When you have the internet at your fingertips, why would you ever think of investing in an archaic television commercial (well archaic only because the internet is so dynamic)? The above question isn’t even a question for some who are seeking to close the gap in the searchosphere, like Yahoo! and Ask.com. When your competition is Google, you don’t ask questions, you just do it.

I was surprised when a t.v. ad for Yahoo! a few days ago. Once I heard the YA-HOO-oooo jingle I thought it sounded familiar. From what I remember they were pumping out commercials a few years ago and then mysteriously stopped. The same goes for Ask.com. They once championed the “Jeeves” butler character but have now killed him in favor of “The Algorithm” slogan, which probably leaves a few people scratching their heads.

Yahoo! has even taken their ads a step further by donating something like 10 hybrid cars (with their name stickered all over them) to New York City to be used as taxis. So, now will Yahoo! be synonymous with clean air?

What is it that has these companies stepping up and marketing their search engines on television, again? I may have found a small connection.

If you’ve been keeping up with Google lately, here’s a record of their most recent sneaky activities:

• Google Maps adds Street View
• Google search adds face filter to refine searches only for people rather than other nouns or adjectives (i.e. Paris Hilton results instead of Paris, France)
• Google acquire GreenBorder security company
• Google buys DoubleClick
• YouTube tests a new and improved video player
• Google in partnership talks with Daum
• Google acquires ClimateSaverPC
• Google Calendar goes mobile
• Google Launches ‘Cross-Language Information Retrieval (CLIR)’
• Google is buying FeedBurner
• Dell gets a customized search page from partner Google

I know there are more than that, but that’s just a few from the past couple weeks! Google has been pretty busy and they’ve also been acquiring land in rural parts of states like Oregon and South Carolina, building enormous computing facilities.

My guess is as good as any, but it seems like Google is up to something…..BIG. Yahoo! and Ask.com are trying to get their names out there any way possible before this Google dam breaks and all the water comes crashing down on them.

Fortunately for Google, they’ll never have to waste money on a television ad. All the lawsuits, acquisitions, new tools and billions of revenue dollars have earned them enough press for a lifetime.