Ticket Scalpers Beware: Australia To Indroduce Tough Laws

We’ve all seen them.  Tickets to “sold out” shows and events popping up online at inflated prices, sometimes two, three or four times their original value. 

Ticket Scalpers have been onto a good thing the world over. There are those who will buy up tickets early specifically to “re-sell” them later on for a profit.  In Australia, the NSW government is putting their foot down, and is close to introducing aggressive new laws to limit scalpers and attempt to put a stop to this unfair and unethical practice.  The change comes at a good time, right as Swiss-based ticket re-seller, viagogo is getting ready to sell scalpers tickets downunder.

The proposed laws will allegedly allow sports organisations and promotors to set their own conditions on ticket sales.  In recent days the NRL cancelled up to 100 grand final tickets that appeared on the Internet Auction giant, eBay.  In that case the buyer was looking to make a quick $9500 profit from selling tickets for $260 each (regular price: $165).  And that’s just one example.  Tickets to Pinks Australian tour were selling for almost double their retail price and if you wanted to see Barclays Premier League champions, Manchester United play the A-League All-Stars would would have had to pay more than FOUR times the regular price at a whopping $420 per ticket!

 ticket-scalpersImage: news.com.au

“We want to give fans a fair go at buying tickets, while also protecting fans from rip-offs and fraud”, said Fair Trading Minister, Anthony Roberts.   Those fraudsters were bluntly described by Sports Minister, Graham Annesley as “unscrupulous profiteers motivated only by greed”.

The NSW probably wont be ablw to stop viagogo, who have already proven to be elusive in other parts of the world.  But a law change that limits scalpers from over-inflating tickets can only be a good thing for Australian events.

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Google Search? Not As Much As You Would Think

On my daily travels through Mashable this evening I came across this rather fascinating story about how Google is killing organic search; and how only roughly 13% of the results page is actually dedicated to giving you the results you need.

The story references a study done by Aaron Harris (twitter: @harris), the founder of Tutorspree, who broke down the Google organic results page(s) and found that far less “real estate” is used to provide you with search results than you would think, or expect.

Google has been the “king” of Internet Search for quite some time, so much so that we no longer say we’ll “search” for something, we often just say “Google-it”.  However the days of copious lists of results seem to have been replaced gradually by revenue raising Google advertising, and with the localised search data we now have other Google products such as Maps also taking up seemingly valuable website space.

Harris used “Auto Mechanic” as an example, while logged into Google on a machine in the TriBeCa area.

13percentgoogle

Says Harris, “I’m using a Macbook Air 13inch. My browser size is set to “Actual Size.” The rest of the page is taken up by Google products. Adwords take up 29% of the page. Google’s map, plotted with it’s own local results takes up 7% of the page. Google’s navigation bar, complete with notifications for my Google+ account, takes up 14% of the page.”

The results themselves?  Harris continues, saying, “The top organic result? Wikipedia. The next two? Yelp, a competitor against which Google is clearly moving.(2)”

If you think 13% is bad, it gets worse – far worse.  “Italian food” provided just 7% real estate dedicated to the organic search results, and if you used your mobile phone, the answer was as low as 0%.  That’s right, NOTHING.

I strongly suggest taking a few minutes to read the study by Aaron Harris on Tutorspree.  You’ll be truly amazed at how little Google is actually providing us by way of Organic Search data.

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Apple Shocks Users, Calls Purple Haze On iPhone 5 Camera “Normal”

 Steve Jobs may not be at the helm, but it appears the same arrogant mentality that bought you “just avoid holding it in that way” is still very firmly embedded in the Apple Ideology.  If you’re not familar with that infamous quote from Steve Jobs, take a read here about the problems the iPhone 4 had after being released.

iphone5-purple-hazeThe iPhone 5 is now here and once again the product has bugs and flaws.  Or at least, that’s what everybody in the world except Apple would call them.  One of the biggest issues with the iPhone 5 is the hated “Purple Haze” effect that for some reason is happening with the iPhone 5 camera.  Those who have been around cameras long enough would know that two of the biggest causes of Purple Haze are either faulty hardware or a low quality product.  It’s hard to imagine Apple using low quality products, right?

So it must be a fault with the hardware (iPhone Camera) itself.

Apparently not.

