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Google and eBay Partner for Click-to-Call Ads 63

bart_scriv writes "A new joint venture between Google and Ebay will expand the advertising reach of both companies and integrate free phone service with web ads. The partnership also puts rumors of a Yahoo/eBay merger to rest. From the article: 'A deal announced Aug. 28 by eBay and Google now appears to put the kibosh on the notion of an "ehoo" or "Ybay" to challenge Google. Instead, eBay signed up Google to provide Web search advertising outside the U.S. And the pair will cooperate on developing so-called click-to-call ads — which let potential buyers click on a link and talk directly to sellers or their call centers — throughout the world. Tests of the ads in the multiyear agreement will begin in early 2007, though neither side revealed specific terms.'"
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Google and eBay Partner for Click-to-Call Ads

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  • Patent #56010201920191 pending on this new revolutionary idea under the general patent idea of annoying the customer even more.


    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by UbuntuDupe ( 970646 )
      I believe the way Google's approach differs from traditional "sign me up for telespamming" crap is that with Google, the telemarketers don't get your personal information and they have to route their calls through Google without knowing anything about you, so if you ask to be removed they really can't contact you anymore. Now, if you expect Google to sell out and betray your trust, *then* it could be a problem. (I don't think they would, as they have too much to lose.)
  • So what is going to happen to Googles proposed online payment system? Can't think of the name at the moment, but wasn't it going to be a direct competitor to PayPal? Is this perhaps a way for Ebay to keep that from happening?
  • Yes, what happened to the eBay/Google scuffle over online payments? It's amazing how the power of commerce can bring net-giants together in a spirit of capitalism and mutual profit, in spite of all their differences and rivalries.

    It makes you sick, doesn't it?

    • by Lemmy Caution ( 8378 ) on Tuesday August 29, 2006 @12:13PM (#16000408) Homepage
      There's such a misunderstanding of the nature of (most) business competition. It's very much to be expected that two businesses will compete in one market or context and turn around and cooperate in another, and it certainly does not mean that there is no chance for a merger that would end that cooperation. The metaphors of total war notwithstanding, it isn't as if business was about the formation of simple alliances against allied enemies.

      Yahoo and Ebay are cooperating in the US market, but Ebay is cooperating with Google in other markets. Microsoft competes with Apple and, to some extent, Mozilla, but goes to some pains to ensure a certain amount of interoperability.

      The shorthand version: competition for markets is not the same thing as war. Business-as-war is just a metaphor, and like many metaphors, it doesn't always fit.
      • Business-as-war is just a metaphor, and like many metaphors, it doesn't always fit.

        The business-as-war metaphor is certainly less apt for competition as practiced in free markets. However, when national governments take a hand in using competition to pursue national interests then business begins to look like war by other means.

        One common example is that governments often use subsidies to lower the price of their products in order to sell more exports in the U.S. with the objective of getting U.S. dollar

        • Your ontology presumes what you conclude, and it is flawed.

          You assume that business interests are a subset of national interests, and that simply isn't the case. The relationship between the state and different industries is complicated, contested.

          What is "an enemy" in this case? Is Ford doing business in Canada a case of the American state pursuing its national interests behind enemy lines? What is the enemy in the Middle East - is it the governments dominated by people with connections to business interes
          • You assume that business interests are a subset of national interests

            I don't assume it but many countries do. Certainly the old Soviet Union did and there is reason to think [www.cbc.ca] that China currently does as well.

            In times past, people in power in the U.S. assumed an identity between American interest and business interests. Witness U.S. President Coolidge's statement [historycentral.com] "The business of America is business" and the statement [bartleby.com] by the president of General Motors thirty years later "What's good for the country is go

            • Those statements weren't statements of standing fact: they were actually attempts to unify national policy with the interests of (some) companies. IBM managed to maintain business relationships with the Nazi regime long after the diplomatic relationship betweeen the US and Germany fell apart; national relationships are very cozy between nations which host hotly competing companies (eg., Boeing and Airbus). French economic policy is torn between nationalistic small-businesses and farmers and multinational co
      • Microsoft competes with Apple and, to some extent, Mozilla, but goes to some pains to ensure a certain amount of interoperability.

        But you can be assured of the fact that Microsoft only does it to prevent getting hauled in front of more judges to address their abuse of monopoly.

        They are doing it legally cover their asses, not because they're being generous. If Apple and Mozilla are still around, M$ can say "See, we have competition". If M$ were to move to block Mozilla from working, they'd probably be faci

        • I'm sorry, I just don't buy into the evil Microsoft thing. They are about as unethical as any other software company out there, and, as far as I'm concerned, the software industry is a bit more ethical than most.

          I'm not saying that your analysis is wrong, mind you: it's mutual self-interest all around (cooperating with Apple ensures that Office remains a standard product across platforms; cooperating with Mozilla ensures that Windows Live will work across platforms - that benefits them far more than having
          • by mgblst ( 80109 )
            You may be right that Microsoft is nor more unethical than other software companies, but this is irrelevant. Microsoft has so much power, that is the problem. They can be as unethical as they want, but if they happen to control the OS and Office market, we have a problem.

            I also do not believe that Microsoft produces Office for Apple to avoid the courts - they do it because it is profitable for them, it helped cement Office as the suite, and it gives them some leverage over apple.
    • by $calar ( 590356 )
      I think the bigger question is who will serve up these types of ads anyways? I think the one who is getting the shaft in all of these new advertising models are the content distributors. Why is it their responsibility for the advertising to be a success? I think that Google Ad(non)sense proves this theory. I mean, the types of items that have been advertised on my own site are cheap items that generate small pay backs from click throughs. Why should we have to put up with more crap to earn money on our site
  • Further information (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kripkenstein ( 913150 ) on Tuesday August 29, 2006 @11:55AM (#16000288) Homepage
    from the press release [google.com] at Google:

    Starting in the near future, Skype will offer its users the option to download the Google Toolbar, to which Skype will add a custom button. The companies will also explore interoperability between Skype and Google Talk via open standards to enable text chat and online presence.

