Google has a lot of friends, and why not ? A company providing a mind-blowing array of incredibly useful services for free, within a fabulously successful business model, and with more and better promised: it seems perverse not to be positively inclined.
Enemies, then ? Well some aren't exactly smitten by Google's many charms. A lot of jealous rivals, obviously. Those who don't enjoy the thought of their every keystroke being analysed as part of a Big Data exercise and then, shock horror, made available to advertisers (- just like the supermarkets). The "don't be evil " injunction invites us to apply high 'ethical' standards which any commercial enterprise - particularly one operating in uncharted territory where there are few rules - is likely to find hard to live up to. (Google is scarcely the only organisation on the planet that bows to China's wishes as regards censorship: must post on Hong Kong soon.) And we can diskard uterly those of the Max Mosley brigade who don't like the idea of their past public-domain misdemeanours being accessible via a search engine.
But Google does have some real enemies. Murdoch is feuding hard with his anti-google campaign, suggesting the old pay-wall strategy isn't a roaring success. Good luck with that, mate. As the music and book-publishing industries have also discovered, (and shopping, and education, and TV, and translation, and taxis, and medicine, ...) the world has indeed changed.
More interesting is recent observation that Facebook is the enemy of Google - and at a deeper level than just the straightforward, long-running battle for investors' and advertisers' favours. How so ? Because Facebook lures people into a closed, self-contained world wherein to spend their hours; whereas Google is seeking to make money from providing services to people doing Real Things in the Real World - travelling, researching, shopping, eating, going to the theatre, reading articles from foreign-language sources ... they'd love you to help them extend the list. The more time spent with Facebook, the less time googling tourist destinations.
To the extent Facebook is a threat to Google's interests, those mad online 'games' that tie people to their screens for days at a time must be even worse. Preference for the virtual vs the real world is increasingly a choice people make for the use of their spare time - indeed for some sad types, of almost all of their time - and some would argue there is more at stake than just Google's revenue potential.
A very strong case against the virtual is made by the fascinating Ian McGilchrist (Fellow of All Souls teaching Eng Lit, and Fellow of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, Research Fellow in Neuroimaging, & Clinical Director of Acute Mental Health Services). His thesis runs along these lines: the left brain (specialising in abstraction, maths, linear reasoning, theorizing, virtual world) should be a tool of the right brain (intuition, empirical reasoning, metaphorical thinking, creativity, real world), but starting in the 20th century the left has started to predominate - and not in a good way. In fact, he reckons, in a very damaging way.
608 pages of this later (The Master and his Emissary), you may or may not agree with him. It's a value judgement at the end of the day: and I'll take real-world Google against virtual-world Facebook any time.