All webmasters know the importance of the title tag on a web page and strive to construct one that describes the page’s content well and identifies the site. But some people who create the pages may not do this well – or at least not satisfactorily in Google’s estimation. There have been many reports of Google displaying a title that it makes up – not the one on the page. These two postings describe this.
Ann Smarty summarizes what it seems Google is doing – shortening the title (unless it’s already too short) and dropping brand names – Why Does Google Modify My Title Tags? (Weekly Q&A) (Internet Marketing Ninjas, Jan 16). She points to another blog with a detailed description – Google Changed My Title (Blind Five Year Old, Dec 4, 2011).