| 4:13 pm on Dec 28, 2002 (gmt 0)|
Any link is fine if it's useful to your visitors. Doesn't mean that the search engines will necessarily agree and count it towards their link pop. numbers.
At least where Google is concerned, they only consider links that they believe are a "vote" of confidence. Of course, they have to determine this through automated technology, so their determination is often fallible. Sometimes they err on the side of counting links that really aren't a vote, and sometimes they don't count links that really are a vote.
Not much we can do about it at this time except to make the very best visitor experience we can.
So my definition of an artificial link according to what I believe the search engines would say, is that they are links that are not really a vote of confidence in another page.
| 8:52 pm on Dec 30, 2002 (gmt 0)|
|So my definition of an artificial link according to what I believe the search engines would say, is that they are links that are not really a vote of confidence in another page. |
What is your own definition then? NOT what the engines think, but what you think. A "vote of confidence" really only applies to the processes of Google and their PageRank formulation.
From what I have gathered and practiced - I would consider artificial link popularity as the possession of incoming links that are indexed or spidered consistently that exist as products of FFA, Guestbook, and similar automated scripts.
(Edited for Spelling)
| 10:02 pm on Dec 30, 2002 (gmt 0)|
I believe the vote of confidence would apply to any engine that uses link pop in their analysis, and I would say the definition I gave would be how I would also define artificial links. Any link that points to a site not because it likes that site, but because of some other reason. These would encompass forum sigs. in some cases, guest book entries in some cases, paid ads in some cases. I say in some cases, because I can envision some cases where those things may actually be a vote of confidence for a site. Generally, they're not, but they could be.
Like take an ad in an email newsletter. A site may pay for a ad in that newsletter which naturally includes a link. Is this ad/link a vote of confidence for that site? It might be, it might not be. If the newsletter people accept all ads so long as they pay, then no, not a vote. However, if the person in charge is discriminating on which sites they will allow to advertise, then perhaps it is a vote of confidence.
Of course, it would probably be very difficult for a search engine to automatically make that judgement. A human might be able to.
| 11:06 pm on Dec 30, 2002 (gmt 0)|
One thing this thread had shown me is that there are at least as many definitions of “Artificial Link Popularity” as there are people that posted.
As I stated earlier in this thread, I believe that the only true “Artificial Link Popularity” comes from an invisible link that is placed on a page for only a bot to follow. If Humans can follow a link (for whatever reason) then IMO the link pop that comes from that link can NOT possibly be “Artificial”.
| 11:09 pm on Dec 30, 2002 (gmt 0)|
'scuse my idealistic thinking, but I would imagine artificial linking refers to deliberately *misleading* links.
Optimizing and creating linkpop for a widget site, using links that say something else just to boost traffic would be artificial.
Asking 3 or 400 good friends to link to your site saying widget would most likely not be considered "artificial" although it would indeed *be* artificial.
To be "genuine" links versus artificial, logically speaking, in order for the links to be genuine, someone would have had to find your site of their own accord, and find it "linkworthy" and link to it naturally, of their own volition.
Asking, begging, trading, paying, farming, crosslinking, guestbook bombing, hidden links, are all artificial.
Maybe its all just semantics to frighten folks who would try to manipulate the SE's. Now who in the world would EVER try to do that?
BTW, how exactly would an SE or a human determine whether a link was artificial or not?
Dear Mr/s. Webmaster,
Why did you link to somedomain.com? We believe this may be a deliberate attempt to manipulate our results, and we don't appreciate it, so if you are only linking to them to help them out, and send traffic to their site from your site, knock it off.
If however, you are linking to them because you like their site, or it gives value to your visitors, nevermind.
The Pure SERPS and Artificial Linking Patrol
| 9:00 pm on Jan 3, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|if Google (or any other SE) did not want link popularity coming from so called link farms, bad neighborhoods or anywhere else they didn’t like would it not be in there interest to PR3 or less (PR0) |
This is the main point here. All the replies thus far do not address this. PR manipulation gains ground from the whole episode of Search King (whereby their PR is dropped to 0)
Lots0, the only logic I can find is that the search engines are possibly using an additional criteria of determining Link Quality, whereby they neutralise certain type of links:
1. Too many links from different pages of same site to one site
2. Reciprocal Links. This is an established practice of boosting link popularity, and, in my opinion the no. of links created this way have gone beyond those placed "naturally"
But I don't think there is anything as Artifical Links, just good, bad & ugly links. Futher, Google Guy and other engine represetatives have clarified that they DO NOT penalise for any type of link. I think at best they try and neutralise the links value.
If any of you have heard of being penalised for certain type of links, please post here
| 7:42 am on Jan 4, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|Google Guy and other engine represetatives have clarified that they DO NOT penalise for any type of link. |
Uh-hum, you may want to rephrase that. There have been many penalized for being involved in certain linking strategies.
| 8:03 am on Jan 4, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|There have been many penalized for being involved in certain linking strategies |
is that a known fact? I though they were penalised for things like funny text, invisible links, cloaking, etc. Are there any known cases of sites being blacklisted for bad incoming links?
| 8:05 am on Jan 4, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|...the whole episode of Search King (whereby their PR is dropped to 0) |
To correct you - SearchKing did not receive a PR0 - they received a loss of 4 PR "points" dropping them from a PR8 to a PR4. And as far as I know Google has kept them at a PR4.
| 8:08 am on Jan 4, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Yes por is 100% correct.
