tedster - 1:37 am on May 31, 2010 (gmt 0)
Never loose site of the commercial benefit that drives Google in it's search for more revenue by controlling the funnel.
The key factor that drives Google revenue is people depending on Google as a search resource, over and over again. This means that the organic results need to be as good as Google can get them to be.
So I strongly doubt that Google would intentionally sacrifice organic quality to drive more PPC clicks. Yes, I know that many have expressed that suspicion and over a long time. I just don't buy it, mostly because it would be short-sighted and essentially stupid.
I also really do believe the input we get from Google people, over and over again, that the paid advertising side has little to no interaction with the organic side. I've strongly considered the opposite point of view - this isn;t blind faith.
I've even "aggressively interviewed" several Google engineers and Adwords/Adsense reps at various conferences. I really am convinced - algorithm changes are aimed at improving the organic user's satisfaction, even when they miss the boat