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Inside Google & Alphabet

Inside Google & Alphabet (May 30th, 2019)

$GOOG (09:31 AM EST): $1,115.43 -1.03 (-0.09%) // More info

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1. Google has created new policies for Google Play apps aimed at kids. This is after 22 consumer advocates filed a complaint with the FTC last December over concerns that Google Play apps aimed at children might be violating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). Google is requiring developers to be more specific about the demographics for which their apps are designed, and will use this information to more stringently categorize apps. Google Play developers are expected to comply with the new guidelines by September 1.-- TECHCRUNCH
 

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3. Throwback Thursday: Google Wave

When it comes to forays into social media, Google is remembered more for Google+ than the much older Google Wave. Announced ten years ago this week, Google Wave was a monster of messaging, collaboration, and extendibility. 

It had file sharing. It had real-time conversation. It was built to add applications and extensions. Google Wave even had its own vocabulary Just one screenshot gives you the impression of a weird tech turducken, with email and messaging and social media features crammed together onto a single busy screen. 

The complexity might have been too much. Less than 18 months after announcing Google Wave, Google decided to discontinue it due to low user adoption, announcing a slow shutdown that completed in 2012

Google Wave was open source, so when Google announced its shutdown it passed on the technology to the Apache Software Foundation's incubator program, where it became known as Apache Wave. Apache Wave lasted far longer than Google Wave, but was finally retired in early 2018

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4. Google is facing more accusations of contract worker mistreatment. Seven Google employees told The Guardian that contract workers working on Pygmalion, which develops linguistic data sets for use with Google Assistant, were regularly pressured to work unpaid overtime. There are about 200 temporary/contract workers on the Pygmalion project; all of them have at least an undergraduate degree in linguistics, while some have master's degrees and even doctorates. Some workers say the prospect of becoming a full-time employee was a "carrot" dangled by Google executives. -- THE GUARDIAN

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5. JerryRigEverything did some YouTube durability tests of the Pixel 3a. The verdict: very good, especially considering the phone's price point. -- AUSDROID

6. Google's John Mueller has addressed some questions about top SEO factors for Google. The short answer: it's complicated.-- SEARCH ENGINE JOURNAL

7. Google says the slow performance issues of Pixel phones is not due to the Digital Wellbeing feature. But it has found other bugs and issues that will be addressed. -- THE VERGE

8. Search Engine Roundtable has noted some changes and feedback from Webmasters that might indicate a Google ranking algorithm update. -- SEARCH ENGINE ROUNDTABLE

9. Google has banned apps created for selling marijuana. But to comply with the new regulations developers just have to relocate the shopping cart. -- YAHOO FINANCE

10. Google has expanded its Digital News Initiative from Europe to the United States. Applications for up to $300,000 in funding are due July 15. -- NIEMAN LAB

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Tara Calishain has been writing about search engines since 1996, when she wrote the Official Netscape Guide to Internet Research. She's since authored or co-authored several other search-related books, including Google Hacks. Tara is obsessed with all things related to online information collections. You can say hi at @ResearchBuzz on Twitter.

Editing team: Kim Lyons (Pittsburgh-based journalist and managing editor at Inside) and David Stegon (senior editor at Inside, whose reporting experience includes cryptocurrency and technology).

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