fair approach to the competition.

The European Commission started an investigation into Google violating antitrust laws.

They concluded that Google had “abused its dominant position by artificially restricting the possibility of third-party websites to display search advertisements from Google’s competitors”.

So, it’s either Google’s way or the highway if you’re a small website.

It’s Horribly Litigious

When you have the money and the power that Google does, it’s practically game over for companies and individuals who fall on the wrong side of them.

This is obvious if we take a look at some of the lawsuits that Google has entered into over the years.

Over the years, Google has been involved in all sorts of weird and wonderful legal action, including by people who had their privacy violated by Google Maps images, false personal information returned in searches, and misinformation leading to injury.

It's Horribly Litigious
It’s Horribly Litigious

Indeed, Google was forced to agree to a $90 million settlement in a class-action lawsuit over click fraud in 2006.

And how many pieces of forged content, copyrighted images, false and damaging information, and inaccurate promotions do you think Google still undertakes?

It Really Sucks At Innovation

With its almost limitless budget, Google is in a unique position to do immense amounts of good through innovation.

You could almost believe a cure for cancer or a way to reverse global warming could be found if they channeled a portion of their enormous resources into the problem.

Google’s track record of innovation is….not great.

The website Google Cemetery lists all the dead projects that Google has invested millions in over the years – the most high-profile of which was surely Google+, which shuttered after seven years of work and investment.

And these are just the run-of-the-mill strands of work for the company – iGoogle, Google Gears, Google Talk – related to its core service.

If you expand the picture to include the Google X moonshot projects, which have been shuttered off under a separate division of Google’s parent company Alphabet (perhaps to further shield them from scrutiny), the waste of time and budget gets even higher, and unrelated content can begin to filter through the cracks.

And although no innovation occurs without failure, Google does have an extraordinarily high rate of failure when you consider the resources they have at its disposal.

Well, some critics have pointed to Google’s ‘build it, and they will come’ approach as being highly problematic.

The company and product team seems very resistant to marketing and market testing, despite their unparalleled ability to do both – in fact, anything apart from SEO and search engine ads seems to be anathema to them.

Google Doesn’t Protect Their Users’ Privacy

Almost every large website has suffered a data breach or privacy concerns at some point in time.

As hackers grow ever more sophisticated, and we give more and more of our personal information out, it’s harder to avoid – but when an entity as large as Google suffers one, it’s in a different league.

Google did not notify any affected users of the issue.

An API bug on the now-defunct Google+ exposed details of over 500,000 users, a huge privacy policy violation.

It allowed third-party apps (which sometimes request permission to access limited amounts of the data held by Google on an individual user in order to run) to also gain access to information marked as private.

This could include highly sensitive information such as your occupation, your nickname, date of birth, and your email address – all stuff which could easily be used to gain access to personal documents, banking details and more.

They also claimed that they couldn’t determine which users were affected due to the short span of time they keep logs for, which sounds misleading to say the least.

The issue only came to light in 2015, when the company was preparing to meet the GDPR regulations deadline set by the EU.

It Controls Your Mind

The idea of a large, faceless corporation exerting some kind of mind control over the population sounds like the stuff of a sci-fi novel.

But there is a growing body of evidence that shows the drastic extent to which Google is controlling, shaping, and manipulating public opinion – to very dark ends.

Search Engine Manipulation Effect

A study in 2015 found that the actions of search engines (meaning Google, seeing as it’s completely statistically dominant) could shift the voting preferences of undecided or ‘swing’ voters by anywhere from 20-80 percent.

The study also estimated that this could change the outcome of over 25 percent of elections worldwide – a truly worrying claim.

It Restricts Access To Information

Although it was effectively shut down due to internal conflict, Google was working on a project to develop a censored search engine for use in China, where access to information on the internet is strictly controlled by the government to suit their agenda, and users can’t get to certain parts of the internet.

Google employees had been working with a website in Beijing to develop blacklists to build a censored search engine for use in China, which was eventually revealed by The Intercept.

