99 thoughts on “Can Google please fix my search?

  1. Stephane said “To John, the sensationalism is just not the case.”

    Now you’re arguing about Robert’s trivial reason for asking everyone to invest their time in this discussion. This is another example of how lengthy-yet-vague messages encourage each reader to go off on different tangents.

    Just get to the point, and get your core idea across while reducing reader costs. That’s the recurring theme here. Applies even more to video than text.

    Robert wrote: “No. I want the most relevant result to come to the top of the page.”

    That’s why *YOU* should summarize your comments yourself. I tried, but didn’t quite get your message. It helps if you define your comments in functional terms — right now readers still need to decrypt your intended sense of “most relevant”. You haven’t yet attempted to check whether your current mystery wish is appropriate to the world at large… you’re talking about your links, your content, instead of weblogs in general, distinguishing “weblog” from “newspaper”, and so on.

    Editing for the reader’s benefit… that’s still the chokepoint here.

    “What’s ironic is that Google’s appreciation for old pages more than new ones is keeping me (and other old school bloggers) in power positions where we get most of the traffic.”

    This is another non sequitur. All older links to you just oppress all the other “robert scoble” people in the world, and do not affect other people writing publicly. But perhaps you meant “when someone searches on ‘tech weblog’ they shouldn’t see me”, which is another digression on an unsummarized tangent.

  2. Stephane said “To John, the sensationalism is just not the case.”

    Now you’re arguing about Robert’s trivial reason for asking everyone to invest their time in this discussion. This is another example of how lengthy-yet-vague messages encourage each reader to go off on different tangents.

    Just get to the point, and get your core idea across while reducing reader costs. That’s the recurring theme here. Applies even more to video than text.

    Robert wrote: “No. I want the most relevant result to come to the top of the page.”

    That’s why *YOU* should summarize your comments yourself. I tried, but didn’t quite get your message. It helps if you define your comments in functional terms — right now readers still need to decrypt your intended sense of “most relevant”. You haven’t yet attempted to check whether your current mystery wish is appropriate to the world at large… you’re talking about your links, your content, instead of weblogs in general, distinguishing “weblog” from “newspaper”, and so on.

    Editing for the reader’s benefit… that’s still the chokepoint here.

    “What’s ironic is that Google’s appreciation for old pages more than new ones is keeping me (and other old school bloggers) in power positions where we get most of the traffic.”

    This is another non sequitur. All older links to you just oppress all the other “robert scoble” people in the world, and do not affect other people writing publicly. But perhaps you meant “when someone searches on ‘tech weblog’ they shouldn’t see me”, which is another digression on an unsummarized tangent.

  3. > unfortunately my old blog is on a UserLand site and I no longer have control of it.

    This is indeed the problem with hosted services.

    Surely someone here could write a sitescraper that outputs some sort of WordPress-format import, to put all the content (including comments) into your WordPress system?

    Robert, how about you ask people to do that for you, with a prize for the first person?

  4. > unfortunately my old blog is on a UserLand site and I no longer have control of it.

    This is indeed the problem with hosted services.

    Surely someone here could write a sitescraper that outputs some sort of WordPress-format import, to put all the content (including comments) into your WordPress system?

    Robert, how about you ask people to do that for you, with a prize for the first person?

  5. It is so simple to improve the results for “Robert Scoble”, and increase the search traffic your old posts receive.

    All these things actually add to your reader experience. Google’s No.1 advice to webmasters is design your website for readers, not search engines.

    Add monthly archives to the sidebar
    Add related posts to single pages

    Create an “about me” page and link from that page to Wikipedia

    Remove the link to your old blogroll, and create a new on on this domain (it is giving significant relevance to the old domain)

    Link through to your Photo Blog with a redirect such that it isn’t followed.

    Think about the TechMeMe link – are they reciprocating “in kind” – it seems to me they don’t carry every one of your stories

    I don’t advocate making Google the same as MSN or Yahoo. I love the fact that each search engine gives me different results.

  6. It is so simple to improve the results for “Robert Scoble”, and increase the search traffic your old posts receive.

    All these things actually add to your reader experience. Google’s No.1 advice to webmasters is design your website for readers, not search engines.

