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Its no secrete that the reputation of the SEO industry isn’t as many of us wish it to be. The term "snake-oil salesman" has been used few times to describe our industry, unfortunately.

It might be therefore we see some responsible SEO companies found themselves in a position where posting a declaration of a "SEO Code of Ethics" on their sites has been a necessity rather than a luxury. The more the clients and employers (in case In-House SEOes) become SEO-educated the more they would demand of the SEOes to declare, follow and be responsible of a set of "SEO Code of Ethics" which insures the quality, and safety (not to be penalized by search engines) of the SEO works conducted on their sites.

Unfortunately, I have noticed that there is no consensus yet within the industry upon what such "SEO Code of Ethics" to cover and contains.

However, there has been few SEO companies which have created their own "SEO Code of Ethics". For example:

http://www.bruceclay.com/web_ethics.htm

http://www.searchandsocial.com/seo-ethics.html

I guess several SEO companies would be pleased to declare and post a "SEO Code of Ethics" once there is a standard version on which the majority of the SEO industry has already agreed upon.

There is no need at present to mandate or police such "SEO Code of Ethics", IMO. What we need is to agree upon and create such "SEO Code of Ethics" and leave it up to each SEO company to decide for itself whether to declare and post such "SEO Code of Ethics".
Comments44 Comments  

Comments

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from paisley 2067 Days ago #
Votes: 0

probably the MOST legitimate compromise on "SEO Certification" ever..i like the bruce clay group.. with one exception..All SEO practitioners will offer their clients both internal and external dispute resolution procedures. This includes the publishing of address and phone numbers on primary web pages, the inclusion of third-party dispute resolution links prominently placed within the practitioners web site, and contracts that include sections discussing dispute resolution.There are few who understand SEO and, i’m sure not refunding any money to a client who acts as a stumbling block to SEO.. as in.. there IT department erases metrics scripts, overwirtes SEO changes or waits 2 weeks to make changes, etc. an arbitration agreement may not take into account these things.the search and social one looks like a re-write of the bruce clay model.. of course.. everything SEO is a re-write of something bruce clay... lol... un-intentional or not..

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from DanaLookadoo 2067 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Laughing about Paisley’s comment about re-write, which is OK. I don’t think we need to invent the wheel, just improve and mass produce it. The external dispute aspect is something that should be addressed in each individual contract, not in the Code, agreed.I support an effort for a SEO Code of Ethics and appreciate Harith’s taking the initiative. Agreed, no police, all voluntary. I look forward to exploring ways and methods to continue the discussion and gain support. One of the (minor) reasons I left consulting for a while was the disgust for the snake-oil SEOs and the ignorance of people who associate all SEOs with these people, the used-car-salesman stereotype.For example, there are 2 Web services firms in my locale who are selling SEO services - one is offering template sites that are image-based, NO text, and the other is only doing PPC. The consumer, in general, doesn’t know the difference. We, SEOs, get lumped in with this approach.The need for a Code of Ethics goes beyond black vs. white hat; it’s also about value, truth in advertising. We might not be able to insure "quality" as Harith mentioned, but we can provide a way for consumers to evaluate what they are "buying."

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from Harith 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

First off, the material "SEO Code of Ethics" of Bruce Clay is highly appreciated efforts in the right direction. I see several SEO companies sites have posted on their sites the same said code and a badge reading [COMPLIANT BRUCECLAY.COM - SEO Code of Ethics]. As a temporary measure for those SEO companies who are interested, the said solution is excellent, IMO. And there is no doubt that the material of "SEO Code of Ethics" issued by Bruce Clay would be very suitable as part of the basic materials and suggestions for further discussion in an effort to establish the new "SEO Code of Ethics" which the majority of the SEO industry would endorse and adopt.Such effort needs the participation, input and collaboration of as many SEO companies, SEOes and SEO related people as possible.I imagine creating a discussion group (for example a Yahoo group) under the name "SEO Code of Ethics" where ideas and suggestions would be discussed aiming at creating a final "SEO Code of Ethics".The final "SEO Code of Ethics" would be posted on its own site and have its own badge. All members of the SEO industry would be welcome to post the final "SEO Code of Ethics" and the badge on their own sites (with reference or linking to the site of the "SEO Code of Ethics"). There would be no mandating or policing of "SEO Code of Ethics" or the badge.

