Google Slapped By Sausage Manifesto

    January 4, 2007
    WebProNews Staff

Something entitled “The Sausage Manifesto” harkens to memory surreal Kids In The Hall sketches – kissing the sausage box; a scratchy-throated table-pounding old Canadian with a one-track disgustingly syrupy mind – but that’s not what it is. The Sausage Manifesto is a marching order written in the chilly twilight of a Chicago morning: a writ demanding that search engines do more about click fraud.

The author, Jeffrey Rohrs, called it a “Jerry Maguire” moment, springing from bed at 4 a.m. to write eight pages worth of his mind. Rohrs is the president of Internet marketing agency, Optiem, LLC, and a frequent panelist at Search Engine Strategies Conferences.

Rohrs adapted an old quote from Otto von Bismarck:

People who enjoy eating sausage and obeying the law shouldn’t watch either being made.

And made it:

Advertisers who enjoy leads from pay-per-click ads shouldn’t ask how the clicks are made.

The rallying cry bemoaned the search industry’s insufficient tackling of the click fraud problem, including what seems to be either apathy or impotence from the search engines, their placing the burden of proof on advertisers, their white-tower cake-eating disconnect, and their unwillingness to share information.

“It is time that we rise up in unison and demand to know what the heck is in our PPC sausage,” writes Rohrs.

But he’s not going to do what you all think he’s going to do, which is flip out. He just wants the search engines to know there is such a thing as manners. Even fish have manners.

The manifesto is divided into 11 parts, a set of demands on behalf of PPC advertisers. Those demands are as follows:

1. Talk, Don’t Lecture (i.e., We spend a lot of money with you. Stop giving us the brush-off.)

2. Appreciate Our Unique Circumstances (i.e., We’re poorer than you, in time, money, and metrics.)

3. Invest in Proportion to the Problem

4. Acknowledge that Tracking Alone Is Not the Answer

5. Improve Click Quality Customer Service (“Why do we feel like. . .’the customer is always wrong, until they produce enough evidence to the contrary’?”)

6. Build a Click Quality Education Resource Center (i.e., Share your method for determining fraudulent clicks)

7. Light a Fire Under the IAB (i.e., They’re too slow at addressing this.)

8. Play Nice With Others (i.e., Third party click fraud detection companies are necessary because we don’t trust you.)

9. Put Somebody in Jail

10. Create a Click Fraud Perp Registry

11. Put Your Data Where Your PR Is

Google’s Shuman Ghosemajumder appears to be the only search engine rep to have responded to The Sausage Manifesto. Mostly, according to Search Engine Watch’s interview, it’s more of the same: Google works very hard to combat the problem and you all are overreacting (paraphrased and editorialized).

The writer pats himself on the back for the restraint he’s illustrated in not making snide remarks about the document title. This is a classy organization, hence no references to sausage parties (the obvious political ramification of such a declaration) or, for that matter, any other obvious, distasteful, crass, or phallic representations, rooster fights, and/or puns.

But you gotta admit you were thinking it.


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