homepage Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 54.166.113.249
register, free tools, login, search, pro membership, help, library, announcements, recent posts, open posts,
Become a Pro Member
Home / Forums Index / Google / Google SEO News and Discussion
Forum Library, Charter, Moderators: Robert Charlton & aakk9999 & brotherhood of lan & goodroi

Google SEO News and Discussion Forum

This 190 message thread spans 7 pages: < < 190 ( 1 2 3 [4] 5 6 7 > >     
Today's Webmaster & Their Relationship with Google
Understanding Where We Are & Where We are Going
The Shower Scene

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 7:55 pm on May 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

I'm convinced that today's webmaster is under the Google mindshare spell. Most don't even realize it.

  • Google's Guidelines do not define Ethical SEO
    Many webmasters equate Google's guidelines with "ethical seo." Google's guidelines represent rules that are convenient for Google. Ethics has nothing to do with it. Internet ethics define how you interact with other webmasters and websites, whether you choose to link to a partner with a real link or not, sabotage, and other questions of right and wrong that sometimes are so subjective they can have a thousand right answers. Google's Guidelines are not part of the ethical equation. It's time webmasters corrected their lazy habit of referring to ethics and Google's Guidelines as if they were one and the same.

  • Google has gone beyond user mindshare
    In many ways Google has acquired webmaster mindshare. How else to explain a post by a member who details his aggressive site promotion efforts then asks if it's ethical? Google literally has webmasters brainwashed into thinking that their guidelines defines ethics. When a webmaster as a matter of course refers to violating Google's guidelines as pertaining to ethics, what else can you do but call it what it is: a brainwash.

  • The Google Webmaster Spell
    Today's webmasters have become so under the Google spell that all their energy is focused on Google. The mindshare takeover is so complete they even think the Google Directory is an entity in itself.

    [webmasterworld.com...]

    I have my one site listed in google directory and the link information is wrong there. Could anyone tell me how we can contact the editors and change my link information for my website link in google directory....

  • Google Defines Webmaster Dialogue and Thinking
    Today's webmaster so intellectually lazy they actually believe that the best information is going to come from a heavily moderated Google Groups forum. Today's webmaster confuses helpful information with what is essentially Kool-Aid that is being posted on Matt Cutts blog.

    Do you actually believe the dialogue on a Google Group or a Matt Cutts blog is moderated for anything other than to make webmasters conform to Google's corporate will? On WebmasterWorld, and other forums like DP, SEW, TW, and many others, we are free to discuss every aspect of search marketing. On Matt Cutts blog and the official Google forums you are not. Google controls the dialogue and the outcomes of the discussions. Google and Matt Cutts are not concerned with helping you rank better. They are concerned about the integrity of their algorithm, and making webmasters unpaid partners in protecting Google's algorithm through snitch networks and data mining enterprises like Webmaster Central.

  • Thank you for smoking, have some more kool aid.
    Todays webmaster is so compliant, complacent, and utterly sheep-like they are willingly surrendering highly personal data to Google without understanding how it ultimately benefits Google far more than it benefits them. The toolbar was pretty invasive, but webmaster central is a shameless data grab. Old ladies resist when someone snatches their purse. Todays webmaster lacks the will to resist and the intellect to understand what Google is doing to them. Do you understand the irony of a search for "Webmaster Central [google.com]" leading to several web pages that benefits Google instead of websites that benefit webmasters?

  • Google is taking over and moderating the webmaster discussion
    Google endeavours to control the discussion of Google by limiting it to their own network of blogs and discussion forums. How else to explain the absence of AdSense advisor, GoogleGuy, Adam Lasnik, and AdWords Advisor? ASA didn't even bother to announce the last AdSense weekend update. GoogleGuy is absent on Webmaster Forums except to defend Google at TW or promoting their snitch programs.

