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Many of these are direct links to business sites.
One can look at them two ways. Fox is selling Page Rank or they are, in fact, just selling small text link ads.
My gut tells me more is going on here than just selling text ads. For one thing, there's one link there that says - "Buy This Link"
The wording on that raises eyebrows.
Also notice that the second link in the left column has a PR7 thanks to Fox's PR8. However, only 14 backlinks show up for that site. There are more examples of this among those links.
According to the company that is selling these links, and it is listed among them as 2 different but similar urls, links are being sold for $500 to $5,000. However, that company has a Gray Bar on both of its sites.
Maybe Fox is not intentionally selling PageRank, but this company which is contracting the sales of these links know what they are doing when they are selling these links.
I feel that if you take care of the visitors to your site by giving them what they want, in a format they appreciate, they will come back, and they will eventually purchase. Much like a lot of us will eventually subscribe to WebmasterWorld!
If I ever get to where I have massive traffic that will feed my family and friends families for the next 500 years, I MIGHT sell advertising on my site, but I doubt it. If I did, I'd be selling it to other sites for what would be a fee based on how well qualified the traffic is perceived to be by the site buying the link.
I would presume that if my site ever grows to that point it would have astounding PR because of it's relevence and popularity, and that sites purchasing an ad from me would be doing so because they saw the possibility of a real dollar return on their investment because of my site's relevence and popularity, not because of the PageRank.
If you will recall, it has pretty much been proven that chasing the intangibles of the net as an asset or investing in such is a false economy. Businesses, unless they haven't a clue, are not going to pour money into the vapor of a promise of PageRank, they will put their money into what appears to show a reasonable, potential, immediate as possible, return on their investment in real dollars and sales. They won't put it into buying a ill-qualified link for the potential inflation of a marginal PageRank to possibly climb the rankings of the #3 (or 2 or whatever) search engine, to potentially bring in semi-targeted lookers who might buy something, if they remember where the site is a week after they looked at it, or two.
That isn't to say that you shouldn't do everything ethical that is available to you to raise your PR and or rankings, afterall, that is what this site is all about. I am just trying to say that some of us are a little more infatuated with the nuances of how the search engines index info, and that because Google does such a good job of determining what people might be interested in in a good number of instances, it just might mean that it simply worth buying a link to tap into that traffic. Of course, if they bought a link, improved sales, are targeted where they should be, and improved their traffic through spending money, it could be reasonably argued they deserve an increase in PageRank anyway.
Of course if anyone is passing out free links on their PR9 site, I wouldn't turn it down... ;^p
>>There is no way that you would convince me that FoxNews would know what PR is, let alone know enough to be selling it.<<
I agree... I've looked at sites of large companies actually in the web business, who should know a lot better than FoxNews, and they clearly don't have a clue. Occasionally, I'll talk to someone in the trenches at one of these sites about SEO, and they don't even know that on-page content and web-context and linking have anything to do with rankings. They're still back in the "doing keywords and submitting" mentality, whatever that means.
What they may be selling simply is influence, the power of size and position, in the economy and the world and on the web... and PageRank usually accompanies that on a site, unless they blow it.
The marketing company may be a whole other story... They were one of the few linkees that had target terms in their "TEXT LINK" anchor with nothing to mess it up. It will be interesting to see how far they rise for "internet marketing" after the next update. Wonder if they're going to tune their title tag to take advantage of it.
THE OTHER SIDE OF THE COIN __________!
Here is a awesome example, MapQuest...what a great site huh, everyone knows that! (PR9) Several companies pay for ads with them looking at them, all relevent! One that comes to my mind is REI what another great site! Problem is REI's link isnt accounted for i mean come on thats not right all because of a wimpy little tracking URL. Man, have you ever been inside an REI, if you have I don't have to say anything! Now if I was working for REI knowing what I know about content delevery on the internet and looking at their site, knowing since I am a previous cutomer that believes in their product I would go get some text links and have some of the adds changed to direct text links. They deserve to be in the results! Even if the adds are on rotation I believe that one day they should and have to be accounted for on the more regular updates that are strived for.
If I have the best content in an industry that better be accounted for! I am advertised everywhere on the internet with relevent content sites why shouldn't that be accounted for. If your not providing quality then there would be no backing$ from a non-commercial or a commercial stand point now would there, unless you talking about the crappy affiliate stuffed markets with overpriced products and no customer service what so ever typa stuff.
I work very hard at what I do to DELIEVER THE BEST CONTENT and consult with site owners who are all my friends about keeping that the main focus, especially with my non-commercial projects. I deliver content, high quality content, that people need to see and judging by dealing directly with customers and the amounts of time spent on the sites they definetly find value.