It would have effectively blacked out huge categories of information, including human rights, democracy, and protests, in line with the viewpoints of the authoritarian reigning Communist government in the country.

For many, this is beyond unethical, and a huge internal division over the project eventually caused the company to call time on it.

It Was Going To Literally Kill People

Restricting access to information, profiting from private data, wasting unparalleled innovation resources, and flagrantly disregarding user privacy may be all in a day’s work for the search giant.

However, even with that shady ethical background, most people would draw the line at actually developing technology designed to kill. But not Google.

Washington Post investigation to develop AI technology to be used in military work.

It Was Going To Literally Kill People
It Was Going To Literally Kill People

Project Maven aimed to use artificial intelligence supplied by Google to analyze drone videos to help in tracking and killing the opposition during warfare.

The project would have seen an analysis of hours of footage taken from Predator drones to pinpoint targets for military attack.

An open letter signed by thousands of Google employees was sent to chief executive Sundar Pichai.

This eventually resulted in a volte-face when Google dropped the project and also decided to develop new company principles relating to the ethical use of AI technology.

However, bearing in mind how ready Google has been to abandon its scruples in all the examples listed above, this may not mean very much at all.

With all the violations and misdemeanors listed above, it’s clear that Google doesn’t have the will to regulate itself, and is simply too large to be fully regulated externally.

What Can You Use Instead?

If Google does not or has never appealed to you, what are your other options? And, do they do the job?

This question warrants a whole article on its own, but here is the number one alternative to the search giant, which is DuckDuckGo.

DuckDuckGo is a search engine that prioritizes privacy and avoids personalized search results. It has tracker blocking and site encryption, so you do not have to feel like you’re being watched every minute of every day.

There are other options out there if you are tired of Google’s shenanigans and want to go anti-Google, many with efficient browser extensions, you just have to keep a lookout.

I Hate Google’s User Interface Design and Logo Design

Let’s take a look at the old Google logo designs since 1998 till today. I know that there will probably be a lot of people disagreeing with me and that’s fine, but I just find that the old Google logo is so bland. The new Google logo is not that different. Over the years they have modified it slightly by changing the font and going from beveled letters with shadow to the flat design icon today, but still I don’t see the message that an icon should convey. Kind of unimaginative from a company that is so creative.

Besides my daytime job as a programmer, I’m also a graphic designer. I don’t pretend to be the top authority in logo design, but let’s take a look at this:

I Hate Google’s User Interface Design and Logo Design
I Hate Google’s User Interface Design and Logo Design

Did you know where the Google name comes from? It comes from googol, which is what mathematicians call the number written as a 1 followed by 100 zeros.

Well, if the logo is a reference to that number with a lot of zeros, I have to ask this:

Why are the “G” and the “e” in the Google logo not based on perfect circles like the “o” is? Why does Google suck so bad at logo design?

I know what you will say: What does this guy know?

But listen, if you think I’m the only one that though the new Google logo sucks, let me show you something.

Google released their new logo on September 1st, 2015. There was even a doodle for the new Google logo. Now, let’s take a look at the following graph from Google trends.

Google Sucks Search Trends

Google Sucks Search Trends
Google Sucks Search Trends

There’s a spike right between August 30 and September 5 2015, when the new logo was released. This shows that people were searching for “google sucks” about 100% more times than usual. Coincidence, I don’t think so.

Also, I feel that Google applications have always suffered from lack of beauty on the UI side. Leaving aside the search engine, which one might argue that does not require a fancy look and feel, if you take a look at Gmail for example, it is anything but beautiful.

I think that Google always knew that it didn’t have what it takes to create beautiful UI’s, so one of the best moves they did was to hire Matías Duarte, the creator of the Material Design specs. I’m not saying that Material Design is the best thing since sliced bread, but it’s a huge improvement in the approach that Google showed regarding UI. Material design is the equivalent of iOS Human Interface Guidelines and I think it is the missing link that Google needed.

