I’m pretty pleased with the focus and quality of the stories that are being posted on the site, but I do have some issues with the whole thing. I have no idea if you, the readers, are checking it out, or find it very compelling. I’m adding a navigation link, so you can find it in the first place, which I guess would help (Ren: Iiiiiiiidiot). And I want a widget that pulls the top five stories and rotates them over on the right or the left. That would be really cool. Any ideas?
This item on Poynter Online caught my eye: Google Losing Traction in China. From the post:
In Beijing, the only city for which detailed results were made available, Baidu’s market share rose by 13 percent from one year ago to 65.4 percent, the survey showed. Google fell by 12.3 percent, from 32.9 percent to 20.6 percent.
That is a rather dramatic drop — and bad news for a company that only started to invest seriously in China at the beginning of this year. Moving into China had brought the US company only bad news, as they are losing the strong position they had before they were present in China.
Billsdue correctly points out that other U.S. giants, Yahoo and eBay, have similar bad records in China.
Google recently sold off its stake in Baidu as it girded for a full blown assault on the checkered country. Ouch.
Yesterday came news that Google has struck a major deal with Intuit. Today comes news Yahoo has struck a deal with Acer. Both are distribution deals – Yahoo and Google are using their partners as channels to get their software and services into the hands of customers. In short, they are buying new business.
So what are they distributing? That’s where it gets interesting. In Google’s case, the deal with Intuit gets AdWords in from of small businesses and encourages those traditional Yellow Pages customers to try Google instead. And of course, the deal includes Google Desktop and Maps integration.
But perhaps the least reported portion of this deal is the fact that QuickBooks also purchased StepUp, a small SF-based firm that helps local businesses get their inventory into search engines. In short, StepUp is the automation software needed to virtualize all that small business inventory and make it easily consumed, and therefore searchable, in Google Base, Froogle, and the main Google index.
If you recall my scenario about the transparent shopping society, this is one significant component in getting us there.
Yahoo’s deal with Acer is a bit more mundane. It’s Yahoo toolbar pre-installed, and setting Yahoo as the default search engine at the factory. This is good for the company, but it’s the kind of deal Google was cutting nearly two years ago. The difference here is YPN – with no play to speak of yet, Yahoo can’t compete with Google for deals like Intuit. Yet….
Google today announced a “showcase of multimedia overlays” for Google Earth. I see this as Google’s first step in making the world digital, location driven, and on demand, and it has implications for many of Google’s other products, like maps, local, IM/Talk, etc. For now, Google is saying the content is educational. But I see a time not far off when this is rip roaringly commercial.
Ars Technica has more.
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Still working on a number of tweaks to SearchMob (including navigation, I know…) but here are the top five stories so far today:
UBS issued a report this week analyzing Comscore data on the top ten web destinations. It’s not on the web, so if you are interested, you can download it here (pdf).
The top sites by page views are:
2) Fox Interactive Media
4) Time Warner Network
Interesting to see Comcast on the list, they are getting serious about being an advertising player on the web. Fox jumps to #2 thanks to MySpace.
When you change the metric to uniques, the list changes in some interesting ways, and looks like this:
2) Time Warner Network
6) Fox Interactive Media
9) New York Times
I wonder if that’s just Ask, or IAC as a whole.
The report has some details on MySpace’s growth, showing 17.7mm uniques in June of 05, and nearly 56mm in August 06. There’s also a fun (but a bit difficult to grok) chart showing minutes/session, pages/day, and days/month for each site (it’s at right as well).
Reader-driven SearchMob is up and running, and many of you have already begun posting stories. Here are the top five vote getters so far:
I’ve already learned a lot from this experiment, and will be working to improve the service over the week. Keep on posting, thanks!
Officially Live in the UK
Windows Live, Live.com and Live Local Search officially graduate from beta in the UK. And now, Live Search will power MSN. Though, the company informed Danny Sullivan, that the beta moniker will linger as the update rolls-out through the entire network. (Meanwhile, ResourceShelf offers a list of Microsoft’s registered ‘Live’ domains.)
