Got a mail from somebody on our BannedContent list:
- Recently, my client, […], found that their Google ranking dramatically dropped. After researching I found the site is victim of wiki-spamming. I guess when wiki spammers listed their urls on wiki sites by using dmoz directory listing, our site was unfortunately also copied by them.
- We do not have intention of wiki spamming. We created it following the Google's Guideline. We greatly appreciate it if you could kindly remove the link, […], from your wiki page (Banned Content). If we need to do anything, please let me know.
- I cannot imagine that I have anything to do with this. I assume that […] is off-topic for the sites I run. Therefore whatever I do, we wouldn't put any links to […] on the sites. Your client's pagerank would not increase. Therefore I must assume that other sites have decided to no longer link to […] – but I can't speak for them. I don't know them.
- I'm sorry I was unable to help you, and I hope you can solve your client's problem soon.
And this is what I got back:
- Thanks for your quick reply. I am not a wiki person and know very little about wiki. We maintain web sites for small businesses. Usually we do not exchange links with sites of other business fields. I really don't understand why this site has been listed in the "Banned Contet" page (or "Bad Content" page) of many wiki sites. If you could kindly explain (or recommend references to read) what the "Banned Content" list is and how we can be removed from it, it will be very, very helpful.
- We just want to be removed from any wiki pages. For some reasons we don't know, we are shown up on these pages as a link. We simply want to be deleted.
- Wiki Banned Content and Bad Content are very simple: they contain regular expressions that are used to tests new pages created on a wiki. If a site is listed, you cannot save pages that link to these sites, for example. In this sense, I think you have nothing to fear: If your client is on that list, wikis using that list will not contain any links pointing to your client. If a wiki removes your client from the list, wiki spammers can once again start posting links.
- Thank you, Alex! It makes me a little bit comfortable. I hope that Google does not use such Banned Content as its black list to penalze the listed sites.
So there are two things I wonder about:
- There is a central way to get on the list, but no central way to get off the list again. At the time I thought this was necessary to ensure quick distribution of the list while allowing local exeptions. Did we manage to strike the right balance, or do we need to look at our position again?
- Given the current system, I really don't think we have anything to do with the sudden drop in pagerank, unless a lot more wikis than we know are using the BannedContent list. If so many wikis use blacklists (in one way or another, eg. Moin's BadContent? or MT Blacklist), this message would indicate that it really has noticeable effects. Cool! If that's not it, I wonder who was able to ruin that spammer's pagerank so effectively.