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Google Drops Many .com.au Sites?

.com.au's removed from the index

4:24 am on Apr 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Every .com.au i look at has been completely dropped from the index. I cannot find any .com.au working.

I have tested through different isps and different computers.
Any ideas?

6:57 am on Apr 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Ok, MASSIVVE PROBLEM! Whole of the Australian .com.au index seems to be lost, even Google.com.au! (Sorry about specifics, but there is no other way to show this, and these are all major Aussies sites I have no affiliation with, i don't even drive a Holden, and i read the Sydney morning herald, not the telegraph ;)

Bright side: .com s in Aus live!

as do .org.au sites:

Is anyone / everyone else seeing this? If it is an april fool's day joke, it is a bit late, it is like 5 pm down here in Sydney town!

[edited by: ciml at 3:27 pm (utc) on April 1, 2005]
[edit reason] It's best to avoid specifics. [/edit]

9:00 am on Apr 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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At around 12 noon Australian Eastern Standard Time a large proportion of .com.au domains ceased to appear on Google listings - at all. This was for both google.com amd google.com.au

Even searches for - www.domainname.com.au drew a blank. Instead of the usual "Google can show you the following information for this URL:" etc, .com.au domains that had been indexed properly for years started to display the "Sorry, no information is available for the URL etc" message. This applied not just to small and insignificant sites but also major media sites like News Ltd, the Sydney Morning Herald, NineMSN and Crikey all disappeared. All these sites and others checked were visible and working properly.

The problem did not extend to other .au domains such as .net.au and .edu.au

A few com.au domains remained listed in the normal way (ie. about 5 of the 100 I personally checked).

By 5.00 pm AEST normal service had been resumed and Google had restored its favorite Aussie battlers to their rightful positions (more or less).

Any clues as to what caused this strange behaviour?

4:04 pm on Apr 1, 2005 (gmt 0)

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It looks like Google put them back.
2:02 am on Apr 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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It looks like Google put them back.

Well if it is an April Fool's joke, at least one person fell for it. That's one more than fell for Google's attempt!

10:13 am on Apr 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Strewth! Almost burned the shrimp on me barby when I heard this news!

Good thing though mate, KoalaClobber is now back in the auld google index.

Off to sink a few tinnies to celebrate.


6:49 pm on Apr 2, 2005 (gmt 0)

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It might be at least partly caused by the cyber-squatting of over 1000 domain names by a new player in the search arena mentioned in some articles that have surfaced in the last few days.

Google might have taken the data away to mass clean it, before putting a sanitised version back in their index. Think of many well known brands, recent films, mis-spellings of competitors names, etc then add .com.au and see where it takes you...

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