On demand ads, for low demand impressions
Right Media’s new Publisher Media Exchange (PMX) tool allows sites to bulk together non-premium impressions and sell them in a real-time auctions. Fox, Tribune, LookSmart, Tickle, and Six Apart, will be among the major sites using the customizable PMX to sell extra impressions to advertisers and ad networks on their sites.
Send a wire to Congress, before one’s set on you
Warrantless domestic wiretapping seems to be illegal, as well as widely unpopular. The due process from Congress? According to legislation proposed separately by Senator Arlen Specter (R-PA) and a group of Representatives (including Chairmen of the House Intelligence and Judiciary committees) …the response is to grant retrospective legal sanction to Presidential free reign, handicap Congressional and Judicial oversight and, to top it off— further expand the warrantless domestic wiretapping program.
Those who fail to follow this logic might consider contacting their representatives—as Congress may act on both these bills this week. Center for Democracy and Technology
A disgruntled AdSense user
An ousted AdSense user turned litigant is now charging that Google infiltrated and then deleted evidence in her Gmail account. Theresa Bradley’s litigious history (also suing Yahoo, with a trail of suits in other states) and the amusing details surrounding the claim (she says it took her staff 100 hours to finalize the placement of the AdSense code) have caused some to doubt the accusation.
Social search, in the news
Garrett French shares a handy reading list and other resources he’s amassed, as he finishes up his latest article on social search. 30 Boxes considers the application of social search to personal organization. And on Monday, The New York Times discovered social search for shopping.
Jatalla launches the prototype of its “100%” human-powered search engine. Though still in double-digit user base, Jatalla aims for its results, created by user keyword tags on websites, to one day becomes “an easy way to interview the whole world through a single search query.” Founder, Shelley Harrison says foregoing automated corrections to pluralize and synonymize tagging was a planned inefficiency, to better reflect the mind of its human algorithm. Jatalla will present at MIT’s Emerging Technologies Conference, where it hopes to attract the investment needed to push the proof of concept into a developed beta.
Track the movements of any flight in real-time at FlightAware. At FlightStatus, gain a multi-sourced preview of flight hassles and helpers (like promotions) per airport, flight or route. If you aim higher, keep tabs on NASA shuttles. Via ResourceShelf
A happy blogging ending
Last week, the blogging enterprise SixApart acquired Rojo.
Remember when I asked you all what you thought about the idea of turning over the reins and letting you post technology, search and media-related stories to Searchblog? Inspired by Piers Fawkes, an FM author, who used Pligg to do Marktd, I’ve been working on a new feature at Searchblog I’ve come to call SearchMob. Ok, maybe not the best name, but at least there’s alliteration. The idea is simple – you can register and submit stories to the site. Then readers vote the stories up the ranks, similar to Digg, Reddit, and Newsvine (yes, all FM sites).
While I’d love to work with one of those sites, making Searchblog better isn’t their focus (though Reddit does help other sites, like Lipstick.) For this test anyway, I’m going with Pligg, an open source application. No doubt there will be bugs and incomplete features, but I’ve found the platform pretty reliable so far. I’ve asked a few folks who send me mail suggesting links to use Pligg and play around with an early version, and so far it’s been a lot of fun. So take a look. I’d love for you all to bang on it, read it, and tell me how to do it better.
Many thanks to Jonathan Schreiber, FM’s amazing author services engineer, for helping me make this happen.
Steve notes the connection between major brand advertisers and their Wikipedia entries.
Wikipedia articles on the top 100 advertisers in the U.S. are consistently among the most highly ranked pages in Google on direct searches. This is according to an informal study I have conducted over the past week. The study was compiled by simply taking the largest 100 advertisers from AdAge, entering them into Google and then tallying the results….
….Consider the following examples. Febreeze’s Wikipedia entry (#2 on Google) notes that the product may be harmful to household pets. Or the article on McDonald’s (#4 on Google), which basically summarizes the critical movie Super Size Me. Even advertising icons like Snap, Crackle and Pop aren’t exempt. The trio’s Wikipedia entry notes the team once had a short-lived adventure as super heroes in the UK.