The Search Engine Report - Number 101

In This Issue

+ SES International!
+ Top Stories
+ More From The Search Engine Watch Blog
+ About The Newsletter

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Hello Everyone--

I've tried something new in the newsletter this time. Many entries end with labels that correspond to how the story is categorized in our Search Topics area that's available to Search Engine Watch members. I thought it might be useful to help readers understand that there are other stories on these topics that have been categorized, in some cases stretching back for years.

The problem is that given this is a text-only newsletter, URLs are extracted from the original HTML content. If I kept in URLs to take you directly to the particular topic areas, it would make the newsletter even longer than it already is now.

Basically, if the categories listed whet your appetite to see more stories on the topic, simply click through on the article headline. That will bring up the story where the categories can be found at the end as links. Click on the link -- if you're a member -- and you'll be in the search topics area.

Hate it? Love it? Please let me know via the feedback link at the end of the newsletter.

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SES International!

After what turned out to be our biggest show ever in New York, Search Engine Strategies now heads outside the US. Our search marketing event arrives in Munich next week, Japan later this month, Toronto in May and London in June.

As with our US shows, each event will feature speakers from major search engines, along with experts on search marketing. Details about all the events can be found via our Search Engine Strategies site. It also has preliminary details of our next US show in San Jose this August.

The Munich show is conducted mostly in German and focuses especially on German search marketing issues. The Toronto show will focus on Canadian issues, while the London show emphasizes UK and European issues.

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Top Stories
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Here's a recap of major articles, important blog postings and some interesting forum discussions from Search Engine Watch since the last newsletter:

SES NY 2005 Recap
SEW Blog, Apr. 6, 2005

There was an overwhelming amount of information and news that came out of the Search Engine Strategies show in New York last month. Looking to do some catching-up? Here's a guide to things you might review. (SEM Industry: Events)

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Google SEO Support Given To Advertisers
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 6, 2005

Google & SEO Support For Advertisers now posted for Search Engine Watch members looks at how increased editorial listings support being given to large advertisers is raising concerns with search marketers and threatening the "church and state" division between ads and editorial results that Google has long sought to maintain. This blog post provides a summary of key issues covered in the article and some related reading, for non-members.

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More On Analytic Vendor Access To Yahoo's API
SEW Blog, Apr. 6, 2005

Controversy Mounts over Yahoo API Access from ClickZ covers concerns about Yahoo apparently not allowing some analytics vendors access to its advertiser API. In this post, a summary of how it may be that new analytics vendors not already using the API may get access in the future. See also our forum thread, Yahoo Could Be Dropping API Access to PPC. (SEM Industry | Yahoo: APIs)

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Playing with Kids' Search Engines
SearchDay, April 6, 2005

Looking for the best ways of discovering kid-friendly content on the web? Check out our just-updated listings and reviews of Kid Search Engines in this story.

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Google Using ODP Titles In Addition To Descriptions
SEW Blog, Apr. 6, 2005

Google has long used Open Directory descriptions in some cases for the web pages it lists. While that usage seems to have ramped up, it's doing something else I've never seen or heard of before -- using ODP titles for some of the pages in its listings. More in this post. (Google: Web Search | SEO: Titles & Descriptions | Yahoo: Web Search)

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Lycos To Distribute Ads Through AlmondNet Post-Search Network
SEW Blog, Apr. 5, 2005

Lycos in Deal for Search-Targeted Banner Ads from AdWeek covers how Lycos will be distributing its paid listings through the AlmondNet search behavioral targeting system I wrote about in January: New Search Behavioral Network Launched. It's the first significant paid listing vendor to publicly partner with AlmondNet. The company has other partners who haven't yet committed publicly. The AdWeek story also notes that Claria plans its own search behavioral targeting service, based on the data is gathers. See my Claria Debuts RelevancyRank: Search Ranking By Behavioral Activity article from last month for more about how that happens. (Other Engines: Lycos | Search Ads: Behavioral)

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Google Images Wins Cherry Tomato Challenge For Attribute Indexing
SEW Blog, Apr. 5, 2005

Tim Bray tests whether Google, Yahoo and MSN image search services can find images that make use of keywords only within the the ALT and TITLE attributes of an image tag. Google is the only one that can. The Cherry-Tomato Challenge and A Cherry-Tomato Winner tells the story. See also A Conversation with Tim Bray for more about Tim's background in search. (Search Research | Google: Images | MSN: Image Search | Search Types: Multimedia | Yahoo: Images)

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Google Debuts Satellite Images
SearchDay, April 5, 2005

Google has added high-resolution satellite images to its Maps and Local search services, offering a birdseye view of millions of locations throughout the U.S. and Canada. More details in this story. See also from Gary Price on the same day, Super Cool: Interact With Satellite and Aerial Images With NASA's World Wind Program. (Google: Maps | Search Types: Maps)

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Google Ranking Itself Tops For Britney Spears & The Need For Better Categorization
SEW Blog, Apr. 5, 2005

Stephan Spencer argues in "Does Google deserve a top 10 spot for 'britney spears'?" that Google is borderline spamming to come up in the top results for britney spears on its own site. I disagree. The content is relevant, nor are the changes suggested necessarily a solution to this "problem." C'mon along for a journey into the issues at hand. (Google: Web Search | Link Building | SEO: Spamming)

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Better Search Privacy Needs Addressing Overall
SEW Blog, Apr. 5, 2005

What Search Sites Know About You from Wired looks at the issue of search privacy. As usual, Google gets to be the whipping boy of concern when Yahoo and MSN, among others, should also be on stage for any potential criticism. There are concerns that the entire industry needs to address. More in this post. (Legal: Privacy)

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Click Fraud Suit Names Google, Yahoo & Other Search Companies
SEW Blog, Apr. 5, 2005

Rumors of a class action lawsuit over click fraud have been circulating for over a year. Now one may have finally arrived. Internet Firms Face Legal Test On Advertising Fees from the Wall Street Journal briefly describes a case filed in February by a group of advertisers against Google, Yahoo, Ask Jeeves, AOL, Walt Disney, Lycos and FindWhat. They claim being improperly charged for fraudulent clicks. The lead plaintiff is Lane's Gifts & Collectibles, and the case filed in Arkansas seeks to be certified as a class action. See also our follow-up More On Click Fraud, The Lawsuit & The Need For Third Party Auditors, which has a few more details on the case and recaps a number of recent articles on the topic of click fraud. (Legal: Ads & Listings | Search Ads: Clickfraud)

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What the lsass.exe? Searching for Windows Processes
SearchDay, April 4, 2005

Ever wonder what all of those mysteriously-named Windows 'processes' are doing, and how they got loaded on your computer in the first place? Use the helpful ProcessLibrary.com to find out. This article explores more. (Search Types: Computers)

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Yahoo's FareChase Releases Hotel Search Beta
SEW Blog, Apr. 4, 2005

A beta released by Yahoo's FareChase service today allows you to simultaneously search multiple sites for hotel rates in the same manner you're able to search for airplane ticket prices. More in this blog post. (Search Types: Travel | Yahoo: Travel)

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Google To Start Indexing Web Video
SEW Blog, Apr. 4, 2005

News.com reports that Google cofounder Larry Page told an audience at the National Cable & Telecommunications Association show today that Google will soon provide access to more video content. Page said, "We're going to start taking video submissions from people" in the next few days." More in this post. (Google: Video)

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Google's First Venture Into Television
SEW Blog, Apr. 4, 2005

A new web-based TV station called Current was introduced in San Francisco. Backed by former US vice president Al Gore, Current will use Google search data and Google Zeitgeist lists for "Google Current" segments that will air each half-hour. More details in this post. (Google: Partnerships | Google: Promotions | Google: Video)

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Yahoo & FindWhat Face Off In Court This Month On Patents
SEW Blog, Apr. 4, 2005

Yahoo and Google settled their differences over a patent lawsuit involving paid listings last year, but Yahoo and FindWhat will duke it out in court later this month. Yahoo/FindWhat Patent Dispute Headed for Trial from ClickZ has more details. (Legal: Patents)

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American Blind Vs. Google Trademark Case To Go Forward
SEW Blog, Apr. 1, 2005

Google Takes Hit in U.S. Trademark Case from InternetNews.com notes that American Blind's case against Google over trademark infringement relating to paid ads is being allowed to go forward to trial. John Battelle has a copy of the ruling up here, for those interested in reading it. For some background, see also Search Engines Turning Trademark Law Upside Down and Trademark vs. Search: Do you Soo...gle?. (Legal: Ads & Listings | Legal: Trademarks)

