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Adam Lasnik Interview on Paid Links & Duplicate Content


Eric from Stone Temple Consulting has published a great interview with Adam Lasnik from Google discussing both paid links and duplicate content issues. Anytime Adam talks, I listen. He is honest and to the point unlike some from Google who prefer to say just enough to leave everyone wondering what is really going on.

Adam clears up much of the concern with the call for paid link reporting. As with any spam report, it’s not going to be used for direct action. Link reports are there to use as a benchmark when modifying the algorithm in an attempt to thwart similar spam actions.

Again, that’s because this is used for periodic testing and review. But, on the reassuring side, we’ve had some people voice concerns “what happens if my competitor decides to report my pages, even though they are completely following the webmaster guidelines. Is some action going to be taken?” The answer to that is definitively not, because this does not lead directly into an action pipeline, but rather it is used only for review. It is not going to directly or adversely affect any pages or sites that are following the webmaster guidelines.

Adam also dispels the myth of duplicate content penalties. Duplicate content would need to rise to the level of black hat, full on spam attempts for a penalty to be assessed. Those printable versions of your shopping pages, while not helpful to your rankings, are not going to get you charged with an actual penalty.

I will reiterate my initial comment, that in the context of duplicate content, penalties tend to be relatively rare. In the majority of cases it is innocent and unintentional. But, in cases where it’s very extreme, there can be penalties applied. It comes back to what I mentioned earlier which is whether or not the duplicate content passes the smell test. It’s very much related to issues of quality as well.

  • http://www.hover-it.com Tony

    I wondered what the criteria for duplicate content was and at what depth for it to trigger a human inspection?

    There are now content generators that will easily pass human inspection and are able to randomly spin the same article to never be the same as the previous.

    Yet time and again,all my sites with relevant content and genuine products have done well, except for 6 weeks ago where it seems google went on a rampage and deindexed all and sundry for no reason at all.

    I now have only 2 site indexed in google, some one there must have had a bad hair day.

    I have also shifted all my PPC to Yahoo, Im certainly not going to do business with google any more untill they become a bit more transparent and responsible with their methods of deindexing, sandboxing or whatever it is they do.

    Tony
    DHTML Windows

  • http://www.mikroproje.com DotNetNuke

    I have a site, but its not indexed everyday. I write orginal articles, what if someone steals my content and google indexes that stolen content first?

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