    So this collaboration seems like more than just click-to-call. The Skype/Google Talk interoperability sounds intriguing, and might give the low-market-share Google Talk some more standing in the IM world; perhaps this is a reaction to Yahoo and Microsoft, who are getting their IM clients to interoperate.
    • Re: (Score:1, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward
      So is eBay allowing Google Checkout now? I get the feeling that if they hadn't already revoked that ban, that this may just be all about that.
    • by tommertron ( 640180 ) on Tuesday August 29, 2006 @12:36PM (#16000572) Homepage Journal
      I think it's more Google honest attempt to open up all IM and VOIP clients to be interoperable. I think this is really what they're trying to do with Gtalk.

      Hopefully one day it won't matter whether you're using MSN, Yahoo, AIM, or Skype, you'll be able to call/IM anyone. Just like now it doesn't matter what email client you're using, you can still email anybody, and how you can call any cell phone or land line no matter which carrier you're part of. IM/VOIP needs to get there.

      • check out a news release from VoIP Inc / Voiceone tomorrow and then thursdays release... All of what your asking for is being released in two parts, first the IM platform tomorrow, then the first set of of "universal" calling services on Thursday. You will be able to see the news releases for all of this at: http://wwww.voiceone.com/ [voiceone.com] and http://www.click4me.net/ [click4me.net] also traded as VOII, so will popup on newswire as well. Sorry I cant say too much more (part of the company), but everything, from any platpfor
  • To be honest, I thought that Google would have liked to compete with Paypal on eBay at some point. This probably negates the chance of that happening for a while don't you think? Something could have been written in the agreement, but I would have to guess that Google will not be used to pay for any auctions anytime soon.

    It could, on the other hand, just mean that Google never intended to really compete with Paypal within eBay. I think it is good that they are sticking to their guns, which is advertising.

    • I'm really disappointed by this news. I had hoped that Google would create new payment and auction services to compete directly with eBay. Paypal is horrible, with their ridiculous fees and terrible customer service record, and eBay is turning to crap very quickly with high seller fees which are causing many small-time sellers to abandon auctions altogether, leaving eBay to the mass-market merchants who just sell the same crap as each other at mediocre prices with inflated shipping charges.

      I've been on eB
  • Do you know what a DDOS attack could do to a call center? A switchboard can't handle nearly the volume that a website can, so you could pretty easily clog the phones at any of these centers forever, pretty much, right? I can't wait to see the prank calls that come out of this -- funny for everyone but the person that gets a zillion calls an hour!
    • Hmm...sounds like a good reason for companies to treat us well and not annoy the hell out of us with intrusive ads and unwanted calls. Sign me up!

  • by ackthpt ( 218170 ) *

    You will get negative feedback on your ads?

    eh, who?

  • Sloth = Evil (Score:2, Insightful)

    by haggie ( 957598 )
    This deal sounds like Google being lazy. Hmmm, should we compete with eBay (which would take alot of hard work and sound business planning) or just sign some half-assed deal so we can all get along (zero effort, zero results). Google clearly has changed direction from the former to the latter. Isn't sloth a cardinal vice and thereby evil? Sometimes doing evil means doing nothing.
    • Since when has entering a market with a sound partner been considered "doing nothing", that what I want to know.
  • Way better than eho...
  • Great, just what we all need... More ads and more telemarketers calling.
  • Sales Reps (Score:3, Insightful)

    by snard6 ( 990260 ) on Tuesday August 29, 2006 @01:44PM (#16001051)
    I don't know... The whole reason i do my shopping online is because i DON'T want to talk with people. In fact, most geeks seem the same way, it's much easier to just choose what you want, pay for it, and receive it. I don't think giving me the option to talk to a sales rep is going to boost their sales.
    • Most places these days don't have real sales commissions, which is a double-edged sword. But it does mean that sales staff will be more likely to tell you the most correct option instead of the most profitable in most cases (unless you are talking about warranties). Seeing as this nation is becoming a giant shopping mall with limited interaction anywhere else and life just a series of transactions, maybe it would be better for you to actually shop with a person instead of a computer. Something less commo
    • by mgblst ( 80109 )
      Yes but the online market has gone beyong geeks, and now includes your sister and your mother, who do enjoy talking to people.

      Don'r worry, you aren't forced to talk to anybody.
  • Thank God for this! The 4+ per day hassle average from call centres wasn't quite annoying enough, I'll definately be clicking ad links to speak to even more instantly!
    • We need more call centers with more sales reps to talk to every time we need to buy something. With all of our manufacturing and engineering work going overseas, we can become a country of sales reps and sell each other stuff all day.
  • Lol, I'm reticent to post this url for fear of the dreaded "slashdot avalanche effect" but here goes.

    The problem with the Google technology is it is flawed. You could build the same solution with some old dialogic boards and a rainy weekend. It would have been hot in the 90's but technology has now moved on.

    There are a number of vendors out there offering far more intuitive and less intrusive solutions however only 1 has a true clientless offering; www.Mexuar.com is a small but dynamic UK company who have r
  • I have no idea of exact figures but from what I have seen when I search on google, ebay has to be one of the top if not the top purchasers of those ads that appear alongside google search results.
    There is no way google is going to risk that by launching a competitor.

Logic is the chastity belt of the mind!