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EcommerceBytes-NewsFlash, Number 1809 - June 11, 2008 - ISSN 1539-5065    2 of 4

Google Fixes Anti-PayPal Bug

By Ina Steiner
June 11, 2008

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Developer Petko D. Petkov noticed the Google App Engine was blocking requests to PayPal and posted the problem on the Google Groups forum (http://tinyurl.com/4t5t98). There was speculation the block was deliberate, given past tensions between the two companies over their competing online payment services (eBay prohibits its sellers from accepting Google Checkout). But a Google representative posting on the forum said it was a bug:

Thanks for the report! This is a bug, and we have located the problem. There was an error in our anti-phishing protections that was blocking some specific URL domains from being fetched using the URLFetch service. This was an oversight on our part, and these specific domain restrictions will be removed in the next few days.

That didn't stop TechCrunch from speculating about it even after the problem was called resolved by Google: "Most developers who have commented on this so far strongly believe that this was a deliberate block by Google."


About the author:

Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.

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