“Google Wants Fastrack” WSJ reports…

In a word, boo.

The celebrated openness of the Internet — network providers are not supposed to give preferential treatment to any traffic — is quietly losing powerful defenders.

Google Inc. has approached major cable and phone companies that carry Internet traffic with a proposal to create a fast lane for its own content, according to documents reviewed by The Wall Street Journal. Google has traditionally been one of the loudest advocates of equal network access for all content providers.

Google and Verizon Close to Striking a Deal?

WSJ reports that the two giants may strike a deal that would see Verizon Wireless serve up Google as the default search engine on its mobile phones. (Note: that link may only provide a sneak peak of the article if you don’t subscribe, but you get the gist, and the rest is just background).

Could it be true? Anyone who owns an LG Dare, Verizon’s version of the iPhone, no matter what their sales associates tell you, can attest to how cumbersome the search process is. Half the time I launch the browser and just navigate to Google anyway.

According to WSJ, the deal is still in the making and wouldn’t close for a few weeks, at which point it’s anyone’s guess how soon they’d roll out Google on their phones.

But a guy can hope…

More from the Google Tent…

Over at PBS.org, freelance writer Simon Owens explores the implications the Big Tent (or the Google Tent as I’m fond of calling it) will have on the Democratic National Convention, how much more access bloggers will have this year, and whether the whole thing constitutes a consolation prize for progressives.

One quote caught me by surprise:

Despite the enthusiasm of many of the Big Tent participants I spoke to, there has been a fair amount of skepticism as well. In the comments section of an Alternet article about the tent, one person wrote that “any learned, critical thinking, reasoned human being would realize that this is a charade to sugar up and pacify the progressive community.”

Is it really ‘progressive’ thing?

If you follow the link and read the comment, posted by user blueapples26, this person hammers both Google and Digg for exhibiting decidedly undemocratic behavior. Now, I don’t disagree that both companies are less democratic than one might think, but I’m not sure the event is an attempt to placate progressives. Aren’t they setting up a similar tent at the Republican National Convention?