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I want to add on 800 more pages of well written and useful content. The problem is this new content isn't original (public domain). I BELIEVE that I've mixed up text/layout enough so it is considered original...
...BUT if I am wrong then will the SEs just ignore the 80% of the site that isn't "original" in their eyes? Or will they penalise the site's original 200 pages for being associated with "duplicate content"?
Search engines don't rank sites, they rank pages.
Often quoted and just as often wrong.
It would be absolutely stupid for a search engine to not consider the site factors while ranking the page. And search engine engineers ain't stupid.
As for the dup content, I believe that Google generally only filters out the duplicate pages. But I suppose that there might be some sort of threshold where they might just assume that if 80% of the site is duplicate that the other 20% is too.
Since my new content would actually be useful and mixed with other fresh/public stuff it shouldeasily pass a hand test.
Knowing yahoo with other filters, then tend to use a hand check if an autoreport is "iffy".
(This though assumes that filter is setup to return as a analog dup % and not a binary "dupe/non-dupe" )
I know this doesn't exactly answer your question, but just based on my experience, I think it may be a percentage kind of thing. Some duplicate content may be fine as long as you continue adding original content. If you have something like four times as much duplicate content, then you might need to worry about being penalized.
I have been testing this a bit -- still to early to tell. Google seems to be indexing the pages (decent site already) -- but no traffic on the news ones yet
Any other comments on the above?
Sorry for lack of update, but even with being down for a week <painfully long story>, that site was treated well by Bourbon so now I'm risk adverse and want to avoid dup filtering the entire site.
Now, I've downloaded a wack of free (and useful) info and humans are editing that offline. I'll supplement each page that goes onto with info from a mix of sources on all pages. Problem is that this takes time (and a bit o money) so it'll only be up in July.
Sorry I can't give a better update.