The search engine Google has come under fire for keeping track of what its visitors have searched for. Opponents claim that this is an invasion of privacy. Proponents claim that this helps in marketing by showing more suitable ads to a visitor based on his or her searching interests. Some critics of this marketing strategy have suggested laws that should be enacted preventing Google from tracking your search history.

Either way, let us look at the issue at hand.

Google is a company that has a web site made for searching the internet. Because it is a very plain-looking site it loads very quickly into your internet browser. It is really made for just one purpose – to search the internet. It became popular because it delivers very accurate results that many believe to be superior to what other search engines deliver.

The search engine and the website itself were designed by somebody. The computers that host the site and run the searches were bought by somebody. The day to day maintenance and upkeep of the site is paid for by someone. Visitors to the website pay nothing to use the site.

Visitors can use the site if they wish. They can also use another search engine if they wish. Further, they can even choose to use no search engine — or the internet itself. If there is something that a visitor does not like about the site, there is no money to be refunded, no warrantee to be honored, and no basis for any complaint to Google. One can simply refuse to use the site.

Because the Google search engine has made searching the internet so much easier, faster, and more effective, the word “Google” has become a verb that means “to search the internet”. It has become such a part of so many people’s lives that it is often taken for granted. What is forgotten is that it is the property and the business venture of somebody else. It is not a right. It is also not a necessity.

Oftentimes today, people believe that something that makes their life easier and better is a necessity. It is common then for this “necessity” to evolve into a “right”. When one believes that his or her “rights” are violated, what results is often a lawsuit or a new Big Government law. One needs to look no further than the telephone, power, and water companies — other private enterprises that started out as a personal business venture — that evolved into some sort of “right” that people had to receive these services, often with Big Government oversight and regulations.

Big Government has all but ruled that the internet is a basic human right to which every American is now entitled. There is even talk of forcing me to pay for a nationwide broadband internet program that everyone will have access to. Right now, if I choose not to have internet service, I simply cancel my plan and pay nothing, but a taxpayer funded nationwide plan gives me no such option.

The bottom line is that if one is dissatisfied with anything that Google does, simply stop using their services. The company will either succeed or fail on that basis. One does not have the right to encourage Big Government to force a private enterprise into complying with one’s personal wishes. One can either use a different search engine, design and build one’s own, or do without. But don’t pretend that you have the right to the use of Google or any other private services or property.