Editor’s Note: I changed the original Twitter post to a more privacy-friendly URL. I also had to change the HTML encoded AMP-\&: joke.
Google’s AMP is a new set of psuedo-html that is supposedly more performant than regular HTML. Designed, nominally, for accelerating page load times on mobile devices (because desktops or larger devices are so last year). They’re also fast because when you find one via Google, you get served up a page from Google. The address bar reflects the actual URL, but that’s just vanity.
Honestly, this is such a thinly veiled farce, that it’s hard to believe that developers are actually eating this shit up. Probably because it pushes a whole class of problems off onto Google. Now you can tell your client that they can’t have 1000 widgets on their mobile page because AMP doesn’t let you. Sigh.
Google wants to keep their users on Google. Damned be the open Internet. It was convenient when they had to compete with more well established giants like Apple, Microsoft and Amazon. Now it’s a liability. While they can’t force companies to implement their sites on Google run systems (yet), they can incentivize them to make AMP pages that they can cache and serve them.
New(ish) to AMP is the ability to build a card-based “story” that is more image-heavy than a regular page, but is more visually engaging for users. WordPress’ official plugin, coupled with the Gutenberg testing plugin enables this feature for site owners.
As you can see, ads (more specifically, Google ads) are available to be integrated with Stories, now. That way you can still generate revenue, trying to sell people stuff they don’t need. Basically, stories is a glossy advertising vehicle disguised as “content”.
At least, not everyone is smitten with Google’s naked greed and anti-competitive behavior:
“I certainly don’t think this is a good look for Google given the debacle of AMP’s ‘my way or the highway’ rollout,” Keith said. “I know that’s a completely different team, but the external perception of Google amongst developers has been damaged by the AMP project’s anti-competitive abuse of Google’s power in search.”Jeremy Keith (Link)
Google Web Advocate Das Surma lent credibility to Keith’s take on the matter, saying:
“[it is] a pretty accurate representation of our intentions, but also of the problems and mistakes we made.”Google Web Advocate Das Surma
The problem is, most people don’t think like me, that Google Won. It’s also astonishing that Google has gotten away with their behavior without at least pinging US Anti-Trust laws, but I guess that’s what you get when you can grease the wheels of the political machine so liberally.
I, for one, will not be building AMP-enabled pages. The idea should be that a web page is a web page and speed is important regardless of form factor you view it on.