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How Google Has Screwed over Webmasters - Florida Update Rant


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#1 phpfreak

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Posted 26 December 2003 - 04:24 PM

I don\'t know how many of you are into the whole Google scene, nor am I sure how many are Search Engine Optimizers (as we all should be), but how many of you have been hurt by this Florida update?

What kills me the most is that Google has taken away from the serious webmasters out there who earn money to sustain their websites. For example, phpfreaks.com has lost over 50% of it\'s advertising revenue over the last month due to Google\'s way of doing things. It used to be that other webmasters could purchase links on big sites like this one, to help drive traffic to their sites. Now, with the way that Google has changed it\'s algorithm, many advertisers have flipped out and run away scared.

My thinking of this is \"why?\" Why would google try to hurt the webmasters such as us that do nothing but build their search engines for them by bringing massive amounts of content to thier database and making them only more popular? The answer is greed. Google apparently wanted to drive as much of the advertising from webmaster\'s sites into it\'s own pocket by forcing all of these advertisers to get no effect by advertising anywhere other than on Google\'s own Adwords program.

Basically, this means alot of sites are in trouble. We can only hope that the new Yahoo search engine or Alltheweb or even the new upcoming Microsoft search engine can overtake Google\'s popularity. I get this fealing from reading tons of posts on the \"Florida Update\". Webmasterworld.com has over 2,000 posts regarding this entire topic and many people have talked about avoiding Google all together as their search results are starting to decline along with their support for webmasters.

So, what can we do? Nothing. Google doesn\'t care about us, nor do they even want to hear from us regarding this entire issue. About the only thing that would get Google\'s attention is to gather webmasters around the world and have them add an exlusion rule into their robots.txt file and disallow the Googlebots to their websites. When the Googlebot has been banned from hundreds of high-powered websites, maybe that\'ll get Google\'s attention. However, we all know that to make a movement like this, it would mean that all the people involved would have to take a traffic hit, and we also know that they wouldn\'t want to do this.

The monopoly has one once again ruled and dictated how we do things. Webmasters who used to earn revenue to run their sites, are now forced to use something like Google\'s Adsense (which is a huge consipracy theory right now) just to make a few bucks and help offset the costs nowdays.

So, now that we are using Adsense as a tie-over for the next best thing, we are dicated by Google on how our site should be operated. If you have ever run Adsense and been contacted by Google about modifiying your site\'s content, you\'ll understand what I mean by this. They contact you and hold your earnings over your heads and tell you that your site must be altered in order to remove the temporary suspension from your adsense account. They dictate how you as a webmaster operate your site and tell you what you can and cannot say. It\'s pathetic.

Another thing I have learned over the past two years dealing with Search Engine Optimiziers is that wembasters litteraly fear how Google is going to rank their sites. We shouldn\'t have to worry about this kind of crap. You as a wembaster, should worry about making your site better and have more features instead of trying to tweak your site to get ranked highly. You should not have to worry about Google\'s secrets and worry about why your site was ranked #1 last month and now is non-existant in the search engine rankings. As you read this, you may or may not relate to it. But trust me, I\'ve spent quite a long time on the phones with some of our advertisers trying to smooth over something that I don\'t even fully understand (Google\'s madness).

If you\'re interested, here\'s a couple of interesting articles about this Florida Update:

An Excellent article: http://www.webworksh...ida-update.html
Another one: http://www.searcheng...3/1125_bl1.html
And : http://www.searcheng...oridaupdate.asp


This is a sad era for webmasters around the world. I know of a few fellow PHP sites that are feeling the same effect and getting hurt like this as well.

This is my rant. These are only my opinions based on what I have seen and read. You are welcome to comment to this if you would like.

