Hey Publishers, Google May Get All Up in Your Business Model

By Alexis C. Madrigal

I love what Google has done to defend the world's search engine against content farm nonsense. But based on comments by Google's Matt Cutts reported on Search Engine Land, the latest changes to the search engine's algorithm could step on some publishers' toes. Check these out:

Cutts said Google is testing algorithms that determine "what are the things that really matter, how much content is above the fold." ...

"If you have ads obscuring your content, you might want to think about it," asking publishers to consider, "Do they see content or something else that's distracting or annoying?"

As a pro-user move, I think it's hard to argue with Cutts, but I'm not on the business side of a publisher trying to make money. If I was, I think I might be asking, "Why should Google get to determine what the right mix -- or placement -- of ads and content is?"

This article available online at:

http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2011/11/hey-publishers-google-may-get-all-up-in-your-business-model/248198/