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My Google Wish List

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Author: Sharon Housley
My Google Wish List
There are a number of “wishes” that I have for Google’s future. While I would like number one ranking for all of my important keywords and phrases, but I would be willing to settle for Google acknowledging at least a few of my wishes that will benefit the search community as a whole.

Google started out as the beloved child, a fledgling start up that was all heart, and today they are a “hated” brand. Why the fall from grace? In some ways Google is a victim of the too big, too powerful, and too successful affliction that attacks companies that achieve a level of success that few companies dream of. Now that does not mean  that I am giving them a pass, they have room to improve and I really do not hate them. I just think there is a lot of areas they could improve.

I sat down and wrote an open letter to Google  about my wishes and dreams for their future:

Dear Google,
Please consider the following for areas of improvement.

1. Usenet and RSS.
Please, I’m begging, (groveling if it will help) create  RSS feeds for Google Groups keyword searches. Think of the value, you could monitor Usenet for company or product names using RSS feeds. This would be an extremely easy way for businesses (and Google users) to stay in tune with what  is being said on Usenet and in forums about specific topics.

2. Privacy Policy.
Clarify Google’s privacy policy, and tell me EXACTLY how you are going to use the aggregate data you collect. While most of us realize that the personal information collected is of little value, the aggregate data is extremely valuable. Google is an extremely powerful company, and this collective  data gives them a huge advantage in negotiating acquisitions or determining trends. Many of us respect Google, its size and power, but do not necessarily want to contribute to Google’s additional growth. Implement a way for customers  wishing to pay a fee, to opt not to have their data aggregated or tracked.

3. Protect Your Customers.
For goodness sake, don’t make it so easy for people to rip off software companies. Why do you suggest cracks or serials on the Google Suggest tool? Please help protect the intellectual  property of your customers!
http://labs.google.com/suggest

4. Stop Tracking Everything I do!
I login in to Writely (now Google Docs) and feel as if I am being stalked, you monitor searches, you monitor tracking through analytics, you monitor advertising through Google Adwords, you monitor money earned as a publisher through Google AdSense, and now you have connected many of the accounts together. Please give users a little privacy, or the ability to easily manage multiple logins.

5. Tell Me How Much I Make!
Clearly tell publishers what percentage range they can expect to receive when they serve AdSense on their content websites. Now, I understand that it might vary publisher to publisher, but disclose a range. Or at the very least, consider adopting  a model similar to Amazon’s where publishers percentage of revenue earned is based on their volume.

6. Google Alert via RSS.
The current Google alert system is from the 1990’s (figuratively speaking) please offer an option to receive Google alerts via RSS feeds. I know you can setup a Google News search using RSS, it seems silly that it is not available via Google  Alerts. http://www.google.com/alerts

7. Faster Blog Indexing.
Google is all about search, right? Why are they so slow at indexing blogs? In fact the Google blog search performs far worse than many of the blog specific search engines. Search should be Google’s strength instead of a weakness. Even the breadth of blogs searched, and the related blogs listed on Google’s blog search are on the thin side. Definitely  room for improvement in this area.
http://blogsearch.google.com

8. Same Rules.
I wish that the rules were the same for all AdSense publishers regardless of the revenue that they produced. In talking with publishers, it is clear that there are a different set of standards, based on the revenue produced or traffic that a website receives. Keep the playing field even, if someone is using a subversive tactic, they should have be  penalized regardless of their revenue.

9. Combat 2nd Generation Fraud.
What is second generation fraud? Fraudsters bid high for AdWords, what they are paying for keywords or phrasing is irrelevant, because the credit card they are using is fraudulent. They make legitimate affiliate sales through the website  and profit from their “free” traffic. Google should help connect the dots on these sites, and ban the websites from their organic index.

10. Drop DMOZ.
Please either drop the Google Dmoz directory listings, or pay to staff DMOZ with reputable editors who can keep up. The Dmoz listings are hopelessly outdated and not reflective of current websites.

11. Protect Copyrights / Trademarks.
Google seems to flip-flop on the issue of allowing competitors to bid on branded words in their AdWords accounts. The current policy appears to be, that competitors cannot use a trademark  in the advertisement, but competitors can still bid on trademarked terms. A company Google’s size should have more respect for trademarks. I really wish Google would stand firm on the issue of trademarks and prevent competitors from bidding  on the terms.

12. Bury the Sandbox.
Dispose of the sandbox or aging delay, or heck get rid of both. Face it, valuable websites are created every day. The Internet is fluid and valuable websites should not be penalized because of their youth. The sandbox and aging delay, may deter spam sites, but there must be a better way.

13. Let Me Be Anonymous!
Why do you need my personal information? Does it really matter in the big scheme of everything that Google does? Why do you require my personal information?

14. Stop Putting US Companies at a Disadvantage.
Canadian and non-US companies can setup literally hundreds of AdSense publisher accounts, yet US companies are tracked using tax ID numbers hence they can only have one account.

15. Weigh Wikipedia Less.
Lets face it, ANYONE can edit Wikipedia. The information read in Wikipedia might be accurate one day and incorrect the next. Wikipedia is a nice resource, but is not a reliable indicator of information. Please do not use links from Wikipedia  to indicate a sites worth. Wikipedia uses the same model as Dmoz which has languished, volunteers can only do so much.

16. Make an RSS Search Engine.
Why hasn’t Google done this? I am baffled. The blog search engine is not an RSS search engine, consider the power of being able to search ALL RSS feeds. There are a number of small RSS search engine portals available but there is not a clear leader, this is where Google could and should be.

17. Stop Buying Companies.
Stop the purchasing, Google is big enough already. Finish all the things that Google has started. Keep in mind that while the archives on the Internet might last forever, it is rare that companies retain power and clout for any length of time. Remember Infoseek, or Altavista? Focus on your strengths.

While my Google wish list might seem trivial,  these are all things that Google could do to earn their way back into my good graces.

About the Author:
Sharon Housley manages marketing for FeedForAll http://www.feedforall.com software for creating, editing, publishing RSS feeds and podcasts. In addition Sharon manages marketing for NotePage  http://www.notepage.net a wireless text messaging software company.[divider]

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