Google : exploring the bottomless pit of irrelevance, since 2004 or so.

Thursday, 13 March, Year 6 d.Tr. | Author: Mircea Popescu

Suppose we want to find a good blog dedicated to the topic of online gambling, and we're reduced to searching for it.

Why are we reduced to searching for it ? Have we no friends, have we no social circle, have we no clue ? I suppose we wouldn't... Anyway, we're googlingi, for whatever reason, such as for instance that we like gambling and recently bought a computer, or because we're looking for pompous idiots to laugh at, or for any other reason. Like I have no idea what other reason, because those'd be the only ones I can think of.

Here's Google :


The first hit (and probably by the numeric measures employed by Google to rank these things far, far above the sum of the next two) is a transparent shill of various Bitcoin scams, registered in August 2012 (you remember August 2012, don't you ?) by... nobody in particular. To wit :


Does this look particularly credible to you ? Here, have a smattering of editorial content to help you decide :


That's the top entry on the #1 Online Gambling Blog (according to Google), and has been, for the past four days. That's all that happened in the interval, "888 Casino Review and 888 Live Casino Reviewed 888 Casino and 888 Live casino has it’s own gaming platform". That's it. At least when zerohedge does this unmarked paidvertorial crap it fails more convincingly.

So with regards to the first link presented, we could say that Google has failed the MFA test, and injected into our lives some SEO'd crap, because it's dumb and doesn't know how to handle that.

The second link Google offers is a bit on, which may be respectable enough but is entirely irrelevant for our search criteria. We're looking for a blog dedicated to the matter of online gambling, not for a website incidentally discussing online gambling in the context of Washington fisticuffs that also happens to have the string "blog" in its url structure. Guess what, many places do that, and rarely for a good reason.

So with regards to the second link presented, we could say that Google has failed the relevancy test, and injected into our lives some unrelated content, because it's dumb and doesn't know how to handle that.

The third link Google offers is This is the first legitimate result, in that indeed it is a blog (more or lessii) and it is dedicated to online gambling (and a bunch of unrelated retarded shit like "being carbon neutral" and so on). They've been there for a long time, it's basically Gawker in a different color scheme, it commands no interest and conveys no value but at least it isn't a MFA or a randomly picked site.

So yes, after being raped to all hell by an inability to deal with SEO, and an ability to deal with string coincidence, Google finally drops the cannonical link. In position 3. This happenstance - which really is more the norm than the exception - coupled with Google's tendency to place its sponsored linksiii at the top of the list has meanwhile substantially altered the way Internet people interact with lists : they now start around position 3.

This neatly mirrors the banner blindness phenomena earlier Internet advertising induced in your parents, and is just further testimony to the simple fact any teenager could figure out on his own : advertising doesn't work. It's not just that it's a moral evil about on the same level with rape, it's actually worse than that : it doesn't even pay.

And after result #3... the deluge :,, score for the MFA crowd‎, some random Washington Post article scores for the "accidentally picked an article about Java beans for your Java compiler query" (how come Google only spuriously injects Washington stuff, why isn't there say a Russian news outlet discussing the misbehaviour of the US Government in Afghanistan ?) and on and on and on.

This is how that shit looks, incidentally :


That's right, that's result NUMBER FOUR according to Google. Because they've fully resolved the MFA SEO problem : as long as you don't actually run the god damned Adsense, you have nothing to fear. Some solution, huh ?

Meanwhile, consider some key firgures :

Valuation Measures
Market Cap (intraday) 405.58B
Enterprise Value (Mar 13, 2014) 354.80B
Trailing P/E (ttm, intraday) 31.77
Forward P/E (fye Dec 31, 2015) 19.85
PEG Ratio (5 yr expected)1 1.38
Price/Sales (ttm) 6.78
Price/Book (mrq) 4.64
Enterprise Value/Revenue (ttm)3 5.93
Enterprise Value/EBITDA (ttm) 19.68
Financial Highlights
Profit Margin (ttm) 21.60%
Operating Margin (ttm) 23.55%
Return on Assets (ttm) 8.60%
Return on Equity (ttm) 15.36%
Income Statement
Revenue (ttm) 59.82B
Revenue Per Share (ttm) 179.74
Gross Profit (ttm) 33.97B
EBITDA (ttm)6 18.03B
Net Income Avl to Common (ttm) 12.21B
Diluted EPS (ttm) 38.02
Balance Sheet
Total Cash (mrq) 57.53B
Total Cash Per Share (mrq) 171.21
Total Debt (mrq) 6.62B
Total Debt/Equity (mrq) 7.58
Current Ratio (mrq) 4.58
Book Value Per Share (mrq) 259.98
Operating Cash Flow (ttm) 18.66B
Levered Free Cash Flow (ttm) 7.95B

Four hundred billion doing what ? Randomly picking links from the hat ? Doesn't seem like it's worth it.iv

Then again... you know that isn't why Google is being actively propped in the land of the "too big to fail". It employs, directly and especially indirectlyv, a whole lot of people. So yeah, for as long as dollars exist there will be no taper, and there will be easing, so as to keep Google & other "blue chip" stock up, so that pension funds can continue with the pretense that they can pay pensions, so the charade can carry on. For how long ?

