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What Would Google Do?

3.76 of 5 stars 3.76  ·  rating details  ·  4,729 ratings  ·  324 reviews
A bold and vital book that asks and answers the most urgent question of today: What Would Google Do?

In a book that's one part prophecy, one part thought experiment, one part manifesto, and one part survival manual, internet impresario and blogging pioneer Jeff Jarvis reverse-engineers Google—the fastest-growing company in history—to discover forty clear and straightforwar
Hardcover, 426 pages
Published January 27th 2009 by HarperBusiness (first published 2009)
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Ryan Chapman
Nov 26, 2008 Ryan Chapman rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommended to Ryan by: Ami
Shelves: nonfiction
It may be unfair to give this book a rating since I couldn't finish it. For all I know, my complaints were resolved in the second half. So with that in mind...

It was interesting to read this book soon after a reread of Clay Shirky's Here Comes Everybody, as both are recent offerings by major publishers on our changing internet culture. However the strengths of Shirky's book and the faults in this one can be traced, I believe, to the two men's backgrounds. Shirky has been a professor at NYU for
Ryan Holiday
There's this example What Would Google Do? where Jarvis talks about how newspapers could respond to Huffington Post setting up a new blogging venture in Chicago. He basically says that they should become their new best friend - forget that they are competition and think long term. They'd get more out of magnanimity than being territorial.

But, he concludes, it doesn't matter because "news organizations don't yet think that way." The thing is, no one does. People, like Marcus Aurelius said, are "m
I will use this book in my future entrepreneurial journalism course, and possibly social media as well - which is saying a lot, because I rarely add new required texts.

If you read Jarvis' blog/follow him on Twitter etc. and are generally well-read when it comes to digital disruption, there isn't much new here - but it's still an excellent, clear summary of the way not just Google but social media and the web more generally are changing many industries, including journalism, media, and education
Although I think this book is about 50 pages too long, I still highly recommend it to anyone trying to understand modern economy and culture. I was afraid that it would be a big bowing down to Google, which I see enough of in my career. It isn't. Instead, it is a series of case studies proving how companies like Google are leading a civil movement against closed-system corporation culture.

I didn't feel like I needed this paradigm applied to so many industries. Jarvis uses the Google template to
"İtiraf ediyorum: Ben bir riyakarım. Eğer kendi kurallarıma uymuş olsaydım, bu kitabı şu anda okumuyor olacaktınız, en azından bir kitap olarak. Onu linkler ve aramalar aracılığıyla bulup online’da ve ücretsiz okuyor olacaktınız. Siz bu kitapta yapmış olduğum hataları düzeltebiliyor olacaktınız ve ben Google ile ilgili son istatistikleri kitaba ekleyerek onu güncelleyebiliyor olacaktım. Bu kitaptaki fikirler etrafında bir diyalog başlatabilecektik. Bu proje, blogumun okurları sayesinde şu anda o ...more
This might be my favorite read so far of 2009 (although I thoroughly enjoyed Outliers and Here Comes Everybody as well). I love discussing creative disruption and this book is full of that. While some of the best ideas aren't Jeff's (Umair Haque and Fred Wilson are heavy influences and mentioned repeatedly in the book) for me it didn't much matter because of the importance and timeliness of the subject matter. If you're entrepreneur you have to read this book.
What Would Google Do? is not a book about Google. At least not directly. This is a manifesto for the social web. A book arguing for transparency, openness, and collaboration. A book imploring that we think differently; beseeching businesses to hand over control to their clients; to share and innovate; to develop platforms and networks of trust; to encourage discovery and diversity over secrecy and authority; to adopt a mindset of abundance over the scarcity models of the past. Google is position ...more
I have to admit that the title of this book put me off from the start. Could it be a serious book based on a blatant rip off of WWJD. So I was a bit grumpy to start with, but the author won me over by the end of the book.

Jarvis does a pretty good job of pulling apart some of the things that Google has done and tries to apply it to other industries.

Google is perhaps give a bit too much credit as being the saviour of all businesses. Google got lucky with Adsense - it was a search company without a
It should be 3.5 stars out of 5 (or somewhere between 3-4 stars).

In this book, author Jeff Harvis of, discusses the concept of "Googlethink". He takes Google and studies what made today's huge company, an enormously successful organization and how that success can be transferred to other industries.