    Add monthly archives to the sidebar
    Add related posts to single pages

    Create an “about me” page and link from that page to Wikipedia

    Remove the link to your old blogroll, and create a new on on this domain (it is giving significant relevance to the old domain)

    Link through to your Photo Blog with a redirect such that it isn’t followed.

    Think about the TechMeMe link – are they reciprocating “in kind” – it seems to me they don’t carry every one of your stories

    I don’t advocate making Google the same as MSN or Yahoo. I love the fact that each search engine gives me different results.

  7. >>Robert wants Google’s results ranking to assign his old links’ weight to his new URL.

    No. I want the most relevant result to come to the top of the page. Searching for “Robert Scoble” should give you my most recently updated page. At least it should give you a page that’s been updated more recently than a year and a half ago.

    What’s ironic is that Google’s appreciation for old pages more than new ones is keeping me (and other old school bloggers) in power positions where we get most of the traffic.

    What I’m asking Google to do would make it easier for new bloggers to kick me off of the A list.

    Think about that one for a while.

  8. >>Robert wants Google’s results ranking to assign his old links’ weight to his new URL.

    No. I want the most relevant result to come to the top of the page. Searching for “Robert Scoble” should give you my most recently updated page. At least it should give you a page that’s been updated more recently than a year and a half ago.

    What’s ironic is that Google’s appreciation for old pages more than new ones is keeping me (and other old school bloggers) in power positions where we get most of the traffic.

    What I’m asking Google to do would make it easier for new bloggers to kick me off of the A list.

    Think about that one for a while.

  9. To Robert, I find it funny that you need to spend time arguing those who oppose common sense. It reveals how many developer types are commenting…

    To John, the sensationalism is just not the case. If you read my blog, you’ll quickly see I am not shy to say WTF when I discover something fishy that could impact a ton of people. If Google were to implement a mood detection factor (hint, hint), that would be more obvious.

    To Matt Cutts, thanks for answering again but I still disagree. Here are my points,

    1) With that line of reasoning, where you justify it’s better if Robert does the “heavy lifting” for Google, in the name of Google, then there is still a flaw : Google.fr returns the right top result.
    What I am pointing out is not only that “top result = most relevant result”, it’s also the inconsistency depending on your IP address.

    2) The case of multiple “Matt Cutts” does not work. It is perfectly fine that all Matt Cutts of the world compete in the top results, and that the order changes according to popularity over time. That’s not what I am talking about. Google makes Robert Scoble makes compete with himself : that’s a bug, period.

    3) IP address and country language : it appears the user agent string is not used by Google. Or the weight is so low that it has little impact.

    4) As for the lack of visual cues, I am sure that if someone is US does a search for football, and YOU are doing some culture filtering on his behalf, then you may want to select the radio option that makes it clear that you are selecting a subset of results of your choice. This radio option cannot be “web pages” obviously. Because if that were the case, then the user would have no way to force an unfiltered search. That’s what I want as a user. I don’t think selecting the right radio option below the search box clutters up the page, since there is nothing added.

  10. To Robert, I find it funny that you need to spend time arguing those who oppose common sense. It reveals how many developer types are commenting…

    To John, the sensationalism is just not the case. If you read my blog, you’ll quickly see I am not shy to say WTF when I discover something fishy that could impact a ton of people. If Google were to implement a mood detection factor (hint, hint), that would be more obvious.

    To Matt Cutts, thanks for answering again but I still disagree. Here are my points,

    1) With that line of reasoning, where you justify it’s better if Robert does the “heavy lifting” for Google, in the name of Google, then there is still a flaw : Google.fr returns the right top result.
    What I am pointing out is not only that “top result = most relevant result”, it’s also the inconsistency depending on your IP address.

    2) The case of multiple “Matt Cutts” does not work. It is perfectly fine that all Matt Cutts of the world compete in the top results, and that the order changes according to popularity over time. That’s not what I am talking about. Google makes Robert Scoble makes compete with himself : that’s a bug, period.

    3) IP address and country language : it appears the user agent string is not used by Google. Or the weight is so low that it has little impact.

    4) As for the lack of visual cues, I am sure that if someone is US does a search for football, and YOU are doing some culture filtering on his behalf, then you may want to select the radio option that makes it clear that you are selecting a subset of results of your choice. This radio option cannot be “web pages” obviously. Because if that were the case, then the user would have no way to force an unfiltered search. That’s what I want as a user. I don’t think selecting the right radio option below the search box clutters up the page, since there is nothing added.

