back to article Google leaves sites in dark over October demotions

Google reserves the right to update its search algorithms whenever it likes. As it should. The trouble is that outsiders have little to no insight into why Google makes a change — or even if a change was made at all. To an outsider, a change looks no different than a bug, On October 22, some sort of flaw in Google's search …

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Anonymous Coward

Monopoly?

Does Google have over 70% of the search market. If so, it should be classed as having a monopoly and be regulated as such.

If not, hey, they can do whatever they like. Don't like it ? Use Bing, Yahoo etc...

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Silver badge
Joke

Don't be silly

Google wouldn't do anything evil. Just ask the font of all knowledge...err...Google.

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One persons demotion

is another persons promotion. Don't see those websites who have been promoted complaining. Didn't see the sites which ranked high before worrying about sites which weren't. Not every site can be ranked in the top 10 and those outside of it will always shout "Unfair" especially if they are a large company and think they ought to be there by right rather than the fact they are most relevant.

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Flame

Agreed

That people will whine about their demotion, this is not the issue really, the issue is that the search is not a "fair" search using only alogorithms. They control the search engine and can make you disappear if they so wish, having this kind of monopolistic power is a great advantage in the market place and means you can drive the market.

Just read up on how some people have found google to be screwing googleads revenues by some very iffy practices...

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Pirate

why google sux - apart from the obvious and well-discussed privacy issues

What a coincidence, I was just debating this very topic with myself last night.

To save everyone else the bother, I post an abridged version of my thinking below....

--------------

Joe Public doesn't seem to care [that they are creating a monopoly], as long as they get their quick fix! They don't seem to realise that if they continue to support this monster, eventually it will eat all the competition, and then they will be customers of a monopoly. They don't understand what happens in a monopolised market. They don't understand any of the internet and to them it's just a website, they have no idea it's just like the real world and they are helping to create the equivalent of BT, or Royal Mail, with all their sloppy service and rubbish products.

The things I dislike about Google are all standard fare for a private company, and I do some of them myself. So the problem is where? The problem is that 80% of the [European] public use them. If the public used many search engines, whatever Google did, anti-competitive or not, would not matter so much. Google should not have to apologise for being greedy, selfish so-and-so's, that is what corporations do. The problem is that the public are so clueless, they either a) don't see it; b) don't care; c) don't realise there are alternatives; d) don't trust the alternatives; e) are locked in due to gmail etc

Is there an alternative? Once I used webcrawler, then I discovered altavista, then metacrawler, then mamma... a long time passed... and I noticed that Google was giving better results than my metasearch was, so I dumped metasearch and started to use Google. Now I worry that I will have a disadvantage, if I use another engine, on principle, or because I think it might have better results - what if it doesn't? But the alternative is to continue to prop up the greedy monster that Google is....

So, the solution is to test other engines, and promote them, that means Yahoo is on my list, once again, I never used them for search, I used them a lot for webmail and then IM. And not to forget, that if I am not getting the answer I want in 5 secs, to try Google... so I'm not disadvantaged much... - so, I tested Yahoo, seems fine.. ;)

- they are still trying to be a portal, so their homepage has news etc, and it's still a wait, esp when compared to the Google homepage - but then, see iGoogle for the same

- a cutdown version of their page is a avail at http://uk.search.yahoo.com/

- For each of Google's services, locate the competition, if it's good, promote it

Anyone who is partnering with Google - promote their competition. that means if I install Firefox on a customer's machine set it to the Yahoo search as homepage. Tools.. Options.. General tab. Also, Firefox has an embedded searchbox, the default engine is Google, to change to Yahoo, click the down arrow next to the Google icon, then click Manage Search Engines. Set Yahoo as the first engine, then click OK. Select Yahoo from the dropdown. close the browser and reopen to check it worked.

Giving Google my clicks takes them away from the competition and thus reduces the competition's ability to compete, which ultimately will result in only 1 company in the market, and that is Bad.

Yahoo are owed a debt, this being due to:

- their pioneering spirit and history

- their longetivity

- their support of FreeBSD and others (Joomla?)

Did Yahoo ever go snooping on millions of people's home internet connections, while claiming to be building a photo library? No.

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FAIL

How about comparing 3 companies with something in common?

This is about internet search, not BT or Royal Mail.

Google, even with a monopoly can't squeeze more money from people without charging to use Google, in which case Bing and Yahoo will become the monopolies.

This isn't like sending a letter or making a phone call because they cost money and with monopolies, BT and Royal Mail just get more expensive.

Google can't do that and survive

So to summarise, a monopoly just makes Google better and able to make your satnav cheaper, your internet search easier, and keeps new innovation coming.

BT and Rotal Mail can't compare there, you chose two completely unrelated businesses to compare with something they couldn't fairly.

A big Google is a good thing.

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Welcome

error: econs fail

Oh look, it's a BT employee. Yes, that's right, your service is shoddy and your products are rubbish.

Now, get back to your cubicle...

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Grenade

Sigh!

If these people would stop messing about trying to game the google algorithms and spend their time creating useful content that is updated regularly and semantically marked up then they will end up being ranked highly no matter what google does with their algorithms.

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FAIL

D'Oh!

That's the sound of site managers all over the world banging their heads and saying"of course, its all so simple, why didn't we think to update our content regularly and semantically mark it up? We could have saved ourselves all this unneccesary effort!"

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Upvoted but...

I thoroughly agree with the sentiment - semantic HTML (or the semantic web) is an ideal... but it can still be borked by Google's algorithms should Google desire it; they control the algorithms after all.

if(preg_match('/bing/', $sContent) && preg_match('/good|great|better than Google/', $sContent)) {

$iPageRankScore -= 100000000;

}

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Stop

SEO people

are such jokers. "Oh, boo-hoo, my site that is just a load of keywords and link farms has gone down four places in the rankings." Sites that consistently stay high in the rankings are the ones that offer some form of useful or entertaining content, like YouTube and Wikipedia, not some worthless link-trap with stilted copy like "you may wonder where to buy Viagra and ask questions like 'what is Viagra, where can I get Viagra...'"

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Anonymous Coward

All I Mostly Agree with You...

Using YouTube & Wikipedia are not the best examples to give. One Google owns and the other Google donates to.

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Alert

SEO

The SEO industry is just web site feng-shui performed by those who're not smart enough to program or artistic enough to do design.

They'll all tell you they're experts (notice how you only ever meet SEO 'experts'? Never anyone in whatever stage one is at before becoming an expert?).

They'll all tell you they know someone at Google (as though this gives them some kind of credibility, even though we know full well it's probably the guy who cleans the bogs).

They'll all pretend they know exactly what format of URL google likes best, or that some little tweak on a keyword is going to rocket you up the rankings. But of course none of them ever provide any evidence whatsoever to justify what they say.

The SEO industry is just full of useless failed IT practitioners and these periodic shake-ups by Google only go to highlight it, since if the algorithms change with such regularity, how can these people still peddle the idea that they know how to get a site up the rankings?

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Change in Terminology

When dis we stop calling such an event a feature?

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Using Yahoo as alternative?

@Anonymous Coward

Using Yahoo as an alternative to Google is flawed:

Yahoo's search does not give clear links in its results, you have to go through their de-URL-fier and get them to redirect you to the link you want.

Yahoo's webmail sucks compared to gmail, plus they don't have pop/imap access on /all/ accounts.

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