One of the first big advocates for cloaking and other forms of IP based delivery methods is due an entry at this blog. I have never spoken or contacted Ralph Tegtmeier (a.k.a. Fantomaster) but I have heard a lot about him.
I wanted to just highlight a few captions from Peter Da Vanzo's Search Engine Blog Interview with Ralph Tegtmeier. I will answer personal questions I have received with Fantomaster's Interview. Let me stress, these are NOT the questions asked to Ralph Tegtmeier by Peter Da Vanzo. Click on the link directly above if you want that.
Why did I not attend the "Meet the Crawlers" Session at the last Search Engine Strategies Conference? You can see it ever and again at search engine conferences all those search engine reps admonishing the participants not to do this, not to do that, to stick to this, to only do that, "be a good boy/girl across the board, do what daddy tells you, and we just might be a wee bit nice to you", wagging their index fingers and threatening SEMs with dirty looks - just like a bloomin' nursery! (laughs) And here are all these adult people, webmasters and marketing officers alike, gobbling it all up in awe like gospel. More often than not, it's a pretty pathetic spectacle.
I have done everything I could to make my site search engine friendly. I rank well for specific keywords and I am happy. However, I want to take my site to the next level but I don't want to cross any lines - how can you help me? There's a pervading myth in the search engine marketing and optimization industry that if you're a good boy, the engines will pat your head and will reward you with fine rankings, even if it may take an incarnation or two. That's unfortunate because not only does it fuzz up the hardcore technological issues involved, it also attracts all sorts of gut level thinkers to the SEM world, flogging their gut level advice ("content is king" being just one pervasive popular myth in question) and confusing each other and everybody else. This is a basically religious, moralistic attitude, and quite an inadequate one when dealing with technological issues.
So search engines are not our friends? But if you set out to use search engine generated traffic for your business model, you ought to realize that there's a generic conflict of interest being installed: you may want good rankings to achieve good returns, while the search engines couldn't care less about your turnover. All they ever want your content for is to expand their database to become more attractive to surfers. It's a number game, and as an individual webmaster you're always being shortchanged: if your business goes belly up, the search engines will simply feature someone else on their SERPs without wasting one thought on you. After all, they have billions of other pages to choose from.
Final quote: "Take your risks if you must - and don't complain if you happen to lose. Rather, pick up the shards and try anew. And if you should really find this business too nerve racking, maybe you'd be better off doing something else in the first place."
Credits to Peter Da Vanzo's Search Engine Blog Interview with Ralph Tegtmeier.