I Hate Google Application Names

Why does Google suck at naming their applications? Why do they seem to lack any kind of imagination in that area?

Let’s say that you work for company and you develop an app that sells books. Your boss asks you to think about a name for the app and you come up with the name Books. What would you expect your boss to say. Well, in case of Google apparently somebody said “Great idea!” if you look at Google Books. Well, that kind of sucks, where is the creativity. The same goes for Google Maps.

Apparently naming applications at Google is not only lacking creativity, but sometimes things that don’t make too much sense come up. I asked a friend, which is totally agnostic of smartphone technologies what he things Google Play is about. First try he said “A place to download music?” and then, when I said wrong, he said “A place where you play games?”. Well though the second attempt was closer to the truth, it still does not make too much sense that the place where you download and install Android applications is called Google Play.

I will not go on and explain why Google Drive is also a bit uninspired – I know it started as a competitor for Dropbox, but now it’s doing a lot more than you would not expect from your “online drive”.

Google Now – I wouldn’t even know where to start to explain the relationship between the name and what the app does. It shows you things now? Guess all apps do that.

The last example is YouTube Red, the paid, ad free service from YouTube. What’s wrong with that, nothing except sounds too much like RedTube, a well known porn website. Ooops!

I Hate Google Application Names
I Hate Google Application Names

Google Image Search

I have to admit that technology-wise the image search is quite impressive if you look at the fact that you can actually search similar images by uploading an image directly in the search field. So why did I add the image search as a reason to why Google sucks?

Well, first of all image indexing is quite chaotic. For at least the last 7 years people have been complaining about Google’s inability to stop spammers getting top ranks in the image search results. Maybe I’m missing something, but how hard is it to figure out where an image appeared first?

Among other websites I’ve been involved in is PSDDude a website that presents Photoshop tutorials and resources created mostly by me. It’s a very image-centric website and the content is original. However, though images from my site are indexed and show up in the search results, after only a week or two they are replaced with the results from other websites that use my images (with, but mostly without permission). Either hotlinking (images linked to my site directly) or not the result is the same, my images appear in the results but link to the other sites using them. Disappointing, but that’s the way it is.

Another thing that sucks in Google images is the fact that you have to click several times on the image search results until you get to the actual image. I can imagine that Google wants to keep you on their site as long as possible, but come on! Hey Google, do you really want to get to a stage where you iframe photos from websites just to keep us forever on your site? Not nice.

Google Image Search
Google Image Search

Google Now search based suggestions

Here’s a story to explain why I think this is another reason why Google sucks. I have a mobile phone running Android and I also have an Android TV dongle. Both of them have a Google Now widget on the desktop. One morning turned on my TV and on the desktop I got stock market info for Compass Diversified Holdings (CODI). Just that you know, I’m not into the financial market in any way.

So, how the heck did I get CODI on my TV and later popping up every day on my mobile? It’s simple: I remembered trying to reach this site “” by hitting enter too soon after “codi”. Did that only once, but that was enough reason for Google to think that I want the stock price every day for CODI. I really don’t and would like to know more about other things that I actually access every day.

Site indexing and avoiding spammers

I know that site searching is Google’s primary business and their starting point and one might argue that since they are number one they are doing a great job. I partially agree. Here’s  my arguments to why I say Google search indexing sucks.

I’ve often heard that Google search indexing and search ranking is “democratic”. That’s simply not true. Considering that backlinks from .org, .gov and .edu have greater value than from other domains, and the fact that these links are often obtained via donations and sponsorship is only democratic in the big corporation kind of way. The reality is that it’s extremely difficult to make it really big on the web today without funding and without ads.

But, that’s not even half of the reason why I say that Google search sucks. I’m talking about the fact that Google seems to have a hard time to keep pace with spammers. I mean sites ranking higher due to higher quantity and not quality. Websites ripping off content from other websites will always have more content than websites actually producing content. But Google will always move up websites that publishes “fresh content” 3 times a day, even though that content is not produced by that site.

