some-cheers-a-few-sneers-for-googles-url-solution-for-amp Some cheers, a few sneers for Google’s URL solution for AMP

Greg Grothaus of Google unveils signed exchanges change to AMP at the AMP Conference in Tokyo on April 17, 2019.

On Tuesday, Google announced that its enabling publishers to display their own URLs on AMP pages by using Signed Exchanges. This solution addresses one of the most prominent AMP criticisms, but its implementation doesn’t come without controversy.    

This GIF sums up how AMP page URLs can now be displayed if websites get on board with Signed HTTP Exchanges.

Some are excited about the possibilities.

While others are worried about the ethics.

Pierre Far, a former Google employee, sent out a thread of tweets highlighting his concerns over Google foregoing the standardization process and how it may have security implications.    

You can’t blame people for being suspicious of Google when one of their own authored the Signed HTTP Exchange specifications — even if they’re upfront about it.

Sometimes we need to be reminded that, despite its decisions carrying so much weight, Google doesn’t own the internet.

Here’s a screenshot of Mozilla’s current position on Signed HTTP Exchanges.

some-cheers-a-few-sneers-for-googles-url-solution-for-amp Some cheers, a few sneers for Google’s URL solution for AMP

Why we should care

Domain names are important for branding and publishing content under our own banners without sacrificing speed or mobile optimization can certainly improve the user experience. The compromise we have to consider before getting on board with Signed HTTP Exchanges is whether we’re willing to allow a third party to serve up our content without users being able to tell the difference.

If we, as digital marketers, want to influence the conventions of our future work environment, we’ll have to decide if the gains are enough to disrupt long-standing assumptions of how websites are delivered. If so, we’ll also have to cede the ability to judge user intent over to Google and swallow the fact that it skipped over the standardization process to implement a process that one of its own created.


About The Author

some-cheers-a-few-sneers-for-googles-url-solution-for-amp-1 Some cheers, a few sneers for Google’s URL solution for AMP
George Nguyen is an Associate Editor at Third Door Media. His background is in content marketing, journalism, and storytelling.

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