Apparently Google jumped the shark this week, punched some nuns in the face, and clubbed some baby seals by introducing an obtrusive new element to their home page. No, not the new Google+ birthday reminders. That ad for the Google Nexus 7 tablet.
If you’ve visited Google’s homepage in the past couple days, then no doubt you noticed an animated ad beneath Google’s search box. The ad is accompanied by the tagline: “The playground is open. The new $199 tablet from Google.”
At tends to happen on slow news weeks, this development sparked outrage among a tiny fraction of Google users and sparked the usual tired blog posts pointing out that this is just further proof of Google’s evil, monopolistic doings. How dare Google use its page like Amazon uses its homepage to advertise its Kindle Fire, or how Apple uses its homepage to sell the iPad.
Did Mashable Just Jump the Shark?
Sorry, but when did Mashable rebrand itself as Laughable? Apparently the company had an “unspoken contract” with visitors that they would never, ever advertise one of their own products, let alone with a banner ad. Pretty sure “unspoken” should read “non-existent”.
‘No Banner Ads ... Ever.’
Oh yes, we must not forget that Marissa Mayer in 2005 (seven years ago, which might as well be a different century in this fast-paced industry) declared (in discussing its advertising deal with AOL) that “There will be no banner ads on the Google homepage or web search results pages. There will not be crazy, flashy, graphical doodads flying and popping up all over the Google site. Ever.”
You know, that same Marissa Mayer who is no longer even employed by Google since she jumped ship to become Yahoo’s CEO.
And let’s just ignore she was mainly referring to the classic horizontal 468x60 banner ads, which this Nexus 7 ad definitely is not.
The piece also notes that “the home page just became a playground for Google’s legion of marketers.”
Google didn’t sell its holy white space to outside marketers. Google is advertising one of its own products on its home page.
They’ve done it before. They will do it again.
Just ignore the ad. Do your search. Or wish someone a happy birthday. Go on with your day. Or feel free to visit another available search engines, such as Bing, Blekko, or DuckDuckGo.