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from Lid 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I like your thinking.  As Paisley points out, probably be best compromise.Have you considered contacting various SEO thought leaders and asking them to be involved - to any degree - even at an advisory level?  Because you’re right, you’ll need the participation of many involved in SEO.In any case, I’m happy to help in any way.

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from GlobalFusion 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Since Google is the main player, and considering that they have done a lot of work to regulate the industry, How about using http://groups.google.com/group/seo-code-of-ethics for the discussion?

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from paisley 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Harith,good idea... an addition... get a revolving group of individuals who will volunteer their time to examine people in the group... criteria being No conflict of interest. i.e. me being in texas could examine an aussie seo for compliance, etc.. and someone from the UK could examine my compliance, etc.. use some type of rotating authority where it’s not the "usual suspects" (i.e. people who will use it to further the SEO speaking career, or boneheads like the new "SEO champion", etc..pixel bella.. i’m "recreating" the "code of ethics" as "SEO best practices" for us to hand out to clients, however i will completely re-write the bruce caly stuff to fit my style and my personal view of the importance along with some "expectations" on communications from the client side as well like..1. client agrees to not remove any pages from website or change wholesale navigational aspects of the website without consulting with SEO firm, etc.. 2. client agrees to consult with seo before buying additional domain names and posting new websites.3. client agrees not to post links to or from website without seo prior consent...lol.. i could go on..........

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from paisley 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

lid.. lol.. umm.. great minds.. (think alike)Global fusion.. google groups is cool as long as you can keep the assclowns out, unlike this past week’s seo conference.

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from Harith 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@paisley, @PixelBella, @Lid and @GlobalFusionThanks for your contributions and kind encouraging words. Higly appreciated. I also wish to thank all the friends who have been kind to Sphinn this post. As I mentioned, for this effort to succeed it is going to need the participation and collaboration of as many SEO industry members as possible. It is going to be a collective effort.All are invited to participate and contribute to the followings activities (in no particular order):- Promote the effort and make it visible among the SEO industry platforms (forums, blogs etc..). - Inviting SEO companies, SEOes and SEO related people to participate and contribute to the effort.  - To create a discussion group, preferably moderated not to censor opinions but just to prevent spam. For that we need several moderators. Yahoo groups and Google groups have been suggested. Any other suggestions, please? The only condition is to choose a discussion group platform which we all feel comfortable in using it.- To create a committee for management of the effort.- and any other suggestions are welcome, of course.

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from paisley 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

lmao.. make a post... we will just keep revising... etc..

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from paisley 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

on second thought...  i’ll be happy to help.. to a point.. i’m not interested in playing linkbait internet games.. msg me on twitter we can circulate, etc..

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from Harith 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 1

@paisley Thanks. I believe the whole effort of creating "SEO Code of Ethics" should be not-for-profit. The whole idea emerged out of a discussion with other friends on Twitter (@danalookadoo   @GlobalFusion @davesnyder @robwatts @DavidKeffen @chris_hart). A post by Rand on seomoz was mentioned too.http://www.seomoz.org/blog/sigh-how-can-we-overcome-ignorance-about-seoSo I thought, instead of keep talking about a problem, why not try to find a solution?Therefore this post!Of course I’m not sure at this moment whether the SEO community is ready at present to proceed in the effort of creating a "SEO Code of Ethics".Lets wait and see ;-)

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from rhcerff 2066 Days ago #
Votes: -1

I actually don’t see the point myself.  Sure you can sign up.  But don’t doctors have to sign up for the hypothetic oath?  Now many unethical medical practitioners are there out there?  While you might say you do/don’t do something the proof still lies in the pudding - as they say.  I think reputation is still the best metric to judge anyone.

