Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 54.147.134.218

Message Too Old, No Replies

Site with Hidden Texts Showing up in SERPS

The saga continues...

     
10:52 pm on Dec 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Sept 11, 2002
posts:293
votes: 0


Continued from [webmasterworld.com...] -

Well it took about a month and a half, but that offending site I mentioned is no longer there.
site:www.domain.com returns zero results.

Looks like I spoke to soon. It is now about 40 days later and the site is back with the same old tricks - <font color=white>

This is disapointing - I want a qulity Google - not this garbage.

11:18 pm on Dec 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

Administrator from US 

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

joined:Sept 21, 1999
posts:38048
votes: 12


There is no way short of running a page through a browser rendering engine and then sampling the screen to detect "hidden" text. Additionally, it could just be your browser itself.

Worry about what is in your control - your site!

11:27 pm on Dec 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Sept 11, 2002
posts:293
votes: 0


Its just a personal annoyance. They were removed and now they are back with the exact same trick.
11:49 pm on Dec 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

Preferred Member

10+ Year Member

joined:May 13, 2003
posts:442
votes: 0


I've been following an SEO site that used the practice of hidden links to a cloaked sitemap, and used the same technique on most of their clients' sites as well.

The SEO site was caught, and removed from Google's index. But only for a week. Then it re-appeared, all cleaned up.

I just can't understand how they could get back that soon. Meanwhile all their supporting sites still use the very same techniques. And so does most of their customers.

If Brett is right, and Google cannot catch this automagically, then Matt Cutts and his crew needs more resources.

11:57 pm on Dec 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:Feb 20, 2002
posts:810
votes: 0


Well - wasn't this one of the hypothesized reasons as to why they hired that firefox developer? Presumably they would get him to build a rendering engine that could integrate with their robots and determine advanced information about a page eg. item placements, hidden text etc..
12:14 am on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Sept 11, 2002
posts:293
votes: 0


wasn't this one of the hypothesized reasons as to why they hired that firefox developer?

if(browser==RegEx(IE versions) && RegEx(<font color>)==white && element bgcolor==white/none)
{
hidden text
}

12:32 am on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Aug 22, 2003
posts:333
votes: 0


paladin: OK, now what happens if they use #fefefe and #fdfdfd for the text and background? :)
12:50 am on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Sept 11, 2002
posts:293
votes: 0


Hence the regular expression. It will take more than 5 minutes to get it right, but Google has been at it for years...
1:47 am on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Nov 12, 2005
posts:227
votes: 0


Are'nt there like dozens of ways to do hidden text on a page? Css, Background .gif's, SS includes? etc.
2:30 am on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:May 29, 2005
posts:866
votes: 0


After one of my rants about spam sites in jagger1 postings, Google Guy himself asked me to report it with my WW id in it and jagger. He told me he saw it and I made a textbook report. He agreed. The site had all kinds of hidden text keywords. It had ALL it's outgoing links in hidden text. It had a complete section of safety and usage of products it sells scraped directly from a Canadian government site. GG assured me it would be banned. It had been number one in google for a long time for almost any of the search terms it would be involved with. (PS: it almost certainly was buying links also).
Well, it was gone...about 45 days...it's back and it is ranking #1 again! And NO changes. And this category is rife with sites like that.
What is funny is this site does NOT rank well in Yahoo or MSN. HAH!
I feel alls I got was lip service from google. And this was all a public relations scam designed to diffuse dissent.
And yes Brett....I worry about my clients sites. Each and every day. I do well in every search engine but google. I have no REAL seo on my sites. Just good structure and content. It gets very frustrating to be ignored by google. Our sites don't buy links. Don't try to game. But it appears following the straight and narrow has no reward. And the black hats are winning.
I can't wait for Carl Icahn to get thru with Time Warner and take a run at google.
2:48 am on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

joined:Mar 13, 2005
posts:174
votes: 0


I must admit, the best traffic I got from google is while they were still growing...

The sad thing is, the blackhats get nothing but some free and untargeted traffic, the surfers leave the Internet (some for good), while the rest of us pay the price.

The good news is, what goes around must come around.

4:35 am on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

New User

10+ Year Member

joined:May 31, 2005
posts:38
votes: 0


The rich are getting richer. There's a pretty good article on Google News today about some big name websites that use hidden text and links. Search for "hidden text"

I'd be interested to know if any of these guys are your competitors as it doesn't seem that anything is being done about it.

3:04 pm on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Feb 4, 2005
posts:179
votes: 0


Its just a personal annoyance. They were removed and now they are back with the exact same trick.

A similar thing has happened with a site in my sector. It came back a few weeks ago after having been removed post Jagger. It had done nothing to fix the blatant spam (interlinking mirrors, masses of bought links).

However, just today I notice that it's PR is back at 0 as part of the directory PR update.

I am fairly confident that it will be goodbye to some spammy friends once this PR/backlink update is complete.

3:24 pm on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Administrator from US 

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

joined:Sept 21, 1999
posts:38048
votes: 12


> Are'nt there like dozens of ways to do hidden
> text on a page? Css, Background .gif's, SS includes? etc.

Lets count the ways:

- inline css.
- external css.
- on the page.
- on the page in nested tables.
- in javascript.
- in javascript that calls a css.
- in a css error that causes ie to render wrong.
- gfx intentional overlays anyone?...

hehe.. that's just a start

3:34 pm on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Preferred Member

10+ Year Member

joined:Oct 13, 2003
posts:373
votes: 0


I blocked my competitors domains on my firewall whilst training myself to stop checking the competitions sites etc. Cold turkey was,, well sweaty...but im a lot better of for it now.
3:37 pm on Dec 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Administrator from US 

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

joined:Sept 21, 1999
posts:38048
votes: 12


brillant irishaff. Take care of home base, and everything will take care of itself.
8:54 pm on Dec 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member

joined:May 13, 2004
posts:220
votes: 0


If Brett is right, and Google cannot catch this automagically, then Matt Cutts and his crew needs more resources.

Didja try mentioning the site in a comment in his blog? Or is that generally not a good idea?

Also, it seems amusing that on the one hand, G seems to have the bandwidth & processing-power of God, in terms of what it's able to do when indexing and understanding the www, yet on the other hand, they don't have enough resources to figure out hidden text.

Sure, there are many ways it can be hidden when you're inspecting code ... but is visual inspection (by machine) not an option? Especially comparing visual inspection to a simple once through the code as well as once through the text on the page?

Or (perhaps more likely), does G simply not want to expend much energy going after hidden text?

Sure, it's true we shouldn't pay much attention to competitors, and it's equally true that we probably all belong to a large "free-search-engine-traffic-addicts-anonymous" group ... given that, our concerns are still reasonable, if perhaps misguided.

 

Join The Conversation

Moderators and Top Contributors

Hot Threads This Week

Featured Threads

Free SEO Tools

Hire Expert Members