The book is divided into 2 parts. The first of which is the answer to "What/Why?" as in "What/Why is Google successful?". Jeff discusses the concepts of "Googlethink" and "Googlejuice"
Posted on my blog at

I recently finished reading the book "What Would Google Do?" by author/blogger/journalist Jeff Jarvis. Jarvis is probably recognized primarily as proprietor of the popular blog I had an interest in this book right from the start because I am fascinated with the approach Google takes to everything they do: Offering premium services for free and finding alternative ways to make their money. A lot of money.

Without giving too much
Lindley Walter-smith
I managed to slog through this for a Coursera course, but it seems badly thought out and embarrassingly fanboyish about Google, Apple (for some reason) and himself (the whole Dell Hell thing), while gliding over any complications.
I love this book -- it is why I selected it for Federal News Radio 1500 AM's Federal News Radio Book Club next month.

In the end, this book isn't really about Google. It is about being agile and sharing information and how to operate in a very new and very competitive world.

I think it particularly speaks to government, which could use some new ways of thinking.

Not all of these ideas are brand new, but Jarvis does a good job building and adding to what has been out there... and fleshing out these
Jean-François Lafrance
j'ai lu ce livre dans sa version française. La traduction a été effectuée en France, ce qui rend lourd la compréhension de certains exemples que le traducteur a choisi de 'Franciser '. Par contre, pour me rapporter à l'essence même du livre, il s'agit d'une ouverture vers une réflexion sur le monde dans lequel nous vivons actuellement. L'adaptation et l'ouverture sont désormais les clés du succès et les entreprises traditionnelles doivent prendre le virage sans quoi la mort à très court terme po ...more
Krishna Kumar
The title is a take on the phrase “What would Jesus do?” and asks a similar question: What should companies learn from the amazing success of Google? What lessons does Google have the rest of us when faced with a business decision on strategy and tactics?

This book is not entirely about Google. At its heart, it looks at Web 2.0, the technology that has put consumers in command instead of companies. Openness and transparency are the important ingredients of today’s society and companies that forge
The idea behind the book is good, and still valid, though the book was published in 2009. The premiss is that a business, to survive/thrive in the internet age, will have to think as Google and determine what their core business is, which can be less obvious than you would think. Several examples are given for industries that are hurting or are turning themselves around, which help you with the mindset.

Reading this book several years later has the added benefit of knowing that some of the predic
Alumine Andrew
This is not so much a good book to read but a lifestyle change! My husband raved about his book and insisted I read it, so I did. And I’ve learned to be Googlier and googlier!
In this book Jarvis shows us how Google has redefined how we do things, how we need to redo things and how much Google has influenced the world we live in. So what? You might ask… In reading this book I’ve learned that blogs aren’t for nerds with no friends to talk to. They are actually a platform from where anyone can laun
Jen Lawrence
Jeff Jarvis’s has written a terrific book in his What Would Google Do? What started out as a blog battle with Dell Computer led blogger/journalist Jarvis (Buzz Machine) to contemplate how business has changed in the internet age.

In the first part, Jarvis describes not Google, the company (which is sometimes criticized for being un-Google-like) but Google, the experience. He shows how the Google model creates a new world of openness, publicness, transparency, and collaboration. Essentially, he ta
Eustacia Tan
As part of my Understanding Media by Understanding Google Course, I was assigned several books. Unfortunately, none of them are available in the school library here, but thankfully, Scribd had a two of them. What Would Google Do is one of them,

To summarise the book in one sentence, it looks at what Google does, and how that will impact various fields such as Media, Public Welfare, Utlities, etc. Some of the areas that he looked at seemed very unlikely to be affected by Google, but the basic ques
Книга о том, как меняется современное общество с приходом интернета и быстрого поиска, и как вместе с ним должны меняться компании, чтобы оставаться успешными.

В первой части книги автор повествует о том, что с распространением социальных сетей, блогов и упрощением обычного поиска в интернете вся информация распространяется по миру практически мгновенно. Главным носителем рекламы становятся не объявления и баннеры, а сами люди, которые рассказывают обо всём в своих блогах. Поэтому чем больше инфо
am not sure why this book as got some mixed / negative reviews because personally for me it was an great read. For someone that works full time from home utilising the benefits of the internet, sometimes I tend to get stuck in my own 'lil world' and projects. This is just one example from many where this book helped me and made it a worth while read...I needed a refresher and breather, sometimes to help me see the bigger picture again to move my own ventures and business forward as well as see t ...more
Tim Kubiak
A quick easy read with a some interesting comparisons of how google and ultimately the internet will open up industries. There were several references to Clue Train Manifesto and many of the positions reminded me of segments of Wikinomics and Naked Conversations but still was worth the time to read.

