QUOTE(Jill @ Dec 15 2005, 02:13 PM)
Don't you see that Google isn't expecting anyone to practice proper ethics? They're just trying to build a search engine that is useful to their visitors.
If this was completely true, why did Matt even make the request. Is he patronizing all of us. Well then why do we even bother to listen to what he says, or what he doesn't say. When I read what Matt has to say, I personally get the sense that he is not dispasionate to website owners. He wants them to succeed. IMO and you may disagree, but that's okay..
QUOTE(Michael Martinez @ Dec 15 2005, 02:54 PM)
That is not correct. I, as a Webmaster with numerous listings in Google, have never been asked to sign any sort of contract with them. Google has no responsibility to me whatsoever, with respect how to operate its search engine.
These kinds of faux rationalizations don't help the Webmaster community deal with reality in the least.
True from a legal standpoint. And, I realize that ethics/morals are relative to each and everyone of us. I knew someone who started a local magazine and it started doing very well. It was taking marketing revenue from a larger magazine and they didn't like it. How did they respond? QUite interesting as some big businesses tend to do, they sued the small magazine. A completely fraudulent claim. They knew that legal expenses alone would put this small magazine out of business, and it did.
Legal issue? No. Ethical issue? I personally feel so.
Do this to a competitor and save your customers. Do this to your customers and you loose.
You can think what you want, but without SEO most web sites would not do well in the search engines. I can see this just by looking at a few of my customers with sites that were new and just developed recently. A lot of web developers do not understand what is needed to get pages ranked. The algo is their main tool. But this algo will only work if site are PROPERLY opimized. Even if there were no black hat tactics out there at all. Even with great content, if sites are not optimized they will not perform in the engines, and so Google would not be able to provide the best content possible.
If Google makes it impossilbe or too difficult to rank through seo, site owners are not going to spend money to have their sites optimized, and Google cannot provide the best content...
QUOTE(Michael Martinez @ Dec 15 2005, 09:17 PM)
Arguing that Google has some sort of moral responsibility to Webmasters is a waste of time. They don't owe us anything.
If you don't think they owe us anything, well then they certainly will not either.
I also believe that Google understands the landscape of this issue. They are not imposing ethical issues, or legal isueds. They are just trying to stay ahead (get ahead) of the game.
If anyone has played fooltabll you realize that, when blocking forinstance, you may try to find a way to "hold" your opponent, which creates a penalty. You try to find a way to do it without being detected... If you are being held illegally you tell the ref and he trys to catch your opponent doing it. It is the refs job to keep the playing field level..
Google is trying to deter as many of the techniqes that people use that cause false serp listings. (A lisiting in the serp that really shouldn't be there, or is just elevated more than it rightfully should be.) ANd if you think this is subjective, I guess it is, but all of us have to admit that we have seen a page in the serp and said, "Why the heck is that listed.?"
This is the business of search engines. It's what they do. It is not discrimination or unjust.
It is just trying to find the best way to control something as massive as the internet to the best of their abilities...!