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A response to Matt Cutts blog and the Official Google Blog: please stop being a bunch of cry babies!
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from TimDineen 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 10

Crybaby?  Seems to me that the Google/Cutts posting on this topic was a lot more level-headed and rational. The only people still crying about it are those who are less likely to get away with tricking the system so blatantly any longer - at least without fear of penalties.

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from seofactor 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 8

@TimDineenI couldn’t agree more. The news is over on paid links. The decisions have been made, and it doesn’t seem as if anything will change their mind. It’s up to us to make our decisions and move forward. Wanna sell links? Find other avenues of traffic and/or outsmart Google. Wanna be a good boy? Don’t sell links. It’s their engine. Agree or disagree, they have a right to do whatever they want to it.

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from crimsongirl 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 8

I agree with the previous two comments.  Google isn’t the Crybaby in this situation; people who think they have some inalienable right to make a living selling links are.  Calling Google a bunch of naive academics who don’t understand how grown-ups do business is especially stupid and just makes the blogger look bad.

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from BartTheBear 2509 Days ago #
Votes: -5

I keep telling people that they have at least 3 propellers in their beanies and will cry when any one of them drops their beanies!

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from Gamermk 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 6

Danny says it right: http://www.wolf-howl.com/google/google-needs-to-stop-being-a-crybaby-about-paid-links/#comment-60650

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from BarbaraKB 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Good discussion here especially reply from Danny Sullivan. Thanks to *both* of you for helping more understand about *paid* links.

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from graywolf 2509 Days ago #
Votes: -2

Hey if some people are happy living in a world where Google makes all the rules fine.For me Google should no more tell me how to run my website than the RIAA should tell me how where when and in what format I can listen to my music in, and why I have to rebuy my music in digital format instead of ripping it as an MP3

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from seowoman 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I’m not even sure I agree with everything you’re saying, but damn, that was a fun read. Preach it!

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from Wingnut 2509 Days ago #
Votes: -4

I’m going to have to agree with Graywolf here. Google making all the rules is bad news.  It’s like...(Post edited: Reason - Godwin’s law.)

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from incrediblehelp 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 9

People can sell all the links they want, you just may not rank well in Google because of it. Now I dont agree with Google penalizing websites for doing this, but it is their algorithm and website and can choose to do what they want to help alleviate SPAM. it just sucks that Google looks at paid links as "YOUR" problem and not look at it as "THEIR" problem.

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from seofactor 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 3

RE: "it just sucks that Google looks at paid links as "YOUR" problem and not look at it as "THEIR" problem."Now THAT’S a statement I can stand by. I think that’s the real heart of the problem. Yeah, a lot of paid links potentially spam up the place. But what about the ones that are OK?

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from TimDineen 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 2

ditto the above... Google should find a better way to fix this than by banning those they suspect of cheating.  That solution just won’t scale and many innocents will get hurt in the process.

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from TimDineen 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 6

@graywolf - "Hey if some people are happy living in a world where Google makes all the rules fine."Michael, the problem isn’t WHO is making the rules it’s just that you don’t like the rules. You just want to keep getting away with something that is hurting the rest of us (general Internet users and SEOs alike).I don’t want any one entity making all the rules I have to live by, esp. if they are unfair, but these rules are intended to level the playing field for the rest of us -- including those SEOs who aren’t cheating to make a living.You are giving us all a bad reputation.The public will chose the best search engine to use based on the quality of an index/algo - if you want the quality of Google to suffer for your own gain then keep polluting it - I hope you’ll be more happy with Google’s successor.  In the meantime I have no problem with Google defending themselves by defining their own policies and acting upon them.

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from graywolf 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 1

>Michael, the problem isn’t WHO is making the rules it’s just that you don’t like the rules.No my problem is I don’t like ANYBODY making rules. I don’t like the Government telling me what to do, I don’t like the church telling people what to do, and I especially don’t like businesses telling me what to do.These rules aren’t intended to level playing field in fact are exactly the oposite, they are to consolidate all of the poser in Google’s hands. By systematically eliminating competing advertising options, and buying up others like Doubleclick, Google is adversely affecting the internet advertising space. What Google wants is a world where there are very few advertiser options available and coincidentally they happen to be the biggest one.>You are giving us all a bad reputation.I guess if you consider free speach a bad reputation. I am all for people having a different opinion, and the platform to share it, You want to advertise your products or services who am I to impose my rights or ethical values on you for doing so, but that’s clearly what google is doing. Think I’m making it up look at this pagehttp://www.google.com/support/webmasters/bin/answer.py?answer=35769according to google buying links is an illicit behavior which according to Google is either immoral or illegalhttp://www.google.com/search?q=define%3Aillicit

