Writing for People Not Algorithms

I am increasingly worried that we have stopped writing for people on the internet and instead gone down the route of pandering to Google algorithms in order to rise up the ranks of page searches. If we continue to trend then we will begin to loose peoples interest in writing about the important things in life.

Plagiarism is rife on the internet, even I have been encouraged in the past to revamp other peoples articles just to satisfy SEO, which really is not something I can agree with. If you have something new to say then say it, don’t just try to fit into the snug little box that Google or other companies have made for you. People begin to loose meaning at the same time as loosing identity and a voice.

I am aware that plagiarism is on my mind because it has recently been highlighted in the news as PayPal is being encouraged to not provide its services to essay writing sites, so that cheating can be kept to a minimum. But I have seen the practice of writing to raise SEO increasingly used as a method of communicating to the outside world rather than writing informative and though provoking content.

I am not saying that all SEO friendly content is not useful, helpful, informative or for that matter vital, but I do worry that we have stopped writing for people. ‘Marketeers’ have a responsibility to not just sell their company/product/vision but also to not clutter up the endless web with content that has meaning.

Even I am not considered a credible source but I would encourage people reading articles on the web to consider what makes an article a credible source there are some key questions any reader should consider The University of Edinburgh has a great list that will help people decipher if what they are reading is credible. There are plenty of examples of this kind of list, but unless a reader has been trained to ask some of these questions it is easy to get lost in the the battle of SEO articles that use the correct (according to Google) key phrases to go up on the search lists, but don’t have credible or in fact massively useful information in them.

I am not saying that entertainment should be credible, post as many cat or dog pictures as you like, what concerns me is that we have stopped writing for people, and in fact have started writing for rankings instead. Being a credible voice is important, I am not saying don’t use SEO tricks to be noticed just don’t write for purely to appear higher on the google search pages.