Google is finally replacing Web Spam Chief Matt Cutts and, according to Google, the new Matt Cutts won’t be anything like the old Matt Cutts.

We’d love to tell you exactly who the new head of Google’s vaunted, and highly influential, Web Spam team is, but the search giant is keeping that information under wraps. There’s no conspiracy here, though SEO hardliners will probably find one anyways, just a new approach.

The original Matt Cutts was something of an enigma in the world of faceless Google engineers. In fact, Cutts had evolved into something of a celebrity in the SEO world and that’s exactly what Google is looking to avoid with the new Matt Cutts.

Putting an engineer, or any other employee, in the position of company spokesman and oracle was never the plan with Cutts, it just happened that way. This go round, the company isn’t taking any chances, they’re just not giving out any information on the most important man in the SEO world.

It’s hard not to blame Google for making their new Web Spam leader anonymous, especially after what happened with Cutts. Cutts became the face of SEO, and was expected to guide web publishers through every update and refresh his department rolled out.

Last year he took an extended leave from the company and, so far, hasn’t returned.

Returning the Web Spam head to the shadows also fits with Google’s current policy of no longer naming or announcing search algorithm updates.

In short, the days of grilling a Google engineer during a speech at an SEO conference in hopes of gleaning an edge on Google’s plans, are long gone.

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