Every single one of these stories has had the quality of seemingly purposefully misinterpreting some move of Google's in a way that's not exactly accurate and much worse than it actually is.
For example, Google getting a design patent on its homepage is more akin to a trademark thing than anything else. It's not really a patent in the sense that people usually think of them.
And I can list a similar kind of twist in thinking in almost all the 'Google is doing this, aren't they evil now!?' stories on Slashdot. Something is fishy.