tristanperry - 10:16 am on Mar 5, 2011 (gmt 0)
react to stories driven by the media, instead of acting at their own pace.
Wasn't it established (by the Google employee moultano on HN) that this update was in the works for perhaps a year?
Heck, even the Wired article suggests it's been in the works for a fair while (but then they run into some difficulties, but had a breakthrough a few months ago).
All this does suggest that Google weren't *reacting* to the recent stories per se. And indeed, they were working on some sort of 'anti-farming' update BEFORE the media stores (and subsequent joining-the-bandwagon) stories started emerging?
On another note - I can understand some of your other points though. It is especially annoying that Google search and the web spam team are hinting that the ad-to-content ratio shouldn't be abused (EZA abused it with sometimes 7-8 ads per page, and look where it got them!), and at the same time Google AdSense are sending out bulk e-mail saying to spam our pages with ads.