Michael Arrington went on a rant about Google testing sound effect in the new Google SearchWiki. In short, Michael is upset that Google would spend the time adding sound effects over adding an option to turn off SearchWiki. I do agree with with Michael on this, but we do know that feature is coming in early 2009.
But if you watch Michael’s video, using SearchWiki becomes addictive when you hear the sound effects – at least to me. Watch the video:
I can see searchers hear the sound and then be led to remove or promote more results, because it makes it more fun.
However, I think this is a limited test. When I tried on both a PC and a Mac, on both Firefox, IE and Safari, I did not hear any sound effects:
Matt Cutts of Google did comment saying sound is not a new thing. And Matt is right, Philipp Lenssen reported it back when it first launched. So this must be a limited test to some users. I think, if you have SearchWiki on, keep those sound effects. But clearly, adding a way for a searcher to opt out of the SearchWiki feature is a big win for the Google searcher.