  11. Matt, I think you are taking a simplistic approach. There are various kinds of website. For some old if gold and for others new is better.

    So ideally a search engine must sense that the old website of Robert is a Blog. A blog which is not updated for a year is a bit less relevant than a blog which is updated a week ago. It is immaterial whether both these Robert Scoble are the same. It is also immaterial who has control on the old website. It is also immaterial whether Robert wants to do something to make Google work easier by putting a link structure of Google’s preference. Search is Google business and not Robert’s. Since Windows Live Search can figure out a mechanism to put Robert’s new blog over old, it proves that there is a way, except Google has to work a little harder to find that way for itself. The discussion here could be helpful.

  12. Matt, I think you are taking a simplistic approach. There are various kinds of website. For some old if gold and for others new is better.

    So ideally a search engine must sense that the old website of Robert is a Blog. A blog which is not updated for a year is a bit less relevant than a blog which is updated a week ago. It is immaterial whether both these Robert Scoble are the same. It is also immaterial who has control on the old website. It is also immaterial whether Robert wants to do something to make Google work easier by putting a link structure of Google’s preference. Search is Google business and not Robert’s. Since Windows Live Search can figure out a mechanism to put Robert’s new blog over old, it proves that there is a way, except Google has to work a little harder to find that way for itself. The discussion here could be helpful.

  13. “But, if people are looking for “Robert Scoble” well, then, Google should sense that they are looking for a person. The fact that there’s a “person” named Robert Scoble”

    “I think it’s just fine to be a little sensationalistic in the headline. Why? Cause it gets your attention”

    Well then, titles like “Google Eats Little Children” are more sensationalistic. They also don’t eat up other readers’ time in the process.

    Summary: Robert wants Google’s results ranking to assign his old links’ weight to his new URL.
    (No discussion on whether this would be a good and safe general thing for search engines to do — discussion is just about the one case.)

  14. “But, if people are looking for “Robert Scoble” well, then, Google should sense that they are looking for a person. The fact that there’s a “person” named Robert Scoble”

    “I think it’s just fine to be a little sensationalistic in the headline. Why? Cause it gets your attention”

    Well then, titles like “Google Eats Little Children” are more sensationalistic. They also don’t eat up other readers’ time in the process.

    Summary: Robert wants Google’s results ranking to assign his old links’ weight to his new URL.
    (No discussion on whether this would be a good and safe general thing for search engines to do — discussion is just about the one case.)

  15. John:>> If you’re asking that Google’s algorithm weight newer links more highly, then say so. But inflammatory linkbait like “fix google” just draws attention, to useless effect, and cuts the value readers may hope to find in your words in the future.

    Good point. But, when it comes to a bad relevancy result, which is what this is, since when you’re looking for someone you want to find the most recently-updated site that that person has made, I think it’s just fine to be a little sensationalistic in the headline. Why? Cause it gets your attention, which got you to participate in this conversation. That helps us all when it comes to figuring out how Google works and how we can urge those who control its algorithms to tweak such.

  16. John:>> If you’re asking that Google’s algorithm weight newer links more highly, then say so. But inflammatory linkbait like “fix google” just draws attention, to useless effect, and cuts the value readers may hope to find in your words in the future.

    Good point. But, when it comes to a bad relevancy result, which is what this is, since when you’re looking for someone you want to find the most recently-updated site that that person has made, I think it’s just fine to be a little sensationalistic in the headline. Why? Cause it gets your attention, which got you to participate in this conversation. That helps us all when it comes to figuring out how Google works and how we can urge those who control its algorithms to tweak such.

  17. Matt: I want Google to bring up the most relevant page for whatever search people are doing.

    So, if they are looking for “Corporate Weblog Manifesto” I’d expect that Google will continue pointing here: http://scoble.weblogs.com/2003/02/26.html since that’s where I originally linked to it.

    But, if people are looking for “Robert Scoble” well, then, Google should sense that they are looking for a person. The fact that there’s a “person” named Robert Scoble who hasn’t updated his Web site for more than a year should tell Google that that site is less relevant for names than, say, the “new” Scobleizer site that HAS been updated recently.

