Google Category Exclusions – Extra Categories

You might have noticed Google’s recent announcement regarding support for category exclusions within content campaigns.

This announcement basically said that you have two new ways to exclude sites from your content campaign, the “Topics” and “Page Types” tools.

The Topics exclusion tool provides you the ability to exclude your ads from pages displaying information on certain types of topics like Death & tragedy and Juvenile, gross & bizarre content.

The Page Types exclusion tool provides you the ability to exclude your ads from certain types of pages like parked pages, error pages, and forums.

If you find these categories limited in scope, you might also be interested in a whole host of other categories available for exclusion.

Locating Additional Categories

Matt Cutts Predicts the Future

If you’ve been following Matt Cutts’ blog over the last few days you may have seen his March 3rd post “My 2008 Predictions“. In this post Matt claims…

2008 will be the year that hacking and search engine optimization (SEO) collide in a major way. By the end of the year, a nontrivial fraction of blackhat SEO will involve illegally hacking sites for links or landing pages. One webhost will get a significant black eye as hundreds or thousands of customers’ websites are hacked. The growth of illegal-blackhat SEO will leave traditional blackhats with a difficult choice: risk doing something illegal or sit out.

Ironically, on the very same day the Earth Liberation Front’s (ELF) website was hacked by Viagra spammers.

How to Break a Framed Redirect

Framed redirects are one of my biggest pet peeves on the web. You click on a link to visit a site, the site loads, and the URL in your address bar is different than what it should be.

Technically, a framed redirect works by loading a hidden framed page on top of a second framed page which displays the target content.

Imagine clicking on a link for Amazon, pulling up the Amazon website, but seeing the URL amazonblackhataffiliate.com in your address bar. You would be able to browse the entire Amazon site, make purchases, etc. but the URL in the browser bar would always display amazonblackhataffiliate.com. This is the experience of surfing a site through a framed redirect.

Will Microsoft Resurrect Natural Language Search?

Could Microsoft’s push toward speech based data entry bring natural language search to the forefront? According to an AP article:

People will increasingly interact with computers using speech or touch screens rather than keyboards, Microsoft Corp. Chairman Bill Gates said.

“It’s one of the big bets we’re making,” he said during the final stop of a farewell tour before he withdraws from the company’s daily operations in July.

In five years, Microsoft expects more Internet searches to be done through speech than through typing on a keyboard, Gates told about 1,200 students and faculty members Thursday at Carnegie Mellon University.

Speech based searches may not necessarily mean natural language searches. For example, I could speak the phrase “search: hd tv” into my computer and fulfill the requirements of speech data entry without fulfilling the requirements for a natural language search.

Baidu Targeted by People’s Republic of China

According to an Associated Press article, top Chinese search engine Baidu has landed afoul of the Beijing Association of Online Media over sexually explicit photos available through their search engine.

The photos featuring Edison Chen and several other stars, seem to have originated in Hong Kong.

Formerly a British colony and subsequently transfered to Chinese rule in 1997, Hong Kong enjoys a slightly-less-aggressive brand of Internet censorship than the rest of China. It was this bastion of slightly-less-aggressive Internet restrictions where the photos started their viral march across China.

The article reports that the Beijing Association of Online Media accuses…

While other Beijing internet companies have boycotted the spread of the racy photos, Baidu still hasn’t implemented effective blocking and obscuring of the photos and has become defensive and procrastinated, leading to the stagnation of a large amount of pornographic, filthy pictures. . . .

Steal This eBay Item

Abbie Hoffman he isn’t, but eBay user “class-it” seems to have had enough of overly seller friendly policies at eBay. In class-it’s recent auction for a “SONY VAIO VGN-NR21J/S LAPTOP BNIB” he listed an extensive collection of methods you can use to steal the laptop from the seller.

With this humorous jab, class-it has compiled a fairly good summary of the perils of selling items on eBay. I’ve quoted most of the section covering the nefarious techniques as I’m sure this auction will have a very short lifespan…

DIFFERENT WAYS YOU CAN STEAL THIS LAPTOP OFF ME:

Apple Using Google as a Verb

Every branding professional you’ll meet will tell you that you never ever refer to your brand as a verb. Phrases like “I Googled that” or “I Xeroxed this” are poison to the ears of those who understand trademark law.

Without getting into the intricacies of trademark law (which I don’t fully understand anyways), the short explanation is that you should only reference your trademark as an adjective. An example of a properly used trademark would be “Google™ Search Engine”.

With this in mind, I was a little surprised recently when going through my iPhone to find Google business partner Apple using Google as a verb.

Let me explain. The iPhone has a keyboard which pops up every time you position your cursor in a field which allows you to enter text. This includes your browser address bar, web forms, search fields, emails, etc.