British Airways to Offer Google Earth Vacation Views

In attempt to lure more people to book their next flight with British Airways, the airline has added Google Earth imagery to their web site, reports Forbes.

“People have always enjoyed finding their own home on Google Earth and now they can see where they’ll be laying down their beach towel or enjoying après ski before they fly,” said Obi Felton, Google’s head of consumer marketing.

I hope they’ve censored some of those southern France beaches. Zoom too close and you might see some unexpected peaks, and I’m not talking about the Alps either. ;-)

MySpace Generates More Retail Traffic than MSN Search

Perhaps Danny Sullivan should look at a new conference titled, MySpace Strategies, as news comes that the social networking site created more retail traffic than MSN Search!

The Hitwise report puts Yahoo! as the source of 4.69 percent of traffic to online retail sites, MySpace as 2.53 percent and MSN search at 2.33 percent for the week ending August 26th. Google leads the pack at 14.93 percent.

Obviously Google has the inside track, with their recently announced deal with the company. But what does this tell us about the feasibility of all the social networks popping-up? According to TechCrunch, it tells us a lot…

Channel Sponsors

Google Faces Fines Unless it Hands Over Info to Brazil

AP is reporting a judge in Brazil has ordered Google to hand over user information of some Orkut users.

Federal Judge Jose Marcos Lunardelli gave Google Brazil 15 days to release information needed to identify individuals accused of using Orkut to spread child pornography and engage in hate speech against blacks, Jews and homosexuals.

Federal prosecutors claim they’ve requested the information on 38 different occassions without response. Google’s arguing that it doesn’t store any user information at its Brazilian office. The judge is not convinced…

But Lunardelli dismissed that argument on Thursday, writing in his decision that “it is not relevant that the data are stored in the United States, since all the photographs and messages being investigated were published by Brazilians, through Internet connection in national territory.”

UK Flickr Users Looking for Soft Porn

If you’ve ever watched TV in England, you’ll know that soft porn is pretty easy to find – Channel 4 on a Saturday night should be your top target. So it’s not entirely surprising that those porn-obsessed Brits having driven Flickr to the #1 spot for UK photography sites.

As HitWise explains…

A quick analysis of Flickr’s clickstream and search terms led me to the conclusion that Flickr has grown through good SEO and specifically searches for soft-porn…the top terms sending visits to Flickr are searches for the brand (“flickr”, “flickr.com” and “flicker”) and soft porn terms (“boobs”, “transvestite” and “nudity” to name a few tame terms).

Via SEW – who picked-up the story so fast, that we suspect they have custom RSS feeds for any news that mention “boobs”. ;-)

21 Ways to Increase Blog Traffic

I still contend that my Top 10 ways to generate blog traffic is all any blogger needs. But, if you need some more ideas, Rand has another 21 that you should consider.

I still think asking your family to add your blog name to the church bulletin, can’t be beat! ;-)

Robert Scoble the Ultimate Connector

Poor Robert Scoble, he’s a little concerned he may have lost his Scoblizing powers. Here’s what he said at his blog…

Anand M., in India, asks “has Scoble lost his blog power?� (I linked to him and he didn’t get many visits). My read? If I ever did have blog power, it’s gone now. Digg and TechMeme have all the power now.

Don’t worry Robert, you’ve transcended to a higher place. Sure your blog is still a huge traffic generator to any site you happen to link to – any site, like this one for example (hint, hint) – but you’ve become a “connector” in true Gladwell “Tipping Point” style.

Not All Search Engines Respect NoIndex Meta Tags

If you think those embarrassing photos of you at the office Christmas party – that you uploaded to that page on your site that you’re sure no one knows about – are safe because you added a “noindex” meta tag? You might want to think again.

Matt Cutts conducted a brief, non-scientific experiment to see how each search engine handles the command. Here’s what he found…

So based on a sample size of one page, it looks like search engines handle the “noindex� meta tag:

- Google doesn’t show the page in any way
- Ask doesn’t show the page in any way
- MSN shows a url reference and Cached link, but no snippet. Clicking the cached link doesn’t return anything.
- Yahoo! shows a url reference and Cached link, but no snippet. Clicking on the cached link returns the cached page.