TheMadScientist - 9:20 pm on Jul 7, 2010 (gmt 0)
It's really an interesting argument, but I really don't have time to expand on it right now... Maybe I'll come back to this one later, but I'm not really sure how you can say people creating concise, organized product listings aren't generally more relevant to a specific search than organic results can probably be determined algorithmically, and I'm not sure how you can say it's abuse of their position as a search engine to allow people and businesses to do so, since as a search engine their implicit purpose is to help people find what they are looking for, and I really think trying to dictate the ordering of the information they present based on 'competitiveness' is a very slippery slope, because if you argue Amazon should be first 'for competition sake', then eBay could argue the same and where does it end?
People are using a service provided by Google to create an organized, categorized, specific listing for products and Google is showing that listing to people who are looking for the product, which sounds like, as a search engine, they are putting people and products together in an organized manner and seems to be right in line with what a search engine should do... They aren't selling the products I looked at; other sites and businesses are doing that...
It looks like they're ordering the results based on 'known to be relevant' and if that's anti-trust or something a search engine should not do, then I'm really confused at what a search engine should do, because it seems like as a search engine with a stated purpose of organizing the world's information that's what they're doing when they put a 'known to be relevant' set of results first.
Just because they're big and tough to compete with does not make them inherently wrong in what they're doing and just because sites and businesses are used to freebies they are no longer getting doesn't mean Google is doing something wrong. It simply means things have changed.