Google And YouTube Company Updates - Tech Talk

google updates youtube changes alphabet lawsuits antitrust investigation monopoly

Google and YouTube (owned by Google) are constantly making changes. Whether it is acquisitions or algorithm updates, or facing lawsuits and anti-trust investigations, Google and its parent company Alphabet are always evolving and overcoming challenges. It is kind of a must when you are one of the most valuable companies on the planet and a leader in technological innovation. Even though Google's valuation has taken a hit in the last year, the company is still dominant or a major player in multiple lucrative industries.

As a marketer or business owner, you need to keep tabs on the latest company and industry developments involving Google so you don't lose your competitive edge. 

Here are some of the recent changes with Alphabet, Google Search, Google As, Google Analytics, Google Search Console, Gmail, Bard, and YouTube for 2023 so far from a variety of sources, including Google themselves. 

Google Wins 10 Year Lawsuit Against Oracle 

After over a decade of litigation, the Supreme Court ruled in favor of Google over rival tech behemoth Oracle on APIs and copyrights. This has long-lasting impacts on Google, Oracle, tech copyrights, API, software, and big tech in general. 

Antitrust Lawsuits And Republican Lawsuits Filed Against Google 

The top news in big tech is talks of antitrust lawsuits against Google for dominating the search engine industry in the U.S. (and most of the world) has been brewing for years not, and may be coming to a head. This is due to Google being one of the most powerful, influential, and valuable tech companies in the world... along with their obvious monopoly in the search engine space in most countries without major media restrictions.

Also, Google is now facing lawsuits or potential lawsuits and a lot of criticism from Republicans for skewing search results to liberal websites and news outlets. Whether this conservative criticism increases or not later this year is yet to be seen, since more of the negative attention has shifted away from Google somewhat and onto social media platforms.  

Google Wins One War For Digital Domination 

Verizon finally sold its ownership of AOL and Yahoo to private equity firms for only $5 billion, about half of what it paid for them. Being acquired by VZ in 2015 and 2017, they weren't able to compete against Google or Facebook for digital ad revenue. AOL and Yahoo are still plugging away but have yet to make any game-changing improvements since being acquired aside from a more competitive advertising program in 2022 and 2023. Bing is still holding strong as Microsoft's search engine advertising bet but hasn't made any major growth either.

Google Acquires FitBit And Data For 100 Million Users

Speaking of antitrust concerns, Google finally acquired Fitbit after waiting 14 months for the U.S. Department Of Justice to approve the acquisition. The DOJ actually hasn't approved the acquisition but they just stopped challenging it, probably due to the major distraction of an entire administration change with Biden winning the presidency and Democrats winning Senate majority. So they could potentially get slapped on the wrist in the near future.

"Fitbit is now officially part of Google. It’s an incredibly exciting moment for us as a company and for our Fitbit community of users around the globe. When Eric and I founded Fitbit 13 years ago, we did so with a simple, but bold idea: to make everyone in the world healthier. Since shipping the original Fitbit tracker in 2009 to now having sold more than 120 million devices in over 100 countries, this mission has never wavered. Instead, millions of you joined that mission, and made Fitbit a movement that transformed lives. In some cases, we heard from our users that we even helped save lives. 

Together, we’ve taken 275 trillion steps and logged over 15 billion hours of sleep. This is just the beginning because becoming part of the Google family means we can do even more to inspire and motivate you on your journey to better health. We’ll be able to innovate faster, provide more choices, and make even better products to support your health and wellness needs. On our own, we pushed the bounds of what was possible from the wrist, pioneering step, heart rate, sleep and stress tracking. With access to Google’s incredible resources, knowledge and global platform, the possibilities are truly limitless. I have no doubt that this acquisition will create so many opportunities. But I also want you to know that many of the things you know and love about Fitbit will remain the same. 

We’ll stay committed to doing what’s right, to putting your health and wellness at the center of everything we do and to offering a no-one-size-fits-all approach with choices that work across both Android and iOS. The trust of our users will continue to be paramount, and we will maintain strong data privacy and security protections, giving you control of your data and staying transparent about what we collect and why. 

