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May 11, 2007

Employee Googling, Facebook Gets Classified and a New Ask Mobile

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Googling Your Employees is Totally Okay

Three federal judges got together, googled themselves, found the whole thing amusing, and then decided to uphold a previous court ruling that said it was okay for employers to perform Google searches on potential employees.

The decision stemmed from a case concerning David Mullins, a federal employee who was fired after he misused a government vehicle and credit card, and falsified travel documents. After David committed his brilliant acts, his employer conducted a Google search and found that David had a history of acting like a jackass. He was then fired.

David cried to the courts that his employer violated his right to "fundamental fairness" by performing the search. The courts and those of us with a brain disagreed. David, you were fired because you are were a government employee who misused a government vehicle and created phony receipts. That’s generally looked down upon.

And another thing? Life’s not fair.

Facebook Lets Users Sell Stuff

I’ve become somewhat Facebook-obsessed over the past few months, so the news that they’ll be opening up free classified ads is very cool for me. It’s a totally great way to guilt trip my friends into buying my stuff. Huzzah!

The New York Times says users can choose to show their listings to only their designated friends or to anyone located in one of their defined networks (high school, college, company, geographic region, employment, etc). Classified listings can be made to appear on their profile pages or be sent out via their news feeds, which users immediately see upon logging onto the site.

I wonder if the new classifieds will take advantage of their recent Oodle or Jobster partnerships? Are job boards next? Did I mention that Hitwise reported that amount of time spend on social sites is three times that of news and media sites?

Coming Soon: Ask Mobile GPS

Search Engine Land comments on Reuters and the Wall Street Journal’s reports that Ask.com is gearing up to launch a new mobile service named Ask Mobile GPS on Monday, which will combine IAC properties like Citysearch, Ticketmaster, Evite and others.

Greg Sterling has a chance to demo the service and said:

I was impressed with [Ask Mobile GPS’] many features and capabilities. But the most interesting and impressive aspects of it from my point of view involved the integration your contacts, the application’s content and tools and GPS: the capacity to send my location information very simply to many people simultaneously through my contact list.

No more having to try and locate street signs to explain to people where I am when I get lost and they need to come get me ASAP before the man with the shifty eyes makes his move? Sweet!

Fun Finds

Danny does an excellent job of defending search engine optimization. Again.

Seth Godin shows readers how the traffic-obsessed are misusing Google Analytics.

Nathan shows us how to run Outlook in iGoogle. Totally cool.

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