Yahoo Apparently Gives Up On Search Relevance, Fires Editorial Team

There are three ways to look at this announcement:

“Yahoo started its week with layoffs in Sunnyvale,” an employee tells us. “Seems to be affecting the editorial team that does search relevance testing.”

  1. Yahoo is preparing for Bing. You don’t need search relevance teams when you’re handing over your search results to Microsoft.
  2. Yahoo is admitting that their search results have never been that relevant and so why even have an editorial team.
  3. Yahoo’s just as tired of crappy results as we are, and is hiring better people.

Personally, I like Option 2, but according to an official statement from Yahoo, Option 3 might be closer to the truth:

Twitter’s Promoted Trends Ads Spotted in the Wild

UPDATE: Twitter has posted official details of the new “Promoted Trends,” including this interesting fact:

Like Trending Topics, Promoted Trends are already trending on Twitter but haven’t yet made their way into the Trending Topics list. Promoted Trends are clearly marked as “Promoted.” If a topic isn’t already being talked about on Twitter, it cannot be a Promoted Trend.

So, advertisers can’t force us to view trends that are of interest to no one. ;-)

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Well, looky what we have here:

Yes sir! You’re looking at one of the very first glimpses of Twitter’s rumored Trending Topic ads–spotted by uber-Twitter user @Ed. Clicking on the link takes you to a trending topics page which has…wait for it…an ad for Toy Story 3.

FTC Homing in on GoogleMob?

Since Google announced its acquisition of AdMob six months ago, the companies have face opposition. First consumer groups eyed the deal—then the FTC started taking statements from other companies in the industry. Now, it looks like the FTC is gearing up for even more scrutiny.

Of course, it may not have a whole lot to do with the US federal government’s deep-rooted concern for the mobile advertising industry. Reports AllThingsD:

“The federal government is looking for a way to discipline Google in some way, because of larger concerns about its search power on the Web,” said one source. “And this is where it looks like it will try to show that concern.”

Google Bringing GPS Navigation to iPhone…This Just In: No It’s Not

You’ve got to love how quickly rumors can start, spread, and become fact, all before you can say “Google world domination.”

Case in point? MacUser published on Thursday what appeared to be a scoop:

The navigation system is available as a free update to Google Maps on Android phones, but won’t stop there. Google confirmed at a London press conference that it plans to bring free satnav to other smartphone platforms, including the iPhone, although it wouldn’t say when.

Excitement ensued. Posts flew around the web, gushing over Google’s pre-cached, always up-to-date, navigation capabilities.

iPhone users everywhere salivated.

Then this:

“We did not say we would bring it to iPhone, we said to date we’ve had it on Android and that in the future it may come to other platforms but did not confirm this will be coming to iPhone at all,” a Google spokesperson told PCWorld.

Facebook Taking Over the Internetz

Facebook is the most popular social network in the world, but that’s not quite enough for them. Finally ready to venture outside their walled garden, Facebook may be unveiling a decentralized version of their site that allows Facebook users to interact on on other sites around the web. But does this mean Facebook’s ready to cede control of its users, or is it just extending its greedy grasp further?

Says the New York Times:

Details of Facebook’s plans — which involve a variation on its “Share” button, already prevalent on many sites — are expected to be introduced by Mark Zuckerberg, the company’s chief executive, on Wednesday during its conference here for third-party developers. But even before Facebook makes its plans public, its aim to become a social networking force across the Web is facing competition.

Did Google’s Eric Schmidt Quit Apple’s Board Over AdMob Squabble?

OK, bear with me hear, but I’m going to put some pieces together to explain why Google and Apple went from being great friends, to arch-rivals.

At the time, this looked like a coincidence:

August 3rd, 2009 – Eric Schmidt resigns his position on Apple’s board of directors, citing "conflicts of interest" in some of Apple’s "core businesses."

November 9th, 2009 – Google acquires mobile advertising platform AdMob for a reported $750M.

December 28th, 2009 - Consumer Groups start lobbying the FTC to block the AdMob acquisition on the grounds of decreasing competition in the market.

March 11th, 2010 – The FTC suddenly starts asking Google’s rivals, what they think of the deal.

Yesterday, April 8, 2010 – Apple CEO Steve Jobs let’s the following slip during his Q&A with the press:

Apple to Announce New Mobile Ads, And Google’s the Happiest of All

Apple is hosting an iPhone developer event Thursday, where they’ll most likely talk about adapting to the iPad—and a new mobile advertising platform. While I’m sure the developers and Apple are pretty excited at the prospect of more money, it’s Google that might be cheering the loudest.

Once upon a time, the two companies were friendly, but especially since Google has entered the mobile phone market, the two have become rivals—and that’s exactly why Google will be excited to see a new ad platform from Apple. After Google announced its acquisition of in-app ad platform AdMob in November, they’ve faced scrutiny from consumer groups and the FTC, especially since there appear to be few rivals for