Facebook Drops Gmail As Find Friends Option

TechCrunch reports Facebook has removed the Gmail option of finding friends on Facebook. If you go to the find friends section on Facebook, you will find options to find your friends via Skype, AIM, Windows Live Hotmail, Yahoo, AOL, Comcast, MSN, sbcglobal and verizon.net, but you won't see Google's Gmail as an option: This doesn't come as a surprise to many. Earlier this month, Google changed their terms of service to force Facebook to either open up more of their information or have to drop Gmail as a friends find option. Here are more of the related stories below to track this [...]

Google TV Ads Coming To Verizon FiOS TV Customers

Google has announced a partnership with Verizon to have Google TV Ads power some of the ads on the Verizon FiOS TV network. The ads should begin showing in "early 2011" and be seen by about "35 million households, or almost one-third of all US cable and satellite homes." To learn more about Google TV Ads, see google.com/adwords/tvads. Mark Piesanen, Director of Strategic Partnerships for Google TV Ads said, "Like Google, Verizon cares deeply about the evolution and future of TV advertising. Together we're thrilled to establish this partnership to offer great inventory and access to your [...]

Google/Facebook Saga Continues: Google Warns Not To “Trap” Your Data

Continuing on from Danny's Facebook: You’ve No Right To Export Email Addresses , it appears Google has upped the ante. ReadWriteWeb noticed that when you try to export your contacts to Facebook, Google gives you a big warning. This warning stems from Google recently changing their terms of service of their contacts API to prevent Facebook from using it without allowing Facebook users to export their data. Yesterday, Facebook began allowing you to export the names of your friends, but nothing all that useful. Google's response is a new warning page having you think twice before exportin [...]

Will Facebook Lose Google’s Contacts Integration?

TechCrunch reports Google has made a small but significant change to their Google Contacts API terms of service that technically prevents Facebook from using it to improve their friends database. When users sign up to Facebook, they are prompted to add friends. They can do so manually or by uploading their contacts or email lists. To make this process easier, Facebook, like other sites, integrate with the various APIs to allow users to enter their username and passwords on third party sites so Facebook can get the data for them. Google is one of those main data sources for Facebook, [...]

Japan FTC May Review Yahoo-Google Deal

The Wall Street Journal reports the largest online retailer in Japan, Rakuten has asked the Japan Fair Trade Commission to review the Yahoo-Google deal from a few months back. A Rakuten spokesperson said: The tie-up between the two firms would result in Google monopolizing information, which could hinder the development and growth of not only search engines but many Internet-related services in Japan. As we know, Microsoft said they will also challenge the deal where they said: We plan to present evidence to the Japanese FTC explaining why we believe that this deal is substantially [...]

Google & NBC Break TV Ad Deal

About two years ago, NBC and Google teamed up to enable Google to sell TV ads to be aired on NBCU cable channels. adWeek reports the deal has be "aborted." adWeek said: NBC Universal and Google have discontinued their ad sales partnership begun in 2008, the companies have confirmed. The split deprives Google's TV ad sales unit of one of its major alliances, although it still has deals in place with Dish TV, DirecTV and a handful of smaller networks like Ovation and the Tennis Channel. Why did the partnership end? Reportedly NBC wasn't benefiting at all from it. The report said, t [...]

Not Hot Air: Google Investing In Offshore Wind Energy

Google announced last night that the company has invested "in the development of a backbone transmission project off the Mid-Atlantic coast" that will help support future harvesting of power from offshore wind turbines up and down 350 miles of the US East Coast. The windmills have yet to be built, but this is key infrastructure for the development of wind power on the Atlantic Coast. According to the NY Times the "backbone" project is valued at $5 billion. Google, Good Energies and a Japanese company Marubeni have all invested in the first phase of development. Google and Good Energies are [...]

Google Announces New Reseller Program

Google's new Director of Global SMB Reseller Partnerships, Todd Rowe, announced a new reseller program and a reorganization to support it along with a partner council at the BIA/Kelsey Directional Media Strategies 2010 Conference in Dallas, Texas. I live blogged the session entitled "Google's Latest Word on Local", and in it, Todd Rowe announced the new program and provided clarity around what's been going on with how Google intends to handle their reseller partners. (See my coverage of DMS2010 Day 1, Day 2, and Day 3.) As you may recall from back in March, Google abruptly closed the Ad [...]

AOL Extends Google Search Deal: 5 More Years

AOL announced they have extended their search deal with Google for an additional five-years. This includes Google powering AOL's organic and paid search results. The deal also added in that Google will power search on mobile search, in mobile apps and content. Also, all of AOL's video content will also be on YouTube as part of this new extended deal. In summary, the new five year deal includes: Search Products: Google will provide AOL with additional features and enhancement to its leading Web search products that will improve the consumer search experience across AOL's network of si [...]

Live Blogging The Google-Verizon Net Neutrality Press Conference

Google and Verizon have announced that they'll be hosting a conference call today at 10:30 AM Pacific Time. Topic? Not said, but probably related to the rumor last week that the two companies have cut a deal to ensure Google's content has preferential treatment in Verizon's network, something that made many wonder if Google's abandoned its commitment to net neutrality. I'll be live blogging the call. Both companies also will be posting statements on their blogs 5 minutes before it begins, as covered in the announcement below: Google CEO Eric Schmidt and Verizon CEO Ivan Seidenberg will hos [...]

