I guess the bigger Google gets the more people will scrutinize them. Scott Miller’s post reminded me of Matt Roche’s post about the Google ToS, which appears to leave the door open for all kinds of mischief.
One instance where Scott Miller’s writing can be seen to be misleading is in this paragraph: “They have code on many, many, MANY websites that they are using to spy on us, and log every move we make. In fact their analytics program is reportedly used on 400,000 sites now.” Err, Google’s analytics program uses 1st party cookies.
I think as long as we can surf anonymously we’re ok. And that should include not requiring shoppers to “sign in” first when placing orders. Greater privacy for shoppers and higher conversion rate for e-commerce merchants can go hand in hand.
In my opinion this highlights a great feature of the Yahoo! Store platform. Unlike other e-commerce platforms out there, Yahoo! allows shoppers to essentially remain anonymous right up until the transaction goes through. Requiring registration is an obstacle to conversion.