Nilay Patel for The Verge:
We live in an information ecosystem whose design is dominated by the needs of the Google Search machine — a robot whose beneficent gaze can create entire industries just as easily as its cool indifference can destroy them.
This is exactly correct. Every website must conform to their standards, bow to their non-disclosed algorithm changes. Google not so much shapes the web, more smashes it into its image.
All those bold subheadings in the middle of articles asking random questions? That’s how Google answers those questions on the search results page.
Searching the web for information is an increasingly user-hostile experience, an arbitrage racket run by search-optimised content sharks running an ever-changing series of monetisation hustles with no regard for anything but collecting the most pennies at the biggest scale.
This is why literally any other way to search the web reliably will explode. Everyone knows that a Google search is littered with SEO spam, but there is no other option and I feel as if they push towards LLM led search is a response to this.