media etc

Competitive Bidding With Ads On Search, BT, and Ad Lableling

Ben Edelman posts a very interesting article on his blog regarding a new proposal in Utah called HB450. This proposal seeks to block competitive bidding from advertisers on search engines. Edelman correctly points out that Google makes more money by allowing competitive advertising. This much is true. But I’m not sure I buy Edelman’s argument that competitive advertising confuses users. Is HB450 helpful? I don’t really see the problem.

But the proposed bill raises an additional potential question. Should competitive behavioral targeting be allowed? I imagine Edelman wouldn’t have a problem with this.

But Edeman also raises an interesting point. The “sponsored links” label on Google Search results are likely misunderstood by many consumers.  The minimum Google could do is change the name. Could this label be used by Google because it increases the click-through rate and further increases Google’s revenues.  By misdirecting even a small percentage of users to advertisements instead of content, Google is profiting by giving inferior information (as defined by Google’s PageRank) to  the public.


Filed under: mediums

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