Is anyone else concerned about the increasing prevalence of Google AMP webpages across the internet? Let’s face it: Google AMP is bad for bloggers, website designers, and readers alike. You may not realize it now but Google is slowly eliminating our ability to design and control our experience as producers and consumers of unique content on the web. I find this trend extremely concerning. In this post, I will explain why I believe Google AMP is dangerous for all of us.
What is Google AMP?
Google AMP stands for Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages. Ever see websites with the little thunderbolt symbol beside them? Those are AMP enabled websites. Put simply, Google AMP is a plugin websites and blogs can use that basically strips them of their complex HTML code, down to a very basic (but fast!) variation. They say it will speed up your mobile website. Which is true: it will!
The Popular Opinion on AMP
If you ask IT professionals about this plugin, they all “highly recommend using Google AMP.” I mean, of course they do! Google AMP is fantastic for improving SEO. If you use Google AMP on your website, Google readily pushes your website to higher rankings above websites not using Google AMP. In the eyes of Google, a quicker loading website translates to a better user experience. Logical.
If you are a blogger or a website designer and your main objective is to rank higher on Google, AMP may seem like a no brainer! It sounds ingenious! Last year, I didn’t know any better and I installed Google AMP on my own blog. The one you are on right now. Within 24 hours, the grand majority of my most popular posts across the internet were already reindexed as AMP webpages. What a mistake.
The Unrecognized Reality of Google AMP
Google AMP is bad news for everyone. Well, everyone except for Google. Google wins big time if we all use AMP on our blogs. In all honesty, I believe Google AMP has the potential to destroy the internet as we know it.
AMP was pitched from 2015 until now as a way to speed up mobile websites. They say it is, “a new and open framework built entirely out of existing web technologies.” Sure it is. Google AMP is a framework that voluntarily allows Google to obscure your website’s appearance, usurp valuable content you created, and remove any lingering signs of personality, differentiation, or character. If you read blogs and personal websites because you connect with the person behind the website, AMP is nonconductive to your preferred web experience.
Does AMP Give Google Too Much Control?
They tell you AMP is wonderful because it means a faster web for all of us. They don’t tell you that AMP forces everyone to sacrifice – and sacrifice big time. It isn’t about speed when you think long-term. As with anything that involves large scale customization, you are bound to experience a degree of lock in over time. The more bloggers there are who use AMP, the more power we give Google to only index and prioritize AMP powered sites. In fact, their massive degree of control on the web is already apparent. For all I know, my blog could be penalized on Google for sharing this information publicly with you.
Google will become similar to Facebook in that it can now show you what “it” as a company believes is relevant to you. Not what actually is relevant to your search.
How Does AMP Impact Bloggers?
You might realize something quite interesting when viewing AMP powered websites. When you look at the address bar of the site you are on, the URL is Google – not the website you’re actually on. Whoa, whoa, whoa there! Thought people were looking at your blog? Nope. They’re on Google’s faster loading copy of your site. You have to look very closely to find the real, original URL.
How Does AMP Impact Readers?
Don’t you prefer blogs with personality? Don’t you also respect websites that are well designed or in some way unique? Why are we willingly sacrificing all of this when you can have a quick, nice mobile website that isn’t just basic Times New Roman, size 12, black text on a white background. What about credibility? Anyone can make an AMP website and it’ll look no different than, say, the United State’s government’s AMP powered website. What wonderful news for fake news groups.
Google AMP is putting a barrier between bloggers and readers and I’m not happy about it. For as long as I can withstand it, this blog will remain AMP free. I hope Google doesn’t blacklist me for posting this. And if they do, at least I can I say I went down fighting.