    When was the last time GoogleGuy or the other representatives did something on the webmaster forums to help or answer questions? Where have they gone? I will tell you where they are. They are hijacking our dialogue and moderating it on the official Matt Cutts blog and their other Kool-Aid forums. I believe it's a conscious effort to control what you think and gain webmaster mindshare for the benefit of Google.

    Google is the Internet
    Am I the only one who feels it's extraordinary how Google is becoming the arbiter of web ethics, coding practices, and the webmaster dialogue? Do webmasters really want an Internet that is defined and dicated according to what is good for Google?

[edited by: The_Shower_Scene at 8:11 pm (utc) on May 8, 2007]

 

mattg3

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 6:00 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

And why do people think Google _isn't_ cross-analysing Adwords, Toolbar and Search data? If any other company on the planet had that kind of info about your sites and those you visit, would you be as content about it?

I think it's been openly admitted that they use their data to increase profits. The open question is do the RANK pages according to adsense adwords usage. Here it depends if they see the marketing gain to be seen as holy spam fighters more worth as to adjust dynamic to the market.

callivert

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 6:09 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Come on, stop getting offended because they have two faces, yes they have. One for sheep and one for wolves.
They're afraid of wolves.

Exactly.
Google can't give feedback about their algorithm for a very good reason: search engine spammers. If you are frustrated that you don't know more about rankings, then maybe you don't really understand just how easy it is to manipulate results when you know the algorithm.
Look at two examples from parts of the algorithm that are public knowledge: links (ie pagerank) and anchor text. Once pagerank was known, a vast industry devoted to link buying, selling, swapping and trading sprung up virtually overnight and continues to this day.
Once the anchor text rule was known, googlebombing started.
And you wonder why they won't tell us more.

Hence, after a certain point, all they can say is "just go away, stop pestering us, and build good websites." And to a certain extent this is good advice. After all, the specifics of the algorithm change, but one thing that doesnt change is that they are trying to tell the difference between good websites and bad websites.

Even without total knowledge, someone with enough resources could totally reverse engineer the google algorithm- but the resources required for such total information are out of the range of even the biggest spammers (I believe).

If there is a complete victory of spammers over google, then the value of their search engine will either be destroyed or drastically reduced. Most people commenting here will also be losers: the people gaining the most traffic will be spammers.

A problem for google is that, to an extent, everyone is search engine spamming. It's too tempting. Every time you tweak your anchor text, or restructure your site to get the "right" pages acquire the most pagerank, or do anything to help you do better in the results, you're trying to make your site more attractive to the googlebot.

I agree with the OP. Webmasters should not be infatuated with google. We're talking about business here, not boy scout clubs.
But Google are an amazing organization. At this point, entering into a business partnership with them is for many (including me) a good idea. But a business partnership is not a friendship, nor a club membership.
Having a google account doesn't make you a member of the tribe. The only members are shareholders.

callivert

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 6:20 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

This is a pipe-smoking comment. If MSN and Yahoo bring 5% of your traffic, G brings 95%, and if G disappears tomorrow, you will loose 95% of SE traffic. How is THAT for "I could give ***".

I think a better wording would have been "and if G bans you tomorrow, you will lose 95% of SE traffic."

atlrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 6:26 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

I like your argument about everyone else doing it so that makes it right though. Great logic, also a sound foundation for building a set of ethics. Everyone doing it=OK to do it. Gotcha.

Yes, if this has not changed since 1993 - it means that it's fine. Many things have changed since 1993, but not how the search engines get their listings. Sorry, but in any kind of deomcratic society the majority rules. You are still entitled to your opinion though.

But at least we agree that Google is scraping and republishing entire sites without permission.

No, we do not agree. This is where the difference comes - many forget that in the PUBLIC DOMAIN if it's not illegal - it's legal. If the content is not made "disallow" with robots.txt - that means that it's "allow". Your website is on the Internet - that's public domain, and it's your responsibility to set the rules. Google bot will not visit your company's intranet uninvited, since it's closed "private domain" network. Think about that for a minute, before bashing.

