Google gets big company disease?

The two guys who started Dodgeball leave in a hissy fit. Google bought Dodgeball in mid-2005.

Dodgeball was the pre-cursor to Twitter and Jaiku (albeit a bit more focused on just cell phones than either of those newer services are). Last summer it was the rage with many of the San Francisco cool kids, er, influencers. I remember Irina and Eddie using it almost non stop on our trip to Montana.

So, why didn’t Google get it enough to give these two more resources? Easy. Same reason I couldn’t convince Microsoft to buy Flickr before Yahoo did.

It’s a small thing. A stupid thing. A lame thing.

Big companies have trouble grokking small things like Dodgeball. Heck, how many of you have called Twitter “really lame” in the past two months? Tons!

More evidence that Google is having difficulty getting small things? I heard a rumor that Google executive Marissa Mayer almost killed the Google Reader team because she didn’t think it would get popular. Feed readers are still “small things.” Seeing business value in them is difficult.

It seems that management is trying to get a handle on the chaos that is Google but in doing so is removing some of what made Google attractive to entrepreneurial developers.

What are you hearing from your Google friends?