Eric Schmidt of Google famously remarked last year that “The internet is fast becoming a cesspool where false information thrives” and that brands were the way out. Well Eric I’m going to show you not only did you get it wrong , but you got it very wrong, not only are big brands just as responsible for the pollution of the internet, but Google is an enabler.Doing some research a few days ago I typed [ferrari development car] into google and this is the result I got back (click to enlarge)
8 of the top 10 results are … (wait for it) … eye-dentical. Don’t believe me go check for yourself on cbssports.com, sportsillustrated.cnn.com, syracuse.com, masslive.com, sports.espn.go.com, signonsandiego.com, q13fox.com, or bx.businessweek.com. This isn’t the first time I’ve written about big brand sites getting a free ride in Google and I don’t think it will be the last (see Dupe Content Google Thinks They Have It Licked and Google The Double Standard of Being an Authority Website). Expect someone from google to dispatch a clean up crew to aisle 3 to whisk away the mess I pointed out so it no longer sticks out as an example, instead of solving the real problem.
What is the real problem you may ask … Google needs to keep the big brands happy, as long as they do, everything is fine, but when they get upset that’s when there trouble. When the secret publisher illuminati Google’s Publishers Advisory Council speaks out they get press, but because I’m “just a blogger” I don’t have much influence outside of the SEO sphere, and can’t do much damage. Google is fully prepared to deal with the occasional bump or bruise I give them pointing out duplicate content and trusted domain abuse, but their share holders, board of directors, and multi-million dollar vested employees aren’t prepared for the nose dive their stock price would take when main stream branded news sites started writing about them with less than favorable ink. It’s not a written policy or even one that’s spoken about, but deep down they all know, if that if stock price goes down, all that 20% free time, free massages, free jelly beans and other perks will fade away.
So how bout it google are you really prepared to deal with duplicate content like you say you are, or are you like mr Schmidt going to keep paying it lip service …