Hitprof, I have not been in the situation of being banned by ATW. They do have some statements on their webmaster help pages, but it's all rather vague.
What I would do is mail them. The ATW staff has more often than not been praised as being very responsive to webmasters.
With guidlines and email address to contact them.
Thanks heini and outrun, that helps!
Couldn't find the spam page.
Still curious about experiences.
I noticed that several of my sites aren't appearing on AlltheWeb
I used the command "site:" but the sites don't appear. However, strangely links to these missing sites do appear. How do I know if these sites have received a penalty?
How do I encourage AlltheWeb to index a site completely?
I noticed that one site shows over 1000 pages in the results while I know the site only has about 400. Why the huge over estimation?
Hard to say, might be a problem with the way the sites are set up, as in having overlap between the sites.
It's possible that some of your sites are penalized. I really have no experience with being penalized by ATW, so I can't say what typical symptoms might look like.
Two things: type in your urls and see what the URL-Investigator (hehe) comes up with. Also just mail them at the address given above.
According to AlltheWeb, the following is considered spam:
"1) Pages that negatively affect the ranking precision and diversity of search results.
2) Pages that give the search engine content that is topically different than the page the user sees (often referred to as "cloaking").
3) Pages created exclusively for the purpose of stealthily redirecting the user to another page (often built to be attractive to a specific search engine).
4) Excessively cross-linking between pages or sites to artificially inflate link popularity.
5) Pages stuffed with superfluous keywords that are irrelevant or do not make meaningful sense.
6) Pages, subdomains or domains that have substantially or very similar content.
7) Automatically generated pages created with the purpose of flooding search engine result pages.
The use of hidden text and hidden links."
The only one that could apply to my case is #4. I do have cross-links. But what is "excessively". The problem with my field is I have to have the cross-links.
I have about 50+ sites (all same theme but locality specific) most don't have any cross-links. Some do because they deal with popular areas and they cross-link with others in the group that also deal with popular areas. There are about 16 that are cross-linked and they are only cross-linked on the main index page. Because the areas are so popular the cross-links are necessary for the user.
60% of the users required this type of cross-linking. It was minimized as much as possible (thus only 16 out of 50 to avoid spamming), but is 16 cross-links considered excessive?
Is cross-linking on one page really excessive?
How would I know if this did cause the indexing problem?
Check the obvious first (robots.txt, meta no index etc.) Some folks just forget that the former (lame) webmaster once put a blocking on some bot. Most people what they're doing, but check anyway.
I too have never had a site banned from Fast, so frankly I don't know what to do if it happens. I'd contact Fast on the matter though. They have a history of responding to inquiries like that.
allanp73, it doesn't sound like cross linking is your problem. IMO there's nothing wrong in linking if it's on topic and related to your theme. Just don't 'over do' it.
Do let us know how it turns out.
The fact that your site is remowed doesn't necessarily mean it's been puhished.
Two of my sites were remowed from Fast index in March 2002. I contacted their support several times, without a response. In February this year I wrote about these problems here in WebmasterWorld. After that I was contacted by a Fast representative who checked the sites, confirmed that they were o.k. and promised that they would be back in the index within 24 hours. I still haven't seen a glimpse of them in ATW!
Whatever the reason, they fail to index my sites!