Wired came out with an article last night named Google Explores Re-Ranking Search Results Using +1 Button Data - it is nothing new, Google told us this from day one.
Google said in their FAQs and it still says the same thing:
Content recommended by friends and acquaintances is often more relevant than content from strangers. For example, a movie review from an expert is useful, but a movie review from a friend who shares your tastes can be even better. Because of this, +1's from friends and contacts can be a useful signal to Google when determining the relevance of your page to a user’s query. This is just one of many signals Google may use to determine a page’s relevance and ranking, and we’re constantly tweaking and improving our algorithm to improve overall search quality. For +1's, as with any new ranking signal, we are starting carefully and learning how those signals affect search quality.
So technically, Wired is not telling us anything new outside of - this stuff is going into the main stream media and thus will become a huge spam target.
Well, it already has with tons of Google +1 brokers out there selling plus ones in the masses.
Heck, even Forbes posted an article on it and then pulled it.
What is sad is that this is going to lead to the same type of abuse Google PageRank lead to and link buying and anchor text and so on. It is just weird to me that Google is promoting it so much as a ranking factor.
I seriously wonder what Matt Cutts or people from his team have to say about this?
Yea, I am sure it is used as a ranking factor - Google says so. But I'd be very surprised if it had a weight above 0.00005% in the total algorithm. :)
What do you think about all of this?
Forum discussion at Google +.