Mithras discovered that Google seems to have decreased the ranking for blogs and asks if this is “The End of Blogging?”. I don’t think it is. If you look at how people discover blogs, it’s not primarily by searching in Google. They use Technorati, or one of the blog directories, and they follow the links in the blogs they already subscribed to.
It’s just another bad move from a company that already seems to have a bad relationship with the blogosphere. When people are looking for content, they are going to want blog content, too (for numerous reasons). If Google doesn’t list that content properly, they’re obsoleting themselves. There is a reason why blog readers already use other services than Google.
On the other side, maybe Google’s point is that many users just don’t want blog content in their results. If a large number of people really think this content is rubbish, then a strong case can be made for a search engine that is able to categorize content semantically and on a metadata level (I already wrote about that). That engine is likely not going to be Google. When it comes out, Google will just be another Altavista.
Blogs are the medium of our time. They basically contain the output of our society in an unfiltered, free form. If Google chooses to ignore the value of this content, they’re screwed.
Update: Anecdotal evidence supports the suppression of blog results. If I search for my name, my blog isn’t coming up anymore. Quite ridiculous actually, if you look at what gets listed way before my blog. This is not quality searching.