At this SEOMoz.org blog, posters are discussing about search engines semantic capabilities, including LSI.

I stopped by to clarify several things since many of these present their hearsay as valid statements.

Here is my most recent comment.

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“Thanks, Jose. Query operators are first in my list of LSI myths.

Indeed, there is a lot of speculations and hearsay within the SEO industry regarding LSI. This seo-rant.com article is a good example. It is clear that its author is just passing around myths. The irony of the article is in its title:

“Understanding Latent Semantic Indexing”

The first paragraph of that article is just a collection of myths and non sense, many of which I have seen around before. Note how LSI is described:

“It compares nearly everything about a page: links; anchor text; meta tags; punctuation; sentence structure; language; img tags; page size – and a lot more. It compares this to sites that have proven themselves to be ‘authority’ sites. So Google knows, based on authority sites, that ‘cat’ and ‘dog’ are animals – because sites that use these keywords will often mention the keyword ‘animal’ when talking about cats or dogs”.

Clearly the author does not know how SVD is applied to the IR problem LSI tries to tackle. I haven’t seen so much garbage in a single post.

How many other LSI myths can you spot in the rest of the article?

Sorry to sound a bit harsh, but when hearsays like this reaches an SEO blog, forum, or a SES conference, I can understand why IR folks just laugh at SEOs since most don’t really understand how search engines actually work.

This tells me that there is a lot of educational work to do within the search marketing industry.

The funny thing is that at different degrees, such kind of hearsay always finds its way through marketing conference talks (SES speakers, SEO events, etc). Then, next thing one hears is SEOs blogging about this or that talk, repeating the same crap as facts.”

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