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New Google Patent May Give Sandbox & Inner Workings Info
SEW Blog, Apr. 1, 2005

A newly filed Google patent -- Information retrieval based on historical data -- has search boards buzzing on whether it's providing new insight as to how Google operates. Many are finding things described fit the "sandbox" idea of sites not doing well until they've matured over time. Key links in this post and in the follow-up Breaking Down Google's New Search Patent Application post. (Google: Technology | Google: Web Search | Legal: Patents)

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Search Engine Forums Spotlight
SearchDay, April 1, 2005

Links to the week's topics from search engine forums across the web: Discuss the 5th Annual Search Engine Watch Awards - Switching Overture Listings On & Off - Is Search Marketing Ready For A Standards Organization? - What To Do When You're Kicked Out of Adsense - Using Trailing Slash In Linking, and more. (SEM Industry: Forums)

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Yahoo Search Issues Index Weather Report
SEW Blog, Apr. 1, 2005

I couldn't be happier. Yahoo picks up the suggestion that many search marketers have wanted (and also see this), an official "weather report" letting them know if an index change was about to happen. Put up your umbrellas, folks, because the weather's about to change on Yahoo. More from the Yahoo Search Blog: Yahoo Launching New Search Index Tonight, including an email address to report any issues spotted. And yep, it's for real. (Yahoo: Web Search)

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April Fool's Jokes For Search: 2005
SEW Blog, Apr. 1, 2005

Lots of funny stories out for April Fool's Day relating to search. In this post, we list a bunch of them! (Search & Society: April Fools)

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No Foolin, Gmail Remains in Beta But Increases Amount of Storage Space
SEW Blog, Apr. 1, 2005

Gmail remains in beta but doubling the amount of storage space it offers from 1GB to 2GB and then will add a "yet-to-be-determined amount of extra storage daily with no plans to stop." More details in this News.com article and further background in this post. Also see 1GB: Yahoo Mail Users Getting Storage Space Increase for news on a Yahoo space increase that came before the Google announcement. (Google: Gmail | Yahoo: Mail)

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Winners Of 5th Annual Search Engine Watch Awards Announced
SEW Blog, Mar. 31, 2005

The votes have been counted, the editors have deliberated, and Yahoo has won the Outstanding Search Service category in the 5th Annual Search Engine Watch Awards, breaking Google's four year streak. But Google wins in several other categories: Best News Search Engine, Best US Shopping Search Engine, Most SEO/Webmaster Friendly Search Provider and Best Search Ads Provider. A summary of all awards in each category is below. For a long rundown with details about the awards, comments and more, please see the 5th Annual Search Engine Watch Awards page. Also see our forum thread, Discuss the 5th Annual Search Engine Watch Awards, where Chris Sherman and I answer questions about the award and how next year, we may do both "people's choice" and "editor's choice" selections.

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WordPress Caught Spamming After Enlisting To Fight Spam
SEW Blog, Mar. 31, 2005

Back in January, blogging software provider WordPress was one of several vendors that signed on to support the new nofollow attribute designed to stem blog and search spam. That's why it was so ironic when it emerged yesterday that WordPress has been spamming search engines itself. A detailed look, in this article. (SEO: Spamming)

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Searching for People with ZoomInfo
SearchDay, March 31, 2005

ZoomInfo is a free service that's gathered information about more than 25 million peopleincluding you, if you have even a minimal presence on the web. The longer version of this story for Search Engine Watch members describes how to create your own ZoomInfo profile, or edit or delete information in your existing profile, if the company has already created one about you. Click here to learn more about becoming a member. (Search Types: People & Public Records)

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Google Prefetch Will Autoload Some Results
SEW Blog, Mar. 31, 2005

Google released a new feature today for Firefox and Mozilla users that allows them to "prefetch" the first result from a serp into their browser even before clicking the result link. More in this post. (Google: Browser | Google: Web Search | SEM Tips: Measuring | Search Features)

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Making Your Searches More Contextually Aware
SearchDay, March 30, 2005

Aware is a desktop search application that learns from context, automatically fine-tuning your search results and providing controls that allow you to influence the importance of your search terms. (Search Types: Personalized)

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NetIQ To Spin Off WebTrends
SEW Blog, Mar. 29, 2005

NetIQ is selling its WebTrends web analytics division -- which also is home to the WebPosition rank checking tool -- to the division's management team and a private investment firm Francisco Partners for $94 million. WebTrends to Go It Alone from ClickZ has more. (SEM Tools)

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On Yahoo's Mojo & The Tiresome Need For Perspective
SEW Blog, Mar. 29, 2005

I'd largely agree with Om Malik's idea that Yahoo is a sharper company that seen in the past, which he addresses in his How Yahoo Got Its Mojo Back. But perhaps a little perspective is in order. Yahoo's successes don't necessarily mean Google is failing. Some selected points and counterpoints in this article. Also see Yahoo Has Google's Mojo: Round Two, where I look at how Second sight from The Guardian falls into the same trap of oversimplifying things into a "Yahoo whomps Google" situation. From TheStreet, Yahoo Sharpens Its Tech Edge takes a more balanced look at how Yahoo never really lost its groove but that instead, new initiatives are being better recognized, especially as it buys into areas with lots of buzz such as RSS and social networking. (Google | Yahoo)

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Looking for Links In All The Wrong Places?
SearchDay, March 29, 2005

In their frenzy to build links to curry favor with the major search engines, web site owners miss a far more important audience that's increasingly turning to topical search sites. (Link Building)

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Yahoo 360 Community Site Opens, Sort Of
SEW Blog, Mar. 29, 2005

Yahoo's 360 social networking-blogging-photo sharing service offiically opens, as the Yahoo Search Blog is tells the world in Yahoo 3600 - A New Model for Online Sharing. Want to try it? Sorry, it's invite only, for the moment. More about the service in this post. Also see a related post, Yahoo 360 Invites for Sale on eBay; Washington Post Calls Service "Confusing" (Google: Orkut | Portal Features: Social Networking | Yahoo: 360)

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Google To Acquire Urchin Web Analytics Firm
SEW Blog, Mar. 29, 2005

Google is to acquired the Urchin web analytics firm, which provides both hosted and log-based tools for understanding how people are interacting with web sites. More in this post. (Google: Revenues | SEM Tips: Conversion | SEM Tools | Yahoo: Web Analytics)

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Enhancing Your Image with Snap.com
SearchDay, March 28, 2005

Logos help build brand awareness, and upstart search engine Snap makes it easy for you to add your corporate image to search results. (Other Engines)

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Search Engine Forums Spotlight
SearchDay, March 25, 2005

Links to the week's topics from search engine forums across the web: Can Tagging Help Search? - Yahoo Buys Flickr - Ask Jeeves Bought By IAC - Yahoo Could Be Dropping API Access to PPC - Deceptive Advertising in Search Results - Google Placing Less Emphasis On Link Popularity?, and more. (SEM Industry: Forums)

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Why Quality Content is Key For Search Engines
SearchDay, March 24, 2005

How did the subject of 'content' find its way onto the agenda of a search engine marketing conference? Because often, higher rankings in search engines go to websites with higher quality content that earn more links. (SEM Industry: Forums | SEO)

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Yahoo Releases Creative Commons Search Tool
SEW Blog, Mar. 24, 2005

Yahoo has partnered with Creative Commons and released a new resource that restricts a web search (using the Yahoo web index) to content available with a Creative Commons license. You're also able to limit a query to find content available for commercial purposes and/or content that can modified, adapted, or built upon. Most of Yahoo's advanced search syntax appears to work. More in this post. (Legal: Copyright | Search Types: Other | Yahoo: Other Services)

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Ads On Ask & Could Paid Listings Take Prime Position?
SEW Blog, Mar. 23, 2005

In The Search Interface Of The Future from MediaPost, David Berkowitz looks at future history, envisioning a move where Ask Jeeves puts paid listings in the prime left-hand column of results, with unpaid results relegated to the less noticed right hand side. An uproar ("Boycott The Butler") ensues, but Ask -- to some degree like GoTo back in 1998 -- holds its ground. Traffic survives, and revenues skyrocket. Others eventually follow, but then a crash happens when consumers ultimately train themselves to still seek out the "natural" results wherever they are. It's a funny story, well worth a read, but it's not necessarily fiction. A look at how this is sort of already happening, in real life. (Ask: Ads | Search Ads)

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Writing for Search Engines
SearchDay, March 23, 2005

Success in search engines almost always means striking a delicate balance between applying search optimization techniques to web pages and creating high-quality, meaningful content. Effective writing for search engines is the key to achieving this balance. (SEO | SEO: Meta Tags | SEO: Site Design)

