Google vs. BMW, a Sanity Check

    February 6, 2006

Okay, I’m officially puzzled by those who are complaining about Google’s treatment of BMW’s SEO techniques.

Like anyone else who violates their guidelines, BMW is subject to the consequences.

Take, for example, the Google Orwellian story on Publishing 2.0:

It’s one thing for Google to tweak its algorithms to lower the search ranking of sites they perceive to be “gaming the system” (although even this is Big-Brotherish) – it’s quite another to summarily reduce a company’s page rank to zero.

You could argue that Google has searchers best interest in mind, but when you smell the stench of “orthodoxy,” you have to ask yourself – is Google’s unchecked power really serving its users well, or is it being blinded by its own definition of “right” and “wrong” in the struggle to get noticed online.

Oh, cry me a river!

Google is not some public utility or government service. They can do whatever they want with their search index: make it better, make it worse, censor it, randomize it, or sell printed copies on a street corner.


Because it’s their index.

The thought that there’s some “unchecked” power is the most amusing of all. The ultimate checks and balances are at work in Google’s case. If its users start to dislike the results they get, they’ll seek out alternatives. Google’s power will diminsh.

Is Publishing 2.0 at risk for this display of dissent? How far down the slippery slip does Google have to slide before they start Stalinistically stamping out dissent?

Put down the tin foil hat, man.

Jeremy Zawodny is the author of the popular Jeremy Zawodny’s blog. Jeremy is part of the Yahoo search team and frequently posts in the Yahoo! Search blog as well.

Visit Jeremy’s blog: Jeremy Zawodny’s blog.