tedster - 12:36 am on Feb 28, 2010 (gmt 0)
overwhelmingly it is because of what Google did
What is it that you think Google did in the area of reciprocal links? I can't find any reference where Google spokespeople or their guidelines ever said that ordinary link exchanges were taboo When it comes to proverbs, I'd go more with "You can lead a horse to water, but..."
On the topic of paid links, as much as I do hate what they did, I also admit that they telegraphed that blow quite clearly.