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back to article Google's latest webspam crusade 'breaks' search results

Google's latest search engine algorithm update – dubbed Penguin – is proving to be something of a dud, according to website owners not happy with the latest tweak. The Chocolate Factory debuted its latest search engine optimisation (SEO) change last week, at which point its engineer Matt Cutts penned a blog post explaining the …

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Can we do a reverse petition....

my non-profits website has gone up about 17 pages, now in at page 7, now that a lot of the crud (that often indirectly links to us) has gone.

So Google, thankyou.

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Vic
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"I've been in SEO for ten years"

Isn't that what mainsleaze always says?

If spammers are getting upset that Google no longer gives them an easy way to spam the rest of us, well ... good.

OTOH, Google's SERPs have been getting worse for ages. And they keep changing the way they do their results redirects. The bastards

Vic.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: "I've been in SEO for ten years"

Wasn't SEO first documented in 2003?

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Complaints from the SEO shower?

Sounds a lot like "Waah, this new algorithm is harder for us to game!" to me.

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Anonymous Coward

"Hold on guys. 300 of our users are unhappy. Roll back immediately!"

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Anonymous Coward

Kek

Search engine spammers dislike antispam measures, pictures at 11.

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Please amend headline

Main headline: "285 sleaze bag parasites identified as search engine spammers"

sub-headline: "Unhappy with anti-search engine spam algorithm and loss of income"

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FAIL

according to website owners

And that's the problem with this "news".

It's beneficial for USERS of Google, not web hosts....

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Anonymous Coward

phone numbers..

Does this latest update get rid of those sites that appear if you search on a phone number which are just nothing but lists of numbers with adverts and links out to other useless sites.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: phone numbers..

I never did understand those sites... whether they just list the phone numbers because they're sad or whether it's all some secret code made of phone numbers that some secret agent will understand when they visit the pages 50 years from now...

They are annoying when you just want to look up who called you, but I have found a few websites where you can do that and now go straight to them rather than Google.

Anonymous in case I'm right about the secret code thing...

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I know someone who almost by chance managed to game the search engines for adult site referrals. In his own words, he's 'worked' a total of around 16 hours over the last 6 years, simply collecting the aff. cheques from the mail and handing his bank statements to his accountant. He has an above average house with plenty of toys, owned some very expensive cars and spends a fair proportion of the year watching TV and going away on holiday. His only real skills are writing HTML to a level that was fairly average even 10 years ago.

I'm not envious of his lifestyle - he got lucky. But I find it hard to have a shred of respect for the fact provided with this golden opportunity of money for (next to) nothing he has done nothing to further his own skills or operation.

Changes in Google ranking factors since the previous update are seemingly giving him new cause for concern and a reduced income. If this latest Google update is another slap in the face for these so called 'internet entrepreneurs' then I'm all for it.

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"I know someone who almost by chance managed to game the search engines for *adult* site referrals.... He has... plenty of toys."

I bet.

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Anonymous Coward

They're definately screwing things up

When you search for, "michelle knight" then you instead get a page showing the results for "michele knight" (single l) with a clickable entry below asking if you really wanted to search for "michelle knight".

You can draw your own conclusions from this, but as you can probably tell, I'm not very happy with this behaviour. In fact, my old BT page (which I haven't been able to access for more than a decade and has been stale for all this time) is rated above my regular sites which are much, much newer. So I don't know what Google is playing at, but early indications are that they've really cocked something up somewhere.

They're new catch phrase should be, "Do no evil, unless someone has paid us money to do otherwise."

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Unhappy

Re: They're definately screwing things up

Michelle K wrote:

----

When you search for, "michelle knight" then you instead get a page showing the results for "michele knight" (single l) with a clickable entry below asking if you really wanted to search for "michelle knight".

----

They've been doing the same to me for quite a while. It's quite infuriating to be told you don't know how to spell your own name.

I assume someone is paying them to do that.

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Re: They're definately screwing things up

I think that one may be a difference between the US and the USA. Do you see a difference between google.com and google.co.uk?

But it does look as though a checking system is over zealous. That does seem an obvious case where Google should give results for the search term as entered, while giving the option for the alternatives. I know the typing errors I make.

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WTF?

I'm Affected

I've got two damn good websites that have been online for over ten years, hundreds of pages, and authoritative. I used to be in the Top Five results for my targeted keywords. Hell, one is/was the top website in a $15Billion semiconductor segment.

Now, I am on Page 2. Everyone before me is a large corporation. No one before me has less than $2Billion in sales/year! Some pages before me rank for no reason that I can see.

My last AdSense payout for the authoritative website is the lowest in six years, and half what it used to be.

Google is crapping on the little guy.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I'm Affected

Maybe, just maybe, their sites are more popular and therefore higher ranked.

For example, if I typed in Office software, I'd expect Microsoft to rank above Dave's software emporium.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: I'm Affected

You're right, I'd expect that too, but in fact Microsoft are listed in 6th place on Google.co.uk. Below such office software giants as "Money Saving Expert", Wikipedia, and "Software For Students".

I know a lot of spammers are complaining, there are some legitimately terrible results out there on Google at the moment.

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Its spider isn't much better...

A drupal run blog I am involved with was suffering from 5+ hours of load per day from Google spiders. After much poking about it was discovered the spider was wandering on and going round and round in circles munching bandwidth and CPU and never leaving! Luckily the connection isn't metered or there really would have been problems.

