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October 25, 2006 | South Carolina Headlines


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 :: Jonathan Pait
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We've been Googled!
Jonathan Pait
November 18, 2003

If you donít know about Google News yet, I hope you wonít learn about it. If you do, you might never visit The Common Voice again! In many ways it probably is a more powerful tool than LexisNexis when it comes to tracking daily news items on a particular topic. Iím sure many of the headlines that find their way onto The Common Voice were found on this incredible news gathering site.

Well, if you canít beat them, you join them. Iím happy to say that columns that appear on The Common Voice are being listed among the stories compiled by Google News. Go and do a search on "The Common Voice" and you will see Andy Arnoldís column, "Crime and PunishmentÖand Talk Radio." Actually, by the time you read this, you may find this as the latest listed column.

Do a search on the topic of John Hinckley and youíll also find Andyís article along with articles from the Washington Times, Washington Post and more national news and commentary sources. When people are searching for news on the topics of the day, columnists for The Common Voice can know that their opinions are being listed along with the heavies.

I submitted The Common Voice to Google News several weeks ago. The process was very simple and anyone with a Web site may submit them. The Google team does review the sites submitted and not all are accepted. However, I doubt it is very hard to be listed there. So, Iím not trying to make The Common Voice out to be some unique news sites among others. Iím just excited that weíre finally showing up!

The impact of Google on the Internet cannot be over emphasized. Most of us donít even realize how powerful a tool it is. If you are like me, you just go and type something in and sort through what you find. There are much better ways to search and Google will educate you how best to use the search mechanism.

One process I heard of recently is a good one to keep in mind. NETS is a good way to remember the steps that will help you find that "perfect page." You can learn more about it at the following link:

In short you want to: 1. Start Narrow, 2. Find Exact phrases, 3. Trim back the URL and 4. Look for Similar pages. Often you will find that the most helpful information is not found in your first response. But by keying off that information you can open a world of possibilities.

One more thing about Google that I found to be quite helpful (besides the Google search bar that I have attached to ALL of my browsers). If you go to the Google homepage, you can click on preferences. Scroll down about half way until you find the SafeSearch filtering option. There you can set the level of filtering you wish to have. You can remove explicit images and text from your searches. The preferences default at blocking explicit images only.

Well, enough Google stuff. It will be interesting to see how things progress at the young company. It seems that the monolithic Microsoft chases anything that begins to find success. Perhaps Google will buck that trend. Hereís hoping.

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Speaking of which...the article I wrote about my trip to Ole Miss ("South of the Blues")that included a mention of a 12 year old blues performer...Gooch was her last name and she was fantastic. Any . . .

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