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Interview with Director of Yahoo Search

Eric Enge Interviews Priyank Garg of Yahoo Search

7:33 pm on Jul 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Great interview published by Eric Enge. He keeps the interview focused on the role links play in Yahoo's algorithm and Priyank Garg offers some surprisingly direct responses. If you are interested in Yahoo's algorithm, then this interview is required reading.

Read the complete interview with Priyank Garg here [stonetemple.com].

Eric Enge:...So getting a link from the bottom of a WordPress template that you create and distribute is completely irrelevant.

Priyank Garg: Exactly, thatís the kind of thing that we are trying to do all the time. The irrelevant links at the bottom of a page, which will not be as valuable for a user, donít add to the quality of the user experience, so we donít account for those in our ranking. All of those links might still be useful for crawl discovery, but they wonít support the ranking.

[edited by: tedster at 9:15 pm (utc) on July 7, 2008]
[edit reason] spelling of name [/edit]

7:52 pm on July 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

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This is the most detailed disclosure I've seen from Yahoo - kudos to both Eric and Priyank for a very rich interview. I appreciated these comments about spam detection very much.

We use algorithmic and editorial means to fight spam. What we have found is algorithms are very effective at fighting spam at the large scale, and our human editors are very effective at recognizing new techniques and providing us that early signal, which we can use to scale-up the detection processes...

However, if there is a page that is generally okay but has some spamming techniques, someone might search for that URL, and as a search engine we want to make sure we have the most comprehensive experience we can.

Also, some nice information about paid links - Yahoo doesn't automatically discount paid links if the rest of the algo shows that those links add to the user experience.

[edited by: tedster at 9:14 pm (utc) on July 7, 2008]

8:25 pm on July 7, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Very impressive interview.

This clears up a lot of the link questions with Yahoo and provides more insight into what factors are important.

Kudos to Eric and Priyank for a great interview.

1:25 am on July 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I found his answers on the duplicate content issue a bit disappointing. It seems they do not penalize sites for mass duplication/stealing of content, it only gets rated a bit lower in results (maybe).

I hate when search engines claim they support DMCA violation requests when we all know they system is broken unless you have tons of money to go after the culprits. I've filed numerous DMCA violations with both Google and Yahoo only to have the spam site that was stealing my pages deny it. Google and Yahoo then simply believe them, and say we have to get a court judgment to have them believe me.

I filed a report documenting 6500 copied pages from my site. I included my original page and their stolen copy of my page. Their pages actually all had the same dates on them. Mine were spread over 6 years. You would think it would be easy to tell which was the original.

Well the site never got penalized in either search engine, and to this day some of our stolen content ranks them HIGHER than us for some queries.

If sites can get away with that kind of blatant theft and spamming, then the system is broken. Don't even publicize that you support DMCA. It is ridiculous.

7:37 am on July 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Real interesting and honest interview. The 2 actionable things for me:

1) Quality is much more important than quantity when it comes to links.
2) It's probably a good idea to start using Yahoo Site Explorer.

1:35 pm on July 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Worth the read. Some good advice that would be applicable to all search engines.
3:19 am on July 9, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Hmm .. more open than Matt :), thanks Eric, you rock.

Priyank Garg, is an IITian, good work Priyank. I just wanted one more answer, why is yahoo explorer showing nofollow links? It is too confusing.