Google Search Engine Is Getting Worse Not Better

Google updates its algorithms periodically to try and make it as fair as possible for everybody. I realize it’s not an easy task and that they have made a lot of progress on this line. There is a “web spam team” at Google and you can file spam reports with them, though it’s my impression that the team is fairly small and that they try to make it difficult enough to fill in such a report such that they are not swamped with reports.

Google Hangouts sucks

Google’s text and voice/video chat tool is a replacement for the desktop Google Talk app that was terminated in February 2015. Replacement is not an exact word for this since Hangouts it not a desktop app and works in the browser only. But my reason for saying that Google Hangouts sucks refers to the mobile app.

First of all being logged in in Hangouts on my Samsung Galaxy S2 will drain the battery in aprox. 10 hours. So, I always have to micro-manage it. It’s true though that the latest versions seem to have improved on battery usage.

Another thing is that signing out from Hangouts is a 3000 XP points quest. You have to search for the “Sign out” button somewhere in the settings of the app, and in the last version I think that they’ve moved it again. Not too great, especially because here’s what happens for me: I’m logged in on Hangouts while on the road to “hangout” with my boss. That all works great, we can chat if there’s anything urgent, but then I get in the office and I’m on my desktop.

Whenever I get a chat my desktop blings, my mobile blings. That is very annoying Google. Because you are already telling me that due to traffic I’m going to be late for work by 5 minutes, wouldn’t it be a good use of tracking my location and figuring out that I’m already at the office and not bling-bling my brains out? Or better yet, if I’m already logged in on my desktop, why would I want my notifications also on my mobile? That just sucks.

Why Google Sucks At Fair-play Against Competition

“Don’t be evil” says the Google motto. Very good motto I would say, but very difficult to keep by. When it comes to being fair to competition Google, like any other “respectable” huge corporation simply sucks. And that’s not just me talking. Recently the European Commission has been investigating Google practices that violate anti-trust laws. Here’s quote from the EU Commision saying that Google

has abused its dominant position by artificially restricting the possibility of third party websites to display search advertisements from Google’s competitors

That does not sound too good. It actually sounds kind of evil. So, Google, don’t be evil!

Google Chrome updating and version numbering

Ok, now I’m going to get technical.

I’m going to talk about why Google Chrome sucks at version numbering. For those of you who are not familiar with version numbering, it’s just a group of numbers tagging a certain software so that you can identify it as to when it was developed.

Usually it’s 3 groups of numbers separated by a comma indicating the major release number, the minor release number and the patch number. Every time the software gets a patch or a new release the respective number is increased.

What’s wrong with Google Chrome version numbering? Well it’s plain weird. In my view major releases are about “major” changes in the software – pun intended. The major release at the start of 2016 was 48. Half a year later we are at version 54 in beta. Whoooa! That’s one major release every month!

Hey Google, are all of those actual major releases? If I had a major change in my life every month I would probably go insane. And that’s not all. It seems that the frequency of major releases is actually increasing. So, we will probably reach a stage where we have one major release a week and then one a day. Well, that will be fun…

And that my friend is why google sucks at managing version number assignment.

Privacy policy

Just like most big companies online, Google also sucks when it comes to the contents of its privacy policy. This is not an uncommon problem online. It’s so common that in most cases users don’t even care to read it and just hope for the best.

As recently as a month ago an online study created a fake social network website. Its TOS agreements required giving up first born—and users gladly consented. Also, the study said that participants also agreed to allow data sharing with NSA and employers.

Mainly the privacy policy of Google services is so flexible and allows such a wide range of private data uses by Google that no company in Europe will even touch an app if it involves the use of Google products.

Google Navigation and Google Maps offline

I’m referring to Google Maps, the mobile app.

I’ve often found myself on vacation abroad and bound by charges limitations on my mobile service. I think that Google Navigation is a great service and I wanted to use it.

