Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Church of Google

A friend recently sent me an email about boycotting Google. Although he cleaned it up a bit, I believe it was one of those forwards that got forwarded. To tell the truth, I followed the link in the email and it made me laugh out loud. But I decided to investigate this.

First of all, let me say that I like Google. In all honestly, I would be hard pressed to follow through with such a boycott. You’re reading this blog because Google owns blogger. I YouTube a little. Youtube is owned by Google. I use Google Analytics and Google’s webmasters tools. I search primarily on Google and I also have several Google alerts.

And Google set up shop not too long ago in Michigan. In this day and age when Michigan is suffering so much economically, Google stepped into our fair state and brought some jobs. I thank God for this, and I thank the Google Guys as well. In fact, Google Ann Arbor is hiring. . . I just checked!

So, Boycott Google? Why, at this point in life, it would not only be a life-altering experience, it would mess a little bit with my sense of justice.

The reason for the boycott is a website that claims Google is God and has established a Church of Google. As I said, I followed the link and really thought the whole thing was a joke. Now, I’m the first one to say that we need to be careful about such things. I mean, if the church is sacred, then She is sacred and we ought to treat Her as such. But really, we do need to poke fun and laugh at things every now and again. Poking fun and enjoying a good laugh is not necessarily the same as sacrilege. So. . . what of this site?

I decided to do some research of my own. is, in fact, NOT owned by Google at all. If those suggesting we boycott Google read the fine print at the bottom of the page, they would have realized this. I debated about whether or not I should put that link in. I don't suggest anyone join the church of google or anything like that. . . But I mean, even the "Googlism" at the top of the page isn't quite the Google Logo. And even I, a non-graphic artist, can see that.

Alas, sometimes we are so quick to forward things, not realizing the harm this may cause. And to tell the truth, this is beginning to anger me. But I digress.

That website states that the Church of Google was founded by someone named MacPherson of Ontario. The domain, however, is registered to someone named Leudy. Now, I won’t list details on this blog because that would just be wrong. But a little e-investigation and one can find out all sorts of information about website owners.

For example, the domain name was purchased at Now, all things considered, would Google buy a domain at GoDaddy?? Come on, folks. Let’s get real here.

But there are a few lessons to be learned here.

You know, we tell our kids to be careful on MySpace. We tell them to avoid chat rooms. At my house, no one clears the URLs but me, The Mom. I decide when PC cleaners are run. . . .I know where you’ve been online. I know what your doing. I’m The Mom. That’s my job.

But you know, sometimes it’s the adults who just don’t get it. We must remember that what we write in our emails can be announced to the world. Cut and Paste. Fowards. It’s just too easy. Before we really forward information about a boycott we’d better be sure we have all of our facts straight. Anything less is, in fact, less than Christian behavior.

The other thing that is a little frightening is that the person who purchased this domain name didn’t bother with a privacy certificate. Domains by Proxy is an excellent service. But she didn’t bother. Sadly, she’s probably going to get inundated with all sorts of hate mail. . .both snail mail and electronic mail. I was able to find an email address, a street address, phone number. . . .it’s just too scarey. And all I did was search. I mean, I’m not black hat or white hat (probably closer to red hat!). My point is, it’s just too easy to find private info if one isn’t careful. You don’t need to be technically gifted at all.

See what I mean?
We try to teach our kids about online safety, when we aren’t practicing it ourselves. If you’re going to buy a domain for personal use, register for privacy. If it’s for a business and you want your business info out there, make sure you register with business address and information.

And for goodness sakes, if you’re going to forward information about a boycott make sure you’re boycotting what you’re boycotting for the right reasons. Do the research. Anything less is gossip. Period.

Google isn’t god, but is an internet giant. I’m certain that Google and the Google Guys don’t need me defending them. I’m certain Google has top-notch lawyers for that.

But I will defend my faith. And my beliefs are as such that I won’t forward a forward of a forward regarding any boycott until I investigate it for myself. It’s a justice thing. It’s the moral thing. It’s the right thing. It’s the Christian thing.


Anonymous said...

Good post. I'm the friend that Rubi got the Google e-mail from.

The point of my e-mail was certainly not to get anyone to worship the "Google God" nor was it the issue of privacy and how easy it is to find something out about someone.

My prayer was to raise awareness in something we are all already aware of: That we are to examine things for ourselves before sending them on.

For instance, so often, we get an e-mail in our inbox and, after reading it, we hit forward WITHOUT verifying the truthfulness of the e-mail's content.

Here's a few common examples:

The e-mail that has run rampant about how atheists are petitioning the FCC to get religious broadcasting banned from the American airwaves and how Dr. Dobson from Focus on the Family is going to save us all from this dastardly doing by putting on his Cape to fight Congress.

That's been around for years. Yet, it still gets circulated - sometimes by those in church leadership positions. It's completely false. No merit to it at all. But it still comes around.

Here's another...The one about how Obama is a Muslim (wrong) and wants to take over the country to do bad scary things (he's a politician, what else is he going to do? LOL).... And guess what else??? He didn't even put his hand on our Holy Bible when being sworn in!

