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Will Google Drop PageRank when Patent Exclusivity Runs Out?
internetheaven




msg:4250468
 8:51 pm on Jan 7, 2011 (gmt 0)

Apparently Google's pagerank exclusivity-usage-patent-thingy is running out this year.

They've removed Pagerank from the WMT area. Updates are few and far between. Is there a chance they'll get rid of it completely in favour of other ranking indications like social patterns? Could they just remove the green bar?

Personally, it's 99% of the reasons I use the Google Toolbar. I still use the green bar as a quick indicator of the site I'm on. It's been handy.

If it goes, surely I won't be the only one to delete my Google Toolbar - is the toolbar still an important source of data for Google though?

 

indyank




msg:4251781
 12:39 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

@BeeDeeDubbleU, I think goodroi also mentions this.

veteran seo people also know that pagerank is not worthless. as a veteran i want my site to have pagerank to make it easier for me when i deal with link exchanges.


but he is just saying TBPR is not very accurate and it doesn't reflect the most current PR. pls. don't try to read it in different ways gentlemen :)

BeeDeeDubbleU




msg:4251796
 1:06 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Well it was written using emotive language, was it not?

Jonny6




msg:4251818
 1:26 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

internetheaven, have you forgotten that PR is calculated on a logarithmic scale ? therefore its not rocket science to conclude that higher PR sites are significantly less likely to see any change.

"We do update the Toolbar PageRank regularly, even if that's not as regularly as some of you wish"
JohnMu

With the hundreds of reports of no pr update, invariably they are from low quality sites that have engaged in aggresive link building.

Untrusted sites are most likely to experience either a delay in updating or dampening of their tbar pr.

Shaddows




msg:4251832
 1:53 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Untrusted sites are most likely to experience either a delay in updating or dampening of their tbar pr.

Utter rubbish.

The odd infrequent standalone update notwithstanding, TBPR is generally updated is a giant datapush, every 1-3 months. All sites get updated at the same time.

As for the occasional intermediate updates, I see NO correlation with
- Starting TBPR
- Resultant TBPR
- Size or Quality
- Link building activity (with exceptions below)

I DO see correlation with

- Link selling
- Link buying
- Penalisation
- Lifting of penalty

Jonny6




msg:4251851
 2:43 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

"updated is a giant datapush, every 1-3 months. All sites get updated at the same time"
Nonsense.

Please substantiate when the last 3 'giant..all at the same time' updates were done since April ?

Who mentioned starting-resultant TBPR ?

tedster




msg:4251902
 3:38 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

Let's cool down the rhetoric a bit here. As we mention in the Charter [webmasterworld.com] for this forum, "absolute rules are in short supply. There are only educated opinions - and it's common for opinions to run counter to each another. Tolerance helps to clear up the discussion much more than conflict."

It is true that we've not seen any "universal" toolbar update since last April - and that is a mystery that Google has not addressed. At the same time, in the Google Webmaster Thread that Jonny6 quoted, JohnMu did talk about INTERNAL PageRank getting continuous updates. The rest is not clear enough to jump to any conclusion, in my opinion.

The PageRank which we use internally is continuously updated, so even if you're not seeing a PageRank in your Toolbar, rest assured that we'll be treating your site accordingly regardless, and will crawl, index and rank your websites appropriately.

We do update the Toolbar PageRank regularly, even if that's not as regularly as some of you wish. I agree that it would be nice to have it updated more frequently. Given the time since the last update, I imagine you'll start seeing another one in the near future.

[google.com...]


If anything, his coment "given the time since..." reinforces the idea that PR has not been exported to the toolbar for a long time.

cloudtap




msg:4251908
 3:43 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

PageRank is the foundation of most of their algos so PageRank is definitely staying.

I'd say that the number of algorithms Google has rolled out in conjuction with PageRank and the different types of algos makes it so that PageRank IS obsolete. Their ranking algos are so advanced now that I doubt that PageRank is the exact same thing as stated in their original patent.

Pagerank was their basis for all algorithms Google has implemented, that's all it is - PageRank is too deep in the algorithm to be changed. They may get rid of visible PR, but I doubt it -- it's a great distraction for SEOs trying to game the system

internetheaven




msg:4251976
 5:13 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

internetheaven, have you forgotten that PR is calculated on a logarithmic scale ? therefore its not rocket science to conclude that higher PR sites are significantly less likely to see any change.


Whilst I would disagree with foundation of that argument anyway (e.g. higher quality sites will likely gain more high quality links over a period than a lower quality site and therefore PR gains may be seen faster for a higher quality site over a lower quality site on occasion) ...

... my point was that, simply because you saw no change in PR for some lower quality sites at one point when there were some changes for higher quality sites (without even getting in a discussion on what constitutes higher/lower quality) - that does not mean there was no change in the actual PR.

Toolbar PR is an update. It is an update to the toolbar. There is no reason for Google to give themselves extra work by separating the toolbar PR update in to separate sections. It would be a pointless exercise for no gain.