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Three Newspaper Publishers Acquire 75% of Topix net
SEW Blog, Mar. 23, 2005

Three newspaper publishers (Tribune, Knight-Ridder, and Gannett) are jointly acquiring 75 percent of the Topix.net news search engine. More details in this post. (Revenues: Acquisitions | Search Types: News)

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Tagging Not Likely The Killer Solution For Search
SEW Blog, Mar. 22, 2005

In case you've missed it, there's been an explosion of interest in "tagging," the idea that if everyone labels photos, blogs and so on, we'll more easily be able to find what we're looking for. But all the interest (dare I say hype) is largely ignoring the fact that we've had tagging on the web for going on 10 years, and the experience on the search side is that it can't be trusted. More in this post. (SEO: Meta Tags)

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Yahoo Posts Ad Guidelines & Ad API Info
SEW Blog, Mar. 22, 2005

Yahoo has posted new guidelines about what's acceptable in its search advertising plus some information about its long-standing API system for advertisers. More details in this post. (Search Ads: Editorial Policies | Yahoo: APIs | Yahoo: Search Ads)

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Google News Says Au Revoir to Agence France Press Content Following Lawsuit
SEW Blog, Mar. 22, 2005

Less than a week after Agence France Press filed a lawsuit (see Agence France Presse Sues Google over News Content) against Google alleging copyright infringement of its content by Google, the folks in Mountain View will no longer index AFP material and remove old AFP content from the Google News index. The eWeek article: Google to Drop AFP from News Index, provides more details. If you would like to read the complaint filed with the U.S. District Court in DC, we've posted it here: Full Text Court Filings: Agence France Press v. Google (Google: Legal | Google: News | Legal: Copyright | Legal: Crawling & Linking)

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NetRatings Search Popularity & Loyalty Figures For Jan. 2005
SEW Blog, Mar. 22, 2005

I've posted new, improved search-specific stats from NetRatings painting a picture of search popularity in the US for January 2005. In the past, NetRatings didn't provide stats based on search volume, which I feel provides a better picture of which search engines are being used the most. Now those stats are available. For last January, they show what you'd probably expect. Google is in the lead, followed by Yahoo, then MSN and AOL. Check them out here: Nielsen NetRatings Search Engine Ratings. For Search Engine Watch members, I've also done a longer analysis of the figures, comparing them to some recent comScore ones. I also looked at some some interesting "crossover" or "search loyalty" statistics that NetRatings released (link to PDF file) earlier this month. That members article is here: NetRatings Search Popularity & Loyalty Figures. (Stats: NetRatings | Stats: Popularity | Stats: Search Behavior)

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Just the Facts, Please
SearchDay, March 22, 2005

While the major search engines continue to dabble with shortcuts to reference sources, Wikipedia and Answers.com have quietly evolved into two of the most comprehensive online search resources for quick, free and reliable ready reference information. (Search Features | Search Tips | Search Types: Answers/Facts)

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Is Cloaking Deceptive Advertising? Not Necessarily
SEW Blog, Mar. 22, 2005

Search Marketing Techniques, Deceptive Advertising Laws & Other Laws from Alan Perkins at Search Engine Guide looks at how laws about deceptive advertising might be applied to search marketing. Alan's long argued that cloaking could be considered deceptive advertising, and he tries to build that case here -- the deception being that the search engine itself was being deceived about the real relevancy of a page. I disagree in this article that the deception can be definited to the tactic rather than the actual content. (Legal: Ads & Listings | SEO: Cloaking | SEO: Spamming)

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BlowSearch Offers Source Exclusion; When Will The Majors Do The Same?
SEW Blog, Mar. 21, 2005

BlowSearch's new PPC program will offer source exclusion. What's that, and why should the major providers give it to advertisers? More in this post. (Search Ads)

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MSN Shopping Beta Tests New Version
SEW Blog, Mar. 21, 2005

MSN Tests Shopping Search Engine from MediaPost has some details about a new comparison shopping service that MSN is testing, the MSN Shopping Beta. Shopping search isn't new to MSN. It's long had a shopping area (once called eShop, now currently MSN Shopping). In fact, a link to shopping search was offered on the MSN Search site until several months ago. It was quietly withdrawn until the new shopping search is ready for a full public debut, I was told earlier this month by someone at MSN. So check out the new beta, which is meant to provide a more comprehensive round-up of products than the existing service along with other features. And expect that shopping link to return at MSN Search in the near future. (MSN: Shopping | Search Types: Shopping)

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AOL Launches Pinpoint Travel
SearchDay, March 21, 2005

AOL's new Pinpoint Travel is an ambitious effort to provide truly comprehensive travel search that consumers can trust to provide the best options, not just inventory a travel provider or agency is anxious to sell. (AOL: Travel | Search Types: Travel)

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Official: IAC/InterActive Corp To Acquires Ask Jeeves
SEW Blog, Mar. 21, 2005

The story is now crossing the wires that it's official, IAC/InterActive Corp will acquire Ask Jeeves for $1.85 billion in stock. For some additional background, see also our earlier post WSJ: IAC/InterActiveCorp Close to Acquiring Ask Jeeves. See also this followup post, IAC-Ask Jeeves 2005 Vs. IAC-Lycos 1999 & The Need For Being Inclusive. (Ask: Revenues | Revenues: Acquisitions)

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Yahoo Acquires Flickr
SEW Blog, Mar. 20, 2005

Yahoo is acquiring the web-based photo sharing site, Flickr. A post on the FlickrBlog says that Flickr's parent company has been acquired by the folks in Sunnyvale. The post also notes that Flickr WILL NOT become Yahoo Photos but Yahoo Photos and other Yahoo services will offer Flickr features. A bit more in this post. (Revenues: Acquisitions | Search Types: Multimedia | Yahoo: Photo & Flickr | Yahoo: Revenues)

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Search Engine Forums Spotlight
SearchDay, March 18, 2005

Links to the week's topics from search engine forums across the web: New Search Ads Program Coming From MSN - Microsoft Search Advertisers Gets too Personal - The Complete AdSense Terms & New Features Update - Why Does Yahoo Add Strange Query String to Pages Indexed? - Click Fraud Check - How to Proceed? - Local Search Summarized: A Fascinating Lack of Data and Definition, and more. (SEM Industry: Forums)

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Lessons Learned from Eye Tracking Studies
SearchDay, March 17, 2005

You've optimized your web pages to be search engine friendly, and they're ranking well in search result pages, but so whatif users don't actually do what you'd like them to do once they arrive at your web site.

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MSN To Launch Its Own Paid Listings Program
SearchDay, March 16, 2005

MSN has announced it will enter the paid search arena with a full-blown self-service paid listing program similar to those run by Yahoo and Google. The longer version of the story for Search Engine Watch members goes into more depth on how the program was developed, why France and Singapore are pilot countries, more details on the program's features, ad targeting capabilities and how targeting is done, how the program makes automated ad management even more important and the challenges in rolling the program out in the US market..

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How to Hack Your Own Search Engine
SearchDay, March 15, 2005

Got the itch to go head-to-head with Google, Yahoo and all of the other big search players on the web? A new book provides a detailed blueprint for using and customizing Lucene, open-source search engine software that's freely available online.

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OpenSearch: Add Your Own Search Engine To A9 (Or Potentially, Anywhere)
SEW Blog, Mar. 15, 2005

A9's new OpenSearch program out today allows anyone with search results to create their own "button" that can be added to the A9 search engine, allowing users there to get custom specialty or vertical search results. More in this story.

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Claria Debuts RelevancyRank: Search Ranking By Behaviorial Activity
SEW Blog, Mar. 15, 2005

Claria, the company behind the Gator eWallet software, has released new search relevancy ratings today examining how the top search listings on Google, MSN and Yahoo compare to pages the company says its research shows are actually most relevant. More important, the ratings mark the first use of technology Claria hopes will let it improve the results of major search engines or perhaps offer its own improved search engine. More in this post. For Search Engine Watch members, the Claria Unveils Behaviorial-Based Search Ranking article goes into more depth on this "third generation" of clicktracking.

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Google's Redirect Hijacking Problem Gets Slashdotted
SEW Blog, Mar. 15, 2005

I've mentioned Google's problem with 302 redirects possibly "hijacking" someone else's page in passing before, always meaning to do a longer article explaining the situation more. The new Page Hijack: The 302 Exploit, Redirects and Google article up from Claus Schmidt looks to do an admirable job of explaining the situation, so check that out if you want to come up to speed. More on that and a round-up of similar information, in this post.

