Google redressed

Well, here are two screen-shots from today’s Google search pages.

google-clean

The first one is the one that is available in all countries: the virgin white screen which offers some more options the moment you use the mouse or the keyboard. It’s the Google as we know it.

However, as we know, Google has some problems to get a strong foothold in South Korea: its 2.2% share on the search engine market is somewhat disappointing. Therefore Google Korea decided to localize the search engine’s homepage. In doing so they try to create a more viable portal for Koreans to start their journey onto the web.

google-korea

Wait a minute, I’ve heard this before. Remember when MTV was putting out the same show in all countries? It was successful for some time. But then competition increased. The next thing all countries started to develop their localized versions of MTV: local presenters, native language and local performers. This move seemed quite successful to retain a large local audience.

This shows that, in the world of global media, local cultures are still quite persistent. A comforting thought… The question is when Google will follow Korea’s example in other countries.

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Maurice Vergeer

I am Maurice Vergeer, working at Communication Science department of the Radboud University Nijmegen, in the Netherlands.