Google will continue to protect Fitbit users’ privacy and has made a series of binding commitments with global regulators, confirming that Fitbit users' health and wellness data won't be used for Google ads and this data will be kept separate from other Google ad data. Google also affirmed it will continue to allow Fitbit users to choose to connect to third party services. That means you’ll still be able to connect your favorite health and wellness apps to your Fitbit account. These and other commitments by Google reinforce why Google is an ideal partner for Fitbit who will continue to put our users first and help further our mission to make everyone in the world healthier." 

That's a lot of big talk from Google and Fitbit, so hopefully they will respect customer data privacy and not make owners regret the acquisition, or they could be facing some less than ideal PR. They will also be debating between keeping the product separate or integrating it with their Google Health program, or both. 

Google Analytics 4 Readiness Audit 

Are you happy with the answers you’re getting out of Google Analytics today? Are you confident in the decisions you’re making from Google Analytics? Are you secure in the knowledge that you’re set up properly to benefit from Google Analytics 4? On the horizon are some big changes, including the newly-released Google Analytics 4, a completely new way to do your marketing analytics. If you answered no to any of the questions above, let’s take some time to get your analytics in shape. This year’s going to be a BIG year for Google Analytics, and to benefit from it, your analytics infrastructure needs to be ready to go. 

So I’m offering you a Google Analytics overhaul with my company, Trust Insights. We’ll help you: Get your existing Google Analytics account in shape with proper goals, tracking cleanup, and best practices Identify key issues that will block your ability to use Google Analytics 4 and help resolve them Help you set an analytics strategy for this that focuses on answers, decisions, and growth rather than pouring more data in your inbox Build you a migration plan for Google Analytics 4, including Google Tag Manager and Google Data Studio. 

Google Being Charged For Ads And News Sources In Europe An Australia, Passing Fees Along To Customers

Google is now required to pay news outlets for including them in search results in Australia and are being charged in some European Union countries, where they have previously been sued and restricted. We have a feeling at Marketing Masterminds Media that this isn't the last we've heard about fees, lawsuits, antitrust, and restrictions within the EU and other similar nations.

Here is what Google has just announced for France and Spain in the EU:

On 1 May 2021, Google will begin charging new surcharges for ads served in France and Spain. New surcharges As of 1 May 2021, we will begin adding a surcharge to your next invoice or statement for ads served in specific countries: 

Ads served in France: a 2% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement. 

Ads served in Spain: a 2% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement. The Regulatory Operating Costs (ROC) are being added to cover part of the costs associated with complying with digital services tax legislation in France and Spain. You can view a more complete description of the surcharges, but here are the most important changes that may apply: Ads purchased through Google Ads 

These surcharges will be shown on your invoice or statement as a separate line item per country. They will also be displayed in the "Transactions" section of your Google Ads account. You'll be charged for advertisements served in the countries mentioned above. 

Any taxes, such as sales tax, VAT, GST, or QST, that apply in your country may also apply to the new surcharges. 

If you pay through monthly invoicing or automatic payments, these surcharges will be added in addition to your account budget. For example, if you have a budget of €100 and accrue €2 in France ROC for ads served in France, you'll be billed €102 (plus any taxes, such as sales tax, VAT, GST, or QST, that apply in your country). Learn more about adjusting your account budget 

If you pay through manual payments, these surcharges may be charged after your payment has been fully spent. You may be left with an open balance that will be automatically deducted from your next prepayment. For example, if you accumulate €2 of Regulatory Operating Costs for ads served in France, and you make a new payment for €100, you would have €98 credit towards displaying ads (€100 - €2), and your available balance would display as €98 for EU ads. 

Now Google Is Passing Along Added Fees To Other Countries As Well To Cover Taxes And Legal Fees

As of 1 October 2021, we will include a surcharge to your invoices or statements for ads that are purchased through Google Ads and for YouTube placements purchased on reservations basis, and that are served in the following specific jurisdictions: 

Ads served in Austria: a 5% Austria DST Fee added to your invoice or statement 

Ads served in France: a 2% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement 

Ads served in India: a 2% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement 

Ads served in Italy: a 2% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement 

Ads served in Spain: a 2% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement 

Ads served in Turkey: a 5% Regulatory Operating Cost added to your invoice or statement 

Ads served in the United Kingdom: a 2% UK DST Fee added to your invoice or statement 

These surcharges are being added to cover a portion of the costs associated with complying with digital services tax legislation and legal fees in these jurisdictions.

