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Google to whack blogs?

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Andrew Orlowski looks at how Google intends to solve the blog “problem”.

Google is to create a search tool specifically for weblogs, most likely giving material generated by the self-publishing tools its own tab. […]Bloggers too are likely to welcome their very own tab as a legitimization of the publishing format. But many others will breathe a sigh of relief as blogs disappear from the main index.
“I just want a search engine that works,” laments Chris Roddy, a politics and linguistics undergraduate at the University of Emory.
“I can get a Google search with porn turned off; why can’t I get blogs turned off too?” he asked on Slashdot. […]One group is likely to protest long and hard, however: and that’s people who have taken advantage of this quirk to use Google as their primary promotion channel or reputation creator. While folk whose reputations have been forged before the dawn of the blogroll will not be affected, and need not worry, the reaction may be predictable.

I’m not sure whether or not this is a good thing. Graham Freeman appears unconvinced:

There’s a sliding scale of credibility amongst news sources, from the papers of record through your usual local angle grinders down to the bottom-feeding ranks of partisan opinion merchants. Similiarly, weblog authoritativeness also runs the gamut from those who actually know they’re talking about, through to ill-informed knuckleheads like myself.
Believe it or not, a minority of webloggers actually discuss things in a way that might be actually useful to people banging in a particular search phrase. Why punish them along with the majority (myself included) who use this or that personal publishing system to deposit their neural bilge into the noosphere? It’s very much an attempt to empty the glass by breaking it.

Graham has other tips on how to make your blog more useful for searchers as well.

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About James Russell

  • http://w6daily.winn.com/ Phillip Winn

    Evan Williams, creator of Blogger and Google employee, says that Orlowski is full of crap.

    There are a myriad of ways to deal with a noise problem if in fact Google believes that there is one. However, there is no way I know of to accurately identify a weblog programmatically. Sure, if it’s hosted, or a Blogger blog, they’ll know. But how do they identify MovableType blogs?

    And what is a blog? Is Blogcritics a blog? What about Metafilter, or Slashdot?

    All of those questions will be true even if Google creates an additional search tab to single out blogs, a la Blogdex, and services like Weblogs.com could be helpful, but it suggests that removing blogs from Google’s main page is more complicated than it sounds.