Is that a suggestion to Webmasters to ride it out untill there's some other magically "good" search engine that will defeat Google? Great, I thought we were discussing something more constructive.

At least I don't suggest that. I suggest you:

a.) create a website around your targeted audience, not around a search engine.
b.) when you creating websites keep in mind that just like any other business, they will need investments. Search engines are not the only source of traffic, I have a bag full of Alexa 10,000's with no search engine presence at all.

Google owns the internet, and Adsense is now your wage. A wage paid by a master with whom you have no contract of employment.

Let's not forget that not all of us ar in the Adsense business - some of us have websites which actually offer a service and/or a product, or sell advertisements to related websites.

I think a better wording would have been "and if G bans you tomorrow, you will lose 95% of SE traffic."

Yes, I will loose 95% of my search engine traffic. Which means I will loose nothing - as I have not paid a dime for that traffic.

netmeg

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 6:38 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

I don't consider that I have a relationship with Google (except maybe for AdWords) either - and I webmaster somewhere around a hundred, hundred twenty five sites.

I don't have time to worry too much about what Google thinks or does; I certainly can't control or influence any part of it. Whether or not they have "ethics" is entirely moot to me.

If Google goes away tomorrow, I still have MSN, Yahoo, PPC ads, but more importantly catalogs, flyers, email, print advertising, newsletters, and all kinds of other marketing tools that I've been using all along.

I care about what works, for me and for my customers. If Google suggests we do thus and so in order to conform to their guidelines for being indexed and ranking, and it's not too costly, to myself, my clients or the users, then I'll do it. If I have to find something else that works, then I'll do that too.

If that means I'm drinking the corporate Kool Aid, well, guess what - I don't have time to worry about that either.

buckworks

WebmasterWorld Administrator buckworks us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 6:45 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Your website is on the Internet - that's public domain,

That statement reflects a complete misunderstanding of what "public domain" means.

celgins

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 7:04 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Your website is on the Internet - that's public domain,

That statement reflects a complete misunderstanding of what "public domain" means.

You beat me to it buckworks.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 7:08 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

I think that unless we step up and provide Our own gidelines to Ethical use of webmaster content by Search Engines, every next wannabe Search Engine will be following exactly the same path

1) Who's "we"?

2) Robots.txt is a great way to show Google (or any other legitimate search engine) who's boss.

That statement reflects a complete misunderstanding of what "public domain" means.

True, "public domain" means something else entirely, but the poster makes a good point: If something is published in the open, for all the world to see, it's fair game for a directory or index. The argument that "Google is crawling and indexing my pages without permission" is simply wrong.

[edited by: europeforvisitors at 7:38 pm (utc) on May 9, 2007]

atlrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 7:25 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

That statement reflects a complete misunderstanding of what "public domain" means.

I'll let the owner of the Internet know ;)
The Internet itself is a part of the public domain.
By this I don't mean that it's the Wild West, but the rule - "if it's not illegal - it's legal", does apply.

It's your responsibility to take your own content out of the public domain - through copyright for example, or through a robots.txt

Either way, you have plenty of tools to stop Google - it does honor robots.txt

Simple example - open any book from your shelfs and see if the publisher "assumes" that his book should not be re-published without authorisation, or if the very first page is filled with copyrights and trademarks. It is the publisher's responsibility to indicate that the book should not be re-written and it's your responsibility to indicate that your content should not be spidered.

Me - I'll take a gallon of that sweet, sweet (and free) Kool-Aid, thank you very much :)

wheel

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



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 7:34 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

You got it buckworks.

People like this think publishing something means it's public domain. That entire post is once again touting information that is provable as being completely factually wrong.

Public domain means either it's pre1923, the author's been dead 50 years, or some other technical criteria. Or you've declared the work explicitly to be public domain. If those criteria haven't been met (I stand to be corrected by webwork) then the assumption is that the work is copyright and PROTECTED. Not that it's public domain and that others can duplicate it and republish it elsewhere.