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from cryptblade 2066 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I think this is pointless. At the core of the problem is in the people themselves. Everyone and their friggin uncle wants "SEO". But do they really know SEO? In my company, our leads come from legitimate businesses and lame overnight startups where the person just suddenly decided to start a website to sell "stuff" and decide he wants "SEO". Oh and he needs sales right away. Give me a friggin break.And companies like Network Solutions and other non-SEO, non-marketing but web-based companies are all too eager to sell "SEO" services. Not to mention there are far too many individual "SEOs" (whether they actually know or dont know SEO) who are willing to do "SEO" for cheap. I ran into some website where "SEOs" bid for projects. I found one guy claiming he’ll do SEO for $15 an hour. Give me a break - a professional web designer charges more for that, why would a REAL SEO charge little more than a customer service rep?A professionl code of Ethics is lame because there’s no power, no governing authority - and frankly, there never will be. Until Google becomes the ONLY search engine and can dictate SEO rules, there will not be any legitimate governing power. Google is "de facto" the only search engine, but that does not make it a governing authority.If you really want this to work, we need to form a powerful "Interactive Marketing" association that brings together web development companies and marketing companies - the basic synthesis of SEO - and build from there. SEO doesn’t have federal laws like in the accounting or medical or attorney fields. There are no schools of SEO. Even to this day, you don’t have certifications for web designers or web developers. And the problem is that many people think SEO is part of web design and web development.Personally, in most cases, I believe the ethics argument is nothing more than an SEO marketing gimmick just like the white-hate vs. black-hat crap. There’s no substance to it. It looks nice. It seems nice. But what is SEO? It’s about delivering results. If you don’t get the website to rank on the first page for the targeted keywords, you fail. And your client will leave. And if you beg them to stay and PROMISE to try harder, then aren’t you breaking "ethics" already? I mean, why would anyone pay someone to "try harder"? So SEO is all about results and customer service - service customers right, give them realistic expectations and over deliver, and get them ranking. Period.

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from g1smd 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

*** And the problem is that many people think SEO is part of web design and web development. ***<div></div><div></div><div>But it is!  There’s bucket loads of sub-standard websites that need work ON the website.</div><div></div><div></div><div>The stuff that isn’t on the website is mostly SEM.</div><div></div><div></div><div></div><div>*** ethics argument is nothing more than an SEO marketing gimmick ***</div><div></div><div>***  But what is SEO? It’s about delivering results  ***</div><div></div><div></div><div>*** If you don’t get the website to rank on the first page for the targeted keywords, you fail. ***</div><div></div><div>Err. No.</div><div></div><div></div><div>Rankings.  No.  Perhaps traffic and conversions.</div><div></div><div></div><div>But there is a bigger picture.</div><div></div><div></div><div>If you do stuff that gets a client banned you’re right to be branded a spammer or cheat or fake.</div><div></div><div></div><div>That’s where the ethics bit comes in.</div><div></div><div></div>

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from ChristopherHart 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Many SEO’s sweat the tech, my worry is always the business health. People pay bills and feed children as a result of their work in the online world. So any time we (Bruce Clay) work with a client of any size. We always consider the human implications to every change. This is why our code of Ethics is so important to all that we do. Can we as a market improve, yes and that is clearly shown with this string, but we had to start some place! Morales and Ethics, Corporate Governance, Stake Holder vs. Share Holder are all elements mature business markets consider everyday. Are we too important to do so also, I don’t think so, but right now it is like herding cats!Everyone is waiting for the one break out leader to make a difference before embracing a set of standards.

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from Harith 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@ChristopherHart,Thanks for chiming in with those encouraging words. Much appreciated.As I mentioned previously on this thread, Bruce Clay’s efforts in connection with creating and declaring its own "SEO Code of Ethics" is a good example of a SEO company which cares about its clients and its own reputation.  Power to you!

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from Harith 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Dear popular names of the SEO industry!Dear the stars of every SEO related conference!We have witnessed some of you during the latest months expressing how sad you are to see the deterioration of the reputation of the SEO industry. We read about how broken your hearts are of sadness of what you saw and see. And we thought that you meant each and every word you posted and said on your platforms. How come non of you "The Popular Names and Stars of The SEO Industry"  has taken few minutes to chime in and contribute with anything just to show us you really care?BULLSHIT..that what you have been posting and saying about how sad you are to see the decline of the reputation of the SEO Industry. Who will believe you next time you write or say anything about how heartbreaking is the state of the SEO Industry?May Your Souls Rest In Peace!

