In the world of internet marketing there have been some bugs in the Google Places system lately which have been recently addressed by Google. Chiefly, these have all had something to do with the review system. One of the primary problems that this bug had caused was that users who wished to remain anonymous were not being allowed to write a review. However, this appears to have been fixed as a “publish” button has reemerged and appears to be working for those using a nickname.

As an SEO firm we know that when anonymous user nick names first came on the scene, it was not possible to view their review histories. This seems to have been fixed, as at least some users that are using anonymous nicknames can now have their history viewed. If anonymous users do not have a nickname though, it appears that their history can still not be viewed.

If an anonymous reviewer leaves a review, it does not display on the Places page. Instead, it is only visible in their review history. This doesn’t appear to happen for all users, but only for some. Google does appear to be making strides towards working all the kinds out of their Review system within the Places program, but there also appears to be work left to be done in this regard.

There are other changes afoot at Google as they try to as always to improve their services. Reports are stating that the telephone method of verification for Google places is being phased out in favor of postcard only verification. It is unclear if this is a change for some users only, or if we can expect to see it implemented across the board.

There are a few other small news items. It appears that the problems that arose with TripAdvisor reviews are not quite finished yet. TripAdvisor had previously blocked their reviews from appearing in Google places, and may be doing so again. There was a link for some time at the bottom of Google Places pages that allowed for users to “Report a Problem” if something was not working properly. It appears that the button has vanished for the time being, although there is no indication as to whether or not this is a permanent or temporary change. Finally, some users seem to be seeing a new, or rather old, display in the search results. Some are seeing old style 7-pack displays, but there appears to be many different display methods that may activate based on the search done.

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