However, I did not want to have Google Navigation download the maps everywhere I go since that would have costed me quite a lot. So, I thought “hey, Google Maps has an offline feature”. That is true, and I gave it a try.

To my surprise though Google Maps offline downloads the maps, but they are not usable for navigation. Well, how should I put that, it sucks! There’s probably a technical reason behind that, but come on Google, figure it out already.

Here it is, my 10 reasons why Google sucks. My only intention with this post is constructive criticism and to point out things that Google can and should fix. What do you think about this subject? I’m sure there are a lot of you that have at least one other item to add to the list. If so, don’t hesitate to drop me a comment and let me know what it is.

Other honorable mentions:

ReCaptcha Google Sucks

You have probably encountered in many places the ReCaptcha “I’m not a robot” component from Google. While very useful to prevent spam bots, it’s also very annoying sometimes when it provides challenges like identifying a store front or indicating tiles containing street signs.

ReCaptcha Google Sucks
ReCaptcha Google Sucks

I have ran into this problem multiple times and had difficulties in figuring out whether a building is really a store or not. Also, with the street signs, am I supposed to also select the squares containing the sign support feet? What about if a small corner of the street sign barely bleeds over into the next square, do I also select that?

Why Google sucks so much even at such a simple thing like captcha I have no clue.



Google sucks Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

  1. Why do people think Google sucks?
    There are a variety of reasons that people might be dissatisfied with Google. Some are concerned about privacy issues, as Google collects a significant amount of data on its users. Others take issue with its search algorithms, which they perceive as biased or unfair. Some users might not like the interface or find Google’s services to be too intrusive. It’s also worth noting that, like any product or service, Google may simply not meet everyone’s needs or preferences.
  2. What are the privacy concerns with Google?
    Google collects and uses a large amount of data about its users. This includes search history, location data, device information, and more. While Google argues that this data is used to improve user experiences and provide personalized services, some users are uncomfortable with the amount of information that Google collects and how it may be used or shared.
  3. How does Google’s search algorithm work? Is it biased?
    Google’s search algorithm uses a complex system to deliver search results based on the keywords entered by the user. Factors considered include relevance, website authority, and the user’s personal search history. However, some critics argue that Google’s search results are biased and can favor certain websites or viewpoints over others. Google maintains that its search algorithm is designed to provide the most relevant and useful results, and is not influenced by any biases.
  4. What are the alternatives to Google’s products and services?
    There are numerous alternatives to Google’s products and services. For search, consider Bing, Yahoo, or privacy-focused search engines like DuckDuckGo. Instead of Gmail, you might use ProtonMail or Outlook. For cloud storage, Dropbox or OneDrive can be alternatives to Google Drive. For productivity software, Microsoft Office is a popular alternative to Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides.
  5. How can I protect my privacy when using Google’s services?
    To protect your privacy while using Google’s services, you can adjust your privacy settings in your Google account. This might include turning off location tracking, managing your search history, or changing your ad settings. You could also consider using privacy-focused browsers like Firefox or Brave, or using a VPN to further obscure your data.
  6. Why do some people find Google’s interface to be intrusive?
    Some people find Google’s interface to be intrusive because of the way it integrates many different services and functions. For example, Google Search also displays personalized ads, and Google Maps might suggest places to visit based on your location history. Google’s services often interact with each other in ways that can feel invasive to some users.
  7. Does Google sell my personal information?
    As of my knowledge cutoff in September 2021, Google does not sell your personal information to third parties. Google uses the data it collects to personalize and improve its own services, as well as to display targeted advertising. However, this practice can sometimes be mistaken for selling data because of the way it’s used to deliver personalized ads.

Remember that the answers to these questions might change or evolve over time as Google’s practices and policies change, or as new information becomes available. Always make sure to check the most recent and up-to-date resources for the latest information.

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With over a decade of writing obituaries for the local paper, Jane has a uniquely wry voice that shines through in her newest collection of essays, which explore the importance we place on legacy.


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