Carter Maslan has been the patient and good-natured face of Google Maps and Places at innumerable conferences and events over the past several years. He’s endured a regular onslaught of questions about missing features and local SEO frustrations surrounding Google’s increasingly important suite of local products.
Now he’s leaving Google.
I got word of this yesterday from a Google partner and then I later confirmed it in an email exchange with Maslan himself. He’s leaving the company on good terms and said he “loved” his work at Google. However he has something else he wants to pursue.
One prominent local SEO, who learned of this yesterday, responded in an email with “WOW” and added, “I shudder to think what Google Places might turn into with someone less concerned about quality and more concerned about money.”
It’s not clear who will take Maslan’s role at Google but I’m sure (I hope) the company will continue to be mindful of quality issues.