Yesterday, Google launched Knol , which has been seen as WikiPedia Killer and the big reason for that is, that it allows publishers or content writers to link their Adsense accounts along with it. Darren Rowse has asked an interesting question over his uber blog that is Google Knol – A Wikipedia killer or a blog killer?
Darren has posted some interesting and useful points and the one which really raises questions against Google’s not so evil approach is -
My mind goes back to sitting in the offices of Google in Sydney where in a presentation by a Google staff member (a fairly highly ranked one) I heard him say that Google was not in the content business and didn’t ever want to compete with their publishers sites.
Google has certainly jumped in as a media company too however, will you see it’s Knol as a blog killer ? Here’s what I think about Google Knol and it’s effect on Blog industry -
I see Google Knol as just another big fish in the market, which has come to join already present thousands of big fishes. I don’t see it making a huge difference and certainly not as a blog killer. The reasons are simple and here are some of them are -
Is Google Knol a blog killer ?
1. Authority blogs won’t have any problem : if we take example of Darren’s blog itself then you’ll get the answer yourself. No matter what happens, if you follow Darren to learn blogging, you won’t switch to Google Knol for learning blogging. The amount of tips, tricks, marketing ideas you’ll see on Darren’s blog won’t come on Google Knol.
Some one can argue that what if some one decides to use it as platform to post blogging tips, well Wikipedia already has millions of articles and there are millions of selfless contributors on it, they never took that step.
2. Wikipedia exists and still blog run : Wikipedia is already present and has got millions of articles ranking on top of the search engines but does that stop you from blogging ? Blogging is not about just sharing the knowledge, it’s about finding like minded people, building communities and Google Knol is not about that. It’s about sharing knowledge only.
3. Traffic doesn’t come from Search Engines only : We all have seen various blogs do really well even though they were banned from the giant search engine itself. JohnChowDotCom, Smashing Magazine are some of the prime examples, they still exist and have grown much more than what they were. They concentrated their energy in building the community and that helped them in building traffic, even though they were banned from Google search. So, if the fear is loosing another rank from the search engine (wikipedia already has many booked on it’s name) then one really doesn’t need to worry about it.
4. Google Knol may only help small publishers : As Darren mentioned in his post, that he has met people who are publishing articles on Squidoo and monetizing them and that too full time. So, if small publishers will feel the threat then they can always use Google Knol to monetize. For a small publisher or I’ll say make money online blogger only, it won’t matter that from where the money is coming. Those bloggers who blog to build an authority will really won’t get affected because of Google Knol.
5. Internet is expanding like Big Bang theory : Everyday more and more people join the internet and they will love to see those sites which cover one topic and provide more resources and information on a subject rahter than a site which cover too many topic and doesn’t cover just one topic. They’ll be more loyal readers of a blog on a particular subject. I think that even if we’ll have 5 more Wikipedia clones, then also we (publishers) won’t be able to cater the information demand on internet.
I don’t understand that how Darren sees Google Knol as a blog killer or some platform which may kill small publishers. For me, it’s like another fish in the pond who has joined the party of publishing the content to attract visitors, who just doesn’t end up reading 1 page on a particular topic, there hunger increases more and if they are attracted towards a topic then they will end up reading a blog more than Google Knol, provided that blog has done good enough research and has authority posts on it.
What are your thoughts on it ? Do you think that Google Knol is a blog killer or do you feel that it will rather help small publishers who are ready to devote their time on Google Knol ?