Blogwatch: Feb. 27, 2006

To promote its search engine, MSN announced a "Search and Win" contest, hoping to entice users with the prospect of a prize in every search. Inspired geeks like OILMAN cracked the source code to learn that the contest works by linking specific terms to prizes--a "Starbucks locations" search might yield a Starbucks gift card; he posted all 1,165 terms. MAKE YOU GO HMM dubbed the contest "Sit and Spin," scolding, "This is not how to get more people to use your search." Determined, THREADWATCH.ORG wrote a program that sent a keyword through the system 4,122 times. The booty: a Home Depot...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now

Subscribe
Subscribe

Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on TIME.com

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!