yep, that's a roundup
A slightly sparse roundup today. That said, there are some stars.
This week we've got some inspired—and sleazy—marketing tactics, an effort to drive a culture of optimization, and some good news for privacy advocates that want to be able to maintain anonymity online: a judge in Maryland has agreed with you. Kinda. Well, ok not really, but he did see Dunkin' Donuts request for information as mishandled.
- We start with a great story from Grokdotcomdotcom about some sleazy, but inspired, tricks that Jeff found on a blog. It seems that one of those marketing 'blogs' about skin care cited comments from an individual who was 'from' your hometown. No matter what your hometown was. Using an ingenious combination of geolocation and marketing the ads would replace the hometown of their fictional character with wherever you are. While the example is sleazy, the tactic has a lot of potential for more directed marketing campaigns.
edit: I found the website, or at least one of the websites. I recognized the picture on domaintools.com and clicked it to see the following: lo and behold Anna Richards is from Vancouver BC (or for you, wherever you happen to be). Look at that, they even bold it to make sure that you see it. Now I wonder what happens if you're in a country that doesn't speak English...
- HuoMah commented on brand bias, in his usual no-nonsense way. He takes the notion of a 'brand algo', analyzes how and why that would be, then looks at the techs that we know are making their way into search and explains how these effects can be caused by these. All in all a great read for people who are worried about the future of search.
- One more HuoMah because, this time from guest writer Jeremy Rivera (who also has a pretty awesome blog), on taking local marketing to the next level. The article discusses the importance of establishing local authority online and defining geographic location, good stuff all in all.
- Nettuts, once again, has a neat little piece on how to use simple pie to parse an RSS feed. Useful for people like me who are running blogs.
- Avinash Kaushik notes that sometimes the way we look at numbers can give inappropriate results, and suggests instead a brand evangelist index. Its an interesting way of using the natural biases we have towards numbers to create better understandings of why a number matters.
- Grokdotcomdotcom's Bryan Eisenberg wonders how to build an optimization culture. Apparently far too few marketers use analytics to measure their online campaigns, and Bryan suggests several steps towards building a web optimization culture.
- Usability Post explored Quince, a user interface patterns explorer. They comment that while there are some nice usability functions, the 'gloss' of the design detracts focus from the applications high points.
- GoodUsability has a nice look at Twitters simplicity, usability, and at Tweetdeck. Their conclusion is fairly simple: design to how your content is being used, stupid!
- A US court has overturned previous rulings that required NewsZap.com to turn over the names of three anonymous commenter's who posted negative remarks about Dunkin' Donuts. That said, the case still exists over whether the comments were defamatory, as Dunkin' owner Zebulon J. Brodie claims.
Aaaaand now I have an image of Zebulon coming to NewsZap.com and demaning "Take me to your readers!"
- Nettuts has a great overview of the new features of Safari 4. Honestly this update looks pretty awesome and helps explain why it has had the largest market share growth of any of the nextgen browsers with a whole 1.88%. Yeah, I know, that doesn't seem very big.