Google Search Console & Google Analytics Integration Update

Google is now working on a new experience combining Search Console and Google Analytics data to provide you with more useful data about your site. We are updating the linking integration between Search Console and Google Analytics to allow the export of data from your Google Analytics property to the linked Search Console property. We'll notify when this new experience becomes available (probably in a few weeks). Linking your Google Analytics property to your Search Console property enables data to flow between the products. Going forward, data shared from your Google Analytics property with your Search Console property will be subject to the Search Console terms of service. Search Console data shared with your Google Analytics property will continue to be subject to the Google Analytics terms of service. If you'd like to disable the data flow between your linked Search Console and Google Analytics property, you can unlink your properties from each other in the property associations page. 

Google Analytics Tags

The new, more intelligent Google Analytics experience is here. This next generation of Google Analytics will take your digital analytics to a whole new level by delivering the essential customer insights you need. In order to experience this new Analytics, you will need to upgrade to Google's latest dynamic tagging solution. 


By updating your current Google Analytics tag (analytics.js) to the latest tag (gtag.js), not only will you have access to the new Analytics, your account will also benefit from: 

Future-proof conversion measurement: Benefit from the latest features and integrations as they become available so that you'll be better equipped to continue measuring conversions. 

Codeless tag management: Turn measurement features on and off within your Google Analytics account without having to manually change tags on your page. 

Faster and easier integration: Seamlessly implement and integrate with other Google products, such as Google Ads and Google Optimize. You can find the global site tag (gtag.js) in your Analytics account and implement it directly on your website. 

And if you already use Google Tag Manager, no action is needed for your GA account. 

Determine Data

Analytics automatically recognizes where traffic was immediately before arriving on your site, and displays the domain names of these sites as the referral-traffic sources in your reports. To make sure your data includes only referrals in which you're interested, you can create a set of conditions that identify the domains whose traffic you don't want to identify as referrals.

Data Import lets you upload data from external sources and join it with your Analytics data so you can analyze a single body of information about your business. You upload CSV files that contain external data to an Analytics property. Data Import joins the offline data you upload with the event data collected by Analytics. 

Analytics Audiences

When you create a property, you select the industry category for your business. Based on that selection, Analytics displays a number of preconfigured suggested audiences you can use that are based on the recommended events for that category.

A predictive audience is an audience with at least one condition based on a predictive metric. You can use suggested audience templates to create your own audiences. You can leverage these predictive audiences in your Google Ads accounts, as remarketing audiences and in re-engagement campaigns. 

Google Goals

Recently a marketing associate confessed that they were afraid to ask basic questions about Google Analytics 4 because they felt their questions were too novice and the people in the group were too advanced. I refuted their statement politely; for every one person in the group who’s further along in their analytics journey, there are easily 50 people who are also just starting out. And right now, let’s be real: everyone is back at the basics in some way. Here’s an example. How do you set up a goal in Google Analytics for a thank you page? Do you know? 

Folks who’ve been around a little while might say, yeah, that’s easy: Go to Admin > View > Goals Configure your goal Put in the destination URL of the thank you page Give it a value, and you’re done. Easy, right? Except if you’re doing it for Google Analytics 4, that’s completely wrong. In Google Analytics 4, to set up a goal, you follow these simple steps: 

Set up a trigger for the thank you page in Google Tag Manager to detect just that pageview event Set up a Google Analytics 4 event tag to match that trigger Set up an event name and parameter for your goal value in the tag Declare that event as a conversion in Google Analytics 4 Something that you would think is “basic” is anything but in the new software. In some ways, we’re all back to the basics when something major changes. 

Here’s another example. How do you track conversions from Facebook ads? The basic answer is, you put the Facebook Pixel on your website, put the conversion event on the thank you page, and you’re off to the races, right? Except when Apple rolls out its enhanced privacy features for iOS, and users will be notified and asked if they want to be tracked by companies like Facebook. You can imagine what most users will say. So the “basic” answer will be to install the Conversions API on your web server and install the necessary back-end code to send server-side tracking back to Facebook (because you won’t be able to count on tracking the user any more), and then install the code needed to de-duplicate the user and the server conversions. That’s hardly basic, even though it’s a basic question. 

Don’t be afraid to ask questions about the basics of Google Analytics updates. Anyone who scorns you for asking a question about the basics is either a jerk or has to hide behind a veneer of superiority to cover for their lack of knowledge on the subject. True GA and digital analytics professionals, true subject matter experts will be happy to discuss the basics, especially when the data science answers have nuances.

