CainIV - 4:37 am on May 8, 2012 (gmt 0)
Hi Tedster, nice post topic.
I've seen some sites get the notorious unnatural link email, and do just fine. When I audited their backlinks, turns out a few were questionable. The rest were fine and they had brand factors involved.
I think one thing that is not often discussed is what level of overhaul to go to when given the notice.
If you have not lost positioning, it is best to further brand yourself and send signals that you are a real company, while removing poor links.
If you lost positions, recoup by building some strong inbound links + sending signs of brand.
Some haven't changed anything at all, and have seen 0 difference in links, which tells me that Google is VERY early in understanding how to evaluate poor quality links in an otherwise decent profile.
I believe history, brand and stickiness / social really turn the tide in a positive direction - even with websites that have a lot of dis-favorable links.