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Google penalty, link removal, and highway robbery

     
5:27 pm on Dec 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

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I noted in another thread that I have a defunct directory I bought many years ago. It's 40K pages of html. I never made a dime off the site directly (I bought it for other reasons and never accepted submissions).

Now I get link removal requests from people that have been penalized in Google for unnatural links. I used to do it for free, but got enough removal threats that I changed to charging $20 for removal. I could give a crap about $20, but I have to log into the server and hand edit the HTML, so, $20 it is.

I just got an email requesting a link removal. I respond with 'drop me $20', and I do it same day. His response? Tells me it's highway robbery and that I should be ashamed of myself.

Well, I am ashamed of myself, but not for that. My response? He should be ashamed of asking me to work for free. Then I provided a real example of highway robbery - told him the price was now $100 for removal. See? $100 for a link removal - now THAT's highway robbery.

Thanks Google! $100!
1:33 pm on Jan 9, 2013 (gmt 0)

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The irony is that it's a green, enviro directory, so most things are natural! :-) Just not the links obviously.
1:38 pm on Jan 9, 2013 (gmt 0)

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LOL ... I actually might be inclined to add a 'helpful note' to my 'published fee' page, something like:

"Link removal is $100 (USD), of course you can always use Google's Disavow Tool, but you could be 'telling on yourself' for being a spammer if you do..."
8:42 pm on Jan 10, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Great thread.

We often get some nasty spammers on our forum and if they aren't your run-of-the-mill 409 or sales scam, we often edit them and move them to a forum visible to guests but not members. If there is a phone number or a company name, we remove the link but make it obvious that the company has spammed. It may be a local moving company, roofer, cell phone 'unlocker', mail order business or even dentists.

Years later, we get requests via email asking us to delete their thread and I only just got one a few minutes ago. I'm wondering if I should ask for a $100 fee to remove it.

Thanks for the inspiration :)

To note: When I get requests like this, it usually involves having to search for what exactly they are talking about and who they are. My time isn't free.
1:57 pm on Jan 11, 2013 (gmt 0)

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Dangerous game. I wouldn't be surprised if one of the people you asked to pay did a little research, found some other sites of yours, and sent a few hundred thousand low quality links your way in lieu of payment.
3:50 pm on Jan 11, 2013 (gmt 0)

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The online community has gone crazy. Some are wasting time and energy to send link removal requests, and some others are wasting time and energy to respond to these requests. Are you sure that's what internet business is about these days. No better things to do?

Don't ask to remove links, and don't respond to link removal requests. This is dumb. Don't do that. Do some real work/business.
9:14 pm on Feb 4, 2013 (gmt 0)

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$20 for removal.
$20 to ADD a link to your competitor.
Or both for $30.
9:55 pm on Feb 4, 2013 (gmt 0)

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It's total bs that google even penalizes a site for being linked to another site. They are really calling the shots on everyone aren't they?
9:22 am on Feb 5, 2013 (gmt 0)

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>>Additionally, it's worth noting that you can't legally charge someone more for a service because they've annoyed you.<<

NOW you tell me! We've been charging an (undocumented) "nuisance fee" to pain in the butt clients for years. lol
This 38 message thread spans 2 pages: 38