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from TimDineen 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 4

I’m fine with free speech - I’m using it to tell you I think you are wrong.According to Google ’illicit’ behavior is immoral... Yep.  Add me to the list of people who considers those (link buying) actions to be illicit and immoral.Regarding being told what to do... its a waste of time to go down this path.  Others have already explained that you don’t need to follow any rules other than what the ’real’ government puts forward.  But it you want to play in this sandbox you’re being asked to do so fairly otherwise the owners (and possibly the other participants) will justifiably have you removed from their property.

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from Chris1 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 4

"For me Google should no more tell me how to run my website than the RIAA should tell me how where when and in what format I can listen to my music in, and why I have to rebuy my music in digital format instead of ripping it as an MP3"Google sends FREE ORGANIC TRAFFIC to sites that it determines are relevant.  That is their business, now you want to tell Google how they should determine relevancy?

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from graywolf 2509 Days ago #
Votes: -2

well if you’re willing to surrender your moral decision making and free will to some corporation, god bless you, I’ll keep free thought and decision making right where it should be between my own two ears.

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from TimDineen 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 4

I am surrenderring nothing - in fact I think I’m taking a less-corporate and more egalitarian attitude as I feel the Internet would be better off for all of us rather than just large corporations or deep-pocketed individuals who can afford to flood it by buying links.By the way - I commend you for saying what you feel and for often speaking to the contrarian point of view when others might not do so. I just happen to disagree with you and I’m glad I’m not alone here.

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from MattCutts 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 7

"Hey if some people are happy living in a world where Google makes all the rules fine."graywolf, this is not a Google-only issue. Every major search engine has come out against paid links that pass PageRank. And I’ve said for months that webmasters can do whatever they want on their own site, but Google in turn reserves the right to protect the quality of our index.

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from graywolf 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 0

>this is not a Google-only issuetrue but I don’t see/hear them beating the drum the way Google does about it.

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from MattCutts 2509 Days ago #
Votes: 3

graywolf, I thought you knew all that Machiavellian stuff. If another search engine is defending why PageRank-selling is bad for relevance, why would you (as a competing search engine) step into the middle of that discussion? Especially when people call the other search engine "petulant spoiled children," Nazis, etc.?Personally, I think that more discussion/communication with webmasters is a Good Thing, so I don’t mind defending my stance in public. But this is not a Google-only issue, and every search engine has taken the same stance that Google has.

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from graywolf 2509 Days ago #
Votes: -1

>I thought you knew all that Machiavellian stuffDrat I left out that I also didn’t like teachers telling me what to read in high school either :-)Since none of us owns page rank, we really can’t sell it. You guys proped up the concept of "links are votes" it wasn’t ratified as a law or anything. So if the rest of the world thinks a link is just a link don’t measure us by your standards. it’s no different than vegans claiming people who eat meat are cruel and heartless people for having a hamburger for dinner.Not surprisningly I also don’t like vegans telling me what to eat, PETA telling me what to wear, or tree huggers telling me a plethora of things I can’t do.

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from graywolf 2509 Days ago #
Votes: -1

Another interesting opinionhttp://www.skrenta.com/2007/12/pagerank_wrecked_the_web_3.html

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from MattCutts 2508 Days ago #
Votes: 2

graywolf, I honestly think you might enjoy Machiavelli. Wait, on second thought--nevermind. Let’s not acquaint you with "The Prince." I hear there’s some good reality television on MTV tonight. :)

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from JohnWeb 2508 Days ago #
Votes: 0

This is all becoming borderline Sisyphean

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from massa 2508 Days ago #
Votes: 1

I don’t think anyone is being a crybaby any more than anyone is trying to create a level playing field. There is simply no such thing. It’s just business and Google has a right to run it’s business legally. So do you.http://www.seo-scoop.com/2007/04/20/the-internet-marketers-manifesto/

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from Halfdeck 2508 Days ago #
Votes: 4

I had it up to here with seeing the SEO industry chase its own tail on the paid links debate. This post in particular is beating a dead horse and regurgitating what’s been said 1 million times already. The issue is sidetracking us from discussing strategies that make us more money.Yeah, I want more money and more time. Guess what? I’m getting neither by reading this post.

