Good morning Refactual, is it scraping or someone else’s fault?
For years, Google has been steadily reshaping its search results pages to provide direct answers or enable transactions right from the search results — without having to click through to web sites. In some cases, Google partners with third-party content providers to show information boxes — as it does with lyrics boxes — and in other cases, it scrapes web pages and features the content in featured snippets. Lyrics site Genius says Google has been scraping its site for lyrics boxes even though Genius is not a Google content partner — and now says it can prove it.
Genius began switching between curly single-quote marks and straight apostrophes, in the same sequence, for every song. When the quote marks and apostrophes are translated to the dashes and dots used in Morse code, the sequence spells out “red handed.” (Genius, indeed.) Then it found Google showing the exact sequences in lyric boxes.
Google insists it’s not scraping Genius’ site and instead it’s blaming partners and says it’s investigating. SEOs are not reacting favorably to Google’s positioning on this.
In other news, Pinterest has rolled out a new visual search feature called Complete the Look. The tool recommends relevant products in the home decor and fashion categories based on the context of an image. For example, from a beach scene image, Pinterest might recommend hats, swimsuits and sunglasses. It’s the latest e-commerce capability to roll out since Pinterest brought former Walmart CTO and eBay VP of engineering Jeremy King onboard in March.
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