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from scottpolk 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I would have to agree with that person who speaks ... named @Chris_Hart (follow him on twitter)thanks@scottpolk

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from paisley 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

@Harith..and this is why you will most likely not ever see me speak at a conference, nor post any mathematical equations or experiements anymore in any type of public forum...i.e. cryptblade... discusses the problem we are trying to overcome at length but dismisses any type of solution... so we can all agree, lack of information about SEO IS part of the problem, just as much as people not trying to do anything about it...i.e. ChristopherHart - (insert company name here) exactly what i meant by.. "i’m not interested in playing linkbait internet games.. "i will be happy to work with you over e-mail/twitter, etc.. i’m not interested in trying to promote my company name or write misleading SEO info.. honestly.. unless your name is matt cutts or danny sullivan then your still a noob, no matter how much bullshit you pump out on your newsletter or how many "seo" student read your blog, forum, how many conferences you ahve spoken at, paid for, been on a panel of, etc..  and yes cryptblade it’s about ranking at the top of the SERPs for qualified, keywords/phrases that CONVERT!those that can’t do.. teach (or start a seminar about it), not always true.. but sometimes it is...@Harith, with no certification NOR possibility of certification, (unless Google, Yahoo! and MSN standardize a class and reveal their algos) (umm.. not in my lifetime)... the logic of having a code of conduct makes sense.. once the code of conduct is widespreade enough, those, "WE SUBMIT YOUR WEBSITE TO 2,357,900 SEARCH ENGINES EVERYDAY!" Emails get less and less effective, which means legitimate seo professionals (not PPC assclowns, yes i know NOT ALL PPC people are assclowns, no offense intended miss kate), but people who manipulate websites to achieve greater results for their clients, employers or affiliate websites, etc for a living... even if it’s for pron sites... it’s still SEO... If a company does black hat stuff.. well then.. ethics really aren’t part of the equation.. are they...the choice is to continue to get customers who have been burned before by shady people who may or may not have experience in SEO, or to move customers up to a higher plane of thinking looking for people who understand ROI, managing client expectations and playing within ethical rules of business...i’d like to get more SEO clients from an SEO perspective.. but i’m doing fine getting SEO clients from a business perspective... but it’s still crap to deal with up front.. which i’m dealing with now.. but would be happier without it..

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from Harith 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Folks,Allow me to bring to this thread, for the record, a great article relevant to this thread posted August 26, 2008, by Lisa Baron on Bruce Clay blog :Displaying Your SEO Ethics

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from DarkMatter 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 2

ehhh do you really think it’s appropriate to paste someone else’s blog post as a comment here? I think a link would have sufficed.

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from paisley 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

or... maybe this is all a geek need to be "certified" i.e. novell, CNA, CNE, MCSE, microsoft Gold Partner, Cisco certified, "google adwords professional" etc..lol

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from Jill 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Why is this supposedly an industry issue?If you want to have a code of ethics on your website, then go for it. If not, then don’t.End of story.

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from Harith 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

DarkMatter,Sorry. Corrected. Haven’t thought about it. Now only a link is mentioned.

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from ChristopherHart 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

paisely, No ill will was mentioned to your post, I just stated what was important to me. Having spent many years developing an in-house SEO culture inside a traditional publishing company. Taking into consideration the effects of SEO changes on those around me is second nature. Now I also agree with you on the topic that just because one speaks or publishes allot of information on a topic, does not make them an expert the proof is in the walk. But I do not agree with you that certification or market place standards will only happen if governed by the big engines. That is like putting Big Oil in charge of Green Energy. Why cant we just have an http://www.angieslist.com for the SEO world, now clients regulate their experience with the SEO market place, in a public forum?

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from paisley 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

no ill will toward you either... i was merely referencing people bringing self promotion into it.. you just happened to be the first person to mention a company name.. (one who has been around as long as i have, so no disrespect in that manner either..)...certification by anyone EXCEPT google is an error, how can ANYONE certify things they cannnot control.i.e. how many classes on buying paid links were taught.. now.. that info is bogus.. follow?bad idea for angie’s list... too many people will anonymously corrupt the results, not too mention it’s VERY one-sided. i.e. client’s IT dept. makes changes late or incorrectly, wipes out metrics codes from website tracking... i could go on.... client picks a keyword like being first for "windows" (he sells mini blinds) and demands that after a month, he wants to be front page or he/she will post bad things.. etc... too many variables.. there is always the BBB... but.. unscrupulous businesses steal the BBB seal and the client has already made the purchase before they went back to click link, etc...think industry credibility.

