Posts Tagged ‘google’

News Commentary: Performing Rights Society and YouTube’s disagreement

March 13th, 2009

As you may aware, the UK’s Performing Right Society (PRS) has had a “little falling out” with YouTube. Basically, as far as I can tell from the BBC reports, YouTube is not willing to pay what the PRS is requesting (some say the PRS is asking for considerably more money the currently, some say that YouTube is offering considerable less).

Anyway, without an agreement with PRS in place to pay royalties to artists and songwriters, YouTube has no right to play their music in the UK. YouTube is, therefore, following the law and PRS’s own policies by blocking those music videos on their site: as they don’t have permission from PRS to play the music.

However, Feargal Sharkey of the UK Music industry body is saying that by following the rules YouTube is using a “blatant, cynical, manipulative” negotiating tactic. So now YouTube is in the wrong because they are following the rules? If they didn’t block the videos, they’ll be breaking the law – but by blocking the videos PRS’s artists are missing out on exposure… I think the PRS needs to think which is more worth while: having lowish quality music videos available on YouTube for potential purchasers to come across and then buy singles (and therefore let YouTube host them for free), or demand so much money from YouTube that it’s not worth them offering the music videos.

You can’t have it both ways PRS!

Google Checkout: Same fees as Paypal, what advantages?

March 11th, 2009

Well, within a few weeks I was going to update a new e-commerce site hoping to utilise Google Checkout and the benefits it offered (the previously discussed lower fees than Paypal and those fees could be reduced to zero by advertising on Google). But no more!

Like many others, I’ve just received the email (below) from Google (yes, I’ve authenticated it: it came to a specific Google Checkout email address I’ve got setup, through Google’s servers and checked with SPF: it’s even on the Google Checkout blog) which basically state “We’re hiking up fees and cancelling the advertising discount”. What rate are they hiking up to? Well, their website shows the following fees and I’ve included Paypal’s Fees for comparison:

Sales volume per month Google Checkout Paypal
Less than £1,500 3.4% and 20p 3.4% and 20p
Between £1,500 and £5,999.99 2.9% and 20p 2.9% and 20p
Between £6,000 and £14,999.99 2.4% and 20p 2.4% and 20p
Between £15,000 and £54,999.99 1.9% and 20p 1.9% and 20p
Over £55,000 1.4% and 20p 1.4% and 20p

<sarcasm> Wow – so much difference. </sarcasm>

Yes, they are identically (ok, Paypal’s limits are “between £1,500.01 and £6,000″/”between £6,000.01 and £15,000″/”between £15,000.01 and £55,000” so there is a penny difference in 5 exact cases!). (cough)Price fixing?(/cough)

But surely Google Checkout will be cheaper than Paypal for “cross-border” transactions (i.e. where the buyer and seller are in different countries):

Sales volume per month Google Checkout Paypal
Less than £1,500 4.4% and 20p 3.9% and 20p
Between £1,500 and £5,999.99 3.9% and 20p 2.4% and 20p
Between £6,000 and £14,999.99 3.4% and 20p 2.9% and 20p
Between £15,000 and £54,999.99 2.9% and 20p 2.4% and 20p
Over £55,000 1.4% and 20p 1.9% and 20p

So Google Checkout is actually more expensive then Paypal: and Google Checkout hasn’t got the market penetration than Paypal, hasn’t got the ease of integration of Paypal, hasn’t got the wide range of integration options than Paypal, hasn’t got the facilities of Paypal…

I’d just like to know why I should bother with Google Checkout instead of Paypal (baring in mind, the more payment methods offered the lower the theshold for discounts I’ll reach on any one of them and the more transaction fees I’ll pay). To me, it looks like Google Checkout is checking out and won’t be here this time next year…

