I really like what you have to say and I totally agree with you. I've been saying the exact same arguments for the past 2 years and it's finally starting to come out now and people talking how big Google is and what they are really doing. The search results have been getting less and less quality for years as more companies learn how to do SEO. SEO is not some black magic that is practiced in the basement of your friend's house. Most people who get into SEO are site owners or marketers that want to be found on the search engines so they learn what is needed to get their pages ranked well. They follow all of the guidelines. The do everything Google tells them to do. They write good quality content. They enjoy some success because they did everything right. Now, they wake up one morning to find out that everything they've done as directed by Google to get into their good graces is gone.
I've been telling people for almost two years now to use Bing. Bing is a great search engine and has been innovating search since it launched. In fact, Google has been playing catch-up with Bing over the past year. Bing was the first to have real-time integrated search, page preview search, image gallery, filtered options, home page images, and many more items that Google stole from Bing after they launched. Bing doesn't need to keep slapping band-aids on its algo because their Algo isn't broken. Every time Google rolls out another update is like saying we didn't get it right before and we know it was broken, but we've fixed it now and it's better. Yeah right? History will tell us that Google keeps making updates every couple of months because people figure out how to game it. This will not change because the system can be gamed. However, in trying to fix the broken algo, good legitimate sites are being taken down, people are being laid off, and companies are losing money in a time when the economy is barely moving along. Google takes into account around 200 factors for rankings, while Bing insists they use over 1000 factors. Maybe it's time for Google to actually do something new and start taking into account more factors so that they don't have to rely on the results from their selected elements that produce a ton of spam. In turn they have to put updates and patches on top of the update to fix them. It's almost like Google jumped of a building with no parachute, breaks it's legs, and instead of fixing their legs, they are putting wrap on their arms. Google is trying to fix something that wasn't even broken while ignoring the real problem.
I for one, will stop using Adsense since it's the now benchmark for what is spam and what not to do on your site. Thanks Google for making it clear that your ad network is crap and putting your ads on a site means that you are spam. I will take Analytics off of my sites. Thanks again Google for providing this free information while using my own data against me. I will stop using Google Search. Thanks again Google for making the search results so filled with scrapped content and crap sites that I'll start searching the real Internet at Bing. I picture Google like I did AOL from 10 years ago. It's not the real web, it's Google Web. This is why AOL died. I don't use Android phones. Thanks to Apple for making a better and more reliable product.
Google doesn't provide or create any of its own content. How many writes or reporters does Google employ? They scrap content all over the web, some forcefully (http://searchengineland.com/yelp-google-told-us-its-our-way-or-the-highway-66417), and they put their ads on top of everything. Google is the biggest content mill in the world. Google is the biggest thieves of content anywhere. It's no wonder they like sites like ehow. Google Places is the most certainly low quality content as it's all just scrapped from other sites and they put their own adsense right on the page above the fold. When I search for real businesses I get these junk Google Place pages which I've learn to just ignore completely because they are ripping off other sites and trying to make money off them. The fact that they rank them so high in their own search is just a joke and a huge anti-trust issue. They are not only stealing traffic from the legitimate business, but they are trying to make money from the viewer, or possibly send a viewer to a competitor. If a person does a brand search for a local business, they get the Places page. On this page, Google put adsense, stolen reviews, as well as other related local business (competitors). This means that a person looking for a certain business and types them in by name, can expect their viewer to see not only your page, but Google Places in very prominent place. Often places are put into a highlighted area making them very attractive and clickable, unlike the natural listing for the actual business. The viewer who was looking for a particular brand is now faced with additional links for related products or services (from adsense), as well as other local businesses (competitors) to maybe lose your business too. Google is not only providing a disservice here, they are possibly entering into anti-trust issues where they are favorably putting their own unvalued content ahead of other good valued content in the hopes of gaining more exposure and pushing out competition. There are many examples of where Google Places is merely a content farm for adsense, and all the while legitimate businesses and content are suffering.
Contact me and let's starting organizing and educating the public! We should create a forum, website, blog, community, etc to get people organized and motivated to do something.