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Google Local Gains Tools For Businesses
SEW Blog, Mar. 15, 2005

Just launched, the new Google Local Business Center allows US business to find their listings in Google Local. It also allows those not already listed in Google Local to gain new listings. A bit more on how it works, in this post.

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Google AutoLink, Meet Butler, Which Enhances Google Results
SEW Blog, Mar. 15, 2005

Upset about Google AutoLink, the new Google Toolbar feature that adds links to web pages that it feels are appropriate? You might try a new tool created by Mark Pilgrim that inserts links on Google's own pages. A look at the tool and a revisit over developments with the AutoLink system, in this post.

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SEMs: Your Days Are Over (Not)
SEW Blog, Mar. 14, 2005

Search-Specific Agencies Fight for Survival from MediaWeek comes away from the SES NY show earlier this month with this frightening sounding conclusion: "Many SEMs also likely wondered whether the event might be their last trip to New York." While there will be more acquisitions, I think SEM firms will still survive. More in this post.

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Search's Long Tail
SEW Blog, Mar. 14, 2005

If you've somehow missed discussion of "The Long Tail," it's a reference to a landmark article of the same name by Wired editor Chris Anderson that ran last October. It covered how the media and entertainment industries will succeed not by pushing only mass market hits that are popular among many but by also mining the "long tail" of interest among a few in less-popular books, songs, movies and more. And in this article, a look at how search has long tail, too. Many search marketers have already understood this, the need to tap the "search tail." If you haven't, learn more in this article.

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Who's in Charge of the Internet?
SearchDay, March 14, 2005

Ever wondered about the organizations that oversee the architecture and operation of the Internet? A recently published article provides an enlightening glimpse behind the scenes of the net's governing bodies.

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Search Engine Forums Spotlight
SearchDay, March 11, 2005

Links to the week's topics from search engine forums across the web: Google Cloaking and Keyword Loading On Pages - Load Balancing and Its Effects on Search Engine Optimization - Changing Domains To Be Re-included In Yahoo - Google is Now Asking for a Code if You Use a Rank Checker - Google Adds Weather Feature, and more.

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USA Today Profile On Google AdSense; I Riff On It Still Not Being Search
SEW Blog, Mar. 11, 2005

USA Today looks at how Google's AdSense program has grown to help publishers make money: Google's AdSense a bonanza for some Web sites. I get to be one of the voices in the article not seeing things as so rosy. A closer look at AdSense having nothing to do with search and the irony of how it now fuels the same search spam that Google has to combat.

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New Customization, Personalization Features at Google News
SearchDay, March 10, 2005

Google has enhanced its news service with a number of new features that make it easy to modify your own version of the Google News page by adding or deleting sources, and to share the customized page with others.

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A Cool Blog Discovery Tool
SearchDay, March 9, 2005

There's a lot of great content out there on those millions of blogs, but finding the good ones related to your own interests can be a challenge. A set of tools from Blogstreet can help.

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Google Admits To Cloaking; Bans Itself
SEW Blog, Mar. 9, 2005

No, it's not April Fool's Day. Google has indeed cloaked pages on its own search engine and now banned those pages from its index. More in this article.

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Yahoo Directory Makes Changes & Further Directory Decline
SEW Blog, Mar. 8, 2005

The Changes in the Yahoo Directory thread in our Search Engine Watch Forums notes that the Yahoo Directory home page has gained a new look and feel. In addition, sites are now sorted by popularity, as I'll explain more below.

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A New F-Word for Google Search Results
SearchDay, March 8, 2005

A new study has added tangible evidence to the widely held view that top-ranking search results get the most attention from users, and that lower-ranking results are all but invisible to most people.

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Google Desktop Search Moves Out of Beta
SearchDay, March 7, 2005

Google has formally launched its desktop search application, after a comparatively short beta test period of just five months.

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Web Research "Dashboard" Nextaris Formally Launches, New Services Added
SEW Blog, Mar. 7, 2005

Nextaris, a web-based "dashboard" for the researcher was formally released today. Chris had several positive thing to say about this feature-filled service in his September 2004 Search day review: Nextaris: An Integrated Web Research Dashboard. He concludes his article by saying that Nextaris is, "blazing a trail for the next generation of web research tools." A longer look at what's provided also, in this post, including a mobile version.

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Most Conversions Happen Offline; You Need To Measure These!
SEW Blog, Mar. 7, 2005

In his ClickZ article, Nonconverting Keywords and the Search Continuum, Fredrick Marckini is stunned that some comScore and Overture research about conversions released at the end of last year hasn't been more widely discussed. It should have been, because it revealed how important tracking offline conversions is to search marketers. More on why it's so crucial to improve online and offline tracking, to better compete, in this post.

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Search Engine Forums Spotlight
SearchDay, March 4, 2005

Links to the week's topics from search engine forums across the web: SES New York: Live Coverage - Google Hires Top Windows Programmer - Yahoo's Contextual Ads in the Wild - Can Google Push Users To Yahoo & MSN? - Overture Services To Become Yahoo Search Marketing Solutions - The Best SEO Tactic: Do Nothing at all?, and more.

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Enhancements Made to Google Local
SEW Blog, Mar. 3, 2005

Google Maps are now available on Google Local on both the US and Canadian sites. Before today, Google was using maps provided by a third party on Google Local. More detailed business information is also offered. A rundown, in this post.

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Finding Free Content in the Creative Commons
SearchDay, March 3, 2005

Looking for photos, music, text, books and other content that's free to share or modify for your own purposes? The Creative Commons search engine can help you find tons of (legally) free stuff on the web.

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Newer, Fresher Google Hacks
SearchDay, March 2, 2005

One of the best books about Google has just been updated with new content and useful tools that make it even easier to exploit the full power of the popular search engine.

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So Long Overture, Hello Yahoo Search Marketing Solutions
SEW Blog, Mar. 1, 2005

A bit of re-branding news to begin the month of March. The Overture brand is no more. All of Overture's and Yahoo's marketing services will now use the name: Yahoo Search Marketing Solutions. Details in this news release.

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A Search Tool for Name Brands
SearchDay, March 1, 2005

Looking for the official site of a major brand? VisioBrand is a comprehensive directory of major global brands, organized by category, and presented in a highly visual, easy to use format.

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Envisioning the Web, 60 Years Ago
SearchDay, February 28, 2005

Sixty years ago, Vannevar Bush laid out a passionate vision of an 'information appliance' of the future. Looking back, we find a remarkably prescient description of what we today call the world wide web.

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More From The SEW Blog
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Google Testing New Related Searches & Clustering System?
By Gary Price, Apr. 6, 2005

Search Engine Lowdown spots a new feature that Google might be testing that shows "try alternate searches" and groups results by topic. More on this post and the SEL site. (Google: Web Search | Search Features: Clustering | Search Features: Related Searches)

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Talking With MSN Search
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 6, 2005

Interview with MSN's Web Search Team from Rand Fiskin at SEOmoz covers a range of topics, such as why the service was created, understanding its in a solid third place versus Google and Yahoo but hoping that being in the game will change that, some brief coverage on dealing with spam and other topics. (MSN)

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Got Good Rep? Strut That In Your Search Ads
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 6, 2005

Give Your PPC Ad "Authority" and your CTR will skyrocket from Search Engine Guide has some nice advice on ensuring your play up your company's reputation in ads as a means of increasing clickthrough. (Search Ads: Creative)

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Retaining Your In House SEM People
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 6, 2005

Those who are good at search marketing are in great demand. So if you've got a good in-house SEM person, how do you keep them from jumping ship? Patricia Fusco at ClickZ in How to Retain a Good In-House SEM Professional offers suggestions beyond just keeping them well paid. (SEO: In House)

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Google Definitions Goes Multilingual
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 6, 2005

The Google Definitions service is now providing word definitions in languages in other than English, according to the Google Blog. The feature is described here. Exactly what additional languages are now being covered isn't said. Note that Google Definitions are generated automatically by Google and a completely different service from the definition links it provides to Answers.com -- the [definition” link that appears in the blue reverse bar at the top right-hand side of search results pages, next to the query count number. More on that here. (Google: Definitions | Search Features: Direct Answers)

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Ars Technica Reviews Desktop Search Tools
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 6, 2005

Ars Technica tests and recaps major desktop search tools in Windows desktop search tools. From the conclusion, MSN Desktop Search comes out on top at the reviewers personal favorite, though anyone interested in web history search needs is pointed at Google Desktop. On a point basis, MSN gets 9, Copernic 9, Google 8, Yahoo 7, Ask 5. See also another review from Forbes with MSN winning "hands down" and Seeking a More Intuitive Search Tool from the Washington Post for another round-up. Google essentially comes out on top there, followed by MSN. (Search Types: Desktop)