Which as I've stated, is exactly what Google does - scrape and republish. And also as I've stated, just because it's been going on since 1993 doesn't make it legal or right either, what an absolutely bizarre notion.

The only reason it's been allowed since 1993 or whatever other weird date you decide to pick is because knowledgeable webmasters allow it because it's profitable or because people don't know about it and so don't protect against it.

There's little that's more offensive to a webmaster that the assumption that you can come along and grab my content.

zett

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 7:43 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

many forget that in the PUBLIC DOMAIN if it's not illegal - it's legal. If the content is not made "disallow" with robots.txt - that means that it's "allow". Your website is on the Internet - that's public domain

Sorry, but this is plain wrong.

Why should the Internet be any different from any other medium? Try that approach with a full article from the New York Times, or try posting a full-length movie to a popular video sharing service. How long until the lawyers turn up? What are you going to say to them? "I saw it on TV, so I fgured it was in the Public Domain."

The copyright reality is this: You may not use content unless you have permission to do so. (Except within the very tight boundaries of "fair use".) Just because you can technically access a document (newspaper article, TV broadcast, HTML document, JPEG image) you can not store that content and use it commercially for your own purposes. This is not the current copyright law.

Google is actually scraping the content of websites. As some posters pointed out in this thread, this may be tolerated by most webmasters (because Google sends traffic), but legally they do not have permission. Full stop.

Also, I think once the spammers win the fight, Google can simply pack up their search engine and stuff it to some very dark place. Nobody will use their search any longer. Google know this, and they are afraid. Very afraid.

Shall we hope for the spammers to win? Then the whole discussion on Google would simply move on to the competition...

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 7:56 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Which as I've stated, is exactly what Google does - scrape and republish. And also as I've stated, just because it's been going on since 1993 doesn't make it legal or right either, what an absolutely bizarre notion.

The argument that Google "scrapes and republishes" applies only to the Google cache. Whether that constitutes fair use is in the eye of the beholder, but the fact that Google lets Web publishers opt out of caching--and out of crawling, for that matter--does tend to weaken the argument that Google is forcing Web publishers to share content with Google and its users. (Copyright law attempts to protect both private interests and the public good, and if a court might well rule that the public good is best served by a search engine's right to cache pages--just as a U.S. court ruled that Google Images thumbnails were legal.)

In any case, this isn't a thread about copyright; it's about Webmasters being "under the Google mindshare spell" and whether "webmasters really want an Internet that is defined and dicated according to what is good for Google." It seems to me that, if the goal of this thread is to teach Webmasters to be more independent, those who are unhappy with Google should be encouraging members to use robots.txt and other tools to escape the Google yoke instead of perpetuating their "relationships" with (and dependence on) Google.

atlrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 8:04 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Guys, forget about the public domain - completely off topic, we can argue about this until Yahoo becomes the best search engine... :)

The bottom line may be - if you leave your registered gun on the street and someone takes it and commits a crime with it - you will also be jailed for not taking care of it.

Same with Google, Yahoo, etc. - if you do not want your content visited by any publicly traded search engine - put the "disallow" in your robots.txt and move one. Fair, unfair, that's the way it is.

Convince enough people that making $$$ from your free visitors without paying a dime is to much of a hustle to go along with the algo - and you may change it.

I dont think Google owes me anything - Let's agree that I give them free content (which I dont) and they give me free visitors. That's plenty of sugar in my Kool Aid. I can break this agreement at any time, so can Google. When you design a website you do not go into a joint venture with Google and I don't see any sane reason why would Google tell you anything about their company business.

TheWhippinpost

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 8:10 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Let's not forget that not all of us ar in the Adsense business

And let's not forget that there's millions of sites out there that are not online businesses. So...

when you creating websites keep in mind that just like any other business, they will need investments. Search engines are not the only source of traffic

... only serves to illustrate how narrow-a-view of this whole discussion you understand.

