This whole business about whether site maps are, or are not, spam in AV's view worries me. As a genuine service to my visitors, I have a site map on one of my content rich sites. For each page I include a short description of the page's content, and, yes, the descriptions contain keywords.
Its hard for me to imagine why there should be any question raised about including such a service on a website. Its much like a table of contents in a book, ie like a synopsis of each chapter.
If this will ban you, then we're really in trouble. So, I'm a little baffled as to why there should even be a question. So far, there's been no trouble from AV. But it seems there's always some doubt and concern lurking somewhere even though you're scrupulous about doing things right.
I personally am not extremely worried about this right now. There are plenty of legitimate uses for site maps and I haven't seen any proof of AV banning for them. This doesn't mean that you should completely blow this idea off though, this rumor didn't appear out of thin air. Infact AV's own statements and lack of responses have fueled this fire.
Hey Ace - nice to see you made it over to the new digs here. Thanks for dialing us up.
Site map as spam? This just doesn't register with me. On a legit site map page, I would put the words 'site map and sitemap' in the title, heading, and url in order to make sure the spider gets the message. If alta has a problem with sitemaps, it is going to be on pages that don't identify themselves as such.