As it is it has just been bogging the site down.

Brutal application of robots.txt excludes has brought it down to a far more manageable 15 minutes a day.

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Anonymous Coward

:)

Looks good to me, my partner makes jewellery, her main keywords or a best selling item get 7 out of 10 links on page 1 and all 5 images!!!! Her sales are quite a lot less than $1B too.

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WTF?

Bill Watterstone...

... Is going to really hate the fact that you are using the peeing Calvin image he dislikes so much.

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Re: Bill Watterstone...

Nah.. Following this latest Google update, he was happy to see that he finally ranks above that Bill Watterson guy.

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Anonymous Coward

One other sticky bit

It seems my name, not my handle, in You Tube has mysteriously been included in Google search results as a Google + account. Never signed up for Google + ....... or accepted the invitation. Google does what ever the hell they want folks. They need babysitters.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: One other sticky bit

Nobody else in the world has your name, eh?

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I'm not surprised SEO "experts" are upset by this. I'm sure there are some innocent mistakes but it may be a sign your cotent is a bit shit.. the problem is it's far too easy to knock up a spam site. Bigger names that are proven are easy to guarantee safe but it is probably quite hard once you get down to the smaller sites especially if they're relying on a lot ads for revenue

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Hadnt noticed any difference

Google ranking has dropped a couple of places in my own user ranking.

If I dont find it on duckduckgo.com or yahoo then google might get a go but its no longer my first choice of search engine.

Google used to be good when real page content outnumbered junk pages.

You could search, spot new keywords and use them to refine the next search usually finding what you wanted while watching the number of page hits dwindle to show how close to either hit or miss you were.

Now google seems too scared to say "I dont know" and returns a load of crap just to try and convince you it knows everything and really has looked everywhere.

When was the last time google didnt have enough hits to fill a page ?

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Alien

Totally OT

I'm sure there are lovers and haters of every change they make. I'm in favor of thwarting the SEO schmucks. But not every change has been in favor of searchers.

For example, you used to be able to do a search like:

+"Worker MPM" +MySQL

...and get pages that MUST include "Worker MPM" and "MySQL." Now the plus sign is interpreted as part of the word. If you exclude the plus signs, you get a crap load of "worker MPM" pages that don't mention MySQL at all, and I DON'T want the phrase "Worker MPM MySQL," either.

Uh, what was the question?

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Re: Totally OT

That + thing still seems to work on bing.

bing just scrape google results anyway so you'll get pretty much the same results as you used to...

but you have to use bing. eww....

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So far so good.

Of the people that have been canned and complaiend about it.

I saw brokem image tags broken image place holders. SUPER BADLY WRITTEN HTML.

Really now. Writing optimised HTML code is not hard at all.

I am just pointing my finger at resellers and those who abuse their customers websites by not letting them edit their site.

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Anonymous Coward

"On [a] personal level, this update has ruined ... passive incomes "

That's a quote from the article.

Anything that ruins "passive incomes" sounds good to me [and many others too, I suspect].

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Holmes

It wasn't Googles fault...

I used to think the evil wasn't the Google's fault, but then I read that Google has become a major customer of Washington lobbyist firms.

Since this is a British website, you might not understand how the American system works, so let me try to explain briefly. Most businesspeople just play the game of business by the rules. The LEAST ethical businessmen hire lobbyists. The lobbyists bribe the CHEAPEST politicians, mostly through campaign donations (now mostly disguised within SuperPACs). The corrupt politicians then write laws to favor the business models favored by the least ethical businessmen. The final result is American companies must become more and more cancerous and EVIL just to survive.

It can be restated as a philosophical version. Many people think that businesses are in business to make money. I disagree, since I think businesses should be in business to stay in business (and of course a business that loses too much money will die). However, the rules of the game as encoded into American laws require American businesses to grow like cancers (just to avoid being crushed or swallowed).

The greedy out-of-wedlock children who are driving this process imagine that their wealth is then insured by being too big to fail. In reality, cancers always kill their hosts--and then die. So have a nice day. Google has simply joined the cancer club--and is therefore paying lots of money to lobbyists and is therefore increasingly at fault.

Government should act as an impartial referee encouraging fair competition that provides FREEDOM in the form of meaningful and unconstrained choice. The referees should get a cut of the gate (in the form of taxes) in a system that also encourages them to make the pie (the total gate) bigger. However, what America has now is like a soccer game where the referees are paid by a few of the strongest teams.

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My Sites same or Improved

my 30 odd sites have either improved or stayed the same, SEO is a scam always has been, Google keep doing whatever it takes to get rid of this scum.

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Top bill for wiki.

Seems like all searches now need to be <blah> -wiki

If I want info from wikipedia (or wikiverse), I'll go there.

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Missing the most important point

I can't believe everyone is missing the most important point of the article - who cares about the google ranking stuff - THAT PENGUIN IS BATMAN !!!!

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Google used to be good

Before everyone and his brother wanted to have a hand in which search results they could show.

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Pint

Well I still come top if I search for me so I'm alright!

Helps if you have a unique name though :-) Was surprised that 192.com thought there were 4 of me until i checked with them and they were all me. I suppose if I keep moving house I could have even more of me! Coincidentally I did find some new stuff of mine online whcih was a pleasant surprise, but whether thats because of their changes or just my international fame is another matter.

think I'll have a beer to celebrate.

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