google’s pocket

I probably could have written a better comment on this but Matt’s use of the royal ‘we’ never fails to set my teeth on edge, plus the inevitable fanboy fawning was making me feel slightly unwell. What I was driving at is that if sponsored links were ever going to do people real harm in Google (which isn’t proven, by the way; do you know of any blogs that have been downgraded because of sponsored links in their theme? I’m genuinely interested. So far all we know is that Google is penalising people for running Text-Link Ads and participating in blog networks such as b5media.) that would have killed sponsored themes without any intervention from Matt. And we would still have themes.wordpress.net, unless of course Matt managed to find some other excuse to kill it.

If people are gaming the system that’s Google’s problem, and it was always Google’s job to fix it.

I sort of love this comment over at Andy Beard’s post:

Of course, here is the part that drives me bonkers. Little ol soon to be Google Partner (just a rumor) WordPress.com, didn’t get smacked, with all of those subdomains, weirdo linkage, unnatural linking. Hmmmm.

for its wild speculation and usage of the word ‘bonkers’. And because surely wordpress.com is one of the biggest blog networks out there. Of course, wordpress.com is also a big Adsense client, stamps down hard on any other form of advertising or paid linking and has an owner who loses no time in leaping when Google says ‘jump’, so if Google turn a blind eye to their peculiar linking practices it shouldn’t surprise anyone. Google doesn’t need to buy Automattic; it already gets to dictate company policy.

I don’t want this place to go to Yahoo. I really don’t want this place to go to Yahoo. But what if it’s the only way to get Matt out of Google’s pocket?

10 Comments »

  1. Andy Beard said

    Well at least if Google bought it then you would be allowed to run adsense and feedburner.

    You would also be able to update code a little more, for free.

    I have been questioning the tag pages for the last year. Google would probably class them as linkfarm if you controlled them all, and if you don’t it is worse.

  2. drmiketemp said

    Wank, I hate to trouble you but since Matt added in gravatars into his blog, it all goes to hell with Netscape 7.2 and the commenter’s name, their gravatar and their comment don’t line up. Which comment is yours?

    Oh and Yahoo is revamping their 360 service. Just something to keep in the back of your mind.

  3. i think the whole thing is more telling about google than matt. the behavior is anti-competitive, and stunts like this are only going to decrease _everyone’s_ dependence on google. matt will follow in time. i think the most interesting thing is that both my comment and yours passed the “great firewall”.

  4. Kissing Bandit said

    Actually, it’s pretty telling about Matt too since my first comment didn’t pass the “great firewall”; it mysteriously disappeared although the second one containing the links has disappeared.

    Here’s what I wrote, since I knew from past events, to keep a record of it just in case:

    Maybe you should have a look at some of the more well-known bloggers and SEOs — it’s FUD. And most of the penalties have nothing to do with “paid links”.

    I guess that hit a nerve.

    And the fact of the matter is, Google does have a hard time detecting “paid links” — the only thing it can do is train its algorithm to look for “unnatural” links and link growth and relies on competitors snitches.

    Skilled link builders can get around Google’s (somewhat asinine) rampage on the linkosphere, so it’s not really about “paid links”. Want to get around the penalty? Just be more careful with how you buy your links and make sure your transactions are under the radar.

    Of course, since the the WP.com homepage still has a PR8, it’s safe to assume Matt can say whatever he wants and get away with it.

    -KB

  5. i think the most interesting thing is that both my comment and yours passed the “great firewall”.

    Perhaps Matt was too busy fending off scurrilous rumours about his personal life to censor moderate with his usual thoroughness.

    @drmike: the comment mentioning themes.wordpress.net is mine. Assuming it’s still there, of course.

  6. drmiketemp said

    Thanks wank. Funny how Matt’s blog is now fixed and displays correctly shortly after I comment here on it.

    WordPress community took such a strong stand

    Hmm, I didn’t know that Matt was a community.

  7. Of course Matt is a community!

    1) Various sources (e.g. Automattic, the wordpress podcast) claim that wordpress.org is ‘community-owned’
    2) Matt owns wordpress.org
    3) Therefore, Matt is a community

  8. AhmedF said

    Excellent logic there [post right before mine]🙂

  9. […] need yet another sploggy Blogger. you know, it already has one. and .com fits just perfectly into its back pocket as it is now. yeah, ain’t broke […]

  10. […] an advertiser of this sponsored link to the “community owned site” (wordpress.org/hosting) bought a ’wordpress.com’ keyword bid from […]

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