Nov 6 2014

Has Google Lived Up To Its ‘Don’t Be Evil’ Mantra?

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Google’s famous “Don’t be Evil” mantra has been questioned time and time again for many years, but it’s back in the spotlight thanks to comments made recently by co-founder and CEO Larry Page. Do you think Google has done a decent job of keeping in line with the “Don’t be evil” mantra? Share your thoughts in the comments . Page did an interview with the Financial Times in which he talked about how, as the FT put it, “the search engine’s original mission is not big enough for what he now has in mind.” The mission is actually that whole thing about organizing the world’s information and making it universally accessible, but the evil thing did come up. This is the part that deals specifically with that. FT reports: It is a decade on from the first flush of idealism that accompanied its stock market listing, and all Google’s talk of “don’t be evil” and “making the world a better place” has come to sound somewhat quaint. Its power and wealth have stirred resentment and brought a backlash, in Europe in particular, where it is under investigation for how it wields its monopoly power in internet search. Page, however, is not shrinking an inch from the altruistic principles or the outsized ambitions that he and co-founder Sergey Brin laid down in seemingly more innocent times. “The societal goal is our primary goal,” he says. “We’ve always tried to say that with Google. I think we’ve not succeeded as much as we’d like.” After that, the actual mission statement was discussed, and Page said he thought they probably needed a new one, and that they’re “still trying to work that out.” The reason they need a new one is basically that Google has grown so much, and has become so much more than the search engine it was when it was founded. I mean, they have robots, self-driving cars, smart glasses, smart contact lenses, and are trying to work on a cure for aging. It’s probably not too unreasonable to be thinking about updating the mission. Some took this story, however, and spun it as something along the lines of “Google has outgrown its ‘Don’t be Evil’ mantra”. I think this misses the point. Either way, Matt Cutts, who is currently on leave from Google (and it’s unclear whether he’ll actually be back or not), weighed in on the topic on an episode of This Week in Google . He said, “They have tried to have a culture of ‘Don’t be Evil,’ and you can argue over individual incidents, and you know, whether this specific thing is evil or that specific thing is evil, but Google as a whole, whenever I look at the DNA, the people try to do the right things. So if you’ve got Larry marching off in one direction, and you’ve got the rest of the company saying, ‘No, we disagree,’ then they drag their heels, and they create friction. That, in my opinion, helps to move things toward a consensus of maybe a middleground, which works pretty well.” He added, “And then having that critical mass of smart people lets you say, ‘Oh, now I can do voice recognition better. Now I can do image recognition better, and I can unlock all kinds of good applications to improve the world that way…’ It’s a tough call…It’s a good problem to have, I guess.” Here’s the full episode. This takes place roughly 28 minutes in, but the discussion about this whole topic lasts for quite a bit. The episode also has a lot of discussion about Cutts’ future with Google . Cutts thinks Google tries not to be evil. Do you believe him? What are some specific areas that you think the company needs to improve on in that regard? Share in the comments . Image via YouTube

Nov 6 2014

Has Google Lived Up To Its ‘Don’t Be Evil’ Mantra?