This is not about you, or your business - It's about the bigger picture; it's about webmasters that don't know about robots.txt; it's about webmasters with sites wishing to provide a lifeline to others coping with dreadful news or circumstances; it's about the user who can't find that site because it suddenly disappeared, leaving the webmaster with many wasted years of devotion, because he doesn't know about rel nofollow, or the consequences of selling the odd text-link at the bottom of his pages after an approach via email.

So if you open your mind to the larger world-view, you'll see that yes, the SE's do scrape without permission and it is unethical given that the vast majority of newbies on the web know not of what a robots.txt file is, and so unwittingly expose their content for exploit and profit, which they may not even be aware is going on.

There was a big story in the UK last week about the very personal details of student doctors being found on Google... very real, very sensitive and in some cases, potentially very dangerous personal information. Now persuade them that scraping shouldn't be an opt-in agreement.

[edited by: TheWhippinpost at 8:12 pm (utc) on May 9, 2007]

wheel

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



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 8:27 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

>>>. Guys, forget about the public domain - completely off topic, we can argue about this until Yahoo becomes the best search engine... :)

I don't really want to forget about it. It's a HUGE issue with people, including me. You seem to think that it's OK to rip off my content for free, and that that's all public domain stuff. It's not. It's wrong.Let's not 'forget about the public domain'. The only thing we need to forget about is assuming my content is public domain. The only difference, technically or any other measure, between Google and scrapers is that Google sends me traffic so I allow it.

More pertinently, this is the very same attitude that gets to the root of this thread. people think it's OK for Google to republish my content, I have no idea why that is - every time I push on it, I get nonsense like 'let's just forget about it'. Sorry, that just says you know your wrong but won't admit it. Fine, we'll move on.

And that's a good example of the point of this thread. Some people won't even consider that Google (and sure, others) could be blatantly wrong in doing this, and other things. Google scrapes content and makes money from it. No thought that maybe, just maybe, this is wrong. Google publishes business guidelines. People start thinking that translates into ethics somehow. And then they translate that into the idea that people who don't give a darn about google's arbitrary 'guidelines' are somehow wrong, or unethical, or bad. The step after that is people who question this get accused of only questioning this trend because of sour grapes, like they got their site banned.

The next short step after that is when people like me start talking about drinking the Google Koolaid (*).

(*)Koolaid is a registered trademark of Koolaid inc. It's also a tasty and refreshing drink!

aleksl



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 8:52 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

I think that unless we step up and provide Our own gidelines to Ethical use of webmaster content by Search Engines, every next wannabe Search Engine will be following exactly the same path

1) Who's "we"?

We - the Webmaster community (not nesessarily WebmasterWorld - all webmasters).

I think it is about time to establish meaningful guidelines about misunderstood and abused topic of equating "public domain" with "whatever is published online".

I think it is about time to establish a Webmaster-driven guidelines for ALL for-profit entities that call themselves "Search Engine". We could start with something simple like a guarantee of a certan % of their traffic to be freely distributed. Like 75%.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 9:03 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

We - the Webmaster community (not nesessarily WebmasterWorld - all webmasters).

There is no "Webmaster community." There are many disparate Webmaster communities, each with different philosophies, different interests, and different definitions of good and bad or right and wrong. Need proof? Just read this thread or many of the other threads on this forum.

MrStitch

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 9:20 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

This topic seems to be quite heated, considering that Google doesn't really need a 'relationship', per say, with any of you.

atlrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 9:31 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

it's about webmasters that don't know about robots.txt;

I would not call anyone a webmaster if they don't know about robots.txt, but then again I call a webmaster a person who builds and/or maintains a website. I guess your definition of webmaster is a little broader than mine.
If you don't know the basics - you should stay out of it. I can call myself mechanic all day long, but if I don't know what a "starter" is - am I a mechanic?

You seem to think that it's OK to rip off my content for free, and that that's all public domain stuff.

