Internet Marketing Weekly News Update #078 December 22, 2010

New e-commerce venture with JC Penney could represent a major new revenue stream for Facebook.
JC Penney has launched a new online store on Facebook. This not only gives the traditional retailer a new e-commerce reach, but is expected to represent the start of a trend for Facebook, one which could give the social media giant a substantial new source of revenue potential.

France to start taxing online ads, beginning January 1st.
The French government has passed a new law taxing online advertisers, though the law is seen as ultimately targeted at Google, whose dominance has rankled French authorities. Up to now, governments have largely kept their hands off Internet businesses to let them develop, but the temptation to tax might increasingly become appealing to cash-starved governments around the world.

Slow and steady, Bing makes market share gains in search.
According to comScore's latest figures, Microsoft is gradually making progress in gaining search share, and apparently at the expense of Google and Yahoo. In November, third-place Microsoft saw its share of search traffic rise from 11.5 percent to 11.8 percent, while Google declined from 66.3 percent to 66.2 percent, and Yahoo declined from 16.5 percent to 16.4 percent.
Search Engine Land

Email remains the top online activity.
Email remains the number one online activity across all age groups of Internet users, and overall 94 percent of adult Internet users engage in email. Significantly, the rate of email usage (96 percent) is highest among Millennials (18 to 33 year olds), which is the group with the highest level of Internet usage penetration (96 percent). Search is the second most common online activity, engaged in by 87 percent of Internet users.
Search Engine Land

Bing rolls out enhancements, including travel details.
Bing has rolled out a number of new search enhancements, including a feature called Attraction Answers, which gives details on more than 60,000 tourist attractions worldwide, including 20,000 attractions in the US.
Search Engine Land

Online scrutiny may become more formalized with the creation of a new government office.
The Commerce Department has proposed forming a new Privacy Policy Office which would set guidelines regarding the use of consumer information online, and monitor for abusive practices. Even so, the Commerce Department has not proposed any new legislation on the subject, nor does it propose giving the Privacy Policy Office enforcement powers.

Patent wars: the Nokia-Apple battle heats up.
Nokia has filed suits against Apple in three separate European countries, alleging infringement on 13 different patents. This is the latest salvo in a legal battle which has previously seen Nokia filing suit in the US over the alleged infringement on 24 patents by Apple, and Apple's counterattack alleging that Nokia infringed on 13 of its patents.

New comparison yields insight about Twitter vs. Facebook users.
A comparison by Digital Surgeons shows some contrasts between the characteristics of Twitter and Facebookusers. For example, while both enjoy high levels of public awareness, Facebook has parleyed its notoriety into 500 million users, compared with 106 million for Twitter. A greater portion of the Facebook audience (40 percent vs. 25 percent) follows a brand on the site, but Twitter brand followers are more likely to buy that particular brand (67 percent vs. 51 percent).

Rumored YouTube acquisition targeted at producing original content.
An unofficial report says that YouTube is in discussions to acquire Next New Networks, a Web-based production company. This would broaden the scope of YouTube's activities, giving it more overlap with traditional networks by getting involved in content production.
The New York Times

Behavioral advertisers have little to fear from opt-out programs--so far.
Whether they come about via industry best practices or regulation, giving consumers the choice to opt out of behavioral advertisements seems inevitable. According to one study, it may not hurt advertisers much. Roughly one in every 700,000 users presented with an ad bearing the Digital Advertising Alliance's opt-out logo chose to act on it. There remains a question regarding how many people actually saw the logo and recognized its significance.

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