Matt Cutts Extends Leave From Google Into 2015

Matt Cutts stunned digital marketers when he announced that he would be taking a leave of absence in July 2014. Well, looks like we’re in for another surprise. On his blog, Cutts announced that he would be extending his leave into 2015.

He added the following message to the end of a post published in July announcing his initial leave:

When I went on leave, I wanted to see how webspam would go without me. I’ve been talking to people on both the algorithmic and manual webspam teams during my leave, and they’ve been doing a top-notch job. So I’m planning on extending my leave into 2015.”

Cutts also announced his plans via Twitter on Friday, October 31.

Many Googlers have stepped up in Cutts’ absence. However, things may not be running quite as smoothly without Cutts in the mix. Cutts had essentially become the face of Google in recent years and a lot of faith and credibility has been placed upon his involvement in the company.

In other search news, Bing also lost a very public-facing member of its team last week. Duane Forrester, the senior product manager responsible for webmaster outreach, was let go in the latest round of Microsoft layoffs. 

Forrester losing his job after seven years came as a great shock to many in the industry. He took to his blog to share the news with his readers:

“Microsoft announced changes within the structures of several groups in the company. My group was affected, and while I have natural concerns for my own future, I am now faced with saying goodbye to some talented friends and coworkers. It has been a pleasure to work beside, and learn from, these people. They are smart, dedicated and creative…not to mention a barrel of laughs!

I am confident in my own abilities and hopeful for each of those affected by yesterday’s layoffs. It happens. Companies make decisions every day. And while it may seem easy to quarterback things like this from a distance, I can state I feel no enmity. Not an ounce.”

Forrester ended his post by stating he wasn’t too proud to ask for help and for any followers to keep him in mind if they knew of any positions outside of Microsoft.

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