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Google Toolbar - A bad idea
Seeing the pagerank in the google toolbar is a big mistake
Assadic

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 4:51 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

I would like to outline a mistake (in my opinion) that is done by Google.

I'm the webmaster of a website with a big pagerank. I'm often asked by other websites that want to have a link on my pages. Sometimes, those websites do not have the same language...

Before, links were made for the users and now they are here for google.

I think that this situation is due to the view of the pagerank in the google toolbar. With this tool, webmasters are only focused on their pagerank (even if the view is not precise).

I propose (do not shoot me) the end of the pagerank in the googlebar to reduce the crazy interest for this.

I would like your opinion about that. What is the interest of viewing the pagerank in the googlebar unless destroying google's algo.

 

RawAlex

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 4:59 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

I think the original intention of the toolbar isn't to help webmasters link their sites, but rather to give the general surfing public a way to telling a "good" site from a "not so good" site... hence the green color... the more green, the more of a go it is.

The use of the toolbar to create PR trades is an unwanted side effect which corrupts over time the process of assigning PR. Thankfully, the SERPs are not totally dependant on PR - and that is what keep it from being a real pain.

Alex

dmorison

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 4:59 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Assadic - I'm with you on that opinion - and for the same reasons you give.

I questioned the logic of Pagerank being displayed on the toolbar in a recent thread and got no reply.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:05 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

As members have pointed out in other message threads on Webmaster World, there are two good reasons for not removing the PageRank indicator from the Google toolbar:

1) Being able to identify penalized or "white bar" sites with a PR0 may help Webmasters avoid linking to what Google calls "bad neighborhoods."

2) Even without the PR indicator in the Google toolbar, competent SEOs would be able to figure out which sites are valuable in terms of inbound links (although it's true that not having the PR indicator might make their work a little harder).

I don't think it's a big deal either way. Larry Page and Sergey Brin let the PageRank cat out of the bag years ago when they published "The Anatomy of a Large-Scale Hypertextual Web Search Engine":

[www-db.stanford.edu...]

roundabout

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:09 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>> there are two good reasons for not removing the PageRank indicator from the Google toolbar..

These reasons are clearly outweighed by the nonsense caused by the toolbar. The toolbar must go.

dmorison

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:10 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)


1) Being able to identify penalized or "white bar" sites with a PR0 may help Webmasters avoid linking to what Google calls "bad neighborhoods."

You have just summed up what is going wrong with the web as a result of Google providing Pagerank information.

Whether you link to a site or not should be your decision, not Google's. You are letting Google influence your site - and that is bad. If you think a link to Site X is in the best interests of your visitors then you should make that link, regardless of what Google thinks of the destination.

Critter

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:13 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

That's bull...

If you see the site has a PR0 what's stopping you from linking to it?

Hint: Think before post.

Peter

dmorison

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:14 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Critter -

What's bull? - can you quote...

Thanks!

rfgdxm1

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:18 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>You have just summed up what is going wrong with the web as a result of Google providing Pagerank information.

Bzzzzzt. Wrong. If Google didn't supply PageRank information, yet penalized webmasters for unknowingly linking to a website penalized with a PR0, d'ya think the webmaster who got booted from Google for linking into a bad neighborhood he couldn't identify would agree? If there is a flaw, it isn't the toolbar, but that Google penalizes based on what sites you link to.

RawAlex

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:23 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Right now, penalizing because you link to a bad neighborhood is a real weird deal - it means that you have to review every outbound link every week to make sure that one of your link partner's hasn't gone to 0. Worse yet, as I mentioned in another thread, I recently had an older and established site go to 0. Nothing had changed on the site, yet suddenly it is "worthless" as far as Google is concerned. Now I have to review every outbound link of any sort everyone on the site looking for the reason why.

My site didn't change, someone else's did, and I suffer as a result?

That is where PR / link relevance becomes a pain... :-(

Alex

kawikadave

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:26 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Ummm... can we put our thinking caps on for a minute?

