Back to Blog
Moz article sparks twitter debate

Google Critiques Moz Article on Twitter, Calling it Misleading

Fake news anyone? According to the big man upstairs, also known as Google, a recent article published by Moz is a bit misleading. So much so that it prompted Google Twitter commentator extraordinaire and Public Search Liaison, Danny Sullivan to speak out about it in a series of tweets.

And if Google says something’s untrue, you best believe it is, in fact, not completely truthful. Well, not always, but most of the time.

In this particular instance, the Moz article in question was written by Dr. Pete Meyers and discussed how an increase in search features is pushing down the “10 blue links” and making it difficult for users to navigate to the traditional organic results.

In the article, organic listings are defined as the traditional 10 blue links that link to a webpage, while featured snippets are defined as “technically organic.”

This didn’t sit well with Sullivan, who took to Twitter to provide some clarification to some of Meyer’s claims in the article.

Always a classy guy, Sullivan cordially responded to Meyers on Twitter, stating that while he respects his work and appreciates certain things that were highlighted in the article, he also felt that certain statements were misleading.


“Your customers probably won’t understand that organic isn’t just web pages if you continue to use organic to mean that. Saying organic listings are “technically” that way or have a “component” — sorry, but it feels like it feeds misunderstandings and confusion,” Tweeted Sullivan, adding that:

“My concern is people who don’t take care to read come away with the idea that organic has diminished when there is organic all over the page. It potentially keeps people thinking backward rather than forward.”

What’s the Deal with Lollipops?

Sullivan also took issue with an example of a worst-case search scenario involving a search of the word “lollipop,” where a user would have to scroll past 2,938 pixels (including a video snippet, people also ask, images, news, and more) before finally reaching the traditional search results.

In response, Sullivan described Meyer’s dismissal of search features like local business listings, top stories, etc. as a “dated assessment of how search works.” Ouch.


Sullivan also pointed out that the goal of arranging search results this way is to satisfy different types of search intents.

So, what do you think? Do you agree with Sullivan in that the Moz article was misleading?

Check out the entire Twitter thread to see more of Sullivan’s comments along with Dr. Pete Meyers’ response.