Google Site Links Broken?

Anne Hennegar has noticed something’s not quite right about the Google Site Links for the San Jose Mercury News–one of the links points to an advertiser.

I’m sure Fry’s is delighted, but does this help the user experience?

(How did this happen? Likely Google mistook the ad link–which runs through a mercurynews redirect–as a navigational link for the site)

Why I’m a Tortoise in a World of Blogging Hares

You can’t blame the NYT for its weekend piece entitled "In Web World of 24/7 Stress, Writers Blog Till They Drop." The article isolates a couple of unfortunate deaths in the blogging community, then selects a handful of juiced-up bloggers to prove it’s theory that blogging can lead to bad health, or even death.

Why can’t you blame the NYT? The newspaper is a mainstay of traditional media and everyday it "wakes-up" to find another hot new blog–with attention grabbing headlines–chipping away at its readership. It’s not that the Times wants to take pot shots at bloggers, it’s just that it thinks that, by writing controversial articles, it can get a pass to the bloggers’ lounge.

Yahoo to Microsoft: You Offered 3 Pigs as a Dowry, We Want 4!

There are so many different ways of looking at the ongoing (non) negotiations between Yahoo and Microsoft. Judging by the letters that went back and forth this weekend, you’d think it was a conversation going on between two arguing parents: “You can tell your Mother, that my offer to take her to Wendy’s for dinner, is fair and final.”

Instead, I think it’s more appropriate if we look at the antics as some kind of “dowry” negotiation. When you boil it all down, it’s as simple as this.

Microsoft: “By any fair measure, the large premium we offered in January is even more significant today. We believe that the majority of your shareholders share this assessment, even after reviewing your public disclosures relating to your future prospects.”

Attention Website Owners: If You Aren’t on Google’s First Page, You’re Dead to Us

Needle in a HaystackBy Michelle Greer.

You can have the most attractive website of all your competitors. You can hire usability experts, professional photographers, and the greatest PHP developers money can buy. If you aren’t on the first page of Google, you might as well be from Mars. Sorry.

Why? It’s not that we don’t value what you have to offer. It’s that we, the search engine using public, are too hard-pressed for time and/or lazy to bother to look for you. According to a study done by iProspect, 49% of us change our search terms and/or search engine after not finding our desired result on the first page. This compares with 40% in 2007, 42% in 2005 and just 28% in 2004. Only 8% of us actually bother going past the third page.

Yahoo Developing AMP Advertising Platform for Publishers

The NYT has early details of Yahoo’s new online advertising platform designed to allow publishers to sell demographically targeted ads on their own sites and Yahoo’s content network. The new system is being dubbed AMP.

With AMP, a newspaper ad sales representative working with an advertiser, like a car dealer, would be able to easily see the ad space available on not only the newspaper’s site but also Yahoo and other Web publishers’ sites. The sales person could slice that inventory by demographic profile to, for instance, aim ads for a new hybrid S.U.V. to females of a specific income and age group. The system will help streamline a manual and time-consuming effort, Ms. Schneider said.

Alan’s Angle – April Fool’s Day, 365 Times a Year?

Having gone through more than a few of the industry’s April Fool’s Day posts, I have come to quite an interesting conclusion: as far as the Web is concerned, we are actually celebrating April Fool’s Day 365 (366) times a year.

Let’s face it: nothing should surprise us nowadays. “Google is conquering space!”, it sounds like a fairly decent April Fool’s Joke, doesn’t it? But guess what: it’s not a joke, it’s was actually an announcement (does Google Sky ring a bell?). No matter how incredible a scenario may sound, nothing would surprise me if the word “Google” were to be included in the headline.

Linky Goodness, April 4

Here’s some linky goodness to see you off into the weekend!