• http://luigimontanez.com Luigi Montanez

    We at the Sunlight Foundation are covering the event, along with live video:

    http://sunlightlive.com

  • TimmyTime

    “And evidence Google also kills kittens and eats unicorns, distrubing evidence”

    Danny , is Matt Cutts holding your laptop as you write?

  • TimmyTime

    “Blumenthal: trying to think of an analogy. YOu run the racetrack you own it, for a long time, you had no horse, Now you do, and they seem to be winning (hey, that’s not a bad analogy, if not fed to him, I’m impressed).”

    Thanks for the jokes Danny. What are your qualifications to be sarcastically impressed by his analogy? Blumenthal graduated from ‘Harvard College (Phi Beta Kappa, Magna Cum Laude), and Yale Law School, where he was Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Law Journal”, ‘served as a U.S. Attorney for Connecticut’ for Five terms and is Marine.

    You are???

  • http://daggle.com/ Danny Sullivan

    15 year expert on the search engine space, which probably trumps him in this particular area.

    I wasn’t sarcastically impressed. I thought it was a very good analogy.

    My experience has been most politicians have a really poor grasp of how search works. This was a nice sum-up of the core issue. But I also know for the past week, all types of lobbyists have been running around pushing angles and ideas on this topic.

    That’s why it might have been fed. That’s what those staffers behind the senators do, and in turn, the lobbyists influence them. Regardless, I was gald someone used a nice metaphor. And it it really was his own, awesome.

  • http://searchinfluence.com/blog/ Douglas Thomas

    This looks more and more like a witch-hunt and the Fairsearch coalition trying to flex its muscles. I’m worried that the non-technological mindset of the senators will be overshadowed by relatively baseless accusations.

    When will Fairsearch start to supply the kinds of biased, but still scientific, studies Google puts out as a counterbalance? Until that day comes, I don’t think they should even be testifying. Then again, knowing our wonderful legislature, they’d understand that even less than the technological aspects of this case.

    Schmidt, however, needs to step away from the whitepapers Google has put out — dodging questions and deflecting to talking points only diminishes his clout.

  • http://www.michael-martinez.com/ Michael Martinez

    It’s not so much a witch-hunt as a growing pain for a society that is still learning how to adapt to a new medium.

    I would argue that the vast majority of the Websites that have been adversely affected by many of these Google changes were more interested in the quick, cheap solutions than in actually providing a quality experience for random, non-paying visitors.

    Google is absolutely leveraging other sites’ content to build value in its own brand and that is a parasitical practice that goes back at least as far as the Pilgrims in 1620 in this country. It always has repercussions and always leads to adjustments in our society’s laws and customs.

    Restricting some of Google’s practices may be a good thing in the long run but if it comes to that you can almost bank on the consumers being screwed over for the sake of the businesses that weren’t putting them first to begin with.

    People who built their business models on the basis of Google referrals were practicing short-sighted strategies. It’s time to grow beyond Google because there always has been, still are, and most likely always will be other ways to build large volumes of traffic for Websites than depending on Google.

  • TimmyTime

    Danny, honestly you sounded like a condescending smart @ss, suggesting that he was not smart enough to have figured it out by himself. Throughout this you inserted smart @ss comments, clearly holding Google’s side. I know they are fed talking points by lobbyists, but that goes for both sides, you saw the excellent performance and tough, probing questions of Senator Schumer for example :)

    The conflict of interest analogy is a long standing one Danny: Cable company and a content owner for example.

    The big news is that Google made it official that it does not put the users first, but profit, something most knew. Now the question is, what else are they doing for profit in that black-box-algo that we do not know? Why should we trust Google?

  • http://searchengineland.com/ Danny Sullivan

    It was good analogy. I was impressed by it. That’s why I said that. Sorry you took it another way.

    If you read the live blogging again, you’ll see there are several places where I poke just as much at Google.

    I totally agree that both sides are playing the lobbying game. I didn’t suggest nor say that this was only some one-sided poor Google thing. They ramped up their PR campaign just as much.

    Schumer was, for me, a highlight of just how sad this entire exercise was. Search engines — overall — have serious issues that should be addressed. I’d prefer to have seen the industry as a whole look at this, rather than it simply being a Google witch hunt.

    As for why trust Google — why trust any company. I guess you look at the track record and your own personal interaction.

    Google’s just another company, even if it thinks it’s not. Schmidt got into that, when he talked about hey, we’re not all about maximizing profits. I’ll leave you with one of my remarks you clearly missed, which wasn’t holding that side at all: “(um, yes, it is)”