Gmail & Google Analytics Adds Addresses With Google Workspace

If you are already using insights from Google Analytics to understand your customer journeys, you can now build on those journeys with each email you send. Along with a suite of productivity tools, Google Workspace gives you a custom email address so that you can: 

- Build more customer trust and confidence 
- Increase recognition of your company name 
- Complement and extend your business website 
- Get your business found more easily online 

You can try out Google Workspace for three months at no charge at this time. Take your business capabilities even further with tools that seamlessly bring together messaging, meetings, documents, and tasks. It's everything you need to get anything done, now in one convenient place.

YouTube Creators And Partner Updates 2021

2021 is finally here for YouTube Partners and Creators. Now's the time to take a fresh look at your channel. There are countless ways to shake things up. Check out your guide for creative inspiration. Tips to Unleash Your Creative Potential If you’re looking for ways to stand out this year, then the Making Creative Changes course is your go-to guide. Follow these official YouTube tips to get your ideas flowing. 

Change Up How You Brainstorm: Seek inspiration in new spaces and fresh experiences - like a morning walk or swapping your music playlists. 

Remix The Hits: Tweak or reimagine existing trends or content series to provide a fresh take on an old topic. 

Let Your Data Guide You: Review your performance data in YouTube Analytics to get a sense of your audience’s evolving tastes and use Google Trends to view search interest! 

Unleash Your Creativity 

YouTube Trends Report Take an interactive journey into ridiculous self-haircuts, communal watchalongs, and all the content that connected us last year. The YouTube Trends Report will challenge everything you know about what has been happening on the interwebs!

Need more inspiration to get creatively unstuck? See how former comedy creators turned YouTube employees ventured into new genres to get fresh content creation ideas. 

Top YouTube creators offer their favorite tips for your channel in 2021, in this short video compilation. We all know there’s no secret to creativity, but with a little experimentation, you can confidently push your channel to new heights. 

Community Comes First

Community lies at the heart of your YouTube channel - the people who believe in you, cheer you on, and come together because of you. By staying connected with your followers, you can unlock new levels of potential for your channel. Test out some of these techniques to stay in touch with your audience: 

Reply, pin, and heart Comments - it is easy and fun, and can incentive fans to engage, too. Don't forget to explore some of our great tools you can use to keep your community safe. 

Use Stories to show current and potential fans what you’re up to between uploads. On average, creators who have an active Story can accelerate their weekly new subscriber count significantly! 

No time to film and edit videos? Use Community Posts to stay connected by sharing pictures or polling fans on what they want to see next. 

Give fans VIP access with Channel Memberships. Exclusive perks in exchange for a monthly fee? Sounds like a win-win. 

Go off-script with YouTube Live! Fans can show love with colorful Super Chats and Super Stickers and help grow your YouTube Partner earnings potential.

We’re celebrating the amazing bond between YouTube Partner creators like you and your fans. Take a moment to send your YouTube Creator community great gratitude by posting #LoveNotes on social today! 

YouTube Content Creator Newsletter Tips

Wondering how YouTube "recommended for you" videos work? Trying to reach new YouTube viewers? This month we’re answering some of your top questions to help you get the most out of your channel. What kind of videos does the algorithm like most? Believe it or not, our algorithm doesn’t have an opinion about the content you make. It actually focuses on what your viewers might enjoy based on things like videos they’ve watched, likes and dislikes, and feedback. So instead of catering to the algorithm, concentrate on your fans. If you do, the algorithm will follow. 

How can I reach new viewers? Make YouTube Analytics your best friend. It can help you find patterns from your top-performing videos, track new and returning viewers, and allows you to view realtime subscriber counts and growth over time. This info can help you focus on the content your fans want to see. VISIT CREATOR ACADEMY 

How to Update Your Language Preference: Did you know that you can adjust your email language settings? 

To get updates in your preferred language on YouTube, try the following: Sign in > Settings > Notifications > Email language

The tools to elevate your YouTube Partner channel are at your fingertips! Many video content creators share their experiences daily to inspire us with their creativity and drive. Just keep watching!

Google Growth - Get Going

When it comes to tech companies making waves, Google and its affiliated companies are constantly making big changes. With such an industry impact, you need to know the newest updates. Keep up with the latest Google company updates to make sure that your business stays current in 2022 and 2023.

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