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Google’s famous “Don’t be Evil” mantra has been questioned time and time again for many years, but it’s back in the spotlight thanks to comments made recently by co-founder and CEO Larry Page. Do you think Google has done a decent job of keeping in line with the “Don’t be evil” mantra? Share your thoughts in the comments . Page did an interview with the Financial Times in which he talked about how, as the FT put it, “the search engine’s original mission is not big enough for what he now has in mind.” The mission is actually that whole thing about organizing the world’s information and making it universally accessible, but the evil thing did come up. This is the part that deals specifically with that. FT reports: It is a decade on from the first flush of idealism that accompanied its stock market listing, and all Google’s talk of “don’t be evil” and “making the world a better place” has come to sound somewhat quaint. Its power and wealth have stirred resentment and brought a backlash, in Europe in particular, where it is under investigation for how it wields its monopoly power in internet search. Page, however, is not shrinking an inch from the altruistic principles or the outsized ambitions that he and co-founder Sergey Brin laid down in seemingly more innocent times. “The societal goal is our primary goal,” he says. “We’ve always tried to say that with Google. I think we’ve not succeeded as much as we’d like.” After that, the actual mission statement was discussed, and Page said he thought they probably needed a new one, and that they’re “still trying to work that out.” The reason they need a new one is basically that Google has grown so much, and has become so much more than the search engine it was when it was founded. I mean, they have robots, self-driving cars, smart glasses, smart contact lenses, and are trying to work on a cure for aging. It’s probably not too unreasonable to be thinking about updating the mission. Some took this story, however, and spun it as something along the lines of “Google has outgrown its ‘Don’t be Evil’ mantra”. I think this misses the point. Either way, Matt Cutts, who is currently on leave from Google (and it’s unclear whether he’ll actually be back or not), weighed in on the topic on an episode of This Week in Google . He said, “They have tried to have a culture of ‘Don’t be Evil,’ and you can argue over individual incidents, and you know, whether this specific thing is evil or that specific thing is evil, but Google as a whole, whenever I look at the DNA, the people try to do the right things. So if you’ve got Larry marching off in one direction, and you’ve got the rest of the company saying, ‘No, we disagree,’ then they drag their heels, and they create friction. That, in my opinion, helps to move things toward a consensus of maybe a middleground, which works pretty well.” He added, “And then having that critical mass of smart people lets you say, ‘Oh, now I can do voice recognition better. Now I can do image recognition better, and I can unlock all kinds of good applications to improve the world that way…’ It’s a tough call…It’s a good problem to have, I guess.” Here’s the full episode. This takes place roughly 28 minutes in, but the discussion about this whole topic lasts for quite a bit. The episode also has a lot of discussion about Cutts’ future with Google . Cutts thinks Google tries not to be evil. Do you believe him? What are some specific areas that you think the company needs to improve on in that regard? Share in the comments . Image via YouTube The post Has Google Lived Up To Its ‘Don’t Be Evil’ Mantra? appeared first on WebProNews .

Nov 3 2014

Matt Cutts Won’t Be Back At Google Any Time Soon

Back in July, Google’s head of webspam Matt Cutts announced that he was taking an extended leave from work to enjoy his personal life. On Friday, he revealed in a tweet (via Search Engine Roundtable ) that he won’t be back to work at all this year. I'm planning to extend my leave into 2015: https://t.co/T5adq50x4L — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) November 1, 2014 Cutts didn’t really elaborate on why he’s extending his leave, but if you could do it, why not, right? He did say this on his blog back in July: I wanted to let folks know that I’m about to take a few months of leave. When I joined Google, my wife and I agreed that I would work for 4-5 years, and then she’d get to see more of me. I talked about this as recently as last month and as early as 2006. And now, almost fifteen years later I’d like to be there for my wife more. I know she’d like me to be around more too, and not just physically present while my mind is still on work. So we’re going to take some time off for a few months. My leave starts next week. Currently I’m scheduled to be gone through October. Thanks to a deep bench of smart engineers and spam fighters, the webspam team is in more-than-capable hands. Seriously, they’re much better at spam fighting than I am, so don’t worry on that score. In Matt’s absence, the industry had relied on updates from people like Google Webmaster Trends analysts John Mueller and Pierre Far. There have been both new Panda and Penguin updates to roll out during Matt’s leave. It remains to be seen when Cutts will return, but there’s not really that much of 2014 left. I’d expect him to return after the New Year. We’ll see. Webmasters must be itching for more of Cutts’ famous YouTube videos. Image via YouTube

Nov 3 2014

Matt Cutts Won’t Be Back At Google Any Time Soon

Back in July, Google’s head of webspam Matt Cutts announced that he was taking an extended leave from work to enjoy his personal life. On Friday, he revealed in a tweet (via Search Engine Roundtable ) that he won’t be back to work at all this year. I'm planning to extend my leave into 2015: https://t.co/T5adq50x4L — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) November 1, 2014 Cutts didn’t really elaborate on why he’s extending his leave, but if you could do it, why not, right? He did say this on his blog back in July: I wanted to let folks know that I’m about to take a few months of leave. When I joined Google, my wife and I agreed that I would work for 4-5 years, and then she’d get to see more of me. I talked about this as recently as last month and as early as 2006. And now, almost fifteen years later I’d like to be there for my wife more. I know she’d like me to be around more too, and not just physically present while my mind is still on work. So we’re going to take some time off for a few months. My leave starts next week. Currently I’m scheduled to be gone through October. Thanks to a deep bench of smart engineers and spam fighters, the webspam team is in more-than-capable hands. Seriously, they’re much better at spam fighting than I am, so don’t worry on that score. In Matt’s absence, the industry had relied on updates from people like Google Webmaster Trends analysts John Mueller and Pierre Far. There have been both new Panda and Penguin updates to roll out during Matt’s leave. It remains to be seen when Cutts will return, but there’s not really that much of 2014 left. I’d expect him to return after the New Year. We’ll see. Webmasters must be itching for more of Cutts’ famous YouTube videos. Image via YouTube The post Matt Cutts Won’t Be Back At Google Any Time Soon appeared first on WebProNews .

