You're right about the pr, but I think you are really wrong about the analogy. I'm guessing you aren't that familiar with the book publishing industry.
The flaws in the analogy are so many that I can't even begin to cover them all. But the prime one is the degree of monopoly. By and large it's book publishers who make or break books, because it's book publishers who GET you that review in the NYTIMES. It's publishers that get your book in the store shelves. However,there are a lot more book publishers than there are search engines like google.
If I don't like my book publisher's support, I go elsewhere with my next project. I can't go elsewhere with my next website. No google, no significant traffic.
BTW, I've never been on the NYTIMES best seller list, but one of my books has been sitting in the top several thousand sellers at amazon for over two years. I have a website that's about two years old that has had its traffic completely trashed since March, except for two days (go figure).
Google doesn't owe me anything (at least my publishers do, either contractually or otherwise), but the stark, harsh reality is that the WAY it is operating right now is making many online enterprises (for profit or not) completely pointless. That's not their intent. But that's what's happening.