Dude my website was earning me thousands of dollars a month, so believe me I am shaken up. The baffling thing is I have no idea what I did wrong. No duplicate content, relevant topics, no filler junk content either, never purchased links, and never gamed the system. Domain was old, or aged as people say.
Not only all of that, but I am one of three people in this niche providing real reviews of products. I bought them all, used them, took pictures of results, took pictures of the products, and people love me. Tons of comments, and a forum was beginning to populate. Then on June 5th everything fell apart for me, despite all my hard work it was all taken away from me, without reason.
I have also been attacked by a competitor with spam links, as i discussed earlier, and have disavowed over 2k domains since May 27th. Requested reconsideration, and was given the "no manual action has been taken" response.
I am one of the few web-masters in my niche who played by the rules, and was rewarded for it. I was so happy, and then - poof - snap your fingers and its gone, and in my incomes place I am removing spam links by the hundreds per day, and wondering why content scrapers are outranking my content. Daily checks of my rank show I am dropping 2-5 spots daily, while people who scraped and spun my content are ranking high.
I always used authorship, so how the dupe content is ranking is beyond me. I never bought links, and never cheated - so how I am penalized remains a mystery. My content, that I worked very hard on for months, has been stolen and made public domain by scrapers. My original info-images and pictures I took, which I put branding on, have been copied and had their branding blurred out or completely cut out, and placed all over the web on wordpress and blogspot sub domains - without my permission of course. At least its where its not lonely, it has my original content right along with it.
I have left matt cutts several comments on his blog, which he likely never read or didnt take seriously and deleted. I started a google crawling and indexing forum discussion about the negative seo and its effectiveness, with no useful responses. (as a side note, I gotta ask why those forums even exist?! Nothing but troll "top contributers" with nothing to do but chit chat about nothing). I also reached out to a search blog I'm sure we all know, asking if they would like to do a case study on my website, and offered to provide all my analytics data, and proof of who I am and my URLs, and all the methods used to build the site and links. Show all proof of negative seo- basically the whole shebang. Most webmasters are afraid to disclose their urls because they are breaking some rules. Not me- I followed all the rules, not by some sense of goodness, but because it was working for me, very well. I was actually enjoying researching different topics because I knew in my head, that I was ranking because like google said, good content will rank.
June 5th was my doomsday, and everyday since then I run rank checking software morning, noon, and night so I can see if any shifts are occurring in search. I started another website, but honestly the level of pride isn't in my writing. I was so proud of my work and what I had built, and having it all destroyed by content scrapers, negative seo, and algorithm changes that opt fot dupe and low quality content (and no, I am not being biased)- it just really took something out of me.
As a webmaster who follows the rules and plays well with others, it's a hard process to grasp that you work was stolen. It stings in a way thats hard to verbalize, or I guess contextualize. Feeling that you have no authority to get assistance from, having no idea when you may rank again- because- well you have no idea why you lost rank to begin with. Its just a really #*$!ty feeling, #*$!ty and frustrating and maddening.
So trust me Mike2010- I feel it, and I know there are other people here who feel it just as much as I do.