Oct 7 2014

Google Is Not Going To Be Updating Toolbar PageRank Anymore

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It looks like Google Toolbar PageRank may officially be a thing of the past. This will no doubt please some, while upsetting others, but for better or worse, don’t expect it to be updated anymore. Do you think Toolbar PageRank should die, or do you still find a use for it? Let us know in the comments . Over the last couple of years, Google has already been updating PageRank less frequently. In fact, it’s not even been updated this year at all. The last update came in December . Even before that, Google had given indication that it wouldn’t update it before the end of last year, if at all, though it ultimately did. By that point, many had assumed Toolbar PageRank was going away because it had been so long since the previous update after years of regularity. Before the December update, it hadn’t been updated since the prior February. Historically, they had updated it every three or four months. Google’s Matt Cutts tweeted a year ago that he would be surprised if there was another PR update before 2014. Well, there was, but that was the last one. It’s now been ten months. Google’s John Mueller actually addressed the lack of an update in a Google+ Hangout (via Search Engine Roundtable ). PageRank is something that we haven’t updated for I think over a year now, and we’re probably not going to be updating it going forward, at least in the Toolbar PageRank… He said that at 20 minutes and 30 seconds into this video. Of course Mueller is incorrect in that it’s been over a year, but he seems to be under the impression that Toolbar PageRank is dead. He wasn’t exactly making an announcement, but discussing it in relation to somebody’s question about a particular site’s rankings, so it’s probably not out of the realm of possibility that an another update could sneak through, but it sounds like it’s not going to happen. A year ago, Cutts discussed PageRank in this video: “Over time, the Toolbar PageRank is getting less usage just because recent versions of Internet Explorer don’t really let you install toolbars as easily, and Chrome doesn’t have the toolbar so over time, the PageRank indicator will probably start to go away a little bit,” he said. In another video earlier in the year, he said, “Maybe it will go away on its own or eventually we’ll reach the point where we say, ‘Okay, maintaining this is not worth the amount of work.’” So the writing has been on the wall for quite some time. Still, people have continued to monitor PageRank, and look forward to seeing that data refreshed. The last update was actually kind of a side effect of sorts. As Cutts noted at the time, the team was fixing a different backend service, and did a PR update along the way. He said it wasn’t an accident, but that it was just easier for them to push the new PR data rather than keeping the old data. Maybe that will happen again. Do you want to see Google continue to update Toolbar PageRank? Let us know in the comments .

Jul 3 2014

Google Continues Link Network Attack

It would appear that Google’s attack on European link networks is not over (if it ever will be). Google has been penalizing link networks on the Internet with a vengeance over the past year or so, with much of the focus on Europe. The company says it has now penalized two more from Poland. This week, Google posted about reconsideration requests on its Poland blog, and then Googler Karolina Kruszyńska told Rusty Brick they took action on two networks in Poland: @rustybrick We took action on two link networks. — Karolina Kruszyńska (@karo_krus) July 3, 2014 She didn’t name the networks (at least publicly). Google’s Matt Cutts also tweeted about it: @bart_goralewicz Yes. I didn't tweet about it because people have been asking us to be more positive, but yes. — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) July 3, 2014 I wonder who those people are. Back in February, Google said it was focusing on networks in Poland. Since then, it was gone after various other networks in Europe, and also in Japan . Image via YouTube