The only changes between PR updates are the grey bars that sometimes get slapped on penalised sites. That is not an update anyway, that is a part of the toolbar PR database that says the PR display for that site should not be displayed.

Reno




msg:4251997
 6:22 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

It's a signal, it's not the only signal

In addition to being a signal and its role in the algo, it's also now something of a gimmick, and a good one at that. Much like an entertainment site posting the "best 10 movies of the year", it has a certain fascination to the viewer, whether true or not. So I'll be genuinely surprised if it goes away, as it's marketing value remains intact, even if its impact on the overall algo ranking drops with every passing year.

......................

Jonny6




msg:4252122
 10:05 pm on Jan 11, 2011 (gmt 0)

@internetheaven

It appears that some may have misinterpreted various comments on various posts, so to be clear pagerank is recalculated continuously without cessation, toolbar pagerank on the other hand is updated when google chooses, consequently the toolbar updates that all of us outside of google see can be delayed, dampened, penalized, all of which I suggest are based on various quality factors which will remain unknown entities.

Google have been doing their best to discourage webmasters to stop concentrating on pagerank, what better mechanisms is there to achieve that objective other than to delay, dampen, penalize and even randomize the updates to the toolbar?

Toolbar updates are a totally automated process, it is just a cron job with a quality filter and an alert mechanism for extraordinary cases, needless to say that actually does not require any extra work, whether it is human intervention or computing resources. Do not forget that google now runs on new infrastructure that relies fundamentally less on the batch style processes of the previous.

..my point was that it is significantly less probable (even without a quality filter) to see any change of toolbar pagerank in a high pr site compared to a low pr site, simply due to the logarithmic scale of pagerank. Then you may if you choose factor in quality factors?

I'll ask, would you not agree that quality factors should be considered in the toolbar pagerank update process?

I surely think they should, the only other option for google is to remove pagerank from the toolbar, I suggest that is not going to happen in the foreseable future, although I think they should, hopefully you aware of the reasons why google doesn't remove it?

internetheaven




msg:4252599
 9:50 pm on Jan 12, 2011 (gmt 0)

I'll ask, would you not agree that quality factors should be considered in the toolbar pagerank update process?


No. Not in the slightest. It's insane. Why update a small percentage of toolbar indicators? Just update the lot every time they "cron job" an update (as you put it).

Your logic doesn't even follow a straight line as far as I can tell, let alone make an argument for staggering the Pagerank update schedule.

So, after the long explanation about ... whatever that was ... how about giving an explanation to the only bit that you didn't spend time on:

... hopefully you aware of the reasons why google doesn't remove it?

That's what this discussion is about jonny6. How about you give us six paragraphs on what this thread is actually about? Then I might, with my limited intelligence and experience, be able to follow such a tale.

Reno: Much like an entertainment site posting the "best 10 movies of the year"

You know - I'd been looking for a good Pagerank analogy. I just might pinch that one to use from now on. Thanks!

RegDCP




msg:4256033
 5:54 am on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

This is going to be a bit long, but it is all backed by hard data.

First, PR is not going to die. It is Google's founder's baby and as such will continue.

The first iteration which proposed that each link is a vote for the page failed because it was based on a mathematical formula, and did not take into consideration if the linking page was relevant to the linked.

One could get more "link juice" from a high PR, not relevant link than you could from a low PR relevant linking page. (All else being equal).

That was the old formula and it was changed in the Mayday update.
Lots of people missed it but Google told Vanessa Fox when she pressed for more info on Mayday that "I asked Google for more specifics and they told me that it was a rankings change, not a crawling or indexing change,...." "Rankings" meaning PageRank and "Indexing" meaning SERPs.

The new PR algo assigns PR "link juice" based on the relevance between linked and linking pages. It looks to not consider the PR of the linking page.

I built a new SEO site in Feb last year and the PR was adjusted mid June to PR4. I noticed the change immediately and checked my links.
At the time of the change I had 115 links to my site. 1 link was on my DCP business page (PR3), another was on a SEO forum post, (PR5) and 113 were on group SEO discussions in LinkedIn. All of the LI posts were on PR0 pages but 100% relevant. (Currently this has built to 487 links and my PR is still 4.)

As my PR3 site had over 5 times the amount of links than my new PR4 site, something changed in their algo.

I think the scheduling of the PR updates have been removed from one of a batch process to one of an individual nature as defined by the Caffeine update.

I have seen a few people reporting PR updates but only as individuals. The hue and cry that accompanies a batch process has not been seen.

PR is still a minor SERP influence. The number of links and their "quality" does not influence SERPs in any measurable fashion.
(I had a search term in #1 on my PR0 site and the #2 and #3 sites were PR5 and PR8 (58,000 links and 277,000 links respectively).

I expect this to change when Google determines that Relevant (Capital R), linking PR considerations are eliminating the paid & non relevant links, the linking schemes, and perhaps even the whole nofollow/follow problems.

