Tag Archives: google
September 3, 2011

Google’s Pharmacy Faux Pas Results In Lawsuit

Image representing Google as depicted in Crunc...

Image via CrunchBase

The US government doesn't take to kindly to companies that facilitate advertising of illegal drugs. And by "illegal drugs" in this context I mean prescription ones.

Google these days is a "good citizen" and is actively involved in a lot of DNS abuse circles including initiatives to stop the sale of prescription drugs across borders. Unfortunately, however, it wasn't always that "clean". It transpires that the company accepted paid advertisements from Canadian pharmacies and is now being fined $500 million by the US government. Ouch!

And to make it worse the US Justice Department alleges that Google's Larry Page knew about the advertising.

So I guess it's not a big surprise that some of Google's investors aren't exactly impressed and are now suing the company's directors and management.

 

 

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August 6, 2011

Getting Business Online Promo video

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August 3, 2011

Will Google+ (Plus) Finally Be Google’s Social Media Success Story?

Jump on the social media bandwagon by Matt Hamm, on Flickr
Jump on the social media bandwagon by Matt Hamm, on Flickr

Jump on the social media bandwagon by Matt Hamm, on Flickr

Google has been toying with social networks / media for years. Remember Orkut? Or how about Wave? And those are just two of the ones that fizzled out..

Google+, however, seems to be "catching on" and might actually go somewhere. (Some reports are citing figures in excess of 20 million users already!)

I'm naturally cynical, so I've been thinking about how Google will gain from it and the answer is pretty obvious.

Stickiness, which will result in more accurate data on usage patterns and behaviour.

While Google has been expanding its various services to encompass all facets of our online lives it wasn't as cohesive and "sticky" an experience as they might have liked. With Google+ users have a valid reason (motivation) to always be logged in, which gives the company a lot more accurate information about how individual users interact online.

Facebook has been the social network for the last couple of years and only a couple of companies, such as Google, could stand even a slim chance of making any significant inroads into their userbase quickly. Sure, maybe something new and exciting will come along in a few months that will overshadow everything else, but Google already has a massive userbase. For Google to convert its existing users over to a usable social network could be the coup.

But getting a (relatively) small percentage of Google's userbase to play with the new "toy" is one thing, keeping them coming back is a totally different matter.

Google does have an advantage as it wasn't the "first mover". It's had the opportunity to watch and learn from both its own mistakes and those of others, such as Facebook.

Facebook has received a lot of criticism for its rather obtuse privacy controls, whereas Google+ chose a much simpler concept of privacy and sharing via the "circle' paradigm.

But Facebook has brought all facets of popular culture to a single place, which means that no matter what your poison is there's probably something on Facebook to sate your appetite. Google+ will have solutions for companies and one would assume other products and services "soon", but they haven't given any indication of when.

Maybe Google+ has simply turned things around and given "social" back to "society" ?

I guess we'll know when we know .. (or when it implodes .. )

 

Image credit: Jump on the social media bandwagon by Matt Hamm, on Flickr

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July 10, 2011

So When Will Google Plus Have An API?

Google Plus
Google Plus

Google Plus

I'm usually not that much of an API fanboy, but in the case of social networks I really feel that they need one.

If you're active on several social networks then being able to share content to more than one of them at a time is kind of important and being able to do so without having to login to each and everyone of them is useful.

Of course if you cross-post ALL your content between ALL the social networks you are either very stupid or don't post that often, as you'll probably annoy quite a few of the people that are connected to you across more than one network.

So with the launch of Google Plus there's definitely a need for them to provide some form of API - if only to allow people to manage updates etc.,

Though I suspect a lot of what Google is trying to do is to get us all to be permanently logged in .. .. (Now if they fixed the multiple accounts issues that might be feasible .. )

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July 3, 2011

Google+ Summed Up

A picture is better than a thousand words:
googleplus.png

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March 1, 2011

Google 404 Updated?

I'm not sure if I'm imagining this or not, but it looks like Google might have updated their 404 page:

google-404-2011.jpg

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January 20, 2011

Where Do People React To Blog Posts?

Once upon a time and it wasn't really that long ago, you would post a blog entry and people would either comment on it directly, or they'd write their own post and link to you.

In 2011 with people cross-posting their RSS to multiple targets such as Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn (and a load of other places) some people are saying that they aren't getting the volume of comments they used to. At least not on their blogs. They're seeing the reactions on the other platforms / networks

I've seen this to a certain degree, but what about other people? Is this common? A trend? A fad?

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November 1, 2010

Blekko And ScoutJet Revealed

A post on Mashable earlier this evening revealed the launch of a new search engine - Blekko.

I've no idea how well Blekko will do, but its method of displaying results is quite novel:

blekko search results display

But forget the display of the results for a moment. Let's have a quick look at how you search.

In Google and most other search engines you simply shove in a keyword (or two) and hit enter.
If you're a more advanced user you might play around with various operators to refine your results or add certain keywords to the query to tune it more finely.

With Blekko this concept is pushed to the front.

So if you wanted to do a search on say "linux" but only wanted to get back results from blogs you can use what they're calling a "slashtag", so your search query would be:

linux /blogs

Which is quite an elegant way of doing it. Of course there's a lot more to it than simply choosing the type of source. You can also use the slashtag to narrow your query.

It'll even suggest relevant ones for you:

blekko search suggestionsYou can read more about how to use the tags on the help pages of the site.

Since I run several sites I was curious to see how long the search engine had been indexing them. A quick scan of my raw logs shows that they've been actively crawling since at least May 2009:
38.108.180.46 - - [27/May/2009:09:25:32 +0100] "GET /robots.txt HTTP/1.1" 200 - "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; ScoutJet; +http://www.scoutjet.com/)"

Which leads us to the name of their bot - ScoutJet.

Not only do they give you the UserAgent, but they also give you the IP ranges that it comes from, which is vaguely useful if it misbehaves. Though I can't imagine that it will based on its previous activity. (Unlike VoilaBot!)

So what about the search results display?

If you look at the screenshot above you'll notice that each result is accompanied by a number of links. This is where it gets really fascinating if you're doing SEO. You can get a LOT of information about both your own sites and those of your competitors. While this information is incredibly powerful I can also see some potential for abuse. Of course if all this information is available to everyone then it is a level playing field so to speak ..

I'll be playing around with Blekko more in the future, as it definitely has an interesting angle on search.

I suspect the tech blogs will be talking a lot about it in the coming days...

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August 30, 2010

Local Knowledge Is Key

If you're going to spend money registering domains in target countries and doing targetted pay per click campaigns you should also take the time to do some basic market research. And no, I don't mean pure figures - I mean cultural stuff.

Jonathan Brazil spotted a really silly mistake this morning:

If you go to the hassle of buying a .ie and sponsored Google links for Irish searches, don't call it EIRE and price your products in GB£

The ad in question:
google-ad.png

And here's another one I found:
adword ad using the term "eire"I can't think of anyone IN Ireland using the term "Eire" or in what context they might even try to use it.

Seriously.

If you're going to try selling to us then learn to speak to us in terms we understand and use.

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August 13, 2010

Adsense Changes?

Just noticed this morning that adsense is displaying adverts in a very different format:

Adsense Layout ChangeSo it looks like some kind of hybrid between the normal text ads and the link units

This was probably announced somewhere, but I haven't had a chance to go digging and / or keeping up with all the changes in the "wonderful" world  of PPC

Anyone else noticing this?

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