Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Confirmed: Yahoo! does get screwed by a regex bug

[Update: Compete has confirmed that it was a bug.]
[Context: My previous post]
I had earlier suspected that Yahoo! Searches are severely undercounted by Compete because of a regex bug. Now, my suspicion has been confirmed. Danny Sullivan of the SearchEngineLand has confirmed that those regexes were indeed given by Compete.

By some estimates, refinement queries constitute over 70%? of the total queries. Is Compete, a widely quoted stats provider, undercounting Yahoo! Searches by 70%?OK, in a hurry, I might've dramatised the impact, but some significant chunk of searches are undercounted. Doesn't it amount to a huuuuuuuuge difference to Yahoo!'s market valuation?Well, I hear that other Stats are more widely quoted than Compete.

And when Larry Wall wondered whether a Perl bug could cause the next Wall Street crash, he must have been only half-joking!

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