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Burning the whole house with a single match sounds like an efficient way of killing someone's business but I just can't picture Google to care enough to do something like that.
and even moreso when there are networks of sites linked through Adsense, Analytics, etc.Network is such a loaded term! It's hard to call unrelated, non-linked, separately hosted, different themed sites a network even though they belong to the same owner. Unless they do indeed have a beef with the owner, what would be their reason to ax sites based on their ownership?
I had a similar thing happen to me earlier this year.May I ask if you were able to un-ban some/all of these sites eventually?
Very diverse sites, about a dozen. All banned. Google only. The thing they had in common was adsense, or had adsense in the past. Little or no interlinking.This, sadly, reads exactly as a description of my own problem. But: "or had adsense in the past" - if that observation had anything to do with the actual reason to ban, it smells of witch-hunt.
I'm very paranoid now, and much of the content I'm adding to the web is on third party sites. I think it's good content and it tends to rank fine.That part I did not follow: if you contribute to other sites (which I also do), aren't the other sites' owners the only ones that benefit? Do you mean that you simply closed the shop? This sounds like you are, in fact, going on assumption that Google has a problem with you personally. I still can't see how they can care so much about one person or one business as to diligently go after every site they had. Besides, not all of my sites got banned. Was that the case with you?
May I ask if you were able to un-ban some/all of these sites eventually
not all of my sites got banned. Was that the case with you?
What do you call it when you are about -10 for your main keyword? In our case we went from #1 for years to about #14 and stayed there for the last several months.I would call it change in algorithm. For many this is a routine, you're lucky you were #1 for years.
Would a reinclusion request have potential for benefit?No. Your site does not appear to be penalized.
Some I did 301 redirects to new domains. I did this about 4 months ago. They are all indexed by G and get traffic.Yeah, I pondered about that and I can probably move one or two of my banned sites to new domains. The rest of the sites have very nice hand-picked marketable (some are expensive) domain names. I am pretty much stuck here...