For as long as you'd like it to. Maybe we should Google for the exact year ?

  1. "Searching" just reduced to "googling", because the sort of person that meets our constraints couldn't conceivably tell the difference. []
  2. It used to be Calvin Ayre's personal site, some random douche who actually believes the world needs or can stand a ten years younger Richard Branson. A copy of that idiot for each generation! Branson is immortal!

    Seriously Calvin, nobody cares. Branson is a failure, he got lucky once and piled some cash, he was occasionally funny after that (You know how to make a small fortune derping aroung with Virgin, right ? Start with a large fortune!) but the man doesn't know what he's doing, and he's consistently proven that he belongs to the lottery winners pile of "successful" people, rather than to the other one. I'd suggest you find a better model, but too old for that by now eh ? Whatever, good luck with the carbon neutral whatever it is you do. []

  3. Ie, the spurious links inserted into the search results because someone paid Google directly, instead of paying some random "SEO expert". []
  4. We laughed at the 100bn acquisition of nothing in particular Facebook did recently, but if we look at things from this perspective, watsapp or w/e it's called is worth about what Google is worth, which is to say nothing much. So if one why not the other ? It's all about brand recognition, right ? Substantive economic reality no longer required, just add bubbles and stir. []
  5. See the SEO experts earlier. What, you thought the SEO expert is "independent" ? Independent of what ? Independent how, in a place where the government accounts for most economic activity ? There's no such thing, you can't be independent in a command economy, which is what the US is to a dot.

    Consider this brilliant point of Chris Ballas' :

    The system isn't flawed, it isn't easily gamed: it is set up this way on purpose. The government wants you to get SSI, because it wants you off the state welfare budget and onto the federal budget, which, as you know, has unlimited funds because it can run deficits, print money, and invade nations and invent words.

    In 2009 SSI paid 8M people about $45B. 60% of those under 65 had a "mental disorder." Did many have a legitimate disorder? Sure. Whatever. But when the system ties benefits to a mental disorder, the point is the benefits, not the mental disorder.


    The system not only pays poor people, it employs lots and lots of almost poor people. I'm not saying this is a good thing, or a desirable thing, I am simply stating a fact. Some of these are direct government jobs (e.g. staff down at the SSI office) and some are pretend private sector jobs. If you're a psychiatrist at an inner city clinic, you may think you're an independent contractor, but you're really working for The Man (but with no pension.) That's the system. Cut SSI payments and those docs-- and nurses and etc-- don't get paid.

    Read that whole series, it's well worth it.

    The system pays unemployable idiots to stay out of the way. Does it pay them too much ? Perhaps. You can't try to do better because it's a monopoly, and you can't break the monopoly because it's a monopoly of fact not of statute. Could you have had your cock sucked in exchange for a meal at a cheaper restaurant ? Perhaps you could have. Ask, why don't you ?

    Does it pay idiots who could be employed if only they worked harder ? Perhaps. But they aren't trying harder, now are they ? You can't try to break this cycle because it requires violence to be broken, and the entire system exists to avoid violence in the first place. If you're trying to avoid touching your light switch because your hands are covered in paint, or skunk oil, it makes even less sense to try and make a lamp out of random materials found around the house : even more touching!

    Does it pay unemployable people who aren't in fact idiots ? Sure, all the "PR executives" and "singer-songwriters" and lawyers and social workers and SEO experts and inner city psychiatrists and government inspectors and so on are a little above stupid, many of them a lot above stupid. But you can't change this, because for as long as you have them acting like unemployable idiots whether they're idiots or not the system can maintain the illusion of universality which is central to its survival. Mess with that, all these people suddenly discovering they can think with their own head aren't about to agree with you. On anything.

    So there it is, Google is just as much a Too Big To Fail entity as any random bank, and generally any large employer. Wanna bet Walmart is not going bankrupt until and unless someone is there to pick up and continue the operation ? Neither is McDonalds, or KFC. The free meals have to be delivered to the proles, or else.

    This situation is obviously reminiscent of the late Roman Empire, constantly short of gold to pay the various unRoman and often anti-Roman tribes it "employed" in its "army". Then again, late Roman imperial history is not taught in school, and the few dozen people who know it aren't part of the system anyway (they can't be, as it wasn't on TV, they do ww2 re-runs and re-makes back to back there - ever wonder why ?). []

Category: Meta psihoza
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8 Responses

  1. Relevant:

  2. Mircea Popescu`s avatar
    Mircea Popescu 
    Thursday, 13 March 2014

    Yeah, now someone just has to build it.

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