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from MattC 2508 Days ago #
Votes: 1

> graywolf, I honestly think you might enjoy MachiavelliActually Graywolf I think Matt Cutts is referring to Tupac.

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from DanThies 2508 Days ago #
Votes: 4

Sphunn, but not for Graywolf’s post... everyone who buys the link-sellers’ line of BS on this topic just needs to read Danny Sullivan’s response. When reading posts on this topic in particular, watch out for who’s paying the poster.

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from wdeloach 2508 Days ago #
Votes: 3

My problem with all this is that Google could do more to resolve spam content by limiting AdSense than crusading against paid links. It won’t happen though. For the one PPP example Matt gave recently you could easily find 20 adsense funded sites providing misinformation (and I think I’m being conservative in that estimate).

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from TimDineen 2507 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@wdeloach - I agree.  There are far too many sites out there that are surviving on decent rankings combined with AdSense... I almost wish Google’s spam team would look at AdSense users for the likelihood of potential abuse based on AdSense use alone.

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from johnandrews 2507 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I have to empathize with graywolf for his disgust with Google’s use of "illicit" and the references to morality. That’s nonsense. I also completely agree with Tim on the scalability problem. I’ve already seen collateral damage. Google has a history of righteous behavior and lack of transparency, so we don’t need to blindly trust Google any more than necessary.Let’s not forget that Danny Sullivan has built a career and several corporations around this industry, which currently is ruled by Google.

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from DanThies 2506 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Meanwhile, lost in the debate over whether Google has a right to run their own search engine as they see fit... the reality is that link rentals have been a weak and over hyped SEO strategy for a very long time.John, are you seriously questioning Danny’s motives and integrity here? Gimme a break, and while you’re at it, glance over at the TLA adverts right there on Graywolf’s blog, if you’re wondering about objectivity.

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from johnandrews 2506 Days ago #
Votes: 1

@DanThies:  Am I "seriously" questioning Danny Sulivan’s integrity? I don’t think I did that. But as everyone throws character judgements around, we have to be fair and recognize that even "neutral" positions can be just that -- positions. Personally I am quite tired of the personality jumping (just like what you did here). Answer me this, Dan, do you truly believe someone like Danny Sullivan speaks freely from the heart when he posts public editorial on the web? Of course he modulates his expressed thoughts. No worries, except when someone notes that "Danny said this" in the same breath that they question someone else’s motives.

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from DanThies 2506 Days ago #
Votes: 2

Yes, John, I think Danny pretty much says what he thinks. So do I.And I certainly wouldn’t question Michael’s integrity, just his objectivity - the text link "industry" puts cash in his pocket. It’s no wonder that he’s crying so loud.

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from Gab 2506 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@ Dan - I think you mean why the wolf’s howling ;)A few other points. Google doesn’t force you to use their engine. I used to like that argument. But yet, by buying out so many small, related companies (think urchin for analytics or blogspot for blogging), and tying it all so tight together, they make it kinda hard not to. So it’s a little hypocritical and isn’t as valid as it once was. Buying links as a tactic means the rich do SEO easier. Not a fan of that situation. But the flip side is that link rentals are way more affordable than newspaper ads and such, thus more accessible to smaller ppl.On a related note, I think it’s lame that some people are voting down all of Graywolf/Mike’s comments. That should be reserved for inappropriate stuff, as it has the effect of hiding comments automatically. Are you afraid of a real, two-sided debate? Ever heard of "audi alteram partem"?aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaanddddd:@ MATT CUTTS... (Excuse the caps, just trying to get your attention dude.) Funny you should mention other engines coming out against selling PageRank too. A freudian slip to be sure, but I think it reflects how you guys have been messing up the whole idea of PageRank with "nofollow". See here: Why Nofollow and Sculpting PR Defeat PR (or Why Click Here is Good Anchor Text)And for more on the same point, see here (saying, in a way, that adsense is a form of selling PageRank): Aggressive Ad Publishing Hurts Your PageRank

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from dannysullivan 2505 Days ago #
Votes: 3