What would stop Google from putting an indication in the toolbar if a site has been penalized (maybe a skull and crossbones :>), but not place the PR rankings of sites that aren't penalized.

That way sites would know whether or not they are penalized and people considering a link could avoid said sites.

The rest of us would have to focus more on judging sites more on their merits/potential inbound traffic, instead of PR value.

dmorison

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:28 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

If there is a flaw, it isn't the toolbar, but that Google penalizes based on what sites you link to.

Google has every right to penalize you based on what sites you link to. That is their prerogative. What it should not do is influence your decision on what sites you link to - which is your prerogative - but you are making it Google's.

It is Google that has messed up with this, i'm not blaming you or any other webmaster that makes decisions based on another sites Pagerank - and in the circumstances given that so much is known about Google's algo I don't really blame you.

RawAlex

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:32 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Dave, I would actually love it if you could use a thing like the "highlight" tool to have google show you links to "bad neighborhoods"... if they really want people to link only to good sites, why not tell us which ones aren't any good?

Then again, they don't seem inclined to explain the difference between a grey bar on a new site, a grey bar on an old site, a PR0 site has no links and a PR0 "bad site"...

Then again, that would just be google telling us where to link and where not to link...

Alex

rfgdxm1

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:35 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>My site didn't change, someone else's did, and I suffer as a result?

"Googlenoia strikes deep.
Into your life it will creep.
It starts when you're always afraid.
Make a bad link, Google takes your PageRank away"

Webmasters must live in a constant state of fear and dread that something they do somehow, someway incurs the the displeasure of Google, they are given the Google Death Penalty, and the domain name must be discarded. When it comes to linking to other sites be afraid. Be VERY afraid.

Assadic

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:40 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>I think the original intention of the toolbar isn't to help webmasters link their sites, but rather to give the general surfing public a way to telling a "good" site from a "not so good" site... hence the green color... the more green, the more of a go it is.

So you think that the end user is using pagerank before looking the page?

"PR7, it must be very interesting to read"

The end user doesn't know what pagerank is and a lot of users have the toolbar without the option. The pagerank in the googlebar is a great marketing idea for webmasters in my opinion.

Google must restore links by interest and not links for pagerank.

rfgdxm1

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:51 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>"PR7, it must be very interesting to read"

Yep. It's the Google seal of approval. Last month my main site dropped from a PR6 to a measley PR5. I think it may have had to do with Google somehow missing the ODP backlink to that site. PR5 isn't bottom of the barrel, however it is disappointing people who surf to it get told by Google "this site is mediocre".

doc_z

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 5:51 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hi Assadic, welcome to WebmasterWorld!

I completely agree with you.
(There are a number of threads about this topic, e.g. this one [webmasterworld.com].)

roundabout

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 6:19 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

rfgdxm1 - you raise the linking to bad neighborhood issue to defend the existence of the toolbar. You may be technically correct, but I think it's pretty clear that Google would be better off by doing away with both of these items.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 6:36 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

RawAlex wrote:

Right now, penalizing because you link to a bad neighborhood is a real weird deal - it means that you have to review every outbound link every week to make sure that one of your link partner's hasn't gone to 0.

No, it doesn't. You might get into trouble if you had a great many links to PR0 sites, which could be the case if you were crosslinking your own penalized spam sites or if you belonged to an organized linking scheme. But that's a whole different scenario from linking inadvertently to a PR0 site.

rfgdxm1

WebmasterWorld Senior Member rfgdxm1 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 6:51 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>rfgdxm1 - you raise the linking to bad neighborhood issue to defend the existence of the toolbar. You may be technically correct, but I think it's pretty clear that Google would be better off by doing away with both of these items.

If Google quit penalizing for linking to PR0 sites, I'd agree that the argument for getting rid of the toolbar PR display is pretty strong. However, Google is so dominant now, without the toolbar I'd sure as hell want to avoid linking to other sites. The toolbar helps keep Googlenoia to a minimum.

roundabout

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 7:20 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

if most of us agree that the toolbar was a bad idea, we have to assume that Google, smart as they are, also understands this. The question then becomes: why do they keep it around? what benefit could they be getting out of the toolbar that outweighs the problems it causes?