11/Mar/09 21:46 GMT: Marketing Pilgrim isn’t sure if this is a sign of Google Checkout’s Success or Struggle (one of the commenters, James Wilton, there actually said what I first thought: “Perhaps Google is trying to kill Checkout by attrition? They certainly haven’t been investing resources into it.”
11/Mar/09 22:11 GMT: Just to confirm, it isn’t just the United Kingdom prices going up – it looks like a world-wide increase!
11/Mar/09 22:13 GMT: Explode On Twitter has already dropped Google Checkout for Paypal (as Paypal is simpler for all concerned). Has Google really sounded the death bell for Checkout?
11/Mar/09 22:22 GMT: There is a Google Support Forum Thread about this and it appears from a quick scan people are going to be dropping Checkout for Paypal after this fee increase (some are even talking about ditching Adwords!).
11/Mar/09 22:28 GMT: @jessicamerritt says she’s going to stick with Checkout because of their chargeback policy (in particular the fair treatment section on their fraud/chargeback page). I’ve not handled a chargeback through Checkout so I don’t know how good it is, but I’ve found Paypal a lot more “friendly” and accommodating than dealing with Lloyds TSB Cardnet chargebacks. Yes, Paypal (and others) do “freeze the funds”, but you do get the money back after the dispute (and from their point of view, it stops bad merchants “doing a runner” with the funds).
11/Mar/09 22:43 GMT: For comparison, here is the Paypal UK Discount Fee structure and the US one is here.
11/Mar/09 22:59 GMT: KingJ is no longer recommending Google Checkout as he(?) handles a large number of cross-border transactions and hence the transaction fee increase will cost him more than Paypal. Stanstech is also saying Goodbye to Google Checkout. I’ve also just checked and Paypal’s Chargeback fee of £7 is identical to Google’s new fee for chargebacks.. Hmm…
12/Mar/09 00:20 GMT: There is now also (as there always is) a Facebook group against the price rises. I’m personally not against the price rises on their own, I’m just against them it takes away the only benefits of using Google Checkout there was and the fact the prices match Paypal’s point for point: do they really both have identical operating costs?
12/Mar/09 11:59 GMT: ValleyWag chimes in asking whether this is the start of Google introducing higher fees for all their services.
12/Mar/09 12:01 GMT: EdSF nicely sums up the advantages Paypal has and the poor customer service he’s had from Google.
12/Mar/09 15:56 GMT:The Register now has an article of the Google Checkout fee increases. It’s getting wide publicity, but will Google realise how much they’ve annoyed merchants and that there are now no advantages to accepting Checkout?


» Read more: Google Checkout: Same fees as Paypal, what advantages?

Tech: Google Cookie Opt-Out Plugin or Customising The Cookie

March 11th, 2009

It appears that Google offers an Advertising Cookie Opt-Out Plugin which not only sets the DoubleClick opt-out cookie (DoubleClick is now owned by Google don’tcha know?), but also ensures this cookie is set to persist even if you empty your browser cookies (Internet Explorer and Firefox only). However, not only can you get this cookie set (along with setting opt-out cookies for all the other major advertising networks), you can also set your own advertising interests so Google can serve more appropriate adverts to you (so no more, or certain less, “weight loss/improve your manhood” adverts).

Google Transit Maps

January 16th, 2009

Cool – I’ve been thinking about something like this for a couple of days ago, and Google has just announced nearly what I was thinking: a transit/transport map of London showing where the tubes/lines actually go so you can easily plot alternative routes from not being underground – see London’s map.

Now they just need the following options and they’ve saved me a development job:
* Distance between stations: yes, I can see Regent Street is an inch away from Great Portland Street by “the crow flies”, but I’ve still got to do the conversion using the manual scale. If I could just click on “Great Portland Street” and get a list of “Walking distance to nearby stations: Regent Street 0.5miles (10 minutes), Euston Square 1mile (20 minutes)” etc it’ll be brilliant.
* Alternative routing. I travel from Harrow on The Hill to Great Portland Street, so what are the routes I could take (Metropolitan Line from HOH to GPS, Metropolitan to Wembley Park then Jubilee to Baker Street then Metropolitan/Circle/Hammersmith to GPS, Walk to Harrow and Wealdstone and then catch overground to Euston…): perfect if a line or station is closed (as has happened with the Metropolitan and Great Portland Street several times this year. If it includes additional distance travelled/time needed, it’ll be perfect.

Paypal, ClickAndBuy, Google Checkout, NoChex and Worldpay Fees

December 31st, 2008

Here’s more a reminder to myself and all figures are based off “base rates” currently provided by the various Payment gateways. Check the figures yourself before using them as they may have changed. I can’t accept any liability for how you use this information.

Paypal charge a fixed fee of £0.20 and 3.4% of each transaction. To figure out the gross figure from the net, use the formula: (net+0.20)/(1-(3.4/100)).

Click and Buy charge a fixed fee of £0.35 and 1.9% of each transaction.

Google Checkout charges a fixed fee of £0.15 and 1.5% of each transaction.

NoChex’s Seller Account charges a fixed fee of £0.20 and 2.9% of each transaction.

Worldpay IMA charges a fixed fee of £0.15 and 3.35% of each transaction (along with a £15 monthly fee and £75 setup fee) [note this is for their current “New Business Deal”, normally they charge £30 per month with a £200 setup fee and £4.50% on credit/charge cards and a flat £0.50 on UK Debit Cards: along with £0.06 per transaction for Fraud Detection]

SecureTrading charges 3.29% on each transaction (subject to a minimum fee of £15 per month with a further £15 per month service fee and a one-off setup fee of £300)

» Read more: Paypal, ClickAndBuy, Google Checkout, NoChex and Worldpay Fees

%d bloggers like this: