There is an interesting thread at WebmasterWorld that Google may be biased towards showing more and more "big brands" in the top Google web search results.
Yea, yea - big brands have more links, more trust, more pages and bigger budgets to rank better. We all know that. But some are speculating that this month, more than any other month, there was a spike in how Google ranks these big brands.
Tedster, WebmasterWorld's administration, goes as far to possibly imply, and I quote, "Eric Schmidt made some comments that brands were more important."
The question is how would Google do this?
- Using social media metrics
- Linkage data
- Something else
There is a lot of speculation and concern in that thread right now.
Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.
Update: Aaron Wall from SEO Book wrote more details, with examples, of this claim. Pretty enlightening, if I must say, so take a look at Aaron's post.