Reno - 2:06 am on Oct 24, 2011 (gmt 0)
concerned about somebody cracking the algo
This of course is the excuse that they have put forth for years and is the overall excuse for their obnoxious FUD policy. It may have made some sense when they were climbing to the top with a considerable less complex algo, but now that they thoroughly dominate it makes no sense at all IMO. In actuality, the constant ongoing threat to deep-six an entire site is more like a fear tactic than anything else. Keep people frightened and you keep them subverient.
And BTW, as I said, no one has a right to expect Google to provide any indepth details whatsoever about the precise problems, but they could say in GWT something like "Suspicious backlink profile". And in addition, they could limit that sort of feedback to no more than one response per month, to avoid the potential of someone trying to game their system on an ongoing basis.
All I'm saying is, if we are to believe that they truly want "quality" (isn't that a big part of why Panda came to be? But of course they never defined what they actually mean by "quality", so it's anybody's guess), then providing basic guidance to websites has the potential to move the whole web one step forward. Unless, as onepointone says, they don't care, in which case, it explains everything we need to know about their true motives.