    Relevancy is hard. And, no, I don’t want Google to remove my old stuff. Just, maybe, make it a little less relevant than newer stuff, particularly when it comes to names.

  18. Matt: I want Google to bring up the most relevant page for whatever search people are doing.

    So, if they are looking for “Corporate Weblog Manifesto” I’d expect that Google will continue pointing here: http://scoble.weblogs.com/2003/02/26.html since that’s where I originally linked to it.

    But, if people are looking for “Robert Scoble” well, then, Google should sense that they are looking for a person. The fact that there’s a “person” named Robert Scoble who hasn’t updated his Web site for more than a year should tell Google that that site is less relevant for names than, say, the “new” Scobleizer site that HAS been updated recently.

    Relevancy is hard. And, no, I don’t want Google to remove my old stuff. Just, maybe, make it a little less relevant than newer stuff, particularly when it comes to names.

  19. Stephane, I understand your points from @36. I do believe that many people expect google.fr to show different results from google.com. And it’s true that we don’t provide visual cues that we’re doing different things based on someone’s IP address, or the language/country that they selected to search. On the other hand, if we provided visual cues for everything that Google does, our search results page would be very cluttered and busy. :) Instead, we usually choose to try to return good results given what we know from the query, and to keep the output simple. I don’t think many (any?) other search engines tell all the factors that change how they return their results, nor do they include messages such as “You are visiting from an IP address in France; you will get different search results.” Or at least, I’m not aware of any other engines doing that. :)

    As far as the argument that we should recognize and combine Scoble’s old site and his new site, I understand the thought that we should recognize that one is a newer site and return that. However, bear in mind that there are several other people in the world with the name Matt Cutts, for example. If we were to combine two sites that were really owned by different people, that mistake would be much worse. That’s why we tend to leave it in the hands of site owners to use a permanent (301) redirect.

    I realize that isn’t the optimal solution for e.g. people who moved from a freehost to their own domain, because most freehosts make it hard to do a permanent (301) redirect. That’s partly why we’ve started giving site owners the ability to indicate their preferred domain in our webmaster console. It’s not perfect (right now a site owner can indicate whether they like their site with or without the “www”), but it’s a step in the right direction.

    Of course, even allowing site owners to combine two sites won’t work if the site owner has no control over one of their sites any more–which it sounds like is the situation with Robert. At that point, you’ve reached the situation where someone says “I used to be at this site and I’ve moved,” and Google says “How can you prove that you used to control this site? Can you modify the pages or put a redirect in place?” And if the answer to that is no, that’s a dangerous situation, because person A could claim that person B’s site is really theirs. That’s fundamentally he-said/she-said situation, and most of the time it’s not scalable for Google to investigate those situations; the correct answers would be to use a permanent redirect or to be able to prove ownership of the site.

    Anyway, now I’m curious. Robert, in this case it’s clear that it really was your old site. If you had a choice, would you like search engines to manually combine your old site and your new site? Of course, even that is problematic, since your old posts don’t exist on your new site. If someone did a search for text that only existed in an old post (not for the words [Robert Scoble]), would you rather return the post at the old site, or return some 404 page on the new site?

    Probably you’d want the post on the old site to come up. So I’m guessing your final pref would be to keep indexing/returning the posts on your old site, but to return your new site for [robert scoble], yes?

  20. Stephane, I understand your points from @36. I do believe that many people expect google.fr to show different results from google.com. And it’s true that we don’t provide visual cues that we’re doing different things based on someone’s IP address, or the language/country that they selected to search. On the other hand, if we provided visual cues for everything that Google does, our search results page would be very cluttered and busy. :) Instead, we usually choose to try to return good results given what we know from the query, and to keep the output simple. I don’t think many (any?) other search engines tell all the factors that change how they return their results, nor do they include messages such as “You are visiting from an IP address in France; you will get different search results.” Or at least, I’m not aware of any other engines doing that. :)

    As far as the argument that we should recognize and combine Scoble’s old site and his new site, I understand the thought that we should recognize that one is a newer site and return that. However, bear in mind that there are several other people in the world with the name Matt Cutts, for example. If we were to combine two sites that were really owned by different people, that mistake would be much worse. That’s why we tend to leave it in the hands of site owners to use a permanent (301) redirect.

