Impact of Expandable Text Sections on SEO

Web designers are tasked with making all of our digital dreams come true - and that's often cramming as much information on a page as possible and still making it look at least somewhat artistic.

One of the ways designers accomplish this is by including sections that expand upon selection by a user. It's quite common in fact and can be see on a wide variety of sites across categories - from merchants to service providers and seemingly every one inbetween. Website Magazine even recently featured a jQuery script in Readmore.js which does just that. Can the use of this tactic/approach negatively impact your SEO initiativse? Essentially, isn't this hiding text from the search engines?

In a video answer from Google's head of search spam Matt Cutts, the practice is "hiding" (including is probably a better word) text in JavaScript/AJAX-like expandable menus is acceptable within Google's webmaster guidlines - if it's being done in a non-spammy way.