If nothing else it will force you to look at inefficient business processes and the business of innovation itself.
Jacob Senholt
Didn't have many expectations for this book, but it actually ended up giving me quite a few ideas. The last chapter on 'generation g', also brings up some interesting perspectives about the future of the modern world, and especially how technology changes the way we interact and think (resulting in future changes, 'power to the people' etc. as currently evidenced in the Arab Spring risings).
Declarată de revista Fortune, în 2008, cea mai bună carte despre internet, Ce-ar face Google a lui Jeff Jarvis aduce o perspectivă nouă asupra motorului Google, cu care ne-am obişnuit atât de mult, încât îl folosim pentru absolut orice, fiind, practic, parte integrantă din viaţa noastră. Google este adesea salvarea noastră (nu ştim ceva, căutăm imediat pe Google), iar autorul acestei cărţi tocmai despre acest impact vorbeşte, mai ales în domeniul finanţelor şi, în general, în toate aspectele soc ...more
Michael Carnell
Jan 28, 2011 Michael Carnell rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Geeks, new media types, and business folks
Hard to give the one a rating. Jeff Jarvis is a brilliant guy and he has some really good insights into Google. The only problem is he tends to repeat himself in the book. Once his point is made, he makes it over and over again. I would recommend really reading the first third, lightly reading the second third, and skimming the final third.
As with many technology books, this one dates pretty quickly. The way it talks about the, now moribund, Digg and doesn't mention Reddit, for example, shows its age. It does make its point very effectively, though, with many examples of how industries are likely to change in the information age. I recently bought my house without an estate agent, for example, and I have never used a travel agent. I am unlikely to buy a car, but would be happy to hire one for the occasional journey, and I can't wa ...more
Rushay Booysen
This book dissect how google and other technology platforms basically transformed everything as we know it.Was a real informative read and alters ones approach to conventional ism
Bianca Smith
The business world has been changed by the internet. Consumers can jump online and in five minutes publish a video blog (vlog) detailing poor customer service. Give them another 30 seconds and the vlog has been sent to to 126 Twitter followers. A further 30 seconds and it’s with 130 facebook friends. If 10% of those people share the link, that’s potentially 6,656 people hearing of the bad experience in under 10 minutes.

Jeff Jarvis’s book What Would Google Do? looks at this reallocation of contro
Maybe a bit overoptimistic and too enthusiastic about technology but still an interesting read
Rotua Damanik
Internet mungkin adalah salah satu penemuan paling fenomenal abad ini. Internet dalam perjalanannya telah berhasil mengubah berbagai aspek kehidupan manusia dengan sangat drastis. Dan Google bisa dikatakan adalah perusahaan teknologi paling berhasil di era Internet. Perusahaan ini benar-benar dibangun dengan pola pikir generasi Internet. Google sebagai sebuah perusahaan juga sangat unik. Tak seperti kebanyakan perusahaan, mereka juga memberikan produknya secara gratis ke pengguna. Google search ...more
Christopher Brehm
If you don't understand how the Internet and Blogging is changing information dissemination and interest group organization then read this book.

If you already understand the basics I doubt you will learn anything new from this book.

Ok, so the book started to really interest me from the chapter Google Power and Light onward. Applying the "Google Model" to many other industries and products was very interesting and made you think about what could be. I really liked the idea of facing the questions
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Jeff Jarvis is an American journalist writing for publications such as New York Daily News, the San Francisco Examiner, and The Guardian. In 2006 he became an associate professor at City University of New York's Graduate School of Journalism, directing its new media program. He is a co-host on This Week in Google, a show on the TWiT Network.

Picture by Robert Scoble
More about Jeff Jarvis...
Public Parts: How Sharing in the Digital Age is Revolutionizing Life, Business, and Society Gutenberg the Geek Geeks Bearing Gifts: Imagining New Futures for News El fin de los medios de comunicación de masas: ¿Cómo serán las noticias del futuro? Free for All: The Internet's Transformation of Journalism

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“Memorization is not as vital a discipline as fulfilling curiosity with research and reasoning.....Internet and Google literacy should be taught to help students vet facts and judge reliability.” 8 likes
“Writing in Library Journal, Ben Vershbow of the Institute for the Future of Book envisioned a digital ecology in which "parts of books will reference parts of other books. Books will be woven toghether out of components in remote databases and servers." Kevin Kelly wrote in The New York times Magagzine: "In the the new world of books, every bit informs another; every page reads all the other pages.” 5 likes
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