bw100 - 9:57 pm on Jul 10, 2011 (gmt 0)
A lot of us are here to learn, and express the occasional opinion. You have commented often enough, and IMO accurately, about the apparent pervasive negativity (however justified it might be) that can occupy these threads at times. That seems to be taking a lot of energy that might be better put to use in a positive, solution-oriented discussion.
Please help us out by "nudging" our thinking in a different, perhaps more constructive, and maybe better direction re these comments of yours:
but I see no evidence that organic search results are taking ad revenue into account
What, based on your knowledge and experience, would constitute evidence that this is occurring?
But when I think about finding local information, I'm not convinced that conventional website search is the best way to serve user needs.
What other options would you suggest to better serve user needs for relevant local* search results?
(* local = direct provider of product / service with a physical presence within or near the stated community of service provision or product acquisition. Local does not mean lead generators, matchmakers, or out of area providers or sellers). If you would elaborate a bit on that "conventional website search" phrase you dropped in there, that might help.
Throw a few pearls, please.