#scroogled

Are you getting Scroogled by Google?

In the beginning, Google preached, "Don't be evil"—but that changed on May 31, 2012. That's when Google Shopping announced a new initiative. Simply put, all of their shopping results are now paid ads.

Watch the video to see how you get Scroogled.

We say that when you limit choices and rank them by payment, consumers get Scroogled. For an honest search result, try Bing.

Scroogled Alert:

  • "But we believe the issue of advertising causes enough mixed incentives that it is crucial to have a competitive search engine that is transparent and in the academic realm."

    — Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page

  • "Since it is very difficult even for experts to evaluate search engines, search engine bias is particularly insidious."

    — Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page

  • "This type of bias is much more insidious than advertising, because it is not clear who 'deserves' to be there, and who is willing to pay money to be listed."

    — Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page

  • "Furthermore, advertising income often provides an incentive to provide poor quality search results."

    — Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page

  • "In general, it could be argued from the consumer point of view that the better the search engine is, the fewer advertisements will be needed for the consumer to find what they want."

    — Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page

  • "For this type of reason and historical experience with other media, we expect that advertising funded search engines will be inherently biased towards the advertisers and away from the needs of the consumers."

    — Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page

  • Google Shopping goes international in February 2013. Countries in line to be Scroogled include UK, Germany, France, Japan, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Brazil, Australia and Switzerland.

  • "The relationship between Google and Web sites, publishers and advertisers often seems lopsided, if not unfair."

    — The New York Times

  • "But Google is walking a tricky line, which antitrust regulators are watching closely."

    — The New York Times

Bing is different.

We don’t use a pay-to-rank shopping search. For an honest shopping search result, try Bing.

The devil is in the details

Google says their shopping results are based on "relevance." Download the PDF to see the fine print where they reveal the truth about their paid ads.

PDF: Learn more about Google Shopping and paid ads
  • From Google to Scroogle

    Then (2004)

    Founders IPO Letter:

    "we do not accept payment for [search results] or for inclusion or more frequent updating."

    Read the article
  • From Google to Scroogle

    Now (2012)

    Google's 2012 SEC Disclosure:

    "After all, ads are just more answers to users' queries."

    Read the article
  • From Google to Scroogle

    Then (2004)

    Google's 2004 SEC Filing:

    "Our search results will be objective and we will not accept payment for inclusion or ranking in them."

    Read the article
  • From Google to Scroogle

    Now (2012)

    Google Commerce announces shopping results will be paid for and exclude merchants who don't participate.

    Read the article
  • From Google to Scroogle

    Now (2012)

    Google Commerce announces it is going international in February 2013. Countries in line to be Scroogled include UK, Germany, France, Japan, Italy, Spain, Netherlands, Brazil, Australia and Switzerland.

    Read the article

Scroogled!

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Scroogled pronunciation
verb

Word Origin:

Google's ongoing use of invasive tactics to maximize their advertising profits.

Definition:

1. The Google practice of selling their shopping search results to a high bidder; known to produce intense anger in online shoppers who might miss out on the best price or the highest quality items.

See also: bamboozled; befuddled; duped; flimflammed; hoodwinked; hornswoggled

Sample sentence:

"These jeans were a top pick on Google but I found a better price—I've been Scroogled!"