martinibuster - 12:03 pm on Sep 3, 2013 (gmt 0)
Yes. Danny Sullivan asked Matt Cutts that question a few months ago at SMX West. Here is the article. [searchenginejournal.com]
New discussion topic from Danny: Shifting to links… Now that we’ve gone through penalty linking through advertorials. Is the world of linking going to break down? Shouldn’t we all just shift to social?
Matt: Links in his opinion have many many many more years ahead of us as valuable. Black hat tactics that were used in the past are getting less and less successful. Google’s put a lot of time and energy into shutting down link networks etc. Thus, good links that are built naturally will still provide value for a long time.
Yes, links still matter. Yes, they are worth the effort. Judging by the many posts in the Google SEO forum, their campaign against crap links is making some headway. Though not as much headway as some would like.