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Friday, January 12, 2007

New Picasa Referral Button

Part of Google’s internal goals from 2006 was to increase the deployment of their Google Pack software bundle... especially for “novice users,” as Google put it. Well, I think here’s a new development targeted at novice users – Google’s Picasa referral button (which webmasters can include to earn revenues) changed to this, as Ionut points out:

When users click on the “organize your digital photo album with the free Google Pack” message, additional to Picasa (which does indeed organize photos) they will, by default, end up installing the following: Google Earth, Google Screensaver, Google Desktop, Google Toolbar for Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox with Google Toolbar, Ad-Aware SE Personal, Norton AntiVirus 2005 Special Edition, Adobe Reader 7. However, all of these pieces of the bundle are declared upfront (and multiple times) before installation, so novice users who may get the wrong message from reading the ad shouldn’t really be confused by the installation itself. You can cross-check with the “Google test” (my emphasis):

Many internet users find that over time their computers become loaded with unwanted software – be it adware, spyware or just plain junk. This is because a few applications they installed came bundled with junk, and that junk generated more junk piled higher and deeper. We believe any situation where multiple applications are being installed should be made very clear to users, so that if you were to ask them several months later – “What’s this?” – most will know where it came from and why it is there.
Google Software Principles (2004)

[Thanks Ionut!]


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