Here at SerpApi, we scrape Google, various other search engines and other big sites to provide data to webmasters who go out and create amazing tools.

Our user base ranges from SEO tool makers to fintechs to AI and marketing companies who use SerpApi for their unique use cases.

Recently, one of our users complained that our API does not parse AMP links from the Google Search Results' Top Stories Carousel.

As I am not fond of the AMP due to many reasons that I will list below, I thought that fixing that bug may not be a good use of our time as I believe that Google will eventually shut down AMP project. Sure, it isn't a good reasoning for not fixing a bug. Anyway, over the discussion why AMP is a bad thing, my colleague suggested that I should write a blog post explaining why AMP is bad and will eventually go away. (Yeah, we will fix the bug)

So, here we are. Let's start with a bit of history of AMP and then dive into the reasons why AMP is a bad, bad thing for the independence of the internet.

After the meteoric rise of smartphones connected to internet, each of the biggest publishers in the world decided to take the matter into their own hands to provide a lighter web not filled with tons of JS and CSS files taking ages to load so that people can have access to whatever they want fast.

Facebook came up with Facebook Instant Articles while Apple released Apple News. As a competitor, Google didn't have any option but to release their own version which is called Accelerated Mobile Pages which is called AMP in short.

Google intended AMP pages to be fast for mobile users. It was an Open Source project. For the history of AMP and support of other companies for AMP, Wikipedia article provides a good overview of the developments so far. [1]

So, what's wrong with AMP and why developers and publishers are getting away from publishing AMP pages? [5]

AMP is a new markdown language which can be compared to HTML. However, in the modern web development world with tons of different technologies working hand in hand, having same design in both regular pages and AMP pages were very hard and cumbersome.

Publishers also had a hard time adding their ads to those pages which decreased their sole revenue. [2]

Google decided to take AMP into consideration when ranking pages on the results page. Simply, Google forced publishers to join their walled garden, if not, threatened them to derank in the Google results which would result in them having fewer visitors. They simply shoved AMP down publishers' throat. [3]

AMP pages had to have a JS file loaded from Google's servers which was slowing them down. So, you had to create a page in a format defined by Google, to be indexed by Google to be served to Google users. Simply put; Google forced publishers to use AMP, if not, they would get fewer visitors from Google. [4]

You can't embed your own statistics code if you are publishing in AMP. Whether you use Google Analytics or any other open source analytics tool, you can't embed your code to AMP pages. You have to trust Google with what they tell you about the visitors of that particular page. [3]

Almost every AMP page has the same design. Publishers couldn't present their brand value or design in the AMP pages. If you are not careful with your sources, any propaganda outlet can create an AMP page, get a place in top stories carousel and an average user wouldn't even know who published what they are reading. [3]

Other publishers have seen a huge drop in their conversion rates resulting with fewer clients. As the design of a landing page has a great effect on the conversion rates, this was an inevitable result. [2]

When you make a search with Google's toolbar in the home screen of any Android phone, you don't see the URL of the page. Adding AMP on top of that, it is always Google who is bringing the content and you don't even know where the article you read is published. You are always in Google's walled garden, never leaving it, therefore not knowing the source of the content you are reading. [6]

Publishers found out that Google AMP was actually slowing down their pages instead of making it fast. [4]

AMP Technical Steering Committee was made up of 7 people. 3 were Google employees while 4 of the others were from Microsoft, Twitter, Pinterest and Pantheon (a hosting company). So, publishers were not given any voice over the development of the format. [3]

Due to those reasons I listed below, AMP project started to crumble down slowly. Many internet personalities and publishers started to raise their voices against Google's internet takeover project. [5][7]

So where are we now with AMP?

Apple started stripping down AMP links when sharing on iMessage. [8] Terence Eden resigned from AMP Advisory Committee.[7] Twitter rolled back AMP support, sending users to regular pages instead AMP pages. [9] After many dissent voices came up against AMP, Google decided to not require publishers to use AMP format and removed AMP as a criteria for SEO while starting to include non-AMP pages in Top Stories Carousel. [10]

There has been even a legal case claiming that Google slowed down the non-AMP ads to promote AMP pages between publishers.[11] Recently, Brave browser and DuckDuckGo decided to steer their users away from AMP links. [12]

So, when you open your Google Chrome browser and visit Google Search to check recent news, you will probably visit an AMP page which is hosted hence controlled by Google. In a political climate where publishers have losing trust rates by readers, are we going to let Google be a company who 'own' the internet? [13]