    I realize that isn’t the optimal solution for e.g. people who moved from a freehost to their own domain, because most freehosts make it hard to do a permanent (301) redirect. That’s partly why we’ve started giving site owners the ability to indicate their preferred domain in our webmaster console. It’s not perfect (right now a site owner can indicate whether they like their site with or without the “www”), but it’s a step in the right direction.

    Of course, even allowing site owners to combine two sites won’t work if the site owner has no control over one of their sites any more–which it sounds like is the situation with Robert. At that point, you’ve reached the situation where someone says “I used to be at this site and I’ve moved,” and Google says “How can you prove that you used to control this site? Can you modify the pages or put a redirect in place?” And if the answer to that is no, that’s a dangerous situation, because person A could claim that person B’s site is really theirs. That’s fundamentally he-said/she-said situation, and most of the time it’s not scalable for Google to investigate those situations; the correct answers would be to use a permanent redirect or to be able to prove ownership of the site.

    Anyway, now I’m curious. Robert, in this case it’s clear that it really was your old site. If you had a choice, would you like search engines to manually combine your old site and your new site? Of course, even that is problematic, since your old posts don’t exist on your new site. If someone did a search for text that only existed in an old post (not for the words [Robert Scoble]), would you rather return the post at the old site, or return some 404 page on the new site?

    Probably you’d want the post on the old site to come up. So I’m guessing your final pref would be to keep indexing/returning the posts on your old site, but to return your new site for [robert scoble], yes?

  21. Lots of other commenters have pointed this out, but a lot of the rest of us who believe Robert’s words may have value, have had to read the whole thing to learn this.

    scoble.weblogs.com has tons more inbound links than scobleizer.com, and odds are strong that it is much higher with anchor text “robert scoble”.

    If you’re asking that Google’s algorithm weight newer links more highly, then say so. But inflammatory linkbait like “fix google” just draws attention, to useless effect, and cuts the value readers may hope to find in your words in the future.

  22. Lots of other commenters have pointed this out, but a lot of the rest of us who believe Robert’s words may have value, have had to read the whole thing to learn this.

    scoble.weblogs.com has tons more inbound links than scobleizer.com, and odds are strong that it is much higher with anchor text “robert scoble”.

    If you’re asking that Google’s algorithm weight newer links more highly, then say so. But inflammatory linkbait like “fix google” just draws attention, to useless effect, and cuts the value readers may hope to find in your words in the future.

  23. Google already allow webmasters to get PRIMARY domain name to be used in links for search results if content is same.

    Bad this also need Robert to put some html file on host or meta tags at home page and will result that instead of two current results with Robert blogs – users will see only one.

    IMHO, it’s better to have two top-10 links instead of one ;-)

  24. Google already allow webmasters to get PRIMARY domain name to be used in links for search results if content is same.

    Bad this also need Robert to put some html file on host or meta tags at home page and will result that instead of two current results with Robert blogs – users will see only one.

    IMHO, it’s better to have two top-10 links instead of one ;-)

  25. @36. Logically I agree with 2. What google algorithm is, whether it is gamed or not does not define what is the relevant link. It is the other way round. So all the explanations, including that of Matt Cutt does not hold water. Whether Robert makes the permanent (301) redirect or not, or whether the old blog has more incoming link does not make his old blog more relevant over the newer one. So when I search Robert Scoble on Google, I as a user do not care about these background issues.

    Ethically I agree with 3 too. But may be it is a default understanding between users and a web-service provider, so may not require an explicit disclosure.

  26. @36. Logically I agree with 2. What google algorithm is, whether it is gamed or not does not define what is the relevant link. It is the other way round. So all the explanations, including that of Matt Cutt does not hold water. Whether Robert makes the permanent (301) redirect or not, or whether the old blog has more incoming link does not make his old blog more relevant over the newer one. So when I search Robert Scoble on Google, I as a user do not care about these background issues.

    Ethically I agree with 3 too. But may be it is a default understanding between users and a web-service provider, so may not require an explicit disclosure.

  27. 1) consistency : Google.fr is different than Google.com. Why? This is a bug.