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myGmaps Lets You Tag Google Maps
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 6, 2005

Want to tag and annotate Google Maps with your own information? myGmaps is a new service spotted via GoogleBlogoscoped that lets you do this. For example, here's a quick map I did for a good place for burgers in Newport Beach and the local Fry's Electronics, for after you are done eating. You can put whatever you want into the pop-up boxes. Just hover over the two points on the map, and you'll see examples of this. (Google: Maps)

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Yahoo Adds Firefox Toolbar for Mac and Linux Users; Anti-Spy Feature Also Added
By Gary Price, Apr. 5, 2005

Yahoo has released a version of the Yahoo Toolbar with antispyware for Firefox users and versions for Mac and Linux users of Firefox. More details here. (Yahoo: Toolbar)

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Jux2 Results Pages Receive Makeover
By Gary Price, Apr. 5, 2005

Results pages on Jux2, the 2005 Search Engine Watch Award winner for best meta search engine have just received a makeover. Tabs on results pages now allow you to move easily between four types of results: Best Results (Results merged into a single list from all three engines); What "Google is Missing" (Results in Ask Jeeves and Yahoo but not Google); Results that Only Google Found; Direct link to Google results page. A few more details in this blog post. (Search Types: Meta)

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The German Greens Don't Like Google, Either
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 5, 2005

German Greens Worry About Google from Google Blogoscoped looks at how the German green party has decided that Google may be a monopoly worth resisting. As Philipp at Google Blogoscoped says, they don't really raise any new worries and actually sound dated at a time when Google is facing strong competition from Yahoo and Google. (Google: Critics)

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Surfing Seasonality With Search Marketing
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 5, 2005

In Seasonality and SEM Campaigns from ClickZ, Fredrick Marckini looks at how search marketers need to react to seasonal and season-like events, in order to catch a growing wave of interest, rather than see other marketers surf past you on it. (SEM Tips)

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Searching For WiFi Hotspots
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 5, 2005

Heading off on that big trip and need to locate the nearest WiFi hot spot? WiFi Search Sites Offer Spring Freedom from Jennifer Laycock at Search Engine Guide has a rundown on resources to try. Also bookmark Geektels, a directory to hotels offering high speed acccess. Chris Sherman did a review of the service back in 2002: Searching for High Speed Hotels, and it still looks to be going. (Search Types: Computers | Search Types: Mobile | Search Types: Travel)

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Google News Undertakes Consumer Ad Campaign In Japan
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 5, 2005

Google will undertake its first significant consumer marketing campaign to promote Google News in Japan. Google turns to advertising in Japan from the Industry Standard has details of posters that will be placed on subway and railway trains in Tokyo, as well as banner ads online. (Google: Promotions)

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Spain Says Hola to Ask Jeeves
By Gary Price, Apr. 5, 2005

Ask Jeeves has just released a beta version of their new search service for Spain. The engine provides access to both web and image databases. Three radio buttons below the search box allow the searcher to limit their search to Spanish language content (default), sites from Spain, or the entire web. Like other AJ web search services, relevancy is determined using their Teoma technology. More details in this post. (Ask: Non-US)

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Looking Inside Yahoo News
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 4, 2005

Inside Yahoo News from the Online Journalism Review looks behind the scenes about how Yahoo News is creating, ranging from human editors involved with Yahoo Full Coverage, through how use of RSS/feeds are growing, to partnerships with wire services for content that have saved it from getting sued, such as AFP is currently doing to Google. (Search Types: News | Yahoo: News)

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Google: We Do Have A Grand Plan
By Danny Sullivan, Apr. 4, 2005

Living by Google Rules from Newsweek is a revisit to the challenges Google faces against stiff competition. Revisit? Sure, because we saw these types of articles before last year, as people were dubious about Google's IPO and worried that Microsoft would simply sweep Google away. But it's a good big picture review. A recap in this post. (Google | Google: Revenues)

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Blinkx 3.0 Goes Live
By Gary Price, Apr. 4, 2005

Blinkx is online today with the release of Blinkx 3.0 (Windows only) that now combines (into a single results list) material from the web, your desktop, Blinkx TV, and other databases. Another new feature is a document preview window with support for more than 200 file formats. More in this post. (Toolbars & Utilities)

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Google Joins Yahoo & Ask With Direct Display Of Stock Market Data In Results
By Gary Price, Apr. 4, 2005

Google has joined Yahoo and Ask Jeeves and is now placing a current stock chart and other info directly into search results pages. Previously, you had to click a second time to get to this info. More in this post. (Ask: Smart Search | Google: OneBox & Direct Answers | Search Features: Direct Answers | Yahoo: Shortcuts)

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New From Google Labs: Google Ride Finder
By Gary Price, Mar. 31, 2005

New from Google Labs is Google Ride Finder. This service uses GPS data to pinpoint and map (using Google Maps) the location of taxis, limos, and shuttle vehicles available for hire in 10 U.S. metro areas. More in this post. (Google: Local | Google: Maps | Search Types: Local)

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Yahoo Adds New Options to YQ
By Gary Price, Mar. 31, 2005

News from Sunnyvale that YQ (Yahoo's contextual search technology that was released as a beta in February) is offering a few new features for web page authors who embed YQ into their pages. Jeremy Zawodny has the details on the Yahoo Search Blog. Zawodny also writes that he is looking for some volunteers to test some new features for an upcoming Y!Q release. (Yahoo: YQ)

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Google Files Annual Report With SEC
By Gary Price, Mar. 30, 2005

Google filed their first annual report (10-K) with the Security and Exchange Commission. You can find the full text here. Supporting documents are linked on this page and include a list of Google's subsidiaries. See also Google Acquires Zipdash and More From The Google Annual Report for pointers to some places breaking down the report. (Google: Revenues | Revenues: Acquisitions)

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Keeping Current With Persistent Search Tools
By Gary Price, Mar. 30, 2005

The Wall Street Journal is online with an about persistent search from companies like PubSub. The article is titled: New Web-Watching Tools Pique Interest of Investors. More bout these type of tools in this post. (Search Features: Feeds, Alerts & Monitoring | Search Types: Blogs & Feeds)

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Can The Cookie Be Saved?
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 30, 2005

Crumbling Cookies Threaten SEM and Online Advertising from Kevin Lee at ClickZ looks at how a growing number of consumers eschewing cookies may make tracking conversions more difficult, thus impacting measuring search marketing effectiveness. He urges for various organizations to band together to save the cookie through education. Want to discuss? Visit our forum thread, Protecting Cookies from Deletion. (Legal: Privacy | SEM Industry: Standards | SEM Tips: Measuring)

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Bloglines Adds Package Tracking; More To Come
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 30, 2005

Bloglines has rolled out a new package tracking feature today that keeps you updated on the progress of items being shipped through FedEx, UPS or the US Postal Service. More in this post. (Ask: Bloglines | Search Features: Package Tracking | Search Types: Blogs & Feeds)

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Save Yahoo Local Data in Spreadsheet Format
By Gary Price, Mar. 29, 2005

Here's a new and potentially useful app (for Windows) that I just spotted on the Yahoo Developer Network Wiki. Do you want to work with Yahoo Local data offline? How about saving and storing entries in a spreadsheet? Rikul Patel's Local Search Excel Export makes doing this a breeze. Simply download the app, run a keyword search, specify a Zip Code/radius (in miles) and in a few seconds (it all depends how many records are available) you'll have the material in CSV format ready to save to your hard drive.and open in Excel. Data is sorted into six columns (Name, Address, City, State, Phone Number, and URL). (Search Types: Local | Yahoo: Local)

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LookSmart Launches Five New Verticals
By Gary Price, Mar. 29, 2005

Search verticals are hot so LookSmart launched five new vertical sites today aimed at different user groups. Each offers access to FindArticles material along with a interface to search the LookSmart web index. They are Teenja (For Teens); GradeWinner (For Tweens); 24Hourscholar (For the College Student); ParentSurf (For Parents) and GoBelle.com (For Moms on the Go). More in this post. (Other Engines: LookSmart | Search Types: Books & Print | Search Types: Kids)

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New Travel Search Engines Beat Old
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 29, 2005

Venerable Consumer Reports pits new travel search engines Kayak, Mobissimo and SideStep against the established brands of Orbits, Expedia and Travelocity and finds the new kids do better on finding lower prices: Travel search engines: New routes to deals. But looking for packages, direct flights, preferred airlines or other options? In those cases, the traditional players are found better to use. (Search Types: Travel)

