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Spam detection using historical factors

Written by David Harry   
Monday, 21 July 2008 10:19

A Google guide to spam detection

We all know your friend an mine Matt Cutts, over at the Google Web Spam team… but how exactly do they go about detecting and curtailing web spam? While there are a wide variety of tools at their disposal, historical factors are easily one of the more powerful methods.

In the last offering in our series on historical ranking factors, we’re going to look at some ways they are used to detect spam. Now, this isn’t an education for spammers in as much as I wanted to give everyone some knowledge in hopes they aren’t needlessly flagged for earnest efforts.

Link Spam via historical factors

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SEO Tools for all occasions

Written by David Harry   
Thursday, 17 July 2008 08:39

It's about the pool player, not the cue

This morning the most wondrous Ann Smarty posted a exceedingly groovy list of tools that rock!

Not to be left out I thought I would take this opportunity to mention we have a pretty good list here on the trail as well…. See our SEO Tools section for more (80+ tools in total).

It is important to note that tools are only as good as the practitioner using them. What that means is your methods and theories of SEO dictate which tools and how you use them. A tool alone cannot make your programs better – