Monday, August 10, 2015
Search engine keywords no longer as easy for webmasters to cull
First, the news media are reporting the anticipated restricting of Google under the ownership name of “Alphabet” (a good trademark name to be sure), as in this New York Times story here.
Back at the end of 2013, Eric Enge in “Search Engine Watch” had discussed six major changes at Google, link here. One in particular is most interesting. I’ll note what he says about Google+. I have found that for me Google+ attracts some visitors (especially in the classical music area) that haven’t looked me up on Twitter, Facebook, or my blogs.
More germane is Google’s gradual move to encrypting search engine key data, first for those logged on to Google accounts, and then for all searches, with a typical explanation here.
This appears to mean that normally search engine arguments would no longer appear on access logs so that analytics passages could tell what users are looking for. It’s pretty obvious that a lot of companies want to know how consumers fund their sites, as would syndicated or franchise entrepreneurs (like financial planners, insurance agents, estate planners, attorneys).
More important is that search key information could matter in some litigation situations. It could be relevant to the Supreme Court’s “reasonable behavior” idea in defamation law. It could tell a website owner with possibly provocative content if most users find the data looking for racy stuff about sexuality, or, for example, weapons and terrorism.
Back in late 2005, I used the search engine arguments on the log files to analyze why a school had banned me from substitute teaching there. (That’s explained on July 27, 2007, and in turn by another Wordpress link that goes into great detail as to how I did this analysis and why it mattered; links already given.) That might not have been possible today.
Web articles say that Bing still offers the search data.
I’ve noticed in the past three years or so that the volume of specific search arguments on my legacy “doaskdotell” site has dropped, and there are relatively few on my two newer Wordpress blogs.
Picture: Kirkland Hall, Harvard (my photo yesterday) as best I could find, where, on Feb. 4, 2004, Mark Zuckerberg launched Facebook by hitting the enter key in his dorm room.