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Texas opens inquiry into Google search rankings

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posted on Sep, 5 2010 @ 09:02 PM

Texas opens inquiry into Google search rankings

Google Inc.'s methods for recommending websites are being reviewed by Texas' attorney general in an investigation spurred by complaints that the company has abused its power as the Internet's dominant search engine.

.....appears to be focused on whether Google is manipulating its search results to stifle competition.
The pecking order of those results can make or break websites because Google's search engine processes about two-thirds of the search requests in the U.S. and handles even more....
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Sep, 5 2010 @ 09:02 PM
Your own website is the same as your own shop. Now google owns their shop and it should be their right to put and prioritize whatever they like into that shop. It is only logic that google would prioritize its own products, and put them into a prime position, behind the shop front window.

It would be funny, if the government starts to regulate and to tell you what you can and can not put into your shop and in which order you have to place it in your shop (or website).

I think the real reason behind this investigation, is that the government is trying to clamp down and control google's huge power as an information/ media tool.
(visit the link for the full news article)

posted on Sep, 5 2010 @ 09:11 PM
The people who think Alex Jones is a tool for the government should be looking at this one.


For several weeks, Alex Jones, of Austin TEXAS, urged his faithful minions to go to GOOGLE and search for specifically worded phrases.

Did Alex Jones himself not cry, Google manipulates the results?

Or was it Alex Jones manipulating them so Just Such an Inquiry can be implemented?

posted on Sep, 5 2010 @ 09:40 PM
I pay 212 a month to a company to make sure that my business is the first return on a page of search results with Bing and Google.

If you search my business type + city, mine comes up first. Before, i came in around 4th. They call it "search optimization".

posted on Sep, 6 2010 @ 12:02 AM
reply to post by bigfatfurrytexan

Google uses several criteria to determine the ranking on their search engine. Some of these criteria are secret , not known and change all the time.

Some criteria are very well known, (search engine optimization), such as:

- Amount of links to your website
- quality of websites linking to your website
- amount of traffic / visitors to your website
- density of keywords in your website and related words to the keyword (for instance keyword hotel new york...related words woudl be accomodation , motel, room, tourists, etc), which match the search term in google
- speed of your hosting server
- quality of website

i always suspected google to prioritize websites, which also do a lot of advertising on google (google ads). This is because the hotel i am working at never did google ads a couple of years ago and was ver bad in search engine ranking. Since we started to do google ads and now in the thousands of US$ per month, our normal search engine rankings also went up hugely.

posted on Sep, 6 2010 @ 06:59 AM
I know of a business owner (motel) that took a computer and runs a program that automatically pages his web site about 60 time a minute.

This program was used first to take down fake Nlgerian bank web sites.
and took 100s of computers to overload the sites.

His one computer just keeps his small town motel number one on a Google web search for "motel+town"
And it only takes pennies a day as the computer can still be used for other uses.

He has been approached by companies that try to sell him on having them make his motel always first.

These same sale people must not have got the business of the other motels in town as he is always first.

posted on Sep, 6 2010 @ 08:29 AM
reply to post by nagabonar

Google change their Ranking algorithms all the time, It's almost impossible to keep up.

I have one site that is the 4th result worldwide for a simple two word search, but last week it was second and it has also been something like 12th, all without me changing much.

For a while google stopped using keywords at all and just relied on links in / out and actual site content, their bots didn't even read the content and keyword tags, now they have gone back to reading them again I think.

I kind of agree that google's strangle hold should be dealt with as at the moment were in a position where google can arbitrarily ban your site from it's search results (as has happened to me) and your business drops down to more or less 0 especially if your running a business that relies purely on the net for advertising.

posted on Sep, 6 2010 @ 09:01 AM
bling, msn, yahoo, or country specific like baidu and gmx

social media (facebook, twitter, youtube)

affiliate programs/ switch websites/ micro sites

loads of alternative ways to advertise, but google has the ability to bring in nice amounts (50 % - 80%) of traffic in short time.

posted on Sep, 8 2010 @ 01:28 PM
And yet, government abuses power all the time. But it's not going to investigate itself now, is it?

posted on Sep, 8 2010 @ 01:51 PM
this is bullsh*t, I mean, I for one love google for its speedy, accurate responses but who really cares if they are prioritizing for their own products, it's THEIR service, they pay for the servers, and it's not like they are a monopoly there are plenty of other search engines to compete with.

posted on Sep, 8 2010 @ 02:21 PM
I agree that a business should have control of it's own property. The problem comes when they have a huge market share and can effect other people's property in an adverse way. Google is THE search engine. Just as Microsoft windows is THE operating system. When you begin to approach monopoly levels in a specific field, then you begin to have an obligation to uphold certain standards of fairness and access. What the state of Texas is looking into is whether or not Google meets the criteria for monopoly and, if they do, are they abusing their position to disenfranchise other property owners. I'm all for the investigation in this case. It's these types of investigations that limit the power of corporations like google and keep them from amassing too much power over the marketplace.

posted on Sep, 8 2010 @ 02:50 PM
reply to post by soontide

Google lets companies pay so that their business will show up first. It's a service the company offers and to be frank they have every right to do this. They are a private company. Google is a private website.

There is nothing illegal about this no matter how much "you don't like it".

posted on Sep, 8 2010 @ 03:05 PM
I don't see a problem with Google charging companies to increse their visibility on the site. From what I know about the state of Texas, they most likely don't have a problem with it either. These investigations usually arise from accusations of unfair practices such as different prices for the same service or outright denial of service for no cause.

posted on Sep, 8 2010 @ 04:15 PM
There are three companies being represented in the anti trust suit Foundem (price comparison site), SourceTool and myTriggers

All of the companies are either funded by Microsoft or represented by Microsoft attorneys

I don't imagine that Microsoft are going to get anywhere with this, I hope not anyway

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