diberry - 4:26 pm on Dec 9, 2012 (gmt 0)
You can't judge a decision on its results. Philip M. Rosenzweig talks in his book The Halo Effect about how every decision Cisco Systems made was lauded by the press... until it slid downhill, and then suddenly the press reported how bad many of those very same decisions had been.
This employee thinks Google is going in a bad direction not because of results, but because of what he believes will happen in the long run. That's a personal judgment call, not theory he's seeking to prove right. You can doubt his perceptions, or you can believe them. And if you believe them, you may think what Google's doing is smart. It's just a POV.
That said, I think the article is meaningful because the author expresses concerns many people here have expressed, which lends some credence to that view: that Google has switched from innovator to ad company, and may well be prioritizing ads and Google+ to the detriment of other services like organic search.
I definitely feel that the SERPs have gotten near-useless in the past year or so. I say that as a user, not a webbie. I gave up Google a couple of years ago, and had to give up Bing months later because it got just as bad. Now I alternate between Blekko, Duck, Bing and Google. Frequently, in total frustration, I have to pick a site I *think* might have what I need and use their search engine. There is something wrong with search, and it's not just Google. Things are changing, and this author offers one perspective on how that might be playing out behind the scenes at one search company.