Folks, it's ALL hogwash -well, kind of. Although newly elected pols are not mandated to place their hand on any book, it is a rite/tradition that started long ago.

I learn these things by examining for myself.

Who started the tradition? I haven't examined for myself that far- lol.

Actually, the elected politician who desired to place his hand on the Quran was a pro-choice, pro-labor Democrat (no, not the one from Michigan)from Minnesota who goes by the fairly American sounding name of Keith Ellison.

I examined for myself.

Here's a little caveat: Guess who else had their hand on the Quran to pose for smiling pictures with Mr. Ellison after he took his oath of office to uphold our Constitution? No, not Mr. Obama. It was the Madam Speaker of the House, the Democratic leader from California, Mrs. Nancy Pelosi.

I examined it for myself.

BTW, I'm not an Obama supporter or a Pelosi hater, but it's about being objective. I do not want my next President or Senator or Dogcatcher for that matter chosen -whomever she or he may be - as a result of personal, professional or spiritual slander.

Do you?

Will we go as far to slander the opposing candidate just to get our guy (or gal) elected?

Why do I say this? Because by circulating false information - especially when it may be related to whom gets elected President of our country or how our prayer (our Faith) may be taken from us, I am spreading F E A R (False Evidence Appearing Real). Now, if you're Catholic, you know a little about that F word, even though the first words of the risen Christ were something along the lines of, "Be Not Afraid." We even sing songs with those words in Catholic Churches. But...

My prayer is that I do not spread anymore F E A R. Jesus wants me to be J O Y F U L. That's why he died. Not so I can sit in a pew and look constipated. I can do that at home. Yes, I CAN be reverent and JOYFUL at the same time. He said so.

It's time for me to rejoice. Jesus left us so the Counselor could come and that was almost 2,000 years ago. I don't want to wait any longer to do what I should have been doing all along.

The Helper is coming.

I know that by examining the Word for myself. REJOICE! BE GLAD! The Word tells me to..

Before I close, please allow me to offer that I am not always JOYFUL, either. The words here are for me, too. I drive the Bus on Sin. Yet, I -we- have all been forgiven by Precious Blood that was shed (so that sins may be forgiven..Do this in memory of me...) Familiar words I hear all the time...But do I listen to them?

Do I truly examine what they mean or are they just words that run through and out my head without examining them when I am kneeling in a certain House?

I examine a car lease or loan with great care before signing it.

I examine a mortgage with great care - leaning over it for hours, nearly sweating blood over the content - prior to agreeing to it.

But do I examine something that it is of greater important to me than any other issue in the universe?

Do I examine Scripture for myself? And if I do, how much time do I spend doing it?

Here's another question.

Do I open myself up to others' interpretations of what Scripture says or do I put God in My Box and proclaim that "I already know what it means and you don't have to tell me?"

If I do, and I'm sure I will again and again in the future, I'm in big trouble spiritually. How do I know? Been there. Don't want to go back. But, I know I will. Why? Because sometimes I think I know what's best. HA HA HA! Can I get a witness? Anybody else out there feelin' it?

I need to examine His Word with great care, because it's not a just a monthly payment on the line. It's where I'm gonna spend eternity that's at stake. And what could be more important than that?

So, let's claim it, brothers and sisters. Let's give it up right now. Let's cast out the Enemy today. Let's tell him he has no authority over us, that Christ Jesus has defeated him and will continue at every snare...The Victory has been won and The Debt has been paid in full and in advance by the Crucifixion.

The Good News is that is that it doesn't end there. It's only The Beginning of a New and Everlasting Covenant. And that, brothers and sisters, it cause for rejoicing.

The Book of Samuel, I believe, shares with us that David was rewarded handsomely for dancing before the Lord unashamed.

Do all of us have to do a Jig in front of the Altar? No, even though Scripture tells me He would not frown on it if we all did.

But, if someone else wants to, I should allow them to do so without being fearful that eternal admonishment is inbound.

It would be awesome if we exuded the same excitement we show at the Easter Vigil each and every time we come into the House of David. Why do we reserve that JOY for once or twice a year? Why do we save it up?

We jump outwardly for J O Y at touchdowns and home runs or income tax refunds but when somebody says the name Jesus, somehow, we can get a little... Well, let's just say there doesn't seem to be a whole lot of desire to celebrate outwardly.

Just because it's not the way I've always done it, doesn't mean it shouldn't be done.

By examining why I do what I do (the good things, that is) - or what I don't do that I should be doing- I may be opening a new doors for myself, and subsequently, others who may want to tag along....

In the Mighty Name of Jesus, I'm praying today, Amen.

(The aforementioned Bus Driver)

Rubi said...

Ah. . the "F" word. . .I always thought that in church circles the "F" word was fundraiser! Fear. . .that's a new one on me!

Seriously though, we do need to be careful of what we forward . . . . Words have power, even if we didn't write them, but just pushed the forward button.

Matthew 5:37 "Let your 'Yes' mean 'Yes,' and your 'No' mean 'No.' Anything more is from the evil one."