jsherloc - 3:57 am on Apr 12, 2012 (gmt 0)
The problem is that we only have speculation based on REASONABLE evidence reported from trusted sources within our industry. Yeah, there aren't many "trusted" sources these days I agree...but lets just say when ALL of my trusted sources are reporting similar things, well, you know the deal...
No one will ever have the evidence that you seek due to Google's proprietary reasons. My beef is why should we just accept that because we don't know exactly what goes on, we can assume that Google is making the right "value" judgements then...lol
I mean does "Panda" mean anything to folks here? lol
The entire industry is speculation based on testing...and I provided folks with a direct link from the horse's mouth regarding a potential "penalty" issue...about as close to "evidence" as we're all gonna get I'd imagine...
Question for you since I believe this is ultimately what you're getting at, and what I read through on the Google webmaster help boards seems to reflect this basic type of "defeatist/you obviously deserved it you're a bad webmaster with a bad site" attitude.
Lets just speculate and assume that Google is handing out temporary ranking penalties to folks based on unnatural links, are you implying that the majority of websites "hit" in this scenario probably deserved it then, but for entirely different onpage/offpage issues etc that were probably identified when Google took a closer look? Possibly manual?