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Answers.com Goes Mobile
By Gary Price, Mar. 29, 2005

Answers.com has released a mobile interface for their database. I think this is a perfect fit and to be honest, something I've wanted to see and use for a long time. To access, simply point your wireless web browser to: http://mobile.answers.com. (Search Types: Answers/Facts | Search Types: Mobile)

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Track Blogosphere Buzz with New and Improved BlogPulse 2.0
By Gary Price, Mar. 29, 2005

Those of you who track blogosphere buzz will be happy to learn the BlogPulse from Intelliseek has just released several enhancements.to the service. These include larger index (Blogpulse now is tracking 9.3 million blogs); new six month index of posts; improved visualization capabilities; new box (upper left corner of homepage) with index stats. For example, in the past 24 hours, Blogpulse identified 35,970 new blogs.
You can learn about other new features and improvements in the news release. (Search Types: Blogs & Feeds)

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InfoSpace Plans to Launch New Mobile Search Engine
By Gary Price, Mar. 28, 2005

In the current issue of The Puget Sound Business, Jeff Meisner takes a look at what Infospace is planning to offer in the mobile space: Next wave for InfoSpace: cell phone surfing. Meisner reports that InfoSpace will launch a new mobile search tool in the next 12 months that can be searched either via typing your query or voice recognition. A bit more in this post and some similar existing services. (Other Engines | Search Types: Mobile)

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Indeed.com and Other Job Verticals Profiled in NY Times
By Gary Price, Mar. 28, 2005

I've been very impressed with what I've seen from Indeed.com since first blogging about the service in December. This employment listings vertical/federated service aggregates results from many job databases, company web sites, messages boards, etc. Their RSS/email news alerts work very well and they also offer an interesting "jobs postings per capita" map. Today's New York Times article: Online Searchers for Job Seekers offers a profile of Indeed.com, which officially launches today. WorkZoo and SimplyHired.com, two other recent startups offering a federated database of job openings, are also mentioned in the article. A bit more on these tools, in this post. (Search Types: Jobs)

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Building The Yahoo Brand Around the World
By Gary Price, Mar. 28, 2005

In the article: Yahoo-Uber Brand, BusinessWeek's Ben Elgin takes a look at what Yahoo is doing to build their brand outside of the U.S. (Yahoo: Promotions | Yahoo | Yahoo: Non-US)

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New Search Features at Fybersearch
By Gary Price, Mar. 28, 2005

Fybersearch, the small but feature filled general purpose web engine that we've mentioned several times in the past (it's the work of one person, Nathan Enns) has released an update and even more search advanced features summarized in this post. (Other Engines)

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Lawsuit Filed in IAC/Ask Jeeves Acquisition
By Gary Price, Mar. 24, 2005

Are legal issues going to cause problems for the IAC/Ask Jeeves deal? The New York Post reports that an Ask Jeeves shareholder has filed a lawsuit in Deleware saying that AJ execs did not get a fair price for the company. More in the article: Suit Says Iac Bid For Ask Jeeves Too Low. (Ask: Revenues | Revenues: Acquisitions)

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New From Gigablast: Related Pages
By Gary Price, Mar. 24, 2005

Since December, Gigablast has been very busy rolling out new services and expanding their index. Today, they're unveiling links to "Related Pages" at the top of all results pages. Gigablast defines related pages as, "relevant search results which do not necessarily contain the searcher's query terms." A bit more about Gigablast's Related Pages here. Two weeks ago we blogged about Gigablast expanding their index size to over 1.5 billion pages. (Other Engines: Gigablast | Search Features: Similar Pages)

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Web Ousts Print Yellow Pages At Top Local Shopping Tool
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 24, 2005

A telephone survey has found that 70 percent of US households now use the internet -- and in particular search engines -- for information when shopping locally for products and services. It makes the internet tied with newspapers as the leading medium used to seek products and services locally. Conducted by the Kelsey Group and ConStat, it involved 500 respondents across the US. More in this post. (Search Types: Local | Stats)

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Shoppers Search For Deals, Then Buy
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 24, 2005

A study conducted by shopping service Shopzilla finds that 59 percent of consumers are starting shopping online at a search engine rather than going directly to a merchant, up from 46 percent three years ago. Search engines would include general purpose search engines like Google or Yahoo, shopping search engines like Shopzilla, Froogle or Yahoo Shopping or auction sites like eBay. More in this post. (Search Types: Shopping | Stats: Search Behavior)

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Are Your TV Ads Tuned Into Search?
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 24, 2005

Integrating Search With TV Ads: The Next Generation from Gary Stein at ClickZ looks at how television marketers better have a search strategy in place, because those TV ads will be fueling searches. Those can be a barometer for success, plus a way to help connect to consumers who need to close the gap between what they saw and how they can get it. (Search Ads: Branding | Search Ads: Tactics)

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Ixquick Adds Phone Search, Other Features
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 24, 2005

Long-standing meta search engine Ixquick has relaunched, with a new ability to look up phone numbers for people or businesses in multiple countries, shopping search results powered by various providers (such as PriceGrabber in the US) and a new "results honing" feature that lets you delete or move up pages listed in web results. Hate something? Use the X icon to move it out of the list and drop out other pages deemed similar to it. Like something? Use the checkmark icon to get similar results. A rundown of what else is new can be found in this press release (PDF format). (Search Types: Meta | Search Types: People & Public Records | Search Types: Shopping)

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Link to Froogle Now Visible on Google UK Home Page
By Gary Price, Mar. 23, 2005

Those of you who track each and every Google move might be interested to know that the Google UK home page now sports a link to Froogle. The folks at Netimperative speculate that it could mean that Froogle is getting closer to an official launch. More in the article: Froogle edges towards official launch. (Google: Froogle)

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Yahoo Desktop Search Adds New Search Options
By Gary Price, Mar. 23, 2005

Yahoo has added a couple of new search options to their Yahoo Desktop Search (YDS) application. Along with the more than 200 indexable/searchable file types that are already part of YDS are two new indexing options. YDS can now index your Yahoo Messenger archives and your Yahoo Address Book contacts. YDS can be downloaded for free here. For more about Yahoo Desktop Search, here's a link to Chris's SearchDay review from earlier this year. (Yahoo: Desktop)

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Scirus Adds 13 Million Patents to Database
By Gary Price, Mar. 22, 2005

Scirus, Elsevier's science-specific web database now provides searchable access and direct links to more than 13,000 million "scientific" patents from around the world. More in this post. (Search Types: Science)

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If Your Site Could Talk, You'd Be Ashamed
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 22, 2005

User Experience and Search Engines: If Your Home Page Could Only Talk from Kim Krause Berg at Search Engine Guide is a very witty write-up of what a poorly designed web site would say, if you do the wrong things from a usability and search friendliness standpoint. (SEO: Site Design)

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Wikipedia Plus Dynamic Search Term Suggestions = WikiWax
By Gary Price, Mar. 21, 2005

Surfwax has just launched its LookAhead search term suggestion technology combined with Wikipedia into a new site calledWikiWax. Over 600,000 Wikipedia index terms are listed with more than 2,000,000 LookAhead rotations available. Remember, you'll see LookAhead offering suggested entries prior to clicking the search button. More in this post. (Search Types: Answers/Facts)

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Should Google Fear France?
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 21, 2005

I was just thinking about a possible April Fool's headline, "Google's Brin Arrested By French For Cultural War Crimes" after reading the latest French-related set-back for his company, that of being for using Agence France Presse material in Google News. This follows on another trademark case loss in France, plus French president Jacques Chirac seeing Google's digitization project as a possible threat to Francophones and French culture. Stephanie Olsen at News.com has obviously been thinking the same thing and weighs in with own short recap in France vs. Google. From us on these subjects, see: Agence France Presse Sues Google over News Content; France: Google Loses Appeal of Trademark Case and France, Google & The Need for Digitization Project Cooperation. (Google)

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Search Ad Prices Rising -- Retailers Seek Options
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 21, 2005

Some Retailers Balk At Search Ads As Prices Soar from Dow Jones discusses how as search ad prices rise, some retailers are no longer finding they can keep up. Some further comments on the article, in this post. (Search Ads: Prices)

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FindArticles Redesigns, Adds Sort & Search Options
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 21, 2005

FindArticles has always been a great resource for locating periodical content that might not be available on the web in general. Now the LookSmart-owned service has redesigned. I actually don't like the new look-and-feel, which seems busier than before. But new options appear to be the ability to see results grouped by topic, to limit results to only content free from pay-per-view charges (more on that premium content here), additional sorting options (date, relevancy, publication) and ability to search within specific categories, such as sports or news. (Search Types: Books & Print)