@johnandrews, I’ve built a career around search, and writing about it to my readers. Not around Google. I was writing about search before Google even existing. And yep, I pretty much do post freely from the heart. If I dislike something, I’ll say so, and I don’t care who it is that’s doing it: Google or whatever. But I will try to be fair and show the other person’s point of view.In terms of this endless, tiring, boring debate on paid links, I’ll I’m saying is the same thing I’ve said for years. Do whatever you want in search marketing, but if you don’t follow the rules of the search engines, don’t be surprised if you get hit with penalities.Google says don’t sell paid links or buy them unless you do it in a way that doesn’t pass link credit. If you fail to do that, then Google might take action against you within Google. Pretty easy choice -- take the risk or follow the rules.I like Michael -- but what will be the next argument. That Google is dictating web page design because it still does a piss-poor job indexing sites in frames? That Google shouldn’t penalize for hidden text? That Google has no right to say that if you generate nonsensical pages to gain traffic, this is a violation of a webmaster’s right to cloak?Actually, Google and all the search engines do need to have continued pressure to upgrade and have sensible indexing policies, not because they have to, but because they should. But it’s absurd to argue that Google is harming an advertising model by asking for nofollow. If you’re buying links to rank on Google, then you’re dealing in Google’s economy -- and it can and will set the interest rates higher.Instead, the stronger argument continues to be that Google simply cannot find all the paid links out there through this flagging, so it needs to get on with better algorithmic solutions, especially since you’ve got plenty of links that aren’t "paid" but still aren’t given on a "deserved" basis. And I, for one, will be extremely happy when site owners don’t feel they have to second guess every link to decide if it needs to be nofollowed to avoid Google’s wraith -- especially in the light of clear mistakes. But that’s entirely a different thing that telling people that are running pretty clear-cut link selling schemes that guess what, the jig is up.

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from johnandrews 2504 Days ago #
Votes: 1

@Dan I am amazed you state Danny speaks without bias yet Michael’s "objectivity" is influenced by his use of TLA. No sense arguing with you. Danny probably makes a little more from search than Michael makes from TLA, but I don’t have access to the numbers.@Danny I was quick to disapprove of Michael’s anti-Google rant at SES, but here I think you’re wrong. Webmasters should be able to innovate without anyone telling the world that what they are doing is shady or deceptive or immoral or illicit. True Google can do what it wants, but when Google delists a site it tells it’s audience that the site is of low quality or otherwise unworthy. When Google paints a public picture of paid links, it does so with a brush that derides the paid link players.  It doesn’t take responsibility for its actions and say "Google doesn’t want to include that site", for obvious reasons -- it wants to protect the public image of trust. And as long as Google continues to play the "we are good, working for the good of the people"  card they should not be defended. They should be held accountable for their lack of transparency and rather righteous modus operandi w/r to "quality control".I have no argument about "google can do what it wants". I have an argument with Google saying those who disagree with Google are "evil". As for dealing in Google’s economy, if you take that approach, where are the consumer advocates asking the tough questions about FireFox integration, Toolbar distribution, apparent conflcit of interest between AdWords and AdSense, etc? Every time I see Matt Cutts suggest the FTC has something to say about advertising, I cringe. Consumers have almost no advocates at all protecting their interests today, let alone the FTC. To call it in on the side of Google is ridiculous.

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from neyne 2504 Days ago #
Votes: 0

>These rules aren’t intended to level playing field in fact are exactly the oposite, they are to consolidate all of the poser in Google’s hands. By systematically eliminating competing advertising options, and buying up others like Doubleclick, Google is adversely affecting the internet advertising space. What Google wants is a world where there are very few advertiser options available and coincidentally they happen to be the biggest one.Now regardless of my opinion on the question of Google being crybabies over the paid link issue and then SEO’s being crybabies over the Google being crybabies over paid links, I really doubt the claim that Google is doing this in order to eliminate the advertising competition. I have a feeling that the earnings of the text-link advertising and Google advertising profits are not really measured by the same orders of magnitude...

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from DanThies 2504 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@John, I would sincerely hope that Danny makes more money writing about search than Michael does. Objectivity is the #1 reason why Danny has what he has and is who he is. Some folks are offended that he doesn’t take stronger positions on some things, others are offended by whatever. We all have our internal biases, of course - some of us don’t agree with the idea that Google owes us a living, for example.

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from bwelford 2503 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Doesn’t it boil down to what is Google’s mission re its search function.  Is it producing relevant results as viewed by the searcher or as viewed by Google?  That’s the crux of the whole issue.

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