The Online Reputation Management of Gordon Brown, the New UK PM

It seems like its been planned for a best part of a decade but today finally saw Tony Blair hand over the keys to Ten Downing Street to Gordon Brown. This of course gives us the perfect opportunity to have a quick look into how well Brown and his spin doctors are getting on in the social media space.

Youtube – not surprisingly there are plenty of clips of the new PM delivering speeches on the video sharing site. Most tend to be straight forward footage of Gordon delivering the oratory, but it’s the comments where it gets nasty. If you think some of the digg comments can get mean its worth seeing the bile spilled on this video though there does seem to be a few supporters of GB helping fight his corner. Still better to let the discussion take place; even if it isn’t entirely flattering. The nose picking clip is a little cringe-worthy though. 2/5

Four Questions About Mahalo’s Part Time Contributor Scheme.

Everyone’s favourite hype fiend Jason Calacanis has announced a scheme to have Mahalo scale its human edited search engine results. Following a similar model to the former Weblogs Inc. re-launch of Netscape.com they are hoping to recruit prevalent social media users to help create their hand-made search results, for the internet’s most searched 10,000 terms, by paying the researchers between $10-15 per results page.

In my previous article about Mahalo I discussed some of the reasons why the engine might take off, despite many people’s belief that the model won’t scale, and was generally quite positive about the venture’s prospects, however the new “greenhouse” initiative has raised a number of questions in my mind about the future of the project.

Baidu coming to Britain?

It seems everyday a search engine is launched or relaunched and today it seems we’ve got one expanding. Baidu the hugely popular Chinese Engine is attempting to make the move into the European search arena.

e-consultancy thinks the move is bold and pretty naive, given their search technology is built around the Chinese languages. Similarly their somewhat vague distinction between natural and paid search might prove unpopular in certain quarters.

However they have set up an office in continental Europe and following their expansion into Japan, are hoping they can make a dent in Google’s strangle-hold on the European searchers.

Blinkx Powering the New Ask Video Search

Ask have used Danny Sulivan’s new event SMX as an opportunity to unlease their new Ask 3D user interface. And like Mahalo and Google’s Universal Search it’s a brave attempt to introduce multimedia like video and maps into their SERPs.

Andy has already had an extensive video demo of the new UI in use, and it’s up for everyone to play with at ask.com. So far there new algo seems to have done a good job of integrating local and video listings into their results, which seems in part down to a strategic relationship with recently stock market listed Blinkx.

NMA quotes Blinkx founder, Suranga Chandratillake

This relationship further demonstrates our technology leadership in the video search space and is an exciting development for our 130 or so media partners whose content can now be accessed through Ask.com

Five Reasons Mahalo Might Work

It seems the SEO community isn’t too impressed with Jason Calacanis’ new search engine Mahalo. It’s not at all hugely surprising given his somewhat antagonistic relationship with the industry. However unlike some people I don’t think the project is destined to fail.

I agree with a lot of the faults that have been pointed out with the idea; but I’m going to play devil’s advocate for a minute and point out five ways in which Mahalo will succeed.

People Search – it seems the manual editors have spent plenty of time creating listings for the rich and famous. A few quick searches on actors, musicians and even bloggers and you’ll see results which generally are as good if not better than Google’s first page of results. They’ve done a good job of getting lots of valuable information and links all in one single page. You only need to look at the top searches for 2006 to see how being the search engine for celebrities could be a clever move by JC & Co.

Yahoo Paying Out with Paypal

Yahoo’s Publisher Network has made the surprise step of introducing Paypal payments for those using their content network. Now as well as cheques, the publishers can have their ad earnings transferred directly into the eBay owned online money transfer service.

This was also good news for smaller YPN users who are only monetising relatively low sums from their website, as the new electronic payment method will pay out at the lower $50 threshold.


Jensense
commended the move saying

I suspect it will be especially popular once YPN goes international, as it will save headaches for publishers cashing foreign checks and getting charged for payments in a foreign currency.

Yahoo Panama Comes to the UK – Nearly

It’s been a while, but it seems Yahoo have finally got round to launching their new advertising platform in Great Britain. It’s been with our American cousins since Feb but it’s taken a while to migrate across the Atlantic.

At the moment it’s still in testing with selected partners but it shouldn’t be long before it’s available to all. For those of us using Yahoo for PPC in the UK it’s good news, the old system was getting pretty creaky but it’s unlikely to make a huge impact on the paid search market.