Let me take a minute to express my annoyance with yet another example of the hypocrisy that we face daily from Google. The “do as we say, not as we do” examples are piling up and getting really old. Guidelines should apply to both search engine and webmaster alike, or not at all.
Why not work with webmasters to reach a solution instead of making totalitarian decisions, creating FUD, and coming up with “laws” that only serve to benefit themselves? I couldn’t agree more with Michael Gray’s presentation during the “Are Paid Links Evil” session at SES San Jose. Google is not the government, and the intimidation tactics are an insult to our intelligence as free individuals.
Old school webmasters (circa 2000) had spread the word and made Google popular in the beginning via word of mouth, yet we’re the ones who get dumped on every time Google identifies a new way to squeeze out more revenue for themselves (and screw us in the process). It may not be wise to seize EVERY opportunity you come across to put more coin in your pocket, because the greed will get you.
You still need to keep your customers happy above all else, and right now I’m not a happy customer. And I’m not referring to myself as a customer because I use/market to their engine, I’m a customer because I’ve spent millions (yes, millions) in AdWords PPC spend over the years, and have generated tons of revenue for Google via AdSense. Try to come up with another company you’ve given millions to…(pause)…I know, I can’t think of one either.
Having to mouseover a link to be notified that it’s an ad (or not at all in this case) is NOT the solution that Google is algorithmically enforcing on webmasters. It’s reserved just for the rulemakers. Full disclosure unless Google stands to profit.
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