Search Engines Are Parasites That Will Kill The Publishing Business?

from the um.--ok. dept

Search Engine Watch points to a recap of an Association of Online Publishers (AOP) conference last week where attendees were told that search engines were “parasites” that will kill all growth in the online publishing business. The reasoning isn’t entirely clear. Basically, he believes that everyone is using search to start their news gathering, but that big publishers will be able to manipulate search to their advantage. It appears that someone from the Economist doesn’t necessarily agree. He notes that Google is killing off the importance of brand in the publishing business, as people just accept the top results. Thus, some random blogger (the horror!) might get more attention than the Economist. Both of these speakers are wrong. First off, while there is some search engine manipulation, it’s unlikely to be powerful enough to completely block out additional sources. Second, many people do still make use of brand and don’t entirely rely on search to find their news. They may have a few sources they like and some random searches for other info — but as more people learn not to trust a single source that actually helps brands that have built up some level of trust.

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Comments on “Search Engines Are Parasites That Will Kill The Publishing Business?”

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doug says:

Ever get the feeling they cant compete?

People who have a good product, price it reasonably and market it affectively dont need to worry about impending competition as long as they continue to remember their customers.

Using search to find news is a stretch unless you are looking for something not found readily on your news module, favorite site, etc.

I agree that Google is a biased search engine as they sell top spots, hence I merely dont use them.

All the hype over single search engines crack me up. I am waiting for the rest of the media to discover aggregate search tools like Copernic Pro, which has been around for several years and getting better all the time, which searches a dozen or so customizable engines, and then applies algorithms to determine the actual value of the content against the performed search. I always find immediately what I am looking for with this tool.

Anyway, there’s my two cents worth…

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Google and top spots

No, Google doesn’t sell top spots. I’ve got enough # 1 ranks to prove it in any number of subjects. Google does run some AdSense ads over their results, but those are colored appropriately. Other sites – AskJeeves, for example – runs sponsored results first in a format that looks very much their normal results, so you could consider that “selling top spots”.

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