I never said that. I said that if your content has no copyright - it's not protected.
And I don't think Google rips off your content. Let's not forget that unless you are running a website on the latest NASA discoveries - someone has written "your" content long before you re-wrote it. So don't get too testy about ripping off - everything new is a well forgotten old thing.

And again - it's simple as hell to make Google stop "ripping off" your content.

I am personally OK with Google "ripping off" my content, so my robots.txt is empty. My main website gets scraped about 10-15 times a day and I have never been banned by Google, or seen my content on other websites in the index. Most of the Google guidelines are also fine by me.

buckworks

WebmasterWorld Administrator buckworks us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 9:38 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

I said that if your content has no copyright - it's not protected.

Wrong again.

Even if a content creator does not specifically declare that a piece of work has been copyrighted, COPYRIGHT APPLIES BY DEFAULT.

atlrus

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 9:47 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Even if a content creator does not specifically declare that a piece of work has been copyrighted, COPYRIGHT APPLIES BY DEFAULT.

It all depends. Without an actual copyright registration it's a tough cookie to prove who wrote what and when.

But when it comes to Google (where we KNOW it's not Google's content) I don't see the cache as a "ripped off" content, not by a long shot, with all the small text showing above the cached page...

willybfriendly

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 10:34 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

I don't see the cache as a "ripped off" content, not by a long shot, with all the small text showing above the cached page...

So, it would be OK for me to rip your site(s) as long as I put my logo above it with a brief statement about the date I copied it? That is certainly good to know!

"This is Joe-Joe's page as it appeared when we ripped it off at 11:05 GMT on April 1 2007. While there may have been changes since then, this is a reasonable facsimile and works just fine in bringing money producng traffic to this site. To see the original site. please <a href="www.joe-joe.tld" rel="no-follow">click here</a>. Just to make it look like we have made enough changes to fall under the doctrine of fair use, we have highlighted a few words on the page for you."

Tedster speaks wisely when he points out the symbiotic natiure of the relationship that has evolved between webmasters and Google. Good to keep in mind that there is a difference betwen sycophonts and symbionts. Also good to keep in mind that even symbionts someties get eaten!

WBF

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 11:02 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

If you're bothered by the cache, why not simply take control and tell Google not to cache your pages?

You've got the power. Instead of playing the innocent or ignorant victim, tell The Man that you don't want to supply content for his friggin' cache no more.

TheWhippinpost

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 11:16 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

I would not call anyone a webmaster if they don't know about robots.txt, but then again I call a webmaster a person who builds and/or maintains a website. I guess your definition of webmaster is a little broader than mine.

You're splitting hairs on semantics, and avoiding the point.

If you don't know the basics - you should stay out of it.

Why?

... because of the search engines perchance? Welcome to this thread.

... and welcome to the internet, where anyone can setup a website.

[edited by: TheWhippinpost at 11:19 pm (utc) on May 9, 2007]

tedster

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



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 11:48 pm on May 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

It seems to me that in many ways, this thread does not actually discuss the points made by The_Shower_Scene, but instead many posts here merely illustrate the point. Google is the pole around which so many measure everything online.

There is so much emotion built-up around Google. It's as though before having the real discussion, everyone needs a chance to blow off a bit first - either defending or attacking Google. And then we wander off in various side discussions but seldom get back to the main points.

As I see it this is mostly a wake up call to webmasters. Know what you are doing and be responsible for your own site - be informed and do not buy just any pre-packaged answers, whether they're from Google, or from Danny Sullivan, or from WebmasterWorld.

We should always research things for ourselves, and remember that "building a website for our visitors" also means knowing, and to a significant degree mastering, the technology we are using. A good bit of what Google says to webmasters in their guidelines is just that basic: Know how your technology works!

And then to a decent degree, Google also shares some details about how their technology works, and they provide webmasters with reporting features. That's more than they need to do for their own business purposes. And naturally, some of what they say and do is very much for their own business purposes. Isn't that true for any business?

