Happy Friday! Hope you all had a great week and are pumped for SES San Jose next week! I know I am and I still don't know if I'm going! :) Here are the noteworthy news for this week:
Google Search Share Tops 70%
Google has had more than 70% of searches according to a Hitwise report. Is Google now a monopoly? It's debatable, but if there's choice involved, most feel that it's not.
Do Hearing About Penalties Worry You?
Google penalizes people for everything lately -- over-optimizing, selling links, whatever. The question we have to ask is: when you read about this stuff, do you feel like you need to make some changes to avoid getting "caught?" We have a poll open and the votes are pretty much split at this time, so vote on whether penalties worry you right now!
Google Doesn't Want You to Use Automated Software
If you're using ranking software to scrape the results of Google, don't be surprised if you get blocked. A few Google reps comment that they'd much rather have the Google TOS followed than ignored and that Google is meant for people and not for bots and applications that attempt to scrape data.
Do You Know that Google Personalizes Your Results?
In case you were living under a rock for the past few months, you should know that Google has personalized your results. In case you were totally clueless, though, Google is being more transparent about it. Just be sure to read the fine print and all.
Google Shuts Down Feedburner Advertising Network, Opens AdSense
This week, Barry spotted the thread where Google announced the end of Feedburner's Advertising Network. Publishers are no longer being accepted. What does this mean for the future of RSS advertising? We already have the answer: Google has opened AdSense for publishers to advertise within RSS. Now it all makes sense.
Google Reader Wants You To Share!
Google Reader is apparently the social RSS reader. It's so social that Google lets you share your feeds with your friends but until yesterday didn't give you a chance to tell Google you weren't ready to learn more. Now that's fixed, though. :)
Google Observations for the Week
After reporting that Google Webmaster Tools encountered 404 errors, we now know that the issue is fixed. JohnMu, our Swiss friend who has lived in the US for a long time and has no accent at all, tells us that the issue is resolved.
Two other issues relating to sitemaps and crawling Blogger have been resolved. Again, it's JohnMu who comes to the rescue... or at least the podium.
With regards to search, forum members observe that Google is not bolding all search results. As for why -- we don't know. My guess is that it's a bug rather than a "feature," but it could be experimental. Still, I don't see how that will encourage people to click.
Gmail Suffers Downtime
It's scary to be dependent on Gmail, but that's the case for millions of users. And when an outage took out Gmail for a large percentage of those users, worry settled in. Can we depend on Google forever? Hopefully, this is an issue that will never recur; I'm just glad that I keep my Gmail tabs open at all time!
You are Not the Most Dependable SEO
Goldmine Research is not a reputable company, even if they tell you that you're the most dependable search engine optimization company for the "feel-good" effect. Guess what? You've just been scammed! If Goldmine Research contacts you, do your research -- they want you to pay $5500 for the publicity. Not cool.
Internet Marketer's Charity Party Kicks off SES San Jose
A bunch of great internet marketers are holding a charity party next Monday, which will occur in San Jose right by the conference center where SES will be held. I'm still not sure if I'll make it but we have some great bloggers who will. Stay tuned for live coverage next week, and to those who will be there, have fun in San Jose! Just don't forget to save me schwag if you don't see me!