Congrats to the investors in TheFind, you’ll get your money with all that fuss of an IPO and especially having to tell the truth, like Box.Net now has to do since their public and of course it’s not as good as their story.
But anyway the interesting point is Facebook’s public rationalization of why they did it. They want to sell their ads.
Now I’ve always wondered about these multi-search sites that claim to find the best price? Do they really? How would we know, go check all the sites they searched ourselves? And maybe the multi-search guys have a backdoor into the website we’d never see. IOW, the whole thing could be rigged and we’d never know. A bunch of advertising, like we incessantly see for Kayak or Priceline, but that’s it – where is the proof they actually do what they say.
So now Facebook takes an already bad situation and makes it worse.
Simple quiz Facebook has an ad buy from site X and no ad buy from site Y – which one will TheFind claim is the best deal. Are you kidding me! Of course they’ll show the result they’re paid to show. If we didn’t already know whether TheFind was telling the truth (do they even bother to search all the sites they claim, do they rank them properly), now with Facebook getting paid for answers how can we possibly believe TheFind.
For all the evil that the do-no-evil Google claims at least they still (or at least we think they do) segregate search results from the paid ad placements. Did Facebook promise that’s the why they plan to do it. And if someone is going to the TheFind to get a cheap price and they see an ad for someplace that isn’t the cheap price, are they then going to be influenced by the ad instead of the price they were searching for. Mostly not, so, simply TheFind is going to have to lie to make those ads worth the cost to the advertiser.
Any bets on which way Facebook will go, as in when was the last time you saw them honest or putting users interests ahead of profit maximization. Sure, believe that as Zuck collects more billions,.