tedster - 7:30 am on May 29, 2010 (gmt 0)
What is wrong with Matt Cutts finding out about spam?
What's wrong is not Matt finding out, but finding out by reading here. If we open that door, it creates fake discussions and turns the forum into more of a weapon and less of a professional community. More noise, less signal.
I also do not want to turn WebmasterWorld into a Google satellite. As much as I value particpation from GoogleGuy, Matt Cutts, AWA, ASA, Adam Lasnik, and others from Google, they are members here and their presence should not be calling the shots. So if anyone wants to report what Google might consider spam, Google has their own channels set up for that. Google defines their own rules, and it should not be our business to help enforce them.
For years, the label "black hat" has been tossed around, but often used for almost trivial technical tricks and violations. However, one of the KEY black hat orientations today is finding ways to take out competitors. Not just in technical ways, but with devious social engineering approaches. That's a playground I don't want to play in.
I've been pushing the envelope with looser link allowances for a while, and I generally want to see that continue. But that kind of change needs to be measured not just in the light of one indivdual's purpose and need, but also by the overall effect on the entire forum community.
And one benefit of the current links policy is this - it tends to make our discussions self contained, with all the essential information on record right there in the thread. That's a real benefit that I'd hate to lose.