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from afzee 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

It is good for companies to declare their "SEO Code of Ethics" on their website but what about those who even after declaring "SEO Code of Ethics" will follow and use un-ethical practices to make their clients fool!To impress clients all such companies use heavy heavy industry terms and promise guarantee client to deliver No-1 rankings in google either by showing them Sponsered Ad’s or implementing some black hat techniques. I can’t imagine what all are the things such people do to get customers.I got fade up dealing with customer’s who have looted by so called SEO people. I prefer better not to have any Client’s but never will keep people in DARK.I guess we need to first black list and identify all such SEO firms/Professionals who spoils and ruining name of SEO Industry.People who want SEO or looking for SEO companies need to educate themselves and understand the real meaning of SEO. I found many SEO Companies and Experts claiming themselves as the best SEO professional but on looking at their back ground they even doesnt know "S" of search engine optimization. All these sites uses *fake screenshots* and *bogus testimonials* claiming to be SEO leader. It is our task to educate people first that SEO is not that your website will get top position very next day or whatever the fake promises people are doing!Morever I beleive even after claiming "SEO Code of Ethics" it’s individual SEO professional inner voice & individual oath that he/she will follow ethical, honest and best practices to help his Clients not for just making money by following illegimit, un-ethical & spammy practices.

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from Harith 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Friends,Thanks much for your time and contributions. Very kind of you.It wasn’t by incident that I have chosen the "SEO Code of Ethics" rather than the "Certification" path. I have been there before.During 2000 I was ripped off by an affiliate merchant. So I posted my case on http://www.revenews.com. The discussion created a momentum to start an effort aiming at creating affiliate program merchants certification standard. Brian Clark, your trully and other affiliate marketers and merchants friends went on and started a discussion group on Yahoo under name "The Affiliate Union". In addition to his great effort, Brian contributed a website (which doesn’t exist anymore) to the effort. Brian popularity within the affiliate marketing industry was at that time something like the popularity of Danny Sullivan today within SEO industry. The "Affiliate Union" group attracted at that time the majority of the affiliate marketing industry popular names.http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/affiliateunion/Here you can see the first posts from April 2000.http://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/affiliateunion/messages/1Through our discussion we came to the conclusion that its a very big task, if not impossible for our group to police or mandate a certification. Therefore we agreed to work together to agree upon and create "Affiliate Program Certification Criteria" and make it available for Affiliate Program Merchantshttp://tech.groups.yahoo.com/group/affiliateunion/message/405Just wish to underline, that the said efforts was a collaboration of both affiliates and affiliate program merchants.

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from DanaLookadoo 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

TOTALLY agree about NO LINKBAITING games!  Of course, a code of ethics is voluntary as Jill mentions. Maybe it’s not an industry issue - have to think about that. Do wish there was SOME industry standard against which a consumer could compare methodologies, like AAA for automotive repair, without it being a governing body, as has already been said. However, afzee is so correct. What stops the SEO Champions and SEO Trademarkers from abusing it? Black list? hmmm... Some super good points!Like paisley’s "best practices" approach. After reading Bruce Clay’s again and again, the base to begin is so very strong. (But wait, didn’t Jason Gambert coin the term, SEO - sorry.)Ready to take discussions over to here, thanks @GlobalFusion.http://groups.google.com/group/seo-code-of-ethics

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from afzee 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Great discussion from industry people, however as @Harith mentioned I too was keen to see the participation from SEO Gurus.....intrested to see where are going to land up........Cheers!

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from paisley 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@afzee"but what about those who even after declaring "SEO Code of Ethics" will follow and use un-ethical practices to make their clients fool!"if they have it posted on their website in writing it becomes actionable content..

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from Harith 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

Dear SEO Industry members,Its always of great benefit to discuss in open mind matters related to our industry. And we should accept and respect differences of opinion in our community. This thread would be remmebered in two ways, and you can decide on which way:- The thread which has opened a golden opportunity for the SEO Industry to create, agree upon and adopt "SEO Code of Ethics" leaving a free choice to the members of the industry whether to post it on their sites telling  proudly their clients; we are transperant..we are responsible..we do care.Or- The thread which illustrated with no reasonable doubt that the members of SEO Industry haven’t been able to find a solution and have chosen to proceed  with business as usual regardless of the remarkable declined of reputation of their own industry.  In this case, I would strongly suggest those kind SEO Industry members who wish to post a "SEO Code of Ethics" to use Bruce Clay’s http://www.bruceclay.com/web_ethics.htm Dear SEO Industry members,The choice is yours!

