What did you do before Google?
The rise of Google as the dominant internet search provider reflects a generationally-inflected notion that everything that matters is now on the Web, and should, in the moral sense of the verb, be accessible through search. In this study of search technology’s broader implications for knowledge production and social relations, authors shed light on a culture of search in which our increasing reliance on search engines influences not only the way we navigate, classify, and evaluate Web content, but also how we think about ourselves and the world around us, online and off.
To better understand the ascendancy of search and its naturalization, Google and The Culture of Search also historicizes and contextualizes Google’s dominance of the search industry, and suggests that the contemporary culture of search is inextricably bound up with a metaphysical longing to manage, order, and categorize all knowledge. Calling upon this nexus between political economy and metaphysics, authors explore what is at stake for an increasingly networked culture in which search technology is a site of knowledge and power.