Google Blatantly Copies Yahoo!? from Yahoo’s Jeremy Zawodny makes a pretty damning case against Google for blatantly ripping off Yahoo’s Internet Explorer 7 promo copy. Yahoo offers a custom version of IE7 via a pitch page you’ll see here. Google appears to have launched its own pitch page yesterday, one that was amazingly similar in look and feel to Yahoo’s.
Jeremy has the side-by-side photos of how the pages looked. Google’s page has since changed. In many places, the copy was either identical or the word Yahoo was simply swapped for Google.
At best, I thought perhaps Google was using some type of template page that Microsoft was encouraging cobranded partners to use. Jeremy says that’s not the case.
Google’s Matt Cutts weighs in with his own post on the topic, damage control by pointing out how Yahoo has copied Google’s ad style, Yahoo ads evolving to match what Google’s showing currently.
True. And Yahoo can easily point out that Google decided that paid ads made sense after imitating GoTo (which Yahoo later bought), plus that Google got real success with ads by moving to a CPC cost format rather than the CPM that they started with.
If I had time and desire, I’d sit here all day pointing out similar things that Google has copied from others, that Yahoo has copied from others, that Microsoft has copied from others, that Ask has copied from others. There’s no end of finger pointing that can be done.
I will say that I find a difference between mimicking user interfaces and simply flat-out copying a landing page. If a particular user interface or standard has evolved into a standard, I can generally back the idea that the industry moves to that, regardless of who pioneered it. But just taking a page and doing a search-and-replace? I cut less slack on that.
Related Topics: Channel: SEM | Google: Browsers | Google: Critics | Google: Marketing | Google: User Interface | Microsoft: Internet Explorer | Search Ads: General | Yahoo: Browsers | Yahoo: Marketing | Yahoo: User Interface