Gizmodo reader, Matt Van Gastel purchased an iPhone 5 and like many of his fellow iPhone users, contacted Apple Support to complain about the “fault” with the camera.  He, like many others had experienced the Purple Haze on the camera.  This is what Apple responded to him:

“Our engineering team just gave me this information and we recommend that you angle the camera away from the bright light source when taking pictures. The purple flare in the image provided is considered normal behavior for iPhone 5′s camera.

xlargeApparently Apple Support think their users are not too smart, because a little research reveals that the Purple Haze has been happening no matter where the light source is in relation to the photo.  Indoor shots, outdoor shots, night shots, they’ve all experienced that horrid haze.

But don’t expect a fix anytime soon.  It appears Apple are very firm in their belief that the haze is “normal behaviour”, and history shows that Apple are just arrogant enough to actually not listen to their customers.

As Stan Schroeder of Mashable put it, “The world according to Apple is, apparently, simply a bit more purple than you imagined.”

Helpful references:

Game & Guide – Apple says camera haze is “normal behaviour”
Yahoo news – Purple Haze, “it’s normal”
Tech Spot – Camera haze is “normal behaviour”
Apple Insider – Users claim camera is defective

 

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Can Bing Compete Compete With Googles Domination?

Bing Vs GoogleFirst we had the Cola Wars, then came the Smart Phone Wars… the question flying around the internet these days is whether we are on the verge of seeing a brand new Social Media War.  For years now Google has stood alone at the top with regards to search and has led the way in the area of PPC Advertising and Market Share.  While there have been countless challenges to Google’s market share, nobody has really stood a chance.

Which raises the question: Can Bing mount a serious challenge and topple the king? Webmaster news source Sitepronews argue that they don’t believe it’s possible, as they reported in a story earlier this week.

“I think it is going to be extremely difficult for Bing to ever seriously compete with Google, but that doesn’t mean they are going to stop trying.” ~ SiteProNews

As SiteProNews mention, the biggest difference between Google and Bing is the revenue they each generate and the market share they have across the globe.

In the 2011 fiscal year Google totally dominated, generating $37 Billion in revenue from PPC Advertising to Bing’s $1 Billion.  They backed this up with an incredible 81.7% market share globally to Bing’s tiny 4.4%!  In the US, arguably the biggest market for both companies Google again dominates with more than 66% of the market to Bing’s 15.2%.

But here’s the kicker, at the end of the day it all comes down to trust.  Who do you like and trust more? 

“The main issue I have with Bing, and the reason I think they will never compete with Google, is the fact they call themselves a decision engine. Why would anyone want Microsoft making their decisions for them?”

Market Share, decision engines, algorythms, the battle for search supremacy may already be over before it’s begun.  But Bing seem determined and that is something they will need if they intend to truly mount a challenge against Google.

Whether you side with Google or Bing, I highly recommend heading over to SiteProNews now to read the full story.

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Cheat Sheet: 10 Ways To Optimize Your Use Of Twitter

SiteProNews posted a great feature on SiteProNews today called “10 Ways to Optimize Your Use of Twitter”, a Twitter Cheat Sheet for Authors.

Is Your Twitter Optimized?We’ve all heard of Twitter, and it’s a safe bet to say most people reading this will have at least 1 Twitter account that the regularly post from or manage.  But are you using Twitter effectively, or is Twitter using you?

Suzanne Fyhrie Parrott, the author of the article shows that the most simplest of things are the ones we most often overlook, and that by doing so you can greatly reduce the effectiveness that Twitter can have for you.

She also explains that 2-way communication is a big part of the WOW Factor when it comes to Twitter.

“Twitter is all about communication. If people talk to you or RT your message, then talk back and/or thank them. (SECRET: People like to feel involved and acknowledged. I like it, you like it, everybody likes it.)”, says Parrott.

You can read the full article on SiteProNews by clicking here.

Here is a brief look at Suzanne’s 10 Ways To Optimize Twitter:

  1. Use your name – be YOU
  2. Use a profile picture
  3. Link your website
  4. Update your Bio
  5. Tweeting Often
  6. The relevance of your Tweets
  7. Don’t overdo Linking
  8. Be yourself and show your personality
  9. Always Follow Useful Tweeters
  10. Communicate Often – RT, DM, etc.

Head over to SiteProNews to read the full article today.

A little about Suzanne Fyhrie Parrott
Suzanne is the founder of UnrulyGuides.com, a resource for self-published authors. She also operates OneWay Advertising and Design and has been active in the book and ebook market since 1988.

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