Some of the worst Kool-Aid that has been given out in the last decade was all this "anyone can build a successful web business with almost no effort" junk. Sometimes it seems to me that this same easy-peasy mindset was just moved over from "the web" and onto Google by many. And then those people get upset when that mindset doesn't work with Google, either.

[edited by: tedster at 2:42 am (utc) on May 10, 2007]

annej

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



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 1:09 am on May 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

No one bookmarked your site?

Google only brings about 30% of my visitors. But that is thousands visitors in a very short time. Of course I care how well my pages do on Google.

The main reason I want good rankings with Google is that Google brings new people to my site. Soon they are telling their friends, linking to my pages and mentioning my sites in their newsletters and message boards.

Given the huge number of our algorithms and the complexity of their interactions, it's statistically certain that on any given day, some Webmasters' sites are going to be "moved" to [-x] for various keywords.

When one of my most important pages disappears into -950 black hole information is lost to the public. In one case it included some exciting new research on the part of another historian. The amount of money the page makes with AdSense is insignificant. It's the way Google is unconcerned about the collateral damage in their quest to eliminate spam that gets to me. I understand that as complicated as it is now there will be temporary problems but in the old days it seemed like Google wanted to correct these glitches.

BTW I can tell Google exactly how they can get rid of most spam. Only allow quality sites to run AdSense. And hire the people needed to monitor this. Also monitor AdWords so only quality businesses advertise.

mattg3

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 1:14 am on May 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

Guys, forget about the public domain - completely off topic, we can argue about this until Yahoo becomes the best search engine... :)

One multinational replaces the next one. Bit like "democracy" these days.. opt for the colour not the policy .. As far as I can see yahoo is more closed more commercial even forbids smoking sites but not drinking sites .. Maybe we pray all soon in the church of California or where ever they are ..

Your relationship with Google will be as good or bad as with any near monopolist.

The grass is never greener on the other side. Yahoo cut my gf email off, only blabla you get back [canned garbage - please open a new one]... not an inch better ... still no idea why it went awol .. with Google you might occasionally run into some nice guy .. happened to me in video.. when videos where banned that were absolutely harmless. Even got an apology.

Still doesn't mean Google's bookscanning SERP randomness WP loving are up my street.

trinorthlighting

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 1:47 am on May 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

At the end of the day do you really think google cares about a handful of complaining webmasters? No they do not. Why, because they are a publically traded corporation. They care about making money.

People are mad because of recent downgrading of links and the -950 penalty. I can tell you this, for all the people who bent the rules and got caught, there were good sites that replaced you.

I look at it this way... Want a part of the pie? Play by their rules, there is nothing hard in their rules and nothing unethical. Its not hard to build a good site and have a good business these days. If you do not like how the pie tastes, then you might want to consider another careeer.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 2:15 am on May 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

At the end of the day do you really think google cares about a handful of complaining webmasters? No they do not. Why, because they are a publically traded corporation.

More likely, it's because they've got millions of Web sites and billions of Web pages, images, Usenet posts, etc. to index, and handholding isn't scalable.

If Google Search were a strictly PFI (pay for inclusion) index, then unhappy Webmasters might have a right to expect customer service. But it isn't, and they don't.

Adam_Lasnik

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 2:18 am on May 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

Whew... okay, just made it through all the new posts!

I do find the discussion about ethics interesting and valuable from a number of perspectives. Who defines them? How do they differ by culture? (I can assure you that Webmasters I've met in different countries have -- in the aggregate -- starkly different views about Webmastering and Google in the context of ethics!)

I agree that the intersection of ethics and law is also fascinating -- I actually focused on "Global Electronic Communications and Commerce" in law school. But alas, I really can't comment upon legal stuff in this context, as I'm sure you understand.

Other topics I won't tackle here include AdWords and AdSense (because I have nothing to do with those departments) though I respect how such topics can fit as part of this conversation.

Anne J:
I don't expect you to comment on penalties. But in the Google Guy days he would notice if people who had done nothing wrong were having a problem. He would gather information. He let us know that Google was working on it.

