Posted June 15, 2009 9:49 am by with 3 comments

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I am from the Tri-State area (for the uninitiated that encompasses NY/NJ/CT area that is within striking distance of New York City) originally so I am used to the New York Post. In fact, it’s a fun read on most days because it is a tabloid that tends to ‘over-embellish’ a bit but you know that going in (unless you’re a tourist then please just spend your money and leave quietly ;-)). A headline from yesterday, though, got my attention because of the sheer NY Post shock factor. It read: Fear Grips Google, Sources: Sergey Orders Bing Study. Way to go headline guys…. that one worked.

According to the paper

You’d think nothing would get under the skin of search giant Google.

But co-founder Sergey Brin is so rattled by the launch of Microsoft’s rival search engine that he has assembled a team of top engineers to work on urgent upgrades to his Web service, The Post has learned.

The sources are telling the Post that Brin himself is personally involved in doing some algorithm diving to see just what Bing has come up with and why there may be a real threat to the World According to Google. Of course, as you read a little further you learn that, while fun to consider for a moment, that there is not likely to be any all hands alerts at Google any time soon.

Why? Couldn’t someone like Microsoft actually knock Google from its perch high atop the Internet Mountain of Revenue? Hey, anything is possible but until there is a true sea change effort in search it’s difficult to imagine Google being displaced. While the reviews for Bing have been nice the reality is that other than the interface it may just be business as usual from a search perspective
After all the end of Google as we know it headline stuff the article rolls over and plays dead

While Bing is presented differently from Google — with a colorful home page and easy-to-navigate search categories compared with Google’s stark white page and search box — there is little difference between the two when it comes to searching for simple terms.

So is there genuine concern in Mountain View? Is Sergey losing sleep or wondering if he will need to get his deposit back on that space travel deal? Not likely. Google’s response was predictable.

A spokesman for Google declined to comment about Brin’s interest in Bing but said: “We always have a team working on improving search.” He added: “We dedicate more time and energy to search than anything else in our company. Our algorithm is constantly evolving.”

Now we are a couple of weeks into Bing-mania. What’s your take? Is this something that the folks at Google should be losing sleep over and thus convening secret committees of mad search scientists to thwart the threat of Bingenstein? Or is it just people fishing for something / anything to make it look like Google has some genuine competition that could hurt their bottom line rather than just create market share stealing at the secondary search level that includes Bing, Yahoo and Ask?