ComScore has reported this week that both Yahoo and Microsoft "gained" share in the U.S. search market for May, although both companies appear to be using gimmicks to distort the numbers in their favor.

By the numbers, Google remained the clear leader but share fell from 64.4 percent in April to 63.7 percent in May. Yahoo gained share, from 17.7 percent to 18.3 percent. Microsoft's Bing jumped to 12.1 percent, from 11.8. AOL fell marginally from 2.4 percent to 2.3.

BusinessInsider reports, however, that both companies are "gaming" the stats, by placing thousands of links on their respective homepages that are search queries pretending to be content.

Additionally, the companies have been creating image slideshows as search engines, as well, in an effort to get additional clicks.

Analyst Ben Schachter of Broadpoint Amtech says without the tricks, real search traffic numbers would have shown Yahoo falling to 16.6 percent, Microsoft holding flat at 10.8 percent and Google gaining to 66.4 percent.

Following the revelations, comScore says it will change the way it accounts for share, so the industry does not consider their work worthless.


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