I know that links are mean something, some sites bring unbelievable amounts of traffic that I track striat off of the adds I purachse. Some are images some are links. It is called advertising and you know what NEWS FLASH Google aint the only fish in the pond. Buying PageRabnk ha What a joke. You see I work on quality websites and help people bring traffic to them for a living via the INTERNET not Google, Hows your Yahoo! oh I mean your Inktomi rankings. I would live without Google Would You? hmmmmmmm I wonder what the new yahoo algo will be like? You think high content plus quality relevent links is what will be looked for? Hmmm maybe I'll get links from high traffic sites so people will come to my site since I believe in the content that we worked on at thew same time build content. To argue about what is and what isnt selling page rank is sensless when you should be not working yourself in a frenzy and get to work on your site rework your model so you can pay to advertise on the big boys or find another market taht works for you....cause hey, We are headed in a more relevent world so this will not last too mouch longer. I have faith, we human's only get smarter!
The internet is so young and I am excited to be here to watch and help it grow at the stage it is in right now. Buying GooglePR? No, But I dont link to crap and I don't link from crap, I can't underestimate some of these guys intellegince by thinking that certain practices days are numbered! I can spot crap and know they can to, who do you think your dealing with, now its all about automating it. Artifical intelligence, it can be automated, soon that will happen and there will be a big drop. Content in any form of any business prevails, it makes money or strikes the interest of those who have money to donate for non commercial content delivery, when that happens the information has value that people should see, from there you expand exposure by this time if it isnt coming up in the SERP's because someone didnt get enough text links or there are tarcking URL's on some of the best links they have then that is depriving the SERP's of quality content.
My To Cents
But serious guys, all the PR hype is getting out of hand. As most of the pros know already, it ain't such a big thing really and if a website owner is paying up to 6000 per month just to receive PR, then by george, let him. Because he could be spending a fraction of that on a decent SEO who would make sure his traffic and PR would increase at less an expense.
I just sit back and grin while my PR4 site with 50 backlinks beats most PR7 sites on my target keyword phrases in Google simply due to the work I spent optimising the pages instead of chasing up people for links.
OK Now Back to Work. I don't think GG will reply to this post!
Important pages receive a higher PageRank and appear at the top of the search results..
Important, high-quality sites receive a higher PageRank, which Google remembers each time it conducts a search. Of course, important pages mean nothing to you if they don't match your query. So, Google combines PageRank with sophisticated text-matching techniques to find pages that are both important and relevant to your search..
Horizontal bars, which are displayed next to each web page, indicate the importance of the page, as determined by PageRank. This distinctive approach to ranking web sites enables the highest quality pages to appear first as top results for any Google directory category.
(the bold-face is mine)
Never mind that if you read further and carefully, you understand - as many do here - that there is more to ranking well, other than Pagerank and a good text-link alone.
Everyone wants to feel important.
I don't know if there is an alternative. I do think, however, that this issue will create problems for Google in the long term. Imagine the day when all the top SERPs are filled by sites that have bought their PR. It doesn't appear that the current algorithm has a mechanism to prevent this.
The fact of the matter, to me, is SIMPLE.
Most PR8 and PR9 sites have such high PR because they have worked hard on their websites. If they want to sell text links, let them do so! If the sites buying advertising get PR with it, consider it a BONUS.
People are obsessed too much with PR - sheesh!
Someone mentioned MapQuest (PR9) as selling text links. Does anyone know of other PR8, PR9 sites doing the same? I think Brett previously said there were many others. I for one would buy a PR8/PR9 link.
A lot of people don't realise that the links they're paying for are ignored.
gives you the answer, I would NOT be advising you to buy a link.
I do not think so. I think Fox, as a media outlet, is in a position to really hurt Google's image should Google irritate them enough. Google will not openly slap down FowNews's website because FoxNews can return the favor, but on the *mass media* of television.
Not something you want to happen, especially before an IPO.
They might try something as ciml suggests, but whatever they do will be on the sly.
On a far more general level, this shows just how firmly the cat is out of the bag. It has grown far beyond Google's ability to control. I suspect you will see more and more of this happening very openly amongst some big players.
Do you have a text link in the Yahoo Directory? Would you advise people not to pay $300 to be included in Yahoo? - Its the same thing as Foxnews.
By the way, I'd still appreciate it if someone would tell me which other PR8 & PR9 sites are selling text link advertising.
Also, I've search WW for "pradnetwork" and found nothing. Aren't these guys affiliated with Searchking? I thought they were out of business?
Right. It wouldn't be appropriate to PR0 FoxNews. Stop and think: even if links from FoxNews didn't pass on PR, wouldn't you like a link on their home page for the click-through traffic? The real problem is that Google is letting these links pass on PR.