Loren Baker, the editor of the respected Search Engine Journal, is convinced the short-lived item on the official Google blog that purported to announce the cancellation of the Google-eBay “click-to-call” partnership is a hoax.
We’re very much inclined to agree.
Baker writes that “such a message would not come from Google blasting eBay, nor would it be full of misspellings, unsigned or end with the ‘This message has been translated using Google language tools’ line.”
The item in question was deleted from the blog less than an hour after it appeared (you can see a screen shot of the item here). And it is inconceivable that such an announcement would be made in a poorly written blog post that calls the month-old agreement “monopolistic.”
So was the Google blog hacked? It sure looks like it may have been.
Ironically, the blog item posted before the “click-to-call” cancellation note, entitled “Our Security Stance” and posted by Heather Adkins of Gooogle’s security team, asserts that “Google takes security very seriously and designs all of its services and applications to protect your privacy and data security.”
“We keep the bad guys out of our systems,” wrote Adkins.
Well, not all the “bad guys.” Chinese government censors seem to have free rein. And so do, apparently, “monopoly”-bashers.
[ADDED AFTER ORIGINAL POST]
Om Malik, the journalist/blogger (whose work, thankfully, tilts more to the left part of that slash) at GigaOm writes that Google has confirmed the post to be a hoax.
According to the spokesperson who contacted Malik, “A bug in Blogger enabled an unauthorized user to make a fake post on the Google Blog claiming that we have discontinued our AdWords click-to-call test. The bug was fixed quickly and the post removed. Our click-to-call test is progressing on schedule and we are pleased with the results thus far.”