Perhaps once the link spam world realizes that only the relevant links get any link love a whole generation of spammers will disappear.

One thing that G has told us is that PR determines how often your site will be visited by the Google bot.
The higher the PR the more often the bot visits.
The more often the visits the fresher your content.

The fact that the PR tool bar is not always current means little as long as it does get updated. It is still a measure of authority.

Best
Reg


Shaddows




msg:4256067
 9:15 am on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

First of all, anyone notice the big batched export on PR recently? It seems reports of its demise were greatly exaggerated <snip>.

Anyway, next on my campaign to clear up terminology:

The first iteration which proposed that each link is a vote for the page failed
No it didnt. It brought about arguably the biggest success story in internet history.

did not take into consideration if the linking page was relevant to the linked
True. They did that with semantic analysis, which accounts for a big chunk of the other 400 factors. Its big issue was the "random surfer" concept, which has now been refined to the "reasonable surfer" model, which would be fantastic, if SEOs and link traders didn't start distorting the graph.

One could get more "link juice" from a high PR, not relevant link than you could from a low PR relevant linking page. (All else being equal).
Still can. Thus, high PR pages get outranked by low PR pages, cos the low PR has got relevant links. PR and link quality are SEPARATE SIGNALS.

That was the old formula and it was changed in the Mayday update.
<snip> The old formula was random surfer, the new is resonable surfer, and it has been refined over 10 years. Mayday seems to have been about introducing branding signals while lurching towards Minty Fresh. G did it on the knowledge that Caffeine (which was launched more or less immediately afterwards) would allow them realtime analysis and tweaking to perfect the new balance, which was pretty unstable to start.

Lots of people missed it but Google told Vanessa Fox when she pressed for more info
Anyone who missed it deserved to. Of course, that doesnt mean to say any answer is actually complete and accurate.

"Rankings" meaning PageRank
<snip>No. Rankings meaning what is normally referred to as an "algo" change. However, in the context of that discussion, precise teminology was required. Algo covers THE WHOLE PROCESS, ranking is about sorting sites by defined criteria.

"Indexing" meaning SERPs
<snip> Indexing means the process of marking up pages such as they are accessible by the ranking criteria in real time. For context, Caffiene was about crawling (getting raw data) and indexing (making sense of that data), while Mayday was about deciding which of the indexed pages got returned for any particular query.

The new PR algo assigns PR "link juice" based on the relevance between linked and linking pages
No, PR is all about reasonable surfer, and has nothing to do with semantic analysis. The semantic factors analyse relevance.

It looks to not consider the PR of the linking page
WHAT? What can that possibly mean? The PR algo doesnt take account of PR? <snip>

I built a new SEO site in Feb last year

Take it down.

At the time of the change I had 115 links to my site. 1 link was on my DCP business page (PR3), another was on a SEO forum post, (PR5) and 113 were on group SEO discussions in LinkedIn. All of the LI posts were on PR0 pages but 100% relevant. (Currently this has built to 487 links and my PR is still 4.)
Quick translation: "I noticed that TBPR does not add up when considered in the round. From this I deduce that TBPR is gospel, and the algo has changed. It cannot possibly be that TBPR is fiction and real PR carries on using the well-understood (if not precisely defined) reasonable surfer model."

As my PR3 site had over 5 times the amount of links than my new PR4 site, something changed in their algo
See above.

I think the scheduling of the PR updates have been removed from one of a batch process to one of an individual nature as defined by the Caffeine update.

I have seen a few people reporting PR updates but only as individuals. The hue and cry that accompanies a batch process has not been seen.
Er, yeah. Poor timing, but have you seen
PR Update 20 Jan 2010 (down 1 for me) [webmasterworld.com]

PR is still a minor SERP influence. The number of links and their "quality" does not influence SERPs in any measurable fashion.
(I had a search term in #1 on my PR0 site and the #2 and #3 sites were PR5 and PR8 (58,000 links and 277,000 links respectively).
Totally agree. PR is one factor out of hundreds, and is easily overcome by a whole host of other things.

I expect this to change when Google determines that Relevant (Capital R), linking PR considerations are eliminating the paid & non relevant links, the linking schemes, and perhaps even the whole nofollow/follow problems.
<snip>

Perhaps once the link spam world realizes that only the relevant links get any link love a whole generation of spammers will disappear.
If only...

One thing that G has told us is that PR determines how often your site will be visited by the Google bot.
The higher the PR the more often the bot visits.
The more often the visits the fresher your content
Crawl schedules are now substantially more refined than that. Including such factors as how often the page actually updates, and the rate that new pages are added to domains. Minty Fresh is the new authority. Possibly.

The fact that the PR tool bar is not always current means little as long as it does get updated. It is still a measure of authority
Not sure if this ties with your original position, but fine. Its good shorthand, if you undertand its many limitations.

[edited by: goodroi at 1:53 pm (utc) on Jan 21, 2011]
[edit reason] TOS [/edit]

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