Google Orkut from Calcutta’s Angle

February 2, 2009

I applied for an Orkut account but was ignored. The GOOG wants my goose cooked. Mark Ghosh was a beta tester of Orkut. he created a community which attracted more than 20,000 users. You can read his article “Et Tu Google? Then Fail, Net Safety” here. (I quite like the Shakespearian lilt to the title too.)  With social systems and social search all the rage, Mr. Ghosh points out his perception of Google’s management of and commitment to Orkut. For me, the most interesting comment in the article was:

The Orkut application itself is full of holes and though Google seems to respond to major public reports of vulnerabilities, they keep coming back. Support for Orkut from Google is almost non-existent with what appears to be zero accountability. If one plows through the Google help sections to try and solicit help, they are either faced with a page not found or convoluted help screens that barely ever actually lead to a form to request support. Pleas for help and more often answered by the “Orkut hackers” than by actual Google employees. The Orkut application is so dangerous that people do not click on any links that are not Orkut generated and even then accounts and communities are compromised all the time. Hacking scripts and techniques are easily found via a simple Google search.

Google’s gaggle of genius gravitons may be pre occupied with flagging the Internet as malware and giving great Google Earth demonstrations to the Davos attendees. Orkut in general and Mr. Ghosh’s issues are of less significance in my opinion. Mr. Ghosh’s article may point out another interesting example of Google’s muffing the bunny.

Stephen Arnold, February 2, 2009


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