Brad

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 7:40 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>>why do they keep it around?

Because Google does not admit when they are wrong.

Google may indeed have a "right" to penalize for linking to a PR0 site. However that does not mean that it is a good idea for them to do it, or that they are even correct in doing it. There is a difference.

mcavic

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 7:43 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

>> what benefit could they be getting out of the toolbar that outweighs the problems it causes?

Well, it allows them to track the urls that people visit, in the order that they visit them. I don't know if Google uses this data or not, but it would have to be quite useful for analyzing user behavior.

born2drv

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 9:01 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Well if you eliminate the pagerank from the toolbar, you'd have to do it for the directory too. And that's the main reason why I even use the directory, it gives me a way of knowing which are the authoritative sites in that category. Otherwise how will they sort it, alphabetically? Then it's just another DMOZ, and I have to click on all sites in the category to find out who's the "best" rather than say, the top 5.

Chris_R

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 9:51 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

1) Google is made for users NOT WEBMASTERS
2) The Toolbar is off by default
3) It is a measurement. Like every other measurement - people are going to complain.

Most people that complain about SAT scores - have poor sat scores.

I could "misuse" a speedometer.

Just because someone doesn't like something - doesn't mean it should be taken away from those that do.

Cry and whine about this and that - if it wasn't the toolbar - people would just use number of links as an example and whine about losing links more than they already do or not want to link to bobs house of widgets as he only has nine backlinks or - well tons of other things.

The toolbar is a great marketing tool for google. Do you think they put that toolbar there so you could measure your site? Or so that a user could? Well sort of - but more to give people an idea into how google works - and related to the web itself. Some of you may not remember this - but when google started they gave TWO SCORES - next to every listing - a PR Score and IR score.

Oh my - if they did that today you would have a google PR forum - a Google IR forum - people complaining their IR is different for different terms while their PR stays the same and I can't even imagine.

PR is a simple way to carry on with their relative openess (no one has EVER been as open as google) and with this more techie come in and they get more people to come in and so on.

It is part of the google master plan. You might as well ask movie critics to stop giving movies star ratings.

Your not supposed to take PR personally.

If google gets rid of the toolbar - I will go on hunger strike :)

jomaxx

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jomaxx us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 9:56 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Interesting that people feel they can lecture Google on what the company "must" do.

mrguy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 10:17 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

assadic-
-I would like to outline a mistake (in my opinion) that is done by Google.-

I have the solution for you.

Use the uninstall feature on the toolbar and then you no longer have to worry about it.

sirlion

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 10:20 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

I use the toolbar as a guide not as a bible. Just because a site has a good PR now doesn't mean it can't be a PR0 next update. I always check the source of a potential linking partner for any hidden abuses. I have yet to find a clean site that began cheating at a later point in time. I have also linked to some "clean" PR0 sites without any apparent penalties and those PR0's later went on to achieve some respectable PR. Just my 2 cents.

albert

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 10:26 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Ranting about Toolbar is quite similar to ranting about Google SERP listíngs: HOW come ... now #57, before 7, I've done nothing.

Sorry, but they try (hard) to improve their SE.

Can't misjudge this 'stupid'.

Your not supposed to take PR personally.

Google is made for users NOT WEBMASTERS

Yup.

If you don't like it: uninstall toolbar, don't use Google. Just ignore it :)

loanuniverse

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 12250 posted 10:29 pm on Apr 26, 2003 (gmt 0)

Interesting that people feel they can lecture Google on what the company "must" do.

Agree 100%... The only one that control the links that go in your site is yourself. Google has the power only because you choose to relinquish it. Do not like the toolbar... You can always remove it. Want to link to a PR0 page, go ahead no one is going to stop you. However, understand that Google can also do as it pleases.

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