Remember AutoLink? You might have forgotten, because after many months of overheated hyperbole, it's still part of the Google toolbar, and the net hasn't devolved into the morass of rewritten links that some people were absolutely convinced was about to happen. Here's an example of the overheated rhetoric that was being deployed - The Register write an article titled "Google AutoLink: Enemy of the people?" That article was written in March, 2005.
Things have gone awfully quiet since then - almost as if the loudest objectors noticed that it was not, in fact, the end of the web as we know it, and decided to stop writing on the subject. This illustrates a problem that blogs and online media share with their older cousins in print, TV, and radio - it's very easy to declare disaster, create a blogswarm of posts agreeing that "something must be done". After awhile, people start to notice that the sky isn't falling, so - in their best Emily Litella voice they mumble "never mind" - and move along to the next pseudo-disaster.
The main difference on the web is that dissenting voices get a chance to object - something which is mostly not possible when the mainstream media has one of their drive-bys.