We recently received an e-mail from the company Apture, the online service we used to automatically make live references to Wikipedia and to enable on the fly deep dives into certain terms we use on our site, stating they have been acquired by Google and will be terminating the service in about one month.
More than a disappointment that the service will disappear, it demonstrates how both the employees at Apture and Google think about customers. Terminating a service without a respectable forewarning to “thousands of publishers” demonstrates how many technologists are merely opportunists, trolling from one financial reward to another while trampling its hard-earned early adopter customers in the process.
Here is the gist of the e-mail Apture sent on November the 11th, 2011:
On December 20 we will discontinue Apture’s product and services. When this happens, users will no longer be able to highlight and search terms with Apture on your web pages.
I will easily forget about Apture, but I will never forget about the real reputation of Google as witnessed by the actions of the company it acquired. It is not smart to bite the public hand that feeds you, and it hurts those trying to make an earnest living in the innovation’s business.