Thanks.
Eric 'phpfreak' Rosebrock
Got LAMP?
http://www.Phpfreaks.com Founder

#2 DarthViper3k

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Posted 27 December 2003 - 08:17 PM

once again the fools of the commercial world (google) gets greedy with their power and tries to own everybody and everything (google trying to immitate Microsoft\'s power)

what is it with companies getting power/money mad these days?

and now I\'m screwed
now that I\'ve finally opened my hosting service.. I\'m tryin to figure out how to get on search engines for as cheap as I can
and without handing over the keys to my server to some SOB
(yes my server has a lock on it... can\'t even turn it on without the keys)

so what exactly do peopel in my situation do?
well
we can either
1) kiss our asses goodbye b/c without the help from search engines we have no real hope of getting trafffic
2) get on our knees and pray that SOMEBODY will find our sites

yea
I\'m screwed
I don\'t know anybody to partner with
so 2 seams to be my only option :-/
[!--PHP-Head--][div class=\'phptop\']PHP[/div][div class=\'phpmain\'][!--PHP-EHead--]
switch($php) {
    case = \"given\" : {
       $website = 1;
       break;
    }     case = \"taught\" : {        $website = lifetime;        break;     } } [/span][!--PHP-Foot--][/div][!--PHP-EFoot--] The lazy never learn. The lazy are the downfall of many great things. Take the time to learn.

#3 phpfreak

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Posted 27 December 2003 - 08:19 PM

once again the fools of the commercial world (google) gets greedy with their power and tries to own everybody and everything (google trying to immitate Microsoft\'s power)

what is it with companies getting power/money mad these days?


I don\'t even think that\'s the half of it. I really find this whole deal disturbing. We only hope that our readers will find interest in their ads on our site and push their mouse button them, otherwise this site may not succeed.
Eric 'phpfreak' Rosebrock
Got LAMP?
http://www.Phpfreaks.com Founder

#4 DarthViper3k

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Posted 27 December 2003 - 08:21 PM

I don\'t even think that\'s the half of it. I really find this whole deal disturbing. We only hope that our readers will find interest in their ads on our site and push their mouse button them, otherwise this site may not succeed.


I know what you mean

I live with my parents still
so that I can afford to go to college
and I\'m trying to make money with my web hosting thing I just got set up
and now it looks as though my chances of gettin any sort of traffic is gone

father told me that if I don\'t make any money on this thing soon
he was gonna drag my ass up to his store (he is general manager at a Carl\'s Jr.) and put my ass to work

so much for my personal life and my g/f
:( :cry:
[!--PHP-Head--][div class=\'phptop\']PHP[/div][div class=\'phpmain\'][!--PHP-EHead--]
switch($php) {
    case = \"given\" : {
       $website = 1;
       break;
    }     case = \"taught\" : {        $website = lifetime;        break;     } } [/span][!--PHP-Foot--][/div][!--PHP-EFoot--] The lazy never learn. The lazy are the downfall of many great things. Take the time to learn.

#5 Maxian

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Posted 25 January 2004 - 05:59 AM

I have always been against Google and there PR algorithm....

I am a big fan of Vivisimo.com - it groups your search terms for you and all!

Check it out! :ph34r:

Edit:
Also wanted to throw in the fact that google has basicly become the superpower of the search engine, and because of that as you said, people worry so much about there PR. Google grades you more on the links you have then your content, but the user doesnt care about how many people link to your site, they care about the content. Balancing the 2 is a very hard thing to do, and can result in lots of money out of your pocket. Then when you do have good PR - google goes and does something like this, and no one can stop them.

Just my thought, I might be wrong :/

#6 theverychap

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 03:34 PM

that was almost (well, was) sickening to read Eric, i cant believe everything has to turn out this way (money->power->ego->domination or jowever it goes...)

but it truly is sickening, i think what you say about doing the robots.txt thing is the best plan, but then we'd need millions of people to do that before google even batted an eyelid....

so folks, if you want to start this mission:
User-Agent: Googlebot
Disallow: /
and save as robots.txt in your web root (ie: www.yoursite.com/robots.txt)

good luck with sorting out the quite scary sounding advertising thing Eric, if i can help in any way, i would be more than happy to. (im sure the rest of you would too? wouldn't you!?)

#7 Thilom

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 05:04 PM

Conspiracy theorists unite!


