While I sincerely doubt that Google can do anything to eradicate spam it is certainly trying to make it easier for people to report it.
The Google Webmaster Central blog tells of improvements in their spam report form and some other areas of consideration when it comes to the Google search experience as a whole. When you take a look at some of these improvements you can’t help but think that maybe, and I mean JUST maybe, Google is realizing that speaking ‘engineering’ 24/7 isn’t as effective as they once thought.
Here are the improvements as listed on their post:
Option to report various search issues
There are many search results, such as sites with malware and phishing, that are not necessarily webspam but still degrade the search experience. We’ve noticed that our users sometimes report these other issues using our webspam report form, causing a delay between when a user reports the issue and when the appropriate team at Google handles it. The new form’s interstitial page allows you to report these other search issues directly to the correct teams so that they can address your concerns in a timely manner.
Google’s “a-ha” moment on this one has taken a while. Most people put as much information through any avenue that Google allows to give information becasue they aren’t sure if anyone is listening or will ever respond but at least they can say they tried.
Simplified form with informative links
To improve the readability of the form, we’ve made the text more concise, and we’ve integrated helpful links into the form’s instructions. Now, the ability to look up our Webmaster Guidelines, get advice on writing actionable form comments, and block sites from your personalized search results is just one click away.
Another revelation. I personally like the one about writing actionable form comments. Google provides a link back to a post from November of 2010 which serves as a Rosetta Stone of sorts helping turn English words into Engineering speak so Googlers can interface with the commmoners.
Thank you page with personalization options
Some of our most valuable information comes from our users, and we appreciate the webspam reports you submit to us. The thank you page explains what happens once we’ve received your webspam report. If you want to report more webspam, there’s a link back to the form page and instructions on how to report webspam more efficiently with the Chrome Webspam Report Extension. We also provide information on how you can immediately block the site you’ve reported from your personalized search results, for example, by managing blocked sites in your Google Account.
When you have to announce that you finally figured out that a thank you page and some direction as to what’s next is being rolled out in 2011 need we say more?
Google is definitely a rare bird. Wildly successful because of the many things it does really well despite its own best efforts to keep its distance from the people who pay its bills. It’s really more of a statement of the power they wield since people have put up with so little information being tossed down to them in a “let’em eat cake” style for so long simply because they need Google for their own success. Talk about a better mousetrap!