Hey folks, welcome to another Smattering of SEO News! This past week was something of a slow week due to the Thanksgiving holiday here in the States, but some interesting stuff did drop. Once you’re finished your leftovers, keep on reading!
- Google Removes “Change Location” Search Feature Permanently – Last week, many marketers – who, let’s be honest, are the primary folks using this feature – were reporting that the “Change Location” search filter had disappeared from Google’s results pages. Google recently confirmed that they removed the feature because they felt it wasn’t being used enough. There’s speculation that it was also removed so as not to impact “Right to be Forgotten” searches in Europe. Regardless, Search Engine Roundtable reports that one can still use the “&near=” parameters in the search URLs to get the same effect, which I can confirm actually works…for now at least.
- Google Accused Of Using Chromebooks To Spy On Students By Electronic Frontier Foundation –The EFF has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) claiming that several features in Chromebooks given to students went beyond what would be considered normal usage for students. This includes turning Chrome’s Sync feature on by default, which collects virtually all information used in the Chromebook. If the FTC chooses to, they can fight Google per violation, so we’ll have to see what happens.
- Matt Cutts Purges SEO Industry Folks From Twitter – While it’s still unclear what Matt Cutts is up to professionally, he apparently has made a concerted effort to remove himself from the SEOsphere, at least on Twitter. According to a conversation on Twitter, he apparently did a “purge of SEO tweeters to rein things in a bit” when talking to a fellow Twitter user about following too many people for work. I guess he really is letting us go…*sniff*…
- Google Launches Santa Tracker – It’s kind of a slow news week, so I thought I’d throw this in. Google has recently launched its site and app to not only count down to Christmas, but to also help track down Christmas’ most famous character, Santa Claus. It’s actually really adorable and y’all need to check it out.
- Reports Coming In Of Board Considering Yahoo Core Business Sale – Several outlets are reporting that when Yahoo’s board meets this week they will consider options regarding selling the core business, which apparently isn’t doing that well. Reports are also coming in that Yahoo’s CEO Marissa Mayer, may also come under increased scrutiny for a series of bold yet ultimately problematic decisions, such as funding original content or buying Tumblr, neither of which have really panned out well. We’ll keep an eye on this as it develops.