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from GlobalFusion 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 1

@paisley, the group will definitely be monitored to avoid acts that don’t enrich the dialog. I think it’s important to agree to disagree. But allowing deplorable behaviors should not be accepted. The chump story is not a measure of the industry IMO. Unfortunately we will always find rock stars like that craving for a moment of glory at whatever cost.Most importantly is that the group, as a whole, should be the one self-regulating. Let’s walk the talk. Otherwise, why promote a Code of Ethics when we cannot even make a step forward in running the house properly?@Harith, the only reason why I thought Google Groups will be a good option is that Googlers participate in different ones, and perhaps they will be incline to join us in this discussion. @PixelBella suggested that “Yahoo! Groups is a little more user-friendly, but Google’s is easy.” Whatever makes people feel more comfortable I am all for that. And yes, several moderators will be appropriate and needed.@paisley @Harith The last thing we all want to do is give the impression that this conversation is some sort of linkbait, self promotion or an advertisement marketplace driven by dubious forces. Let’s do this because of our believes and principles, not because of derived benefits that can be obtained. That’s a NO-NO!I don’t think this is about how many people are doing inappropriate things in the industry. This is more about adhering to a set of principles that WE, the people interested in this topic, share with others. If that happens to be ethically correct, and which “could” eventually shape a company/individual’s reputation, then more power to us. Ethics, as we all know, transcend time and is unchangeable. However, societies evolve and create new rules. Ethics is not a marketing gimmick and should not be used as such.@cryptblade  “A professionl code of Ethics is lame because there’s no power, no governing authority - and frankly, there never will be.” - This is not what we’re discussing here. This initiative is more of self-regulation than anything else. We can go beyond forming an “Interactive Marketing association,” but we have to start somewhere. And this is exactly what is happening here. Working on the foundation, what you may call substance. Then, if you want to take it further you can even think about a Union, which I am not very keen on, but will be up to you. We just need to take one step at the time.@Jill, it becomes an industry issue when many of us are claiming for changes, perhaps not the majority, but a fair sample of the universe. And that’s what matters. Changes have not been started by the masses. They sparked in universities, communities, churches, etc where there were latent deficiencies that needed to be addressed. A couple of friends mentioned in a different conversation that this topic has been brought up over and over, year after year, yet nothing has been accomplished. Well, then work with us. Give us the opportunity to crystallize these efforts instead of becoming another obstacle in the horizon. This ought to be an industry-wide effort and we need the participation of all involved parties.It will also be our responsibility to outreach and invite as many people as possible to craft a group of principles that will become our framework.Apathy is a disease that consumes the soul. I hope I can sit 40 years from now and think back about the many times I tried and failed, but without the remorse of not trying at all.

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from paisley 2065 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@globalfusion excellent summation post... and maybe this will be repeated later..but we must remember different people do things differently.i get a newsletter from a "popular seo" that is pretty much horseshit for newbies in my opinion... but that’s MY opinion. I’m not a link seeker, nor do any strategies/tactics i use for search involves links other than yahoo! dir, ODP and anything that comes from traditional PR or news coverage, luckily i work with high enough profile clients where links come naturally.. I’m not always going to agree with "popular seo" people, nor will they always agree with me.. i think the ethical business aspect is the best compromise to some time of certification/regulation which so far involves someone judging your website by their standards and tactics, which usually invovled things like.. "has a minimum of 10 PR6 links, etc.."i will provide my input to the point where it gets ugly, then i’m done.. i can give a viewpoint from the ad agency/pr firm perspective or the web development/seo perspective.

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from DanaLookadoo 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 0

WOW! You guys are eloquent!OK, let’s walk the talk as @GlobalFusion said. As @Harith stated, we have a Golden Opportunity. I’m there with @paisley; the moment discussion gets ugly, I’m gone. No politics or narcissism. Movements of change are based on genuine motives to impact society, to make a difference. We all agree there is a deficiency. The resolution is unclear. I’m not going to let apathy consume my soul, either!

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from paisley 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I’d say let’s do the google group... Globalfusion can moderate...???sound good?