But you are also correct Google has said they do not penalize for incomming links.
| 8:26 am on Jan 4, 2003 (gmt 0)|
The way this statement reads...
|Google Guy and other engine representatives have clarified that they DO NOT penalise for any type of link. |
I didn't realize you were talking specifically about incoming links. Yes, they have made statements that incoming links are not an issue. When you reciprocate, then there may be issues to contend with if you are dealing with what is classified as a bad neighborhood.
I was also responding to this request...
|If any of you have heard of being penalised for certain type of links, please post here. |
| 8:56 am on Jan 4, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Would you care to elaborate on your comment that was to the effect of directories being a means to arificial link popularity?
I have been building a small, focused directory. That statement made me a little nervous even though my directory is focused and provided as a service to my potential visitors. If it misses that objective, I enjoy having all of my favorite topically related links in one place on the web. I should add that I think my setup would be much more useful than a "links" page or at least the ones I am used to seeing.
What are your thoughts on viability of directories and the chance that Google may look at them as spam or artificial?
[edited by: mat_bastian at 9:13 am (utc) on Jan. 4, 2003]
| 9:10 am on Jan 4, 2003 (gmt 0)|
SearchKing's homepage is PR4, rest all all PR0.
[quote] When you reciprocate, then there may be issues to contend with if you are dealing with what is classified as a bad neighborhood [/unquote]
wow! this is very important news. I knew they were gonna catch up on those reciprocal link programs soon.
Any idea if TravelNow has been banned for a similar reason?
| 7:00 pm on Jan 5, 2003 (gmt 0)|
IMPORTANT: see thread [webmasterworld.com...]
| 4:06 am on Jan 7, 2003 (gmt 0)|
In my opinion most commercial sites would have a difficult time including bona fide links on their pages to take clients or potential clients to another site.
Compare any site developed by someone not familiar link building to one designed by someone who does, and the concept of artificial links will become clear.
For the most part I would think that a link page is not present because it helps a commercial site close a sale.
IMHO artificial-links.html would not be an artificial link.
| 1:33 pm on Jan 7, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Jon, I think commercial sites have lots of reasons to include links. Most commercial sites want to be "sticky" and encourage repeat visits - offering visitors some access to resources on other sites is one way to do that. Clearly, you don't want to have external links on your "Click to confirm order" page, but they are useful in tutorials, resource lists, etc. I often make them open in a new window to reduce the probability of losing the visitor completely.
| 3:04 pm on Jan 7, 2003 (gmt 0)|
|There's nothing intrinsically wrong with a judgement call, is there? |
I assume that you're willing to respect a judgment call by the spam referees at Google. :-)
| 3:38 pm on Jan 7, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Slightly OT. How would you know if you got a negative adjustment applied to your domain?
| 3:40 pm on Jan 7, 2003 (gmt 0)|
And on the topic of crosslinking. Do you think that one gets penalized for crosslinking too much between domains even if the links are deeplinks?
For instance there is domain X and it links to domain Y, but in reality the link is a deep one from content page X.1 to content page Y.1. Is this a red flag issue?
| 4:10 pm on Jan 7, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Good points RogerD
| 10:45 pm on Jan 7, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Google's definition of "artificial link" is of course artificial itself (or, at least "mechanical") since it's the result of a mathematical algorithm, not a human judgment. They invented the term, and you can invent your own definition, but it doesn't matter to anybody on earth. Google's definition matters.
They call it "artificial" (as opposed to "natural") because they detect a pattern of interlinking sites (a "bad neighborhood"), which are all MUCH more popular from each other than they are from the rest of the universe. Google has seen trillions of links, and they say "this ain't natural!"
It is therefore almost certainly an "artifice" of deceptive SERP perpetration, hence "artificial," created by a single entity masquerading as all the members of a closed mutual admiration society....and almost certainly deserves the contempt it receives from the rest of the universe.
It is NOT the same thing as a "Free-for-all" link farm, which collects spam from a lots of different entities, and it is NOT quite the same thing (although algorithmically, it will look very similar) as any of the Link-Exchange-for-Luzers programs.
And, of course, it's NOT the same thing as "hidden links", which is a different kind of deception altogether, and which Google tries to detect by altogether different methods.
It is very simple. If you have a website that nobody will EVER care about visiting, because they could have seen the exact same products and prices at any number of other places if you had only happened to die and rot before they did their search, then the only way you are going to get incoming links is to make them yourself, thus committing "artificial linking."
And deserving the oblivion that Google tries (not always successfully) to give.
It's not a penalty at all. It's a correct evaluation of the true link popularity (based on all independent links) of the site. It's just that oblivion is hell on promoters.
| 9:13 am on Jan 8, 2003 (gmt 0)|
hutcheson - you sound like you work for Google. ;-)
|It is therefore almost certainly an "artifice" of deceptive SERP perpetration, hence "artificial," |
created by a single entity masquerading as all the members of a closed mutual admiration society....and almost certainly deserves the contempt it receives from the rest of the universe.
Wow...So according to you one little old hypertext link could not be “artificial”?
|If you have a website that nobody will EVER care about visiting, because they could have seen the exact same products and prices at any number of other places if you had only happened to die and rot before they did their search, then the only way you are going to get incoming links is to make them yourself, thus committing "artificial linking." |
I am amazed at the contempt you show for people attempting to start an online business.
I guess all the mom n pop/one person operations do deserve the contempt of the universe (and Google) for trying to succeed - NOT...
But..Those mom n pop/one person web sites can just go and buy adwords - then they won't need any links, artificial or not. Just give Google your money and you don't need links, is that what your trying to say, in a round about way?
| 10:48 am on Jan 8, 2003 (gmt 0)|
Full points to hutcheson for a clear and consise summary of the issue. A good one for the knowledgebase.
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