When Lawyers Fail
The SEO Free Speech Initiative's editor in chief Rev Sale scores an interview with SEO maven Bob Sakayama. Part I is here.
Part II of this interview is a discussion of the ethical controversies presented when sites are penalized in Google, and how the law is failing to address the most important injustices.
Bad1y.com is part of the SEO Free Speech Initiative and an active supporter of Global Network Initiative (Protecting and Advancing Freedom of Expression and Privacy in Information and Communications Technologies) to perform a public service - documenting questionable practices, bad behavior of all kinds, and misuse of legitimate power.
Free speech is the first victim of an authoritarian state.
It's also under attack whenever monied interests use our legal system to attempt to control the messages that the public sees. Whenever individuals or businesses successfully suppress damaging information about them from being made public, everyone loses. The SEO (search engine optimization) community has an obligation to help individuals use their right of free speech to publicize unethical practices, including the efforts to silence whistleblowers.
Exposing malfeasance is especially important on the internet, where controversy, monied interests, SEO, and the laws of many lands are forced to coexist. Because on the web, the search results can be impacted in real time - creating a battleground in which optimization skills determine who has the upper hand in influencing public opinion.
Because SEO can directly impact the messages read by large numbers of searchers, it is appropriately on the front lines in the defense of free speech. Along with the search engines, the professionals that understand how to insert pages into the search have an interest in maintaining freedom of expression. Fortunately there are deep pockets that benefit from this freedom, but that freedom is always under attack by those who wish to control the message.
Of all the media we experience, the internet is our best hope of preserving a democratic platform, where individual voices can be heard by many. Films, tv, and radio, because they require large resource outlays, are already controlled by the oligarchs. And there are forces already in place that are gradually moving the control of internet content to the monied interests. SEO plays a role in this migration away from democracy, because money can buy SEO services. But SEO is also the weapon of choice for pushing back against corrupted, monied interests, because it requires knowledge, not great resources, to place documents in the search results.
So it is important that SEO remain in use as a tool that fights for the small player, the little fish - everyman. If you know of an injustice has not been addressed properly, tell us your story. If we can verify your facts, we will help you publicize it in the search results without cost.
It is clearly in the interest of the SEO community to use the search to expose bad behavior, corruption, and unethical practices, and to demand that the freedoms that protect free speech be respected on the web.