Google Webmaster Central has officially come out of beta, about a year-and-a-half after Google Sitemaps -- core of the service later renamed Google Webmaster Central -- launched. To celebrate, a new era for Google. The Official Google Webmaster Central Blog becomes the first official Google blog to gain comments. Google announces both news items here, including a tidbit that Google Webmaster Central now has more than one million users.
The Google Webmaster Central team already actively monitors a number of third-party discussion forums such as Digital Point Forums, Search Engine Watch Forums and Webmaster World. They also actively participate by commenting on blogs across the web. In addition, they also participate in Google's own Google Webmaster Help group within Google Groups.
Still, people like to comment on blog posts directly. We saw Google come under renewed criticism (see here, here and here) earlier this year for not allowing comments in association with official blog posts, in the way that Yahoo, Microsoft and Ask do. So in what's now billed as a "Valentine's Day gift," comments finally come to Google via at least one official blog.