Robert Cringely writes:
Universal Search is Google’s attempt to destroy its major competitors who, like Gorbachev in the waning years of the USSR, have to follow suit and start spending money they don’t have if they want to even appear to still be in competition with Google. This means for these companies more software development, more sweeps of the web, as well as the greater likelihood that among their top results will be pages located at Google properties like YouTube.
It has to burn Yahoo, MSN and the others to now have to drive traffic to YouTube, but that’s what will happen if these search competitors choose to continue to compete head-to-head, which they will.
There is literally no downside for Google in this strategy.