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Google giving SEO lessons?

Found this on a .gov site

     
7:58 pm on Aug 31, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I just came across this page about Google giving SEO lessons?


Web Manager University - Fall 2006

Class Title: Optimizing Your Websites for Google Search
Instructor:

Adam Lasnik, Google, Inc.
Date/Time: September 18, 2006 1:00 pm 4:00 pm
Place: Catholic University
Directions to CUA
Fee: $30

Has this been discussed before? Is it only for Government employees? I find this very interesting. Anyone planning to attend?

8:28 pm on Sept 4, 2006 (gmt 0)

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It is an interesting find -- Adam doing his job as "search evangelist".

This page [firstgov.gov] is a little vague about the need to be a US government employee. But the registration form says you must first be a forum member, and the FAQs says "The forum is open only to government employees who have an email address in the .gov, .mil. or .fed.us domain."

12:09 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I thought we were supposed to build our sites for our visiors and not for Google?
1:03 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Build your website for visitors then optimise for Google. ;)
1:41 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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There are varying levels of optimization. I have a feeling that this runs toward the create lots of content and make it accessible to spiders level of optimization. I doubt we'll be seeing reciprocal link directories popping up on .gov sites a few months from now, lol.
2:26 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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classic MB, you'd hope not, but I am sure someone will be thinking outside the box.

Go Adam Lasnik!

Good value at $10 bucks an hour even if it is only the basics.

2:38 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Good value at $10 bucks an hour even if it is only the basics.

That's an absolute steal!

They have a pretty impressive list of seminars, courses and webinars for the rest of the year too. :)

Here's a description of the seminar...

Optimizing Your Websites for Google Search
[firstgov.gov...]

6:02 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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so does that mean that finally all kind of guess work and assumptions on how exactly google works wiil come to an end?
8:56 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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so does that mean that finally all kind of guess work and assumptions on how exactly google works wiil come to an end?

Doubt it, people will ALWAYS look for shortcuts. I can't see Google leaking the thresolds for spam and whatnot. Part of Google's business model relies on keeping the organic search under wraps and a little mystified (Matt Cutts Blog is a great example), they need people spending on AdWords.

Funny thing is people who think they should rank rarely take search seriously enough to pay an SEO consultant and find out what is wrong with their site / online marketing plan.

Nothing is free in this world, even the free serps.

[edited by: Bennie at 9:01 am (utc) on Sep. 5, 2006]

9:44 am on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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ha ha ha. I think the google guy is taking a plain class. It is just at a philosophical level nothing serious about it.

see the classes

* Understanding search engines and search engine results (25 minutes)
* Building crawlable, indexable, and well-ranked sites (45 minutes)
* Tools, tricks and troubleshooting (35 minutes)
* Break (10 minutes)
* Webspam --what it is, how to avoid it, how to report it, etc. (10 minutes)
* Live site evaluations (45 minutes)
* Questions & Answers (45 minutes)

The main session will be Q&A and break. Rest will be at philosophical level.

1:24 pm on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Well, comprehensive or not, if any Webmasterworlders get into this class, ye best ask good questions and take good notes. And bring teacher an apple.
7:59 pm on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Not that I could go, but would be interesting to pry at him in a class setting.

I wonder if I can get the title "Search Evangelist" where I work :) Hows that for a title on a biz card.

I always thought of Matt as the "Search Evangelist" for Google - at least to the Webmasters.

8:58 pm on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I have signed up for the class. So let's see how it goes ...
9:28 pm on Sept 5, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Hey everyone,

fjpapaleo:
I thought we were supposed to build our sites for our visiors and not for Google?

Absolutely. I have to admit that I would have chosen a different title, but luckily I get to choose the content :-).

Martinibuster:
I have a feeling that this runs toward the create lots of content and make it accessible to spiders level of optimization. I doubt we'll be seeing reciprocal link directories popping up on .gov sites a few months from now, lol.

Actually, it's more like... holy moly, there are already a zillion pages of content here! How can we do a better job of making it accessible to the Googlebot, sight-impaired users, etc. But yeah, Martinibuster, link exchanges and v1agra-4-u comment spamming techniques aren't on the agenda :P

With this said, I have to frankly note that -- while I'm excited about this upcoming presentation to government manager folks -- I think that the generally very-tech-savvy WebmasterWorld audience would be disappointed with the depth and focus of information presented. The primary emphasis will be on accessibility, not ranking, and the needs (and limitations) of government sites are often quite distinct from those of for-profit sites.

[edited by: Adam_Lasnik at 9:45 pm (utc) on Sep. 5, 2006]

1:40 pm on Sept 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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> link exchanges and v1agra-4-u comment spamming techniques aren't on the agenda :P

Ya, you need to come to pubcon for that. bahahaha. Thanks Adam.

2:09 pm on Sept 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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With this said, I have to frankly note that -- while I'm excited about this upcoming presentation to government manager folks -- I think that the generally very-tech-savvy WebmasterWorld audience would be disappointed with the depth and focus of information presented.

I'm not too certain that would be the case...

The primary emphasis will be on accessibility.

Based on my years of researching and implementing accessibility guidelines, much of that translates over to better rankings. You'd be surprised at the number of tech-savvy people who overlook the alt attribute, <noscript> or <noframes> elements. ;)

3:24 pm on Sept 6, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Eric ward calls himself "Link Moses." Now Adam Lasnick is decribed as a "search evangelist." I once wrote a piece about what kind of a webmaster the Buddha would have been. I guess this establishes SEO as a new religion (or is it a cult?). ;-)
3:34 am on Sept 7, 2006 (gmt 0)

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Firstgov already offers SEO tips, why pay? :)

[firstgov.gov...]

6:55 am on Sept 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

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I don't refer to myself as LinkMoses, I was introduced as LinkMoses at a conference I spoke at by someone who was poking fun at the fact that I've been around so long and preach white-hat tactics always. I was at first bothered by it, because I thought it hinted at me being old (can't stay 39 forever) then I figured I'd make fun of myself with it. Hence the LinkMoses site.

Anyone who has ever heard me speak or met me knows I'd never have called me that on my own. Here, BTW, I'm braincloud, in reference to Tom Hanks in the movie Joe vs the Volcano.

Eric Ward

[edited by: tedster at 7:21 am (utc) on Sep. 13, 2006]

7:13 am on Sept 13, 2006 (gmt 0)

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why pay?

The govt probably pays or reimburses the fee for training. The govt employee receives a paid day out of the office. Two compelling reasons to pay. If it results in improved SEO for gov sites all the better. Then you might call it decent investment for a tax dollar.