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from dsnyder 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 1

(wrote this in the Google group too)Hey All,Dave Snyder here. Our company Search & Social, displays our Customer Service Promises http://www.searchandsocial.com/our-promise.html , and our SEO Ethics http://www.searchandsocial.com/seo-ethics.html.We do this as our personal promise to our clients that we will guard their brands. It is also the foundation of mine and Jordan Kasteler’s philosophy on Client Services. What I dont think many people get is that Black Hat’s dont often due client work, so the real threat to client service industry is the proverbial snake oil salesman. I do not think a regulated industry is the answer, as no other marketing outlet has such a regulatory factor, and the FCC is not an example because that is not their purpose. This needs to be about education and personal responsibility. In the end our code is our personal stance on the issue, and I have no problem with it remaining a personal stance.Dave

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from DanaLookadoo 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Discussion at http://groups.google.com/group/seo-code-of-ethics

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from afzee 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@paisley - "if they have it posted on their website in writing it becomes actionable content...." Who is gonna keep check on them. We may need to hire Spider Cops ...lol@PixelBella - joined the group - google group make sense I find myself comfortable out there."I don’t think this is about how many people are doing inappropriate things in the industry. This is more about adhering to a set of principles that WE, the people interested in this topic, share with others. If that happens to be ethically correct, and which “could” eventually shape a company/individual’s reputation, then more power to us." @GlobalFusion - I agree with ur views As @GlobalFusion said it’s all about WE, the people to be part of this revolution and make everyone aware of what is ethical. Every SEO porfessional has their own way of doing SEO but all adhere to ethical approaches.........I want to be part of this revolution................see you guys at group

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from paisley 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@afzeethere is no "we"....wait.. there are two ways to read that..a. once we post this... say someone snags it.. and isn’t worthy?good point.. my atty is $300/hour to send nasty copyright infringment letters.which brings me to my original intent...b. if lame seo person posts it, it becomes actionable content for the client they screw over... so it’s not really that these people stole our content and posted it to look legitimate... it’s the fact that by putting these things in writing the possible client does have some kind of legal recourse..plus we also have... archive.orghttp://web.archive.org/web/19980215010938/www.paisleynet.com/cool/

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from afzee 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@paisleyGreat...your are genius.....between I haven’t  thought in this direction.......

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from Harith 2064 Days ago #
Votes: 0

Friends,I wish to invite all of you to participate in the effort of "SEO Code of Ethics". We have created a new Google group for that purpose:Discussion at http://groups.google.com/group/seo-code-of-ethicsThis effort needs the participation and collaboration of as many members as possible of the SEO Industry. Welcome to "SEO Code of Ethics" effort!

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from WebmasterT 2056 Days ago #
Votes: 0

I agree, sham certifications (which Bruce Clays are) and Codes of Ethics are why we have a reputation problem. Why is Bruce Clay LLC no longer in either SEOConsultants or SeoPros? The firm was removed from both. I can’t say why I initiated removal from SeoPros but I do think it laughable they are accepted as authors of a "Code of Ethics" which is akin to alcaholics writing laws for DUI.

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from paisley 2042 Days ago #
Votes: 0

@webmasterTmaybe they got tired of paying SEOPros oir SEOConsultants?i don’t know.. SEOPros - Currently the directory is not accepting submissionsSEOConsultants - PAID Advertisement space is available to approved SEO Consultants Directory Members. There will be a maximum of ten advertising spaces available and ads will appear on all search results pages.Directory advertisements are available in 30, 60 and 90 day increments. Advertising space is limited to 10 directory members and is available on a first come first serve basis.30 Days @ $100.00 USD 60 Days @ $150.00 USD 90 Days @ $200.00 USD Our paid advertisements are designed to provide increased exposure for those directory members who have secured an advertising opportunity within the directory.How does paying someone to list your website prove you have ethics.. or that you have any SEO skills??? I’m not listed in either and i’m looking at a client’s website that is #2 out 8,230,000,000 and has a 17% bounce rate on that term. I’ve also been doing SEO since 1994 on AOL with a 2600bps modem.. so how come I’m not listed? think i’m bullshitting? put up 20k and i’ll violate my NDA, with my client’s permission of course and you can see the result.. oh.. and hey.. it’s on the DNN CMS system..if YOU have legal issue with Bruce Clay then publish your real name and address and take it to a legal authority.. also with the comments you posted in google group, i am surprised they aren’t having legal contact you.. I remember using a Bruce Clay diagram in 1996 to explain SEO on a CNN interview.. so my frame of reference is historial not moral or ethical...  i talk to one person that works there on twitter and she seems to be a nice enough person (hi lisa B), otheriwse I don’t know if they do SEO right, (Bruce has been doing as long as i have.. so i hope so), it’s not my place to judge them unless i get a  client after they do.. then i could give some type of factual information.. Bruce Clay is just a VERY important facet of SEO History.. (no, i have no affiliation with Bruce Clay, whatsoever), so why re-invent the wheel..

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