A summary of search related news items that occurred this week including Business.com to provide PPC ads for Wall Street Journal Online, Viacom chooses Joost instead of YouTube to distribute commercial programming, Adware Distributor DirectRevenue is fine $1.5 million by FTC for its shady business practices, Google Apps matures and enters the business world, and finally Rebecca Kelly gives us SES London in comic strip format.
- Business.com to Provide PPC Ads for Wall Street Journal Online - Search Engine Watch reports that Business.com has inked a deal to become the exclusive provider of pay-per-click advertising for the Dow Jones’ Wall Street Journal Online search pages. This deal adds the largest paid subscription news site on the Web to Business.com’s network of partner sites which already includes top business publications such as Forbes, BusinessWeek, Entrepreneur, Hoovers, and Financial Times.
- Viacom Chooses Joost Over YouTube - Viacom has announced a broad licensing deal with Joost, a new Internet service that specializes in commercial video content. This just two weeks after Viacom ordered Google to take down more than 100,000 allegedly copyrighted videos from YouTube. The deal, which follows the recent collapse of similar talks between Viacom and YouTube parent Google, involves licensing hundreds of hours of programming from Viacom cable networks such as MTV, Comedy Central and Spike as well as movies made by the company’s Paramount studios. The Wall Street Journal has the full story (paid subscription required). TechCrunch also has commentary.
- Adware Distributor DirectRevenue Gets a Slap on the Hand by FTC – WebProNews reports that DirectRevenue, a company responsible for distributing adware on computers without users permission and then making it next to impossible to remove all traces of it, has been slapped with a $1.5 million fine. Critics of the settlement say that’s only a fraction of what the company made. The settlement prohibits future downloads of DirectRevenue’s adware without consumers’ express consent, and requires the company to provide “a reasonable and effective” way for consumers to locate and remove the adware from their computers. The adware was installed via affiliate and “sub-affiliate” networks, secretly installing programs named The Best Offers, A Better Internet, ABI Network, Ceres, and Aurora that monitored users’ Web browsing to display targeted pop-ups. While I am glad to see the FTC dealing with companies that practice business in this deceptive manner, a slap on the wrist is hardly going to send a strong message to DirectRevenue and other companies engaging in the same kinds of practices.
- Google Apps Matures – What started as a few lines of code back in 2005 is now entering the business world as Google Apps Premier Edition. This new version is designed to take on all the challenges presented by businesses with complex IT needs and for only $50 per account per year. What is included? You get the whole Google Apps package plus many new business-oriented features, including access to APIs and partner solutions (so it’s easy to integrate with existing systems), conference room scheduling for Calendar, 10GB of inbox storage, extended business hours phone support, and mobile access to your email on BlackBerry devices (just in case you can’t get enough at the office). They will continue to offer the Standard and Education Editions for free, and vow to keep working on all three flavors of Google Apps with the help of feedback from users.
- SES London Comic Strip From Rebecca Kelly – She did it for Chicago SES and has now provided us another comic strip style look at the people and events surrounding the recent Search Engine Strategies Conference in London. Check it out – SES London: The Comic Strip.