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Fredrick's Dad Makes Him A Believer In Local Search
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 21, 2005

Fredrick Marckini thought the hype over local search and getting little merchants online was just that, hype. But after watching the experiences of one of his smallest spending clients, Mr. Marckini Sr. AKA Fredrick's dad, he comes away a believer. ClickZ's Local Search: Convert and Win has the story of his father's site, Boston Environmental, becoming a local search convert. Note that Fredrick isn't really talking about any special "new" local search product. This isn't pay-per-call, for example. Instead, it appears to be success with ordinary paid search combined with new local targeting options. (SEM Tips: Local Search)

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Engine Manipulation, Verticals, and the Library
By Gary Price, Mar. 17, 2005

Adam Penenberg offers a profile of WebGuerrilla's Greg Boser in the Wired article: Search Rank Easy to Manipulate. While I'm sure many of you will plenty to say about the article, allow me to share a few random thoughts that came to mind from my non-SEO, professional researcher (librarian) perspective. You'll find them in this post. (SEO: Spamming)

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France, Google, And The Need For Digitization Projects To Cooperate
By Gary Price, Mar. 17, 2005

A month after we posted on the head of the France's national library (Bibliothhque nationale de France) being concerned with Google's ambitious program to digitize library materials from several large libraries "favouring Anglo-Saxon ideas and the English language." Today we're reading about President Jacques Chirac of France calling for a European project to digitize library books. In this post, links to the translation of his statement and the bigger issue that it's not Anglo-Saxon domination to worry about but that none of the many digitization projects underway right now are cooperating.

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New Tech Buzz Game from Yahoo Research Labs
By Gary Price, Mar. 16, 2005

Yahoo's new Tech Buzz Game is "a fantasy prediction market for high-tech products, concepts, and trends. As a player, your goal is to predict how popular various technologies will be in the future." More on the game and some PowerPoint slides from a presentation about it, in this post.

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Where Did Google X Go?
By Gary Price, Mar. 16, 2005

Earlier today Danny blogged about the new Google X interface from Google Labs. Now, a day after launching the service, it's already offline. Philipp and News.com report that Google X was taken down sometime this afternoon. Why? Google isn't saying. Earlier, Danny wrote, "Google X comes from apparently similar functionality in the MacOS system." Hmm, perhaps Apple had a few issues with the "look" and "feel" of the service and Google decided to simply kill their "homage" to OS X. According to the News.com article, both Google and Apple were unavailable for comment. As of 9pm EST, the Google X remains unreachable. Want to discuss? Visit our forum thread, Google X. If you're having Google X withdrawal or never even got to use Google's "homage" to Apple's OS, a mirror of the site and service is available here. (Google: Other Services | Search Features)

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Feedster Improves Advanced Search Syntax
By Gary Price, Mar. 16, 2005

Feedster has just made some of its already robust advanced search syntax easier to use. It's all documented here. Impressive! I'm very happy to see that the proximity operator (near) remains available. You're even able to specify how many words "term a" can be from "term b." If you don't specify a number, the default is ten words in either direction. Presently, the only large general web engine to offer a proximity operator is Exalead. Too bad. When available, proximity operators can help deliver more precise results. Kudos to Feedster on improving their already robust search syntax.

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New Firefox Toolbar from Ask Jeeves
By Gary Price, Mar. 16, 2005

A post on the Ask Jeeves Blog informs us that the company is now offering a version of the AJ Toolbar for Firefox users.

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France: Google Loses Appeal of Trademark Case
By Gary Price, Mar. 16, 2005

Google has lost an appeal of a trademark infringement case in France and will have to pay $100,300 in damages. "The court in Versailles, west of Paris, found that Google Inc. was guilty of "trademark counterfeiting" and ordered it to pay the damages originally awarded to French travel companies Luteciel and Viaticum, as well as costs." More in the article: Google Loses French Trademark Appeal.

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Hiring An In House Search Marketer
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 16, 2005

How to Find an In-House SEM Specialist from Patricia Fusco at ClickZ looks at how to find and bring someone in to do search marketing in house, if you've reached that need.

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Poking At Search Marketing Myths
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 16, 2005

Popular Search Marketing Myths Debunked from Jennifer Laycock at Search Engine Guide takes a nice look at some of the popular search marketing wisdom you may hear out there and explains that it ain't necessarily so.

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SEMPO Elects New Officers From Board
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 15, 2005

Last month, SEMPO elected a new board of directors. Now that board has selected from among themselves a new chairperson, president and other officers. A rundown in this post.

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Looking At ClickTracks Optimizer
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 14, 2005

Jennifer Laycock does a rundown on key features of the new mid-range ClickTrack Optimizer product released in January. ClickTracks Optimizer Offers Must Have Reporting for Small Businesses is the title of her article on Search Engine Guide, and as you might guess, she loves the web analytics tool, as do I.

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Search Engine Showdown Posts New Items
By Gary Price, Mar. 14, 2005

Greg Notess (also a librarian) has posted a couple of new and interesting items on his Search Engine Showdown site. You'll find a Premlinary review of Exalead, a look at how the major web engines handle long words and an item about how Yahoo is now searching stop words in phrases and how it "breaks" several "hacks" for Yahoo proximity searching. I agree with Greg, Yahoo needs to bring back both truncation and the proximity operator that were once available at AltaVista.

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Clusty Now Offering Government Info Search and Cluster
By Gary Price, Mar. 14, 2005

Word of something new from Vivisimo's Clusty.com this afternoon. The company has just launched a new "government tab" that allows you to search and cluster results from a variety of government info sources including FirstGov, MSN limited to the ".gov" domain, DefenseLink, political news from Reuters, the Associated Press, and CNN, and a number of prominent American think tanks, including RAND, The Brookings Institution, and The Cato Institute. An advanced search interface is available. Also, Clusty continues to make search/cluster versions of key government reports and documents available. They're now providing a search/cluster version of the 2006 U.S. Budget. Finally, Clusty now offers a shortcut to find info about members of the U.S. Congress. Enter a state name, postal abbreviation, or Zip Code in the search box and at the top of the page you'll find pictures, links to voting records, and email info.

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Big Brands Need To Do SEO, Too
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 14, 2005

Big brand? "Get over yourself," says Shari Thurow, when it comes to SEO. In her Big Brands Equal Big SEO Opportunities column on ClickZ today, she looks at how being a big brand can give you opportunities in search engine optimization but doesn't mean guarantees if you aren't willing to accommodate search engines. That's especially so give there are smaller, nimble companies who will.

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On Google Jets, Google Bras & Removing Michael Wolff's Talk From Google
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 14, 2005

SiliconValley.com points to a transcript of keynote speech by Vanity Fair columnist Michael Wolff, where he tells a story of Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin discussing the coolness of owning your own 767 while traveling on the private jet of an unnamed billionaire. The duo also discuss the idea of Google branching off into making underwear and bras. If that's not strange enough, you'll note that before you get to the actual transcript, the site hosting it is printing correspondence telling it to remove the transcript because of copyright issues. The site obviously disagrees. But that didn't keep it from being pulled out of Google, as this post looks at more.

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Leading UK Travel Providers Stop Keyword Advertisers from Using Their Trademarks in Google Ads
By Gary Price, Mar. 13, 2005

Interesting read on the Silicon.com site about three leading UK travel providers (First Choice, Thomas Cook and Thomson) telling travel agents that they are no longer allowed to use their trademarks in keyword advertising on Google. More in the article: Travel companies ban trademarks from Google

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Mobile Access to Your My Yahoo RSS Feeds
By Gary Price, Mar. 12, 2005

This CMPNet Asia story points out that the mobile version of My Yahoo now allows you to view your RSS feeds via your WAP browser. In other words, My Yahoo joins Bloglines from Ask Jeeves as services offering mobile tools to access your feeds. More info and details about how to access your feeds via My Yahoo Mobile in the story: Yahoo Launches Mobile RSS News Feed and in the Yahoo Search Blog post: My Yahoo Mobile RSS.

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Looking At Become.com
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 11, 2005

Who's Shopping? Who's Researching? has ClickZ executive editor Rebecca Lieb coming away impressed with the research versus shop search options that new shopping search engine Become.com plans to roll out. But as an "elephant" of a feature, it's something that the bigger search engines could also do, given that they do have "pure play" shopping search engines of their own. The article has some more details on Become, including the use of human editors to select sites with reviews. Consumer Reports content is mentioned being crawled -- Yahoo Shopping has long offered some of this content as well. Our own look at Become and how it is shaping up against other shopping search engines is in the works, so stay tuned.

