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25 Signals of Crap
So many threads on Signals of Quality - let's take the reverse approach...
Fribble

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 5:34 am on Jan 27, 2007 (gmt 0)

A recent thread I read in the supporters forum that mentioned the ever-popular phrase "signals of quality" got me thinking. Why don't we try and compile a list of possible "signals of crap"?

I realize that many of the list items would logically just be a perceived "signal of quality" reversed but if we all dig down into our experience then this exercise just might bring up a few unique and useful insights. Here's a start:

25 Signals of Crap

  1. Reciprocal link request pages.
  2. No Privacy policy.
  3. Outdated copyright date or last modified date visible on the pages.
  4. error pages that don't send 404 headers or send content regardless of the page requested/querystring entered.
  5. Massive numbers of incoming links from link farms.
  6. dead/404ing links.
  7. High link churn.
  8. No published contact address, email address or phone number.
  9. A high bounce rate (surfers clicking back on their browser and selecting another search result).
  10. Too much duplicate content.
  11. Whois info for the domain which is the same as other domains previously penalized or banned. (Could also be true of adsense publisher/affiliate ID's and other identifiable footprints)
  12. Use of/links to affiliate programs that are known scams
  13. Domains previously used for spam or that are blacklisted.
  14. Stagnation (Site never changes)
  15. excessively long URI's/URL's (query strings or folder and file names)
  16. A high percentage of affiliate links vs regular outbound links.
  17. No / very few outbound links.
  18. No / very few inbound links.
  19. All inbound links are to homepage only
  20. Outbound links to questionable/spammy/crap sites.
  21. Profanity or explicitly adult language on a non-adult site.
  22. Too many spelling errors.
  23. Contains unrelated subjects (ex: a site that reviews toys and tries to sell insurance or viagra).
  24. Lack of interest from social bookmarking sites.
  25. MySQL or PHP errors in the pages

I'm not claiming any of these are definitely a signal of crap, but they make my list of possibilities based on my own conversations and observation.

Please add/subtract/modify and let's see if we can find a new perspective and learn something.

 

groovyhippo

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 1:28 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

I don't think anyone mentioned having the words "under construction" on a page. Especially if it's accompanied by a nice animated GIF of a guy with a shovel.

mattg3

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 1:37 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)


I don't think anyone mentioned having the words "under construction" on a page. Especially if it's accompanied by a nice animated GIF of a guy with a shovel.

Aaaaaaaaah do they still exist, I haven't seen them for ages .. :) Maybe the guy that made that gif has retreated to a buddhist monastry in shame ...

OTPh

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 8:40 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

Copyright date isn't a sign of crap. It is a sign that the page was written on the year of the copyright. Updating the copyright date each year is silly on a page without a change in content.

[edited by: OTPh at 8:41 pm (utc) on Feb. 7, 2007]

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 8:50 pm on Feb 7, 2007 (gmt 0)

Copyright date isn't a sign of crap. It is a sign that the page was written on the year of the copyright. Updating the copyright date each year is silly of the page content has not chnanged.

In many cases, the copyright date is displayed in a running footer, so the current year will be shown regardless of when the page was written. Also, the entire site may be protected by a "compilation copyright." Look at any newspaper site, for example, and you'll see a "Copyright 2007 [Name of Newspaper]" notice on every page, even though the content on some pages is copyrighted by syndicates, contributors, wire services, etc. and archived articles may be from 2006 or earlier.

Moncao

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 8:28 am on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

europeforvisitors
So I compiled a page in 1999 and need to copyright it. So I change my copyright notice to 2007 and then find someone copied it in 2006, so now I am the thief. As pages have a server date or last modified stamp right (sorry if terminology is wrong)? Surely a page that has been around since 1999, copyrighted 1999 or 1999+ and periodically refreshed is better than a new 2007 page, or am I wrong?

Tidal2

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 8:51 pm on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

Phew took a while to get to the end of this!

What about very very long pages that are 100K+ of html.

Crap if they are stuffed full of html layout instructions - use CSS! Or wasted if its mainly text that should be split into many pages.

europeforvisitors



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 11:39 pm on Feb 8, 2007 (gmt 0)

So I change my copyright notice to 2007 and then find someone copied it in 2006, so now I am the thief. As pages have a server date or last modified stamp right (sorry if terminology is wrong)?

Google isn't going to rely on copyright notices or (date of last updating) to determine which of two sites' versions of a text block is older. It will rely on the data in its own index.

trinorthlighting

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3233693 posted 2:54 am on Feb 9, 2007 (gmt 0)

Agreed EFV, copywrite statements on the bottom of the page might seem a bit boilerplate like.

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