Report: Verizon And Google In “Neutrality” Agreement Over Preferred Content Access

We'll have to wait and see what emerges from the reported discussions between Verizon and Google. However prospect of a patchwork of agreements between large internet companies and ISPs like Verizon over web traffic is highly undesirable. (See update below.) The private Google-Verizon talks are an apparent response to the slow pace of progress on "net neutrality" discussions at the FCC, according to the New York Times and Bloomberg. The FCC and large internet companies want to ensure that online content is not selectively discriminated against ("throttled") while ISPs want unregulated freed [...]

MSFT Will Challenge Google-Yahoo Japan Deal

In a move that should surprise no one, Microsoft says it will try to block the recently announced Google-Yahoo Japan partnership. In our story from Tuesday, a Microsoft senior VP spoke out strongly against the partnership. Now, Silican Alley Insider received confirmation last night that the company will take steps to challenge it formally. "We plan to present evidence to the Japanese FTC explaining why we believe that this deal is substantially more harmful to competition than Google's deal with Yahoo in 2008 that the DOJ found to be illegal," says a Microsoft rep. Also reported in o [...]

Google, US Gov’t Back Same Data Mining Startup

Their objectives may be different but both Google and the "investment arm of the CIA" are funding the same startup: Recorded Future. According to a piece in Wired both In-Q-Tel (the CIA investment firm) and Google will have a seat on the company's board. This is reportedly the first time the government and Google have invested in the same company, though as Wired points out both have done business with the same companies in the past (e.g., Keyhole, which became Google Earth). Recorded Future mines public data online and other available data sources and tries to identify patterns that are [...]

Google Talking With Game Makers About New Social Gaming Site: Report

Nary a week goes by this summer that we don't hear more rumors about Google's interest in online games, social networking, and/or some combination of the two. Tonight, the Wall Street Journal is quoting unnamed sources that say Google is talking with "several makers of popular online games" to have those games included on a new social networking site "that could compete with Facebook." There's no confirmation from Google on this report, but the WSJ's sources say the game makers include Zynga, Playfish (owned by Electronic Arts), and Playdom Inc. There were reports two weeks ago that Goo [...]

Yahoo Japan Switches To Google, Microsoft Calls It ‘Anti-Competitive’

AllThingsD reported that the Softbank majority owned Yahoo Japan has decided to replace Yahoo Search (soon Yahoo-Bing) with Google. Yahoo owns a minority stake in Yahoo Japan and so can't control or block the decision. According to a statement released by Yahoo it will "support" the deal as it is contractually bound to do: Yahoo! Japan announced that it has chosen to implement Google as its backend algorithmic search engine and paid search infrastructure. Yahoo! Japan made this decision as an independent and separate publicly traded company, in which Yahoo! holds a 35% equity interest. [...]

Google In Major Display Partnership With Ad Holding Company Omnicom

According to an article in the Wall Street Journal, Google will announce a deal with Omnicom Media Group, one of the major global ad holding companies. The Google-Omnicom deal is focused on display advertising and the DoubleClick Exchange specifically. According to the WSJ Ominicom will be spending "hundreds of millions of dollars to buy display ads for its clients through Google over the next two years." For its part, "Google will  . . .  build a global 'trading desk' [for Omnicom] that allows the company to buy display ads more easily." Google will also provide additional analytics [...]

Would Gaming Fuel A Google Social Network?

Based on unnamed "sources," yesterday TechCrunch reported that Google had "secretly" invested more than $100 million in social gaming platform Zynga and is launching "Google Games," built partly on Zynga. Let's establish all the usual qualifiers; this is an unconfirmed story and so on. And there are plenty of times when these TechCrunch-surfaced rumors turn out to be wrong. But this one seems to be supported by a job posting ("Product Management Leader, Games – Mountain View"). Given that, here are the main elements of the TechCrunch story beyond the headline itself: The Google inv [...]

Google Launches “Commerce Search 2.0″

Google has upgraded its "commerce search" offering for retailers, e-commerce sites and manufacturers. Commerce search is a product of the enterprise search team and version 1.0 launched roughly six months ago. Commerce Search 2.0 has more features and the price has been cut in half from $50,000 per year to $25,000 to drive more adoption. Here are the feature upgrades from the Google blog post: More merchant customization: Today we’re introducing a full merchandising dashboard, which gives merchants more control over promotions, ranking rules and filtering. Marketers and product me [...]

Google Closes Nexus One Store & Don’t Expect A Nexus Two?

When Google started selling its Nexus One android phone earlier this year, it raised many issues. Was Google now competing with people it depends upon for distribution? Would consumers buy from an online-only store? To the latter, apparently no. Google's closing its shop, and perhaps never offering another Google-backed device in the future. Google just announced that its Nexus One store would be closing today: While the global adoption of the Android platform has exceeded our expectations, the web store has not. It’s remained a niche channel for early adopters, but it’s clear that m [...]

Google Pursues Small Businesses With Help From US Government

Google's dogged pursuit of small business owners continues with a new web page that offers advice about "how to succeed online" and appears to have the backing of the U.S. government. The page is called "Tools for Online Success" and shows both Google's logo and the U.S. Small Business Administration at the top. The introductory text explains that Google and the SBA "have partnered to educate local businesses about how to succeed online." But the fine print at the bottom clarifies the relationship: This web site is provided as a public service under Cosponsorship Authorization 10- [...]

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