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You Had Them At Search; Keep Them With Email
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 10, 2005

Hey, I love it if you search for something and found my site about search engines. But it's always been my goal since the very beginning (that's 1996!) that if you find me, I want you to leave your email address to I can continue to reach out to you (with your permission, of course). If the excitement over search and enthusiasm over RSS has made you forget email, don't. It's still used by lots of people and is a great way to convert and stay connected with the people who found you the first time. Search and Retain: The Search/E-Mail Combo from ClickZ looks at this more.

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Looking At Chinese Search Censorship
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 10, 2005

China's search engine censorship continues from Pandia recaps Chinese government pressures to censor search results, along with its funding of the Accoona search engine.

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Search Players Want Your Mobile Phone
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 10, 2005

Local mobile search? Hold the phone from News.com takes a look at how search companies are eyeing the mobile market as a way to extend their reach.

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WSJ's Mossberg Against AutoLink
By Danny Sullivan, Mar. 10, 2005

Wall St. Journal tech columnist Walt Mossberg has come out against the AutoLink feature in the new Google Toolbar: Google Toolbar Inserts Links in Others' Sites, And That's a Bad Idea. Mossberg was instrumental in getting Microsoft's Smart Tags killed, as my earlier article explains more.

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FareChase Announces Enhancements
By Gary Price, Mar. 9, 2005

FareChase, the travel search site that Yahoo acquired in 2004 is announcing a few enhancements to the service. A post on the Yahoo Search Blog says that FareChase is now available for Firefox and Safari users and offers more search and refinement tools including the ability to sort results by price and departure times. FareChase is one of a growing number of travel research tools that simultaneously search and aggregate results from disparate databases. Competitors include Mobissimo, Kayak, and SideStep. More about these services in the Charlotte Observer article: Search engines revved up for one-stop travel service.

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A9 VP Talks About New Visual Yellow Pages
By Gary Price, Mar. 9, 2005

Interested in learning more about A9's new "visual" yellow pages? During SES last week, Zachary Rodgers from ClickZ chatted with Barnaby Dorfman, a VP at Amazon's A. The Q&A style interview: Questions for Amazon.com's Barnaby Dorfman, has info about the companies providing data to the service, Dorfman's thoughts about why the images can be useful to consumers, how a9 plans to increase the user base, and much more. For an overview about what the service has to offer, see the SearchDay article: Amazon's A9 Launches Visual Yellow Pages.

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A Busy Time for China's Web Search Companies
By Gary Price, Mar. 7, 2005

Several announcements from the major web search providers in China over the past couple of weeks. The Asia Pulse article: Search Engine Market To Consolidate In China, has an overview.

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Yahoo: Ten Years, 100 Moments, One Page
By Chris Sherman, Mar. 6, 2005

Yahoo has created Yahoo Netrospective: 10 years, 100 moments of the Web a seriously cool single page highlighting key events for the company and the web. Click on a thumbnail image or its description, and a pane opens up showing a larger picture describing the event. It's a fast, easy-to-use and fun way to quickly scan ten years of history. See also The Site that Inspired the Yahoo Netrospective.

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Listen to Jerry Yang Interviewed on Charlie Rose Show
By Gary Price, Mar. 6, 2005

The audio of the 23 minute interview between Chief Yahoo Jerry Yang and Charlie Rose sat is currently available for FREE via Audible.com (look for the Free Audio links near the top of the page or search for "Jerry Yang"). Some bulletpoints from it and a bit more, in this post.

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Google's New Weather Shortcut and Similar Services
By Gary Price, Mar. 5, 2005

A post on the Google Blog informs us that Google now has a shortcut that provides a four-day weather forecast in a OneBox at the top of web search results page. More on using this and similar features with other search engines, in this post.

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Google: The Business
By Gary Price, Mar. 4, 2005

Ben Elgin at Business Week asks if Google is a one-trick pony? "A handful of analysts increasingly are questioning whether Google's laser-like focus on search may be something of an Achilles' heel. Google remains almost entirely dependent for growth on search -- a business that's poised to slow. In the maturing U.S. market, Forrester Research Inc. predicts growth will drop from 45% to 30% this year."

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Google News China Blocked...Again
By Gary Price, Mar. 4, 2005

Interfax reports that Google News China was unavailable after trying to access from various locations throughout China. The article goes on to mention that one of Google's English language news sites was often inaccessible.

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Ask Jeeves Improves Relevancy With Image Search
By Gary Price, Mar. 4, 2005

Ask is now using their own relevancy algorithm on top of the image database that's provided by Picsearch. The Picsearch database and algorithm is also used with MSN's Image Search. The AJ blog post offers a couple of before and after examples.

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Yahoo Now Recommends Movies
By Gary Price, Mar. 2, 2005

Greg Linden tells us about a new movie recommendation service from Yahoo Movies. Greg also points out that ChoiceSteam offers a television recommendation service called MyBestBets. Another web-based movie recommender system (this one utilizes collaborative filtering) is called MovieLens. It comes from the GroupLens Research Project at the University of Minnesota and has been online for several years.

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Keyword Search Prices Drop Two Percent
By Gary Price, Mar. 2, 2005

A new Fathom report was released today and shows that keyword prices dropped two percent last month. More numbers and a chart are available here.

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Ask Jeeves Now Powering Lycos Web Search
By Gary Price, Mar. 2, 2005

Score another deal for Mr. Jeeves. Word this morning that Ask Jeeves is now powering web search on the Lycos.com site. Details in this news release.

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Yahoo Search Makes APIs Publicly Available
By Gary Price, Mar. 1, 2005

Yahoo Search application programming interfaces (APIs) are now publicly available from the just announced Yahoo Search Developer Network. The YSDN features Yahoo Search APIs which span Web search verticals, search engine marketing and direct advertising products including. A bit more in this post. See also A Week After Launch, Yahoo Search Developer Network Lists More than 20 Applications.

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New Services from MSN Maps
By Gary Price, Feb. 28, 2005

News of a few new services from MSN Maps this afternoon, such as pasting formatted addresses into a search box, find businesses along a route, ability to directly link to maps and more in this post.

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Yahoo: Remembering The Early Days
By Gary Price, Feb. 28, 2005

As many of you know, Yahoo will celebrating their 10th anniversary later this week (March 2nd to be precise) and the AP has put together a wonderful timeline with key dates and milestones in Yahoo's history. I also did a bit of research and found some early posts about Yahoo in the Usenet archive and elsewhere. Those are in this post. Enjoy!

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Study: UK Searchers Understand Differences
By Gary Price, Feb. 28, 2005

An article from Netimperative: Brits search smarter than Yanks, reports on the findings from a new study about UK web searchers. "Nine out of ten (93%) Web users in the UK know the difference between sponsored and organic search engine results compared to just 38% of Americans, according to new research."

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Keyword Search Movie Trailers via Blinkx
By Gary Price, Feb. 28, 2005

The LA Times article Film Download, Search Firms to Link Services covers about a deal that will allow people who use BlinkxTV* to be able to keyword search trailers of films available from Movielink, a web-based service that allows users to download complete films to their computers. More in this news release. Also, in this blog post, I offer an overview of several web-based audio/video search tools. Some use closed-captioning associated with the video while others use metadata or speech-recognition technology. BlinkxTV is available as a standalone site or via the TV icon on the Blinkx Desktop.

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Full Text: The State of Search Engine Marketing 2004
By Gary Price, Feb. 28, 2005

The SEMPO report: The State of Search Engine Marketing 2004, is now publicly available as a full text (PDF) document (free) here. Highlights from the report were mentioned in this December blog post. Chris also provided a detailed review in this SearchDay article.

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AOL's Advanced Search Preview Feature
By Gary Price, Feb. 26, 2005

As someone who teaches many web search training classes I would like to offer a tip o' the cap to a simple but elegant feature found on AOL's advanced search page. A frequent challenge to new and even some veteran users of advanced search interfaces is entering terms into the various boxes and then not having a clear understanding (aka confusion) of what they are or aren't searching. AOL's Search Preview, located on the right side of the advanced search page, takes the material entered into each search box and uses it to dynamically generate the query into a single easy/easier to understand sentence. Words and items that will be searched appear in green. Material that will not be searched appears in red.

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The Boys Versus The Adults: Google Goes Public Story
By Danny Sullivan, Feb. 25, 2005

Spotted via John, Journey to the (Revolutionary, Evil-Hating, Cash-Crazy, and Possibly Self-Destructive) Center of Google from GQ is a great, great long read about "the boys" versus "the adults" journey Google has made to being a public company, one where the boys of founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin are still firmly in control.

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