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Does Google Ban or Filter Web Directories?



1:06 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I think the subject worth a thread itself. It's a suspision so far. Yet I don't see dmoz, yahoo nor any major web directory were banned/filter nor PRed zero as my web directory did. I tried to check it in Alexa (powered by google) and I see some results from my site. Appearently, Alexa brings old results from Google but something weird is that Alexa itself has PR0 now. But that's another story!

If you run a web directory, feel free to post your experience here.


3:49 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Got several directories .. but none of them are Dmoz or SEO purposed. No problems so far .. infact been seeing a decent increase in traffic since Bourbon.

I suspect you've been caught by some dupe filters.

Or .. [dmoz.org...]

As far as I can tell its been PR0ed for a while.


4:31 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I run several directories that do pretty well in Google, but as of this morning I see that one of them has been de-indexed by them.

The site is about 2 years old and is squeakey clean as far as SEO goes, but today it is gone from Googles SERPs and is now PR0.

I'm not concerned for the loss in traffic, because it pretty much gets its own traffic from regular users, but I would like to know if I did something wrong. I sure hope that it doesn't happen to any of my other directory sites, but without knowing why one site was de-indexed, I don't think it would be wise to make any changes.

Are there any other directory site owners who have had their directories de-indexed lately?


4:33 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Same thing happened with one of my business to business related sites... Almost 3 year old site, PR5 (till now), thousands of indexed pages so far.
As of today, site completely vanished from google...


4:57 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

The only thing I can come up with is that about 10% of the directory pages on the site that was removed overlap with two of my other directories, so they have close to the same content.

Could my site be confused as a scraper site?

zoltan, could you site be in a similar situation?


5:05 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

>>>Could my site be confused as a scraper site?

Possible if some knucklehead reported it as such, and someone at Google gave it a cursory look and flipped the switch on it.

I have a hand edited business directory that takes free submissions, it charges no fees, that I filled up using my own knowledge of local businesses. Nothing black hat about it. It went gray bar in April.

My suspicion is that it's a hand ban. I can't know whether the root of it is a false spam report or a blacklisting from an eval.google knucklehead. I suspect it's an eval.google related action.

Not sure if it's related, but at the exact same time, the site in my profile (created for my profile, never promoted), also got a gray bar. Now, if a non-promoted website created just to stick in a WebmasterWorld profile gets graybarred, isn't that just a little weird? Was it an eval.google action gone bad?


5:49 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Got several directories .. but none of them are Dmoz or SEO purposed. No problems so far .. infact been seeing a decent increase in traffic since Bourbon.
I suspect you've been caught by some dupe filters.

In fact my directory has listings from dmoz and yahoo directory as well as its own unique listings. Assuming it's been filterised, as when I search for "www.mydomain.com" I see "showing results 1-4 from 330.000"), the 330.000 are my directory cached pages that were dropped from google index, assuming so why all site subdomains got PRed zero?


As far as I can tell its been PR0ed for a while.

My directory is not listed there. All directories listed there arent penalized.

Also I dont know why I suspect alexa being PR0 is related somehow to the topic. But at least only their www subdomain was PRed zero, not all subdomains as it's the case for me.


5:58 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

At first I thought an "underhanded" competitor somehow managed to get my niche industry directory deleted from Google, but after seeing each of your comments and speculations, I'm beginning to wonder if indeed Google is filtering out directories now.

If they are, I think that they better differentiate between "scraper" directories and human edited sites like my directory is. I have been compiling and publishing my industry links since early 1997 before there was a Google and before I had competitors, because I helped create my niche market sector by being one of the first in the industry, and definitely the first to promote the entire industry without bias by providing FREE links to all of my direct competitors.

Since that time (moving forward as the buzzwords go), I have been publishing updated versions of my original information as an "independent enthusiast" web site. By far I have the most comprehensive directory on this IMPORTANT topic (good thing the United Nations had the site bookmarked - no political comments please), and it's relevancy always helped it to be among the top in Google's SERPs, until early this morning. Most everyone worldwide has need some time or another to reference this information I provide, yet Google seems to be deliberately choosing to CENSOR the information in preference to some of THE WORSE scarper sites I have ever witnessed, along with a few, good industry web sites.

I have written to Google for explanation, and waiting for reply. Apparently it's not because of Google AdSense TOS violation (if indeed Google itself did the deleting), as AdSense ads still appear on the pages and clicks are being tallied from visitors finding the pages from other search engines. However, I only now obtain 10% of the traffic I had before being completely deleted from Google's data base.

martinibuster - I have similar suspicions that you have: I am now pondering if the "nightmares" that some were speculating about has finally began to crop up... jealous/unscrupulous web masters turning in competing sites as TOS violators or Spam scraper sites, and Google employees not familiar enough with the topic and its historic development to make an accurate relevancy determination in the few seconds that they take to judge a web site, deletes good factual content because of the disparaging words of a competitor or someone else with an axe to grind.

Nobody is safe from worry now (believe me I had one of THE most RELEVANT, UNBIASED web sites in a highly competitive sector)

Guess I should start making scraper web sites? They seem to be still in Google's SERPS in my sector.... That's the lesson I am learning from this example.

What say you Google reps?


5:58 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

As I already posted in other threads, our site with a directory has also been banned.

On the other hand we have a few other sites with directories, but they are not banned. What I think is the following:

1. Google gone mad with "scrapers"
2. They decided to ban sites where directory is the majority of site content pages, assuming that such site would be a scraper
3. They don't care much about casualties, because they are big, kind Google that brings traffic in your home for free and you have to be happy.

On the other hand of the story:

1. Lots of real scrapers are still in, and its totally irrelevant to try to determine them automatically or basing on reports of possible competitors.
2. Simple case (ours actually) - site offers 'widgets' and has normal 10-20 pages devoded to widgets, plus forum, and secured area. Additionally the site has a small directory - 5-10K sites - also devoded to 'widgetry, widget components and supplementary services'. The directory would have MUCH more pages than the main site.
3. Once the site get booted with no way back, no clue, no chance and NO PRIOR WINK that anything it does is against any TOS, lots of people may suffer dramatically, and Google IS responsible, just as when you're happened to become a dominant internet power, you should care about the internet and people who are part of it.

Ian Cunningham

6:10 pm on Jul 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

This is interesting... try searching for these sites in google (DMOZ data sites):


Many don't even appear!

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