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Google is wealthy, and has money to burn and power to give and take as it desires. (more take than anything else!)
They depend on results for power, size and give little in return. The PR toolbar was genius, a way to generate powerful emotions within site owners, and give absolutely nothing, yet make the whole world believe the green bar actually is worth something.
Trouble was/is most DID buy into this mentality, some made a lot of money from it, and it contributed towards even more junk webpages that could manipulate Google toolbar. This resulted in Google's engine housing false, naff websites and pages that fill up already expensive servers, add to their costs and lengthen search time for their users. But it was genius. Google knew the world would download the toolbar because of ego. Illogical buying decisions are made, partnerships are made, websites are bought and sold - all on some ego boost.
Okay, some think that the idea of Google PR is to rank sites, and it does that - but what it's really about is simple emotion and sales, but Google couldn't have forseen the toolbar's BS factor, which has now resulted in bad feeling aimed at themselves. They did it to themselves and I feel now they are paying the price. Do they care, hmmmm, probably not as they made a bundle of cash along the way.
From what I've read on WebmasterWorld, and sites I've seen in the last 7 years on the web - the toolbar is mostly wrong anyway and has flaws which reveal themselves when trying to rank the lower websites (I could be wrong on this), but it's clearly a Public Relations and power tool which has been abused over the years and is very much worthless.
The question you should all be asking yourselves is, Who actually tells us what we are worth? Google does. So in theory, they could tell us what they want us to believe, and many fall for the flattery too.
Not because they are necessarily forced to - but because they really want to. Remember a website is personal, and takes hours of work to create something good, so who wouldn't mind some large company telling them that they are the greatest website and what better way than to give it a 'rank'! Think of it as "My site is better than yours" as it has a PR of 8.
Wow PR8, PR9 or the creme da la creme PR10......
Think logically what these numbers mean. Based on what exactly, 100, 200 or more pages of useful or not content? So what. So a website has 5000 pages of text, who cares. I'm much more concerned that the pages give me what I'm after, not that it has some number stamped on it!
Yet Google stamps it's authority - and you can't stop them doing it, or people viewing it or even opting out of it! Are you sure Google is being helpful or giving the opportunity for good sites to recieve good/bad reviews which really boil down to a little green bar and a number.
Google brought this on themselves and I say it's time to get rid of this inaccurate and worthless bit of ego boosting technology, and do it now.
Also "viboranegra" great post! My point exactly, it now does effect a lot of folks and people need to be responsible. Good post.
Trust is when you tell people why you do things not hide the truth.
I expected a few things from Google today
1) A bit of hiding (Lets see how nutty we can get the webmasters)
2) A public comment on the loss/gain of P.R.
3) I expected we keep the P.R. (Makes a lot of sense and is needed)
If you're looking for a site about Elbonian travel, you might use a directory. But if you're looking for an article about mud kayaking in Elbonia, you need a search engine like Google. That's why human-edited directories can't be a substitute for spidered search.
I don't know. A good Elbonia site should be easy to find in a good directory. And in a perfect world a good elbonia site should have an article about mud kayaking (and a search engine to find it easily). Is it really much faster to find your mud kayaking article on Google? Sometimes you get lucky but sometimes you have to wade through so much crap to find what you're looking for.
Perhaps the solution is a human monitored/edited directory that spiders. Only high quality sites are added, then the spiders take over and catelog other interior pages, etc. You could actually let webmasters submit individual pages too if they wanted (which they probably would) once their site was "in" ...
I talked to a few people and there was some new infrastructure that was swapping in. They expect normal toolbar pagerank display to resume in a few hours--no need for concern
infrastructure, not update :) "
If Google would've said that, great. But they didn't so an update was assumed
If everything does in fact return back to normal later today, wouldn't it have been easy for Google to post a one line announcement stating that pagerank may be down for maintenance over the weekend?
I'll answer this for you ... YES!
PR = Public Relations.