DO you remember when Google and other search engines actually returned a result you wanted? Me neither. Well I kinda do, but it’s about a decade back.
‘Do no evil’ – Ha! Google has sold it’s heart to marketing to the point you will not find specific search results anymore unless it’s a product or service. If you type in something like ‘writers of the enlightenment that were atheists’ you’re going to get a steaming pile of algorithmic fecal matter appear in the search results. There’s sponsored ads at the top. There’s an unrelated Amazon link nine times out of ten or Wikipedia. And the rest will be generic search results with little relevance to the query. You really have to work to find something close to what you’re looking for.
I’m totally aware of the fortune to be alive in an age where I am able to use technological wizardry on a mobile or other device, but search engines have destroyed the integrity of searches and discovery. Keywords, SEO, page rankings, linking blah blah blah. Guess what SEO does? Search Engine Optimisation is what it stands for. Have you ever thought about what SEO actually really translate into? Well buddy old pal amigo comrade mate, who is it optimised for? It’s not optimised for you. It is a set up. A set up for business to sell and for the search engine to make money from ad streams. That’s it.
All this SEO bullshit is sold as a way to make your website rank higher in the search hits, with the aim to be on the golden Page 1 of Google, or Bing, or… Lycos? Of the billions of websites, in order to rank that highly is either a matter of throwing money at it or constantly altering your website so Google’s webcrawling ‘spider’ notices that there’s a new post and boosts it up the rankings. Google has enslaved millions into the SEO model which means you have people creating websites with the same shitty generic content, bad content, irrelevant content, key word rich content often with no writing merit. All so their algorithm (which changes often) can ‘optimise’ the content of your website for marketing purposes for their gain, not yours. It’s a terrible idea, and even more terribly executed.
It means instead of creative content being rewarded, or specific niche content being returned to the search, only the websites that are abiding by Google’s rules have a chance to rank highly. Do your research by all means and dare to go beyond page 1 of Google, but the fact remains that Google has become part of the problem with the world wide web when it was once a symbol of its greatness. Google has come to mean searching for something in the lexicon, but like a lazy king sitting on it’s throne with no threats of an invasion, it is ordering minions to bring it food and it is now a bloated mess; clothes filthy, face covered in grease as it eats deep fried web pages and belching intermittently as websites wet themselves to make themselves noticed. Google cannot be bothered to go to for a shit anymore either.
Once upon a time if you searched for specific terms, a website would appear in the results even if that website had barely been touched in years, even if it had only one page – because it was relevant! Learning was easier. In some ways that’s the world we live in now. Relevance is irrelevant, context has long gone and everything is skewed for some agenda or another.
I try DuckDuckGo because it is supposedly not keeping tabs on me. It isn’t great for some things. I also try Ecosia who claim to plant trees based on the number of searches. Again the results are mixed. It isn’t just Google. It’s the whole search engine model that is broken. And having a direct link to a website seems like the only guarantee of anything.
I expect Google will relegate this post to the bottom of the pile. I really don’t care.