You know, I feel really torn about this. My colleagues and I are often spotting and escalating issues (including those having to do with penalties); that's actually a big part of my day. The problem is the increasing lack of scalability of posting a reply or sending an e-mail... in itself not a lengthy endeavor, but it nearly always results in a lengthy conversation and additional questions.

Europeforvisitors:
Side note: I can't help thinking that Google and Webmasters might be better served if Google made less effort to communicate with Webmasters. Maybe Webmasters would be less addicted to Google if Matt Cutts, Adam Lasnik, GoogleGuy, etc. simply went about their business instead of abetting addictive behavior.

And this, indeed, highlights the challenge we face every day. We aren't going to disengage overall; the core of my job involves finding how we can communicate more, not less. But the venues may change, the methods may change. I know I touched upon this refrain earlier, but my goal is to do the most good for the most Webmasters... a great many of whom don't even see themselves as "Webmasters" much less frequent quality Webmaster forums. One-on-one e-mail chats are absolutely not scalable, even if we hired a thousand of me/Matt/Vanessa/GoogleGuy/etc. More videos? Webinars? More conference attendance? Documentation in different formats, more languages...? So many options, no easy, comprehensive solutions.

NickG (and also echoed by Trinorthlighting):
...there are no ethics here, just what ranks and makes you, or them money.

Ah, back to ethics ;). See, this is where we may have to agree to disagree (and forgive me for what -- in rereading this draft -- is clearly a lengthy personal diatribe :D).

Google is a public company, accountable to shareholders on the whole. But those of us on the Search Quality side of the business are directed and rewarded based upon... the (user-focused) quality of the index. And what actually drives us? Speaking for myself (and perhaps many of my colleagues), it's not money. I honestly believe that I'm doing Good in that -- directly or indirectly -- I'm making the world better in at least some small way. I feel it when I chat with someone at a conference and a light goes on -- in her head or mine -- that results in her previously-all-Flash non-profit site getting indexed. When I'm "off duty" and chatting with the owner of a new restaurant, I get a kick out of helping the guy understand that, no, he doesn't have to pay to get listed in Google (or the other major search engines)! Info that's ridiculously basic/simple/obvious to us search geeks... it makes a world of difference for far more people than you may realize.

That sort of passion is hardly exclusive to Google and Googlers. I see it in the eyes of various Webmasters I chat with... who feel that THEY are changing the world... whether it's sharing their Indonesia photos with people around the world or helping families find a new home or whatever.

For some, money is a passion. But to equate ethics or passion absolutely with money is, IMHO, overlooking the diversity of Webmasters and search engine employees. I would expect (and hope) that most people working for Yahoo! or Ask or MSN, etc., also feel like they're involved in something deeper than just shifting money around.

* * *

So what does all of this have to do with the relationship between search engines and Webmasters? At the core, I think it highlights the problem of assuming monolithic motivations. Assuming, specifically, that money is the driving force of either or both whole party can lead to conclusions and actions that don't effectively fit the real situation.

annej

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



 
Msg#: 3334098 posted 2:22 am on May 10, 2007 (gmt 0)

I know, I know. But it still makes me feel very grumpy. I suppose that means I'm under the Google mindshare spell.

I predicted that the old Google would be gone once they became a publicly traded corporation. I guess it's time to adjust to reality.

This 190 message thread spans 7 pages: < < 190 ( 1 2 3 [4] 5 6 7 > >
Global Options:
 top home search open messages active posts  
 

Home / Forums Index / Google / Google SEO News and Discussion
rss feed

All trademarks and copyrights held by respective owners. Member comments are owned by the poster.
Home ¦ Free Tools ¦ Terms of Service ¦ Privacy Policy ¦ Report Problem ¦ About ¦ Library ¦ Newsletter
WebmasterWorld is a Developer Shed Community owned by Jim Boykin.
© Webmaster World 1996-2014 all rights reserved