Google is by far the biggest source of traffic on the web and web publishers live in a constant fear that they will fell out of favor with Google. The closest analogy of this situation in off-line world are city streets and shops. If a city closes down a street, traffic in shops along the closed street dwindle over night. That's why shop-owners keep a close eye on city council and are always willing to cooperate with political establishment. Publishers on the web have no such luck. The most transparency they can expect from Google is an annoying video by Matt Cutts. If a web publisher goes out of business due to Panda or Penguin Google will not even notice and definitely shed no tear. Google can put on as many fancy excuses as he wants but the fact is that Google is on a path to kill organic search and replace it with paid offerings. By making organic traffic utterly unpredictable, Google is scaring the shit out of web site owners who have no other option but to pay for AdWords, AdSense or Doubleclick. Unless the web finds a decent alternative to Google as a traffic source, the dark '90s will pale in comparison to the bleak 2010's with Google replacing Microsoft as the absolute ruler of our ecosystem.
You might argue that Facebook, Apple, and Amazon will keep Google in check. But I consider them a poor comfort for independent web site owners. Even if any of these companies manages to steal a substantial piece of pie from Google, it won't distribute it to the wider web but keep it to itself. What we need instead are new technologies/tools/services that will preclude the need for centralized navigation on the web!