    2) quality : there is no bias if Google figures out that the top result scoble.weblogs.com is very old. Any human being that would go there would consequently click the link to the newest site, the most relevant site. Since Google touts the top result as most relevant, the fact that it does not do that goes against it. As simple as that.

    3) from Matt Cutts answer using [football] to justify differences in what Google returns based on your IP address, something relevant in principle, Google fails to provide visual cues that it is doing so. The radio buttons below the search box don’t tell me Google is doing a “filtering” for me based on my IP address.

  28. 1) consistency : Google.fr is different than Google.com. Why? This is a bug.

    2) quality : there is no bias if Google figures out that the top result scoble.weblogs.com is very old. Any human being that would go there would consequently click the link to the newest site, the most relevant site. Since Google touts the top result as most relevant, the fact that it does not do that goes against it. As simple as that.

    3) from Matt Cutts answer using [football] to justify differences in what Google returns based on your IP address, something relevant in principle, Google fails to provide visual cues that it is doing so. The radio buttons below the search box don’t tell me Google is doing a “filtering” for me based on my IP address.

  29. Maybe Google just figures it’s OK if they send everyone to your old blog on the first result since your cell number is there for the taking. I can just call you and get your new URL. :-)

    Lesson learned: Don’t host your own blog. If you own the URL, you’re in control.

  30. Maybe Google just figures it’s OK if they send everyone to your old blog on the first result since your cell number is there for the taking. I can just call you and get your new URL. :-)

    Lesson learned: Don’t host your own blog. If you own the URL, you’re in control.

  31. So let me get this, Scoble wants good to tune up their search engine because his new blog doesn’t come up first. Seriously that’s nonsense. Google has way more important things to do then fix a problem which was really created by Mr. Scoble himself.

  32. So let me get this, Scoble wants good to tune up their search engine because his new blog doesn’t come up first. Seriously that’s nonsense. Google has way more important things to do then fix a problem which was really created by Mr. Scoble himself.

  33. what do you mean by fixing? if old site has more incoming links accumulated over time then it should be highr?

    SEO? oh, I see. your way of thinking is so microsofties.

  34. what do you mean by fixing? if old site has more incoming links accumulated over time then it should be highr?

    SEO? oh, I see. your way of thinking is so microsofties.

  35. @24:

    Stephane says:

    “You mean Google can’t do the heavy lifting? It can’t learn by itself? Wow, that’s not what I expect from the best search engine.”

    Stephane, what would you have google learn exactly? that the scoble from scoble.weblogs.com is the same scoble as scobleizer.com? yes i suppose it would be neat if it did that, but you seem to suggest that because it doesn’t it’s somehow some awful flaw (implied by your tone), which i think is hardly the case.

    Also, once it does that, what then? it should automatically redirect the user to the link of the newer blog? why is that desirable behavior? i wouldn’t call that heavy lifting, i’d call that heavy handed lifting, and of the totally “do evil” sort. google shouldn’t be making an assumption about what to redirect and not. There are simple things already in place that handle such tasks.

    Perhaps you’re trying to balance what you see as google getting too much of a free ride in press/popular opinion and want to point out google’s legitimate weaknesses? if so, fair enough, and more power to you, but the particular examples you’ve adduced on yr blog and above are, to many of its users, not flaws but features that work as designed, and/or are not the most important feature they are looking for google to “improve” on or even implement (e.g., determining that scoble.weblogs.com is the old site of scobleizer.com so that they can issue a redirect).

    If i’ve misunderstood yr intent or yr examples, apologies. i’m definitely happy with someone stirring the pot to get the market leader to continue to excel, but nothing that you’ve said so far has made me think anything less of google or caused me to want to try a different search engine.

    the only company that this thread has raised a question about, in my mind, is userland. robert has stated in the past and again here “my old blog is on a UserLand site and I no longer have control of it.” robert is not a go quiet into the night kind of guy so i can’t imagine he hasn’t asked his old colleagues at userland to issue a permanent redirect for him. (?) Regardless of that though, i guess the only question i would have for robert is, even he did have control over his old site, does he really want a permanent redirect? wouldn’t that pretty much make his old content cease to be reachable? or does the redirect only apply to a call to http://scoble.weblogs.com/ but, not, say, to a specific page like http://scoble.weblogs.com/2005/09/30.html.

