I’m working on a story about the Google AutoLink feature and controversy is has raised with some publishers that should be out tomorrow. But I wanted to note an interesting
change now that I spotted at Barnes & Noble, the poster child for concerns over the tool.
Yesterday, I could go over to Barnes & Noble, find a page with an ISBN number and use the AutoLink tool in the Google Toolbar to turn the numbers into links that lead to
Amazon. Today, all those ISBN numbers are already links.
What happened? My guess is that Barnes & Noble got wise to the fact that AutoLink won’t impact any ISBN numbers that are already links — so they made every ISBN a link
leading back to within their own site.
Powell’s Books hasn’t figured that out yet. If you are using the Google Toolbar with the new feature, visit this
page, and see how clicking on the button will show you how the ISBN can be turned into an Amazon link.
For more on the AutoLink feature, see our forum discussion AutoLink & Google As Anti-Webmaster
and this past blog post, A New Version (Beta) of the Google Toolbar is Now Available. And more from me
tomorrow, of course.