After finding out that I rank 120+ for my own site name on live.com I just happened to be looking at my logs and noticed a referral from live search in australia. Well something's different down under because I actually rank #1 for my site name and some other terms.
BillyS, when you first mentioned [webmasterworld.com] that your site lost rank for its name I have pointed out that your site must have been penalized just like mine. Back then it was a.k.a. google's penalty 31. Since then the penalty actually worsened. Now my site just like yours does not rank on anything at all in US. However it ranks well in UK, Canada, Australia etc. and still receives some traffic from there.
I don't buy MSNdudes's explanation of it being a "ranker's problem". I think it is their overzealous "search defender" generously giving away penalties to good sites and overlooking obvious junk.
I think MSN has lost it. If I were them I would hire a few seasoned spammers from Ukraine, learn from them what spamming is all about and then go from there.
Shurik - I tend to agree with your assessment. Unlike some sites that have a competitive keyword in their domain names, mine is not. Top ranking for my site name are a Google and MSN RSS feeds (add feeds). Next up are several directories including bcentral (which I'm a member). In nearly every instance where that name appears, it points back to my website.
When I asked MSN if I had a penalty, they quickly responded that it was not a penalty just a ranking problem. I think that person is really telling me the truth in that it's not a manual penalty but perhaps an automated penalty of some kind.
Our Asia based ( English language ) sites do well on ninemsn but do terrible on US, same applies on Yahoo7, good positions, terrible on US etc, on G we get nowhere. We have small sites for local businesses but very often they rank down in the hundreds, well below countless link sites etc.