[t]he big problem is SEO — search engine optimization. A whole cottage industry has arisen around helping sites optimize their pages to get ranked as highly as possible in Google. As a result, the sites that land at the top of Google search results have become more about which sites are best optimized rather than which ones have the best and most relevant content.
Even worse, whole companies have emerged whose entire purpose is to create low-quality content that is highly-optimized for Google and loaded up with ads to turn a quick buck. These “content farms” have become big business. One of them, Demand Media — which hates to be called a content farm and shuns the label — is now a public company and brags about having a close partnership with Google.
It’s a great read and certainly worth checking out.
Throw in the rise of social search and Google doesn’t look so dominant so more, right?
I’m not sure that Google considers the content farm problem to an either/or situation in relation to its algorithm. I doubt that Google is so married to its über-powerful algorithm that it wouldn’t consider a hybrid approach? Google is nothing if not flexible.