Search engines face a number of challenging issues, as the industry continues to develop. Should they censor listings? Should they ban ads linked to words that may also be trademarks? How about webmaster support -- should there be a free 800 number you can call or a paid 900 number for express help?
I've just assembled the panel for our What Would You Do session at Search Engine Strategies next week in Chicago. At the panel, search marketers will play the role of executives from GooHoo!, a search engine that's emerged from the fictional merger of two major search engines.
The merger has left GooHoo! with a 97 percent share of the search audience, making criticism of everything it does even more intense. We'll look at a laundry list of issues to see how our panel of vice presidents from GooHoo! suggests dealing with them, such as:
- How to defining and eliminate search spam?
- How to provide listing support to site owners?
- How to weigh the challenge of listing the alternative views of "anti" sites against concerns "official" sites might have about misrepresentation?
- Should policies not allow terms that are trademarks to also be linked to ads?
- How do advertisers sell some products if they can only be described using trademarks?
- Should certain ads be refused, such as hate ads or those selling controversial products?
- Should listings be censored if deemed offensive?
- How to deal with censorship demanded or imposed by governments?
- Any solutions to clickfraud concerns?
- Do you stop spam by immediate hand removal or instead let it live until automated detection can improve?
- Should affiliate ads be banned or restricted?
- Should big companies get guaranteed placement for free to help with navigational search requests?
- How should paid placement or paid inclusion be disclosed?
Want to help? If you have comments or complications to the scenarios above for the panel, toss them over into our forum thread discussing this: Questions For GooHoo! You can also suggest ideas we haven't thought of.
Our company also needs a slogan. We're pondering:
- Don't Be Too Evil
- As Evil As We Outta Be
- As Evil As We Can Get Away With
- Less Evil Than Jell-O
- Evil is Sexy
- Floss, Eat Omega-Three, Get Enough Sleep, and While You're at it, Don't Be Evil
- It Wasn't Us, It Wuz the Computers that Did It.
Got a favorite? Got your own? Contribute in the thread above.
By the way, the agenda doesn't yet reflect the full panel. The four people listed below are all confirmed, and I'm waiting on a fifth person to confirm shortly. We'll get the agenda updated soon, but here are the people with their titles for the session:
- Greg Boser - VP, Editorial Quality, GooHoo!
- Andrew Goodman - VP, Advertising Programs, GooHoo!
- Noel McMichael - VP, Content Acquisition, GooHoo!
- Dana Todd - VP, Revenue Enhancement & Partner Relations, GooHoo!
Finally, expect live coverage of the session as well as other sessions as they happen next week to show up in our forums, in our SEM Related Organizations & Events section. Gary will also blog daily recaps of coverage from across the web.