Misys stops the Meta tag Madness

Amateur Hour

A Misys subsidiary has been caught red-handed inserting the names of rival suppliers into its Web site Meta tags.

Key words included, until Friday March 30, in the meta tags of M-link, a site for independent financial advisers, the "trademarked names" of The Exchange, and DBS services Assuresoft and AssureWeb. M-link's amateurish attempt to divert traffic from competitors was uncovered by the Sunday Times.

DBS and The Exchange are consulting their lawyers, and Misys, a FTSE 100 company, is left with egg all over its face - and a potential legal bill of its own. In July last year, a precedent was set with the first fine (for £15,000) for trademark infringement using metatags.

The enthusiastic marketer or Web developer who thought up the Misys M-link Meta tag Madness could be in for some interesting career developments over the next few days.

And what was the point of it all? Every IFA in the UK has heard of Misys, a significant player in this sector, and just about every IFA will have heard of M-link. As if they needed to go to Google to find out where to get IFA services.

Meta tag Wags

Ignore the claims of search engine fixers: metatags have to be the most over-rated Internet marketing tool. We speak with some authority, as our meta tags are literally useless in drawing in people, and yet somehow, without spending a single penny on marketing, more than a million people a month make their way to The Register.

The best way to get people to come to your Web site is to get people to come to your Web site. Yes, this is recursive - but high search engine rankings, or distribution deals at grossly inflated prices with the likes of MSN or Yahoo!(in the US) will never match word of mouse. ®

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