  36. @24:

    Stephane says:

    “You mean Google can’t do the heavy lifting? It can’t learn by itself? Wow, that’s not what I expect from the best search engine.”

    Stephane, what would you have google learn exactly? that the scoble from scoble.weblogs.com is the same scoble as scobleizer.com? yes i suppose it would be neat if it did that, but you seem to suggest that because it doesn’t it’s somehow some awful flaw (implied by your tone), which i think is hardly the case.

    Also, once it does that, what then? it should automatically redirect the user to the link of the newer blog? why is that desirable behavior? i wouldn’t call that heavy lifting, i’d call that heavy handed lifting, and of the totally “do evil” sort. google shouldn’t be making an assumption about what to redirect and not. There are simple things already in place that handle such tasks.

    Perhaps you’re trying to balance what you see as google getting too much of a free ride in press/popular opinion and want to point out google’s legitimate weaknesses? if so, fair enough, and more power to you, but the particular examples you’ve adduced on yr blog and above are, to many of its users, not flaws but features that work as designed, and/or are not the most important feature they are looking for google to “improve” on or even implement (e.g., determining that scoble.weblogs.com is the old site of scobleizer.com so that they can issue a redirect).

    If i’ve misunderstood yr intent or yr examples, apologies. i’m definitely happy with someone stirring the pot to get the market leader to continue to excel, but nothing that you’ve said so far has made me think anything less of google or caused me to want to try a different search engine.

    the only company that this thread has raised a question about, in my mind, is userland. robert has stated in the past and again here “my old blog is on a UserLand site and I no longer have control of it.” robert is not a go quiet into the night kind of guy so i can’t imagine he hasn’t asked his old colleagues at userland to issue a permanent redirect for him. (?) Regardless of that though, i guess the only question i would have for robert is, even he did have control over his old site, does he really want a permanent redirect? wouldn’t that pretty much make his old content cease to be reachable? or does the redirect only apply to a call to http://scoble.weblogs.com/ but, not, say, to a specific page like http://scoble.weblogs.com/2005/09/30.html.

  37. Scobie-Doh! > “Matt: unfortunately my old blog is on a UserLand site and I no longer have control of it.”

    Well, hopefully you’ve learned something about the importance of having control over the software you use to generate and manage your data.

  38. Scobie-Doh! > “Matt: unfortunately my old blog is on a UserLand site and I no longer have control of it.”

    Well, hopefully you’ve learned something about the importance of having control over the software you use to generate and manage your data.

  39. As I mentioned on another post, it is not just because of the old site having been left dangling.

    Links like this one in your sidebar seriously don’t help matters.

    http://scoble.weblogs.com/stories/2004/12/15/scobleblogroll.html

    Your internal linking structure leaks PR like a sieve.

    Quite often the majority of links on any page of this site are external links, even though all your comments use nofollow.

    It is possible to setup a wordpress blog that allows 50 external links per page, and still retains most of its pagerank.

    It isn’t “Gaming Google” increasing and optimizing your internal linking structure, as doing so can also add a huge amount of additonal usability for your readers.

    It certainly isn’t Google’s fault that your current blog is ranking worse than your older one.

  40. As I mentioned on another post, it is not just because of the old site having been left dangling.

    Links like this one in your sidebar seriously don’t help matters.

    http://scoble.weblogs.com/stories/2004/12/15/scobleblogroll.html

    Your internal linking structure leaks PR like a sieve.

    Quite often the majority of links on any page of this site are external links, even though all your comments use nofollow.

    It is possible to setup a wordpress blog that allows 50 external links per page, and still retains most of its pagerank.

    It isn’t “Gaming Google” increasing and optimizing your internal linking structure, as doing so can also add a huge amount of additonal usability for your readers.

    It certainly isn’t Google’s fault that your current blog is ranking worse than your older one.

  41. BTW, Matt did respond and is he correct; you, Robert, should put up a 301 moved permanently on your old site. T’is the way of the internet.

  42. Paul, you are a coward. Put your last name when you are name calling people.

    If you are happy with Google state of the art, fine.

  43. Paul, you are a coward. Put your last name when you are name calling people.

    If you are happy with Google state of the art, fine.

  44. That was a really clueless post by Stéphane Rodriguez. Robert, are you simply blogging everyone that mentions your name?

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