It is not the length of life, but the depth of life.[br]-- R.W.Emerson --

#8 Dark-Hawk

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Posted 02 February 2004 - 06:08 PM

Yeah I completely agree with you guys here; it's complete crap what Google is doing. On my site we are using their Google Adsense program, and several times have had to change things to better suite them. One of our news posts once said something along the lines of "Please do not judge the site on the advertisements that we have here; rather judge us on the content that the site contains. If you do not like the advertisements please just ignore them, and do not click them, however if you'd like to support this site, and help us out and have no problem with the advertisements feel free to click them." And several days after that post we received an email from Google telling us that we were in violation of their TOS (Which I read, and I must say it is a pretty screwed up TOS/UAG if I can't say so) and that we had to change the news post immediately. I complied because frankly I want, and need, my money. Google is definitely turning into the next Microsoft, and what do they do? They don't develop anything for us, they merely are a search engine. Our sites are being controlled by something so measly (though at the same time so enormous) as a search engine. Hopefully we can find some way to hit Google where it hurts, where we as webmasters will not take a hit as well. I would say perhaps some sort of petition, though we all know those do not do much, and there are far too many people out there that would just over look it, and not sign it.

#9 darkcarnival

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Posted 09 April 2004 - 08:35 PM

i have never been good with search engine stuff(which is why i have my provider help me when they can) but google and yahoo are the bigger search enger players. so they have us in their palms since the lower forms(lycos,hotbot,msn(yea msn i think sux)) i lost nothing only b/c i dont play with money on my site,my site is free for users and i have no ads. but i think its crappy that they would do that. im really mad when i have to pay to get listed.

#10 Promark

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Posted 22 April 2004 - 05:48 PM

I realize this topic is probably dead, but I thought I would throw in this little tidbit.

I read an article in PC Magazine about this subject not long ago. According to Dvorak, and alot of other places, Google's time may be drawing to an end. There are other search engines that are eagerly waiting to take over Google's lead. And with the problems they've been having of late, I wonder how much longer it will be.

One engine that wasn't mentioned in the article, but I've heard will be "the next google" is A9, from Amazon (yes, Amazon). Will this solve the problems? I doubt it, I imagine that soon it will be as much fun to worry about as designing for 15 different browsers that each are broken in one way or another. :(
Move web design ahead! Separate content, structure and presentation & use standards based code. W3C & WASP See the power and possibilities of CSS at CSSZenGarden.

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#11 darksat

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Posted 27 September 2004 - 02:14 PM

I quite like killerinfo.com i think its a very good engine.


I was really poor as a child, good thing i was a boy otherwise i wouldn't have had anything to play with.

#12 harley

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Posted 05 November 2004 - 09:42 PM

Well, you can be assured Google is not going anywhere anytime soon. They're currently doing what any smart corporation does: diversifying.

Yep, that's right. They're placing Google as prominently as they can as a necessity of the web users experience. Before they were a search engine, now they are an email provider, shopping directory, major website ad network, and they continue to expand operations far beyond the search world.

There are good and bad results to this, for the consumer they tend to be bad, and it happens virtually everytime a corporation has huge reknown for one particular product or service. Microsoft started out in OS development. As soon as they hit it big they began buying up other interests. Hotmail, Quicken, etc, etc, etc. Large companies do this because it has a pyramid effect on their corporation. Ever try to knock a pyramid off balance? It can't be done. Even if you were to knock it over, one of the other points of the pyramid would be on top.

Were Google to have major trouble with it's search engine function right now, it would be a killing blow to the company. What if Yahoo were to have trouble with it's search function? They've got 8,000 other services ready to step in and pick up the slack: stock quotes, web hosting, games, personals, etc, etc, etc. If Amazon's book warehouse were to fall on hard times, that'd suck but they would survive - because they've got a dvd warehouse, and electronics, and toys, and games, and shoes, and clothing, and music.

Give Google a few years and it'll end up a much more diversified, lower risk company, and unfortunately a more commercialized, less useful search engine.

#13 Promark

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Posted 11 November 2004 - 05:52 PM

Don't forget: Coming soon to a PC near you - GBrowser! Yes, Google will soon be releasing it's own browser. Yet another headache for all good developers. :rolleyes:
Move web design ahead! Separate content, structure and presentation & use standards based code. W3C & WASP See the power and possibilities of CSS at CSSZenGarden.

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#14 LiamUK

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Posted 28 November 2004 - 09:54 PM

So thats email and browser hey will have
Netscape developed with Mozilla.




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