Social search engine launches user rewards scheme
Combining the results of algorithmic and human powered searches, a new social search engine called Scour.com has been launched to encourage and reward consumers to vote and comment on search results called up from Google, Yahoo! and MSN.
Scour was designed to build a community of regular search engine users, and to allow its members to communicate and discover more relevant search results through user feedback, friend networks, and social groups, while still giving them control over the various parameters needed for accurate search results based on their own preferences.
Rewarding the human element The idea is simple. Human members of the social search engine can evaluate, vote on, and comment on the results they receive from the usual major search engines. Those votes and comments are then available to others in the Scour.com community to help them decide which results are likely to be most useful or trustworthy.
"Scour gives people a different way to search by fusing the best search results from the web with a way to benefit from the previous work and feedback of millions of other searchers," explained Daniel Yomtobian, president and CEO for Scour.com.
Burning points Scour differentiates itself from other social search, rating and community web sites in that it allows its users vote and comment on search results, provides absolute privacy control, gives weight to each user's preferred search engines, and allows members to redeem their search points for Visa gift cards.
Scour works by extracting search results from the top three search engines (Google, Yahoo! and MSN), and then adds data from community user feedback to complete the picture. After enough votes are received about any given search result (i.e. a web site or link), that search result will either rise or fall in ranking accordingly.
Earning points Members can earn up to 4 points per search through a combination of actions, including:
- Searching: 1 point;
- Voting: 2 points;
- Commenting: 3 points;
- Friend referral: 25% of each friend's points.
In a scenario cited by Scour.com, an average of 4.5 searches per day could translate into rewards worth as much as US$25 per year. And, when adding in the value of friend referrals with an average of 3 searches per day for each friend, 25 friends who sign up and use Scour.com regularly could earn the original member up to an additional US$100 or more each year.
"We're not trying to provide users with an alternative income, but the Scour points programme is a good way for us to reward users for helping to build up the community, to refine search results beyond the ordinary algorithms," concluded Yomtobian. Scour.com is owned and operated by ABCSearch, a part of Internext Media Corporation.