Content_ed - 2:12 pm on Dec 7, 2011 (gmt 0)
Are there any documented cases of other people doing this? I didn't research carefully, all I saw was people playing with sub domains or moving a whole site. To me, there are obvious reasons neither of those approaches would make sense.
I don't have high hopes for this being a permanent fix, but if it fails, it will be because Panda is keeping track of penalties assigned to a site on a URL-by-URL basis, not because any algorthimic "quality" issues with pages in their new location.
I've also noted that over the last two days that the pre-exisiting pages on the site have seen a solid traffic boost from Google, the previous highest ranking page is up nearly 40% week-on-week. Unless I missed the announcement of another Panda update, the only reason I could assign is that the authority of the site has shot up with the new links.
Look, I'm not in a position to argue about what Google thinks is smart vs what they think is suspicious. It's clear to me that Google and I don't see the world the same way. I do know that the pages I moved were basically the top destination in the world for their subject matter, pre-Panda, with great organic linking, media citations - tens of thousands of copyright infringements can't be wrong.
From technical standpoint, based on what Cutts had to say about how Google treats 301's, there's nothing wrong with moving pages from site A to site B, and given the better theme match, I think it's the sort of thing Cutts himself would have suggested to me a couple years ago if he happened to know me and the sites.
In any case, how anybody can predict a two/three week boost based on two days of data is beyond me. It could crash tommorow, it could crash next February on Panda's first anniversary, or it could grow for the next fifteen years, like the old website. My idea here was to share real data, something I wish there was more of on the board.