I think it's interesting, though, to think about where we've come from and where we are today.
Years ago in the infancy of web content there were two main ways to find something. You could go to Yahoo! and browse their index of sites which was maintained by humans that would evaluate link submissions, or you could go to Google and search their index which was created automatically. Obviously today the thought of maintaining any sort of relevant and current index of the Internet manually is quite laughable, due to the sheer volume of material.
But back then it was possible. Google's approach was to let everyone else do the ranking by looking at links. They thought that if 20 people linked to site A and only 2 people linked to site B that site A must be better. It was the early version of "liking" someone, I guess.
The problem was that as people started to try to make money on their web sites, they started to abuse the process. Link farms were born. phpbb.com even sold text links (and still does, not that there's anything wrong with that). Google recognized that link farms were polluting the "intent" of their ranking system, so they added code to discount or even penalize links from those sources.
Don't want to write an entire dissertation on SEO evolution here.
But the point is that when I personally search for something, I want content. I don't want ads. I don't want sites that don't do anything but redirect my search terms into a new search engine. If I want to look on amazon or ebay, I will do that myself, thank-you-very-much. So I read the article above with interest, because it goes back to focusing on content. Search engine algorithms have become more effective at identifying original content.
Google wants to see backlinks sprout up naturally, rather than through the efforts of professional SEOs. What makes links sprout up naturally? Unique and relevant content, according to Google.
I hope this is true, because in my opinion right now 90% of the Web is crap. If Google and other search engines can make it harder for these sites to make a buck (by collecting a few pennies at a time, from each visitor) then maybe they'll go away.
Then again, maybe I'm dreaming.