This week - bye-bye authorship, hackocalypse, and Tesla takes Sin City.
Bye Bye Authorship
For those of you that keep your finger on the oh-so-exciting pulse of SEO developments, you’ve probably seen this development cresting the horizon for some time now. Google has been hinting at the demise of authorship, with Matt Cutt’s points during PubCon in October 2013 and the gradual decline of author photos next to search results.
Authorship was a very popular development in our little world because it was another tactic we could employ to gain some sort of advantage in the slippery world of rankings (that don’t matter) and keywords (that Google wont provide you anyway). It placed an emphasis on content creators by building influence through the Google+ social platform and authorship which encouraged searchers to click on relevant results with the aid of a little icon.
But, as with all tactics that Google employs, once SEOs figured out how to game the system Google shut it down in an effort to “equalize” the playing field.
What can we do now that Google no longer cares who wrote the content? Continue creating great content and optimizing it with relevant meta data and employing Rich Snippets. So, as with most of Google’s updates, not the end of the world, but also continually inconvenient.
In little publicized news this week, healthcare.gov, the website for the US health insurance marketplace, was hacked. This is a major breach in the wake of dozens of smaller breaches, relatively speaking.
So far in 2014 there have been more than 10 major corporate websites hacked that contained personally identifying and financial information for millions of US citizens. Even iCloud, Apple’s cloud server, was hacked and the photo contents (mostly nude) of several A-list celebrities were leaked onto the internet.
While Forbes claims that all these hacks are a benefit to the cyber-security industry, forcing companies to step up their game, it is important to remember that all information that touches the internet is vulnerable. To be fair, Forbes is more concerned about the low cost of investing in cyber security companies as they rake in the money repairing the damage done by hackers from a variety of nations including Russia, the Ukraine, and China.
My recommendation - do a Google search for yourself and start contacting websites where you no longer actively want a profile. Ask to have them removed and make sure you are actually reading those terms of services. Double check your bank accounts and review your credit reports regularly. Figure out where the heck you put that social security card and then relocate it to a lockbox. #masshysteria
Tesla Takes Sin City
No, not the comic book (#nerd) - Tesla, who had until recently been in talks with Texas officials to build their new battery manufacturing facility in the lone star state, made the decision to bypass Texas’ complicated relationship with politics to set up shop in the state of Nevada.
And why the heck not, right? Manufacturing in Nevada puts the batteries closer to the cars themselves, which are manufactured in California. It also very nicely thumbs Tesla’s nose at Texas laws prohibiting Tesla’s ability to sell the actual vehicles within the state of Texas. Rather ridiculous, no? I salute your spiteful nature, Elon Musk.