The holiday shopping season is now well underway, and from now until late December people will be searching online for the best deals for gifts to give to others. Today, Microsoft decided to use the holiday shopping theme as a way to take another shot at Google regarding what Microsoft claims are Google's deceptive search results.
It's part of a new campaign that Microsoft has launched called "Don't Get Scroogled" (Scroogled is actually a term coined by well-known author Cory Doctorow back in 2007). Microsoft says Google's search practices have changed over the years so that when users search on Google's site for holiday gifts now, they may not be receiving truly objective results, but rather results that people paid Google to have listed.
The official Bing blog states:
You see, Google recently pulled down its “product search service” and replaced it with a “paid listing ads” service. Search for “Canon EOS” in Google Shopping and you receive pages that look like the old days, with “results” down the middle and ads mixed in. But the “results” are also ads. Every product offer within the shopping search results on that page paid to be there, and where and how high they appear is at least in part dependent on how much they paid. Meanwhile, at least one of biggest online retailers refused to pay Google’s new fee, so you won’t see any of their product offers and great holiday deals in shopping results.
Naturally, Microsoft says its Bing service doesn't give those kind of search results for its users. The company said:
We won’t let who pays us for ads or other services affect what you see in your search results. Search results are one thing; ads are another. We won’t switch to pay-to-rank to allow some shopping search results to appear higher than others. We don’t believe shoppers should risk paying more, simply because they started their search at Google.
This campaign is just the latest instance of Microsoft going after Google. Earlier this year the company ran a massive TV ad and online campaign that attempted to push the idea that search results from Bing were more accurate than Google's.
Update: Google sent Neowin this response to the Scroogled campaign:
Google Shopping makes it easier for shoppers to quickly find what they’re looking for, compare different products and connect with merchants to make a purchase. With new 360-degree, interactive product images, social shopping lists and a fast growing inventory of more than a billion products worldwide, Google is a great resource for shoppers to find what they need, at great prices for their loved ones this holiday season.
Source: Don't Get Scroogled website | Image via Microsoft