I don't know or care how you got 5000 links almost over night, but I know a 3 month old site with links like that could easily raise a red flag, because it's barely old enough to be scraped and yet those links came from somewhere...
There's one I took over that's about 10 years old and only has 200 links.
Sounds like automation to me...
Yep, me too, and no I didn't invent how to drop 12,000 links on a site with a single line of code, but I sure know how to do it, and I seriously doubt if someone liked your site so much they went and edited 1000 HTML pages just so they could link to you.
Do you really think that's what they did?
Really, do you think it's more likely they automated the links, or put them on by hand, because personally, I've linked to some sites I really like and haven't edited more than 2 or 3 HTML pages to add static links...
Would you edit 1000 HTML pages to add a link to someone from each one unless you were well paid by the person receiving the links?
Let me just go over and place a sitewide to my comperitors site, or better spam Wiki like crazy with my competitors site link.
nothing a competitor can do to harm your site is how the page on Google's site for webmasters regarding the issue reads now... It's a dirty game we play and if you think a competitor wouldn't pay to have links to your site added if they thought it would get you out of their way in the rankings, then IMO you're sorely mistaken. Would it work or not? Your guess is as good as mine, because that's not how I do things, so I haven't tried it, but there are those who do.
There are some people here who are trying to point out what they know from having done this for a long time and whether you think (or even know) the links are legitimate or not, and whether we think (or even know) there are times when a non-spam pattern looks spammy or not, doesn't really matter... Google's system is automated and to tangor and myself it looks like there were a bunch of automated links added to your site and that could easily be seen as an attempt to artificially influence rankings, which is against the Google TOS and can easily result in a 'penalty' or 'filtering' of your site.
It doesn't really matter if the links are legitimate or not, the only thing that matters is what they probably look like to an algorithm, and IMO they probably look spammy, and that's probably the biggest issue your site has right now, even if I don't like the Wik-MOZ garbage myself.
Anyway, not sure why you're arguing when your getting some fairly good advice from the people who are trying to help you out, rather than just saying thanks for the replies and suggestions which are way more than you got from Wikipedia or will likely ever get from Google, but each to their own I guess...
[edited by: tedster at 8:42 pm (utc) on Apr 26, 2010]