As usual, Google watchers miss the forest for the trees when it comes to Google’s intersection with traditional media. Google announced the launch of Google Co-op, which clearly has one strategic purpose — destroy the opportunity that magazines and other niche media believe they have to compete with Google by creating vertical searches.

Here are some Google watchers commenting on Co-op:

From Search Engine Watch:

This is Google making a giant and somewhat perplexing leap into mass tagging.

(How Co-op works is rather perplexing.)

From
Search Engine Roundtable
:

Is it spamable? Ha. Well, lets give you the forum threads on this topic. I would call it more hackable, than spamable…

(Hackability is any interesting question.)

But as to Google’s strategic objective, here’s the forest:

From Marissa Mayer of Google’s search division:

“People can create vertical searches built on Google Co-op technology,” Mayer said. “It provides a deeper search experience inside the main search on specific topics.”

From Magazine Publishers of America’s upcoming event on “Vertical Search-An Opportunity for Media”:

While no one doubts the power of the big search engines, there is increasing frustration about the inexact nature of results they deliver especially for specialist media sites. Enter Vertical Search, which might be better than Google.

See now what Google is really trying to co-op(t)?