Jun 18 2014

Google Looks At Apparent IE Sponsored Post Spam

Tech blogger/investor Michael Arrington revealed that someone who claimed to be a “social strategist on behalf of Microsoft” tried to get him to write about Internet Explorer for payment. The message he got says: Hi Michael, I work as a social strategist on behalf of Microsoft, and I wanted to invite you to collaborate on a sponsored post opportunity for Internet Explorer. We love your aesthetic and blogging style, and think you’d be the perfect partner to spread the word on the new Internet Explorer browsing experience! The new Internet Explorer is a brand new experience with many different features. This reworked Internet Explorer lets you search smarter and do more with its cool new features, such as multitasking, pinnable sites, and full-screen browsing. In this program, we are looking to spread the word about the new Internet Explorer web experience in a cool, visual way, which is where you come in! Internet Explorer has teamed up with many partners in gaming, entertainment, and more, and we’d love to see you talk about your opinions on these collaborations. If you accept our invitation to work on this program, we would like for you to write a blog post by July 10th, in addtion to sharing links to the new Internet Explorer across your social channels. Compesnsation for this post is available, and there will also be ample opportunities for fun prizes and rewards throughout the duration of the program. To learn all about the details of this program, please visit this page (http://unbouncepages.com/7975010c-edb3-11e3-b3e0-12314000cce6/). I look forward to working together. As Arrington notes, “This is just layers of stupid.” This is, after all, the founder of TechCrunch, who has referred to people being paid to shill products on their blogs as “pollution” in the past. When Arrington responded, asking if this was real, they replied that they weren’t sure how Arrington wound up on the list, and “Go TechCrunch!” The URL in the message has since been taken offline, and Google is even investigating what could be webpspam from its biggest competitor. Google’s Matt Cutts tweeted: @SocialChorus I'd like to talk about your sponsored post offer at http://t.co/zDGCNeGiPV as well as http://t.co/WKcCAp7f6u — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) June 18, 2014 He was then in contact with SocialChorus program strategist Gregg Hanano. @mattcutts Thank you for reaching out Matt. I just sent an email back and cc'd some more employees to better answer your questions. — Gregg Hanano (@gregghanano) June 18, 2014 @dannysullivan I've emailed the point of contact from http://t.co/zDGCNeGiPV asking for more info while the webspam team investigates. — Matt Cutts (@mattcutts) June 18, 2014 As you may recall, Google actually had to penalize its own Chrome browser a while back for pretty much the same thing. The story there was that an outside agency was soliciting such posts on the company’s behalf. It doesn’t look like Internet Explorer has suffered such a penalty so far. Of course, Google’s competition with Microsoft adds a whole other layer to this. Microsoft is a big part of the FairSearch lobbying group that constantly tries to see antitrust regulation brought against Google. To be continued…

Jun 4 2014

Here’s Another Matt Cutts Floating Head Video (About The Most Common SEO Mistake)

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We’ll just keep this one short like the video itself. The most common SEO mistake you can make, according to Matt Cutts, is not having a website. Hopefully you feel you’ve gotten your money’s worth on that one. Once again , Cutts uses the ol’ floating head trick. I wonder how many more of these things he’s got. Image via YouTube

Jun 4 2014

Here’s Another Matt Cutts Floating Head Video (About The Most Common SEO Mistake)

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We’ll just keep this one short like the video itself. The most common SEO mistake you can make, according to Matt Cutts, is not having a website. Hopefully you feel you’ve gotten your money’s worth on that one. Once again , Cutts uses the ol’ floating head trick. I wonder how many more of these things he’s got. Image via YouTube The post Here’s Another Matt Cutts Floating Head Video (About The Most Common SEO Mistake) appeared first on WebProNews .

Jun 2 2014

Google Talks Determining Quality When There Aren’t Links

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Google has a new Webmaster Help video out talking about how it looks at quality of content that doesn’t have many links pointing to it. Specifically, Matt Cutts takes on the following question: How does Google determine quality content if there aren’t a lot of links to a post? “In general, that sort of reverts back to the way search engines were before links,” he says. “You’re pretty much judging based on the text on the page. Google has a lot of stuff to sort of say OK, the first time we see a word on a page, count it a little bit more. The next time, a little more, but not a ton more. And that after a while, we say, ‘You know what? We’ve seen this word. Maybe this page is about this topic,’ but it doesn’t really help you to keep repeating that keyword over and over and over again. In fact, at some point, we might view that as keyword stuffing, and then the page would actually do less well – not as well as just a moderate number of mentions of a particular piece of text.” He continues, “We do have other ways. In theory we could say, ‘Well, does it sit on a domain that seems to be somewhat reputable? There are different ways you can try to assess the quality of content, but typically, if you go back to a user is typing possibly some really rare phrase, if there are no other pages on the web that have that particular phrase, even if there’s not that any links, then that page can be returned because we think it might be relevant. It might be topical to what the user is looking for. It can be kind of tough, but at that point, we sort of have to fall back, and assess based on the quality of the content that’s actually on the text – that’s actually on the page.” A few years ago, after the Panda update was first launched, Google shared a list of questions one could ask themselves about their content to get an idea of how Google might view it in terms of quality. You might want to check that out if you haven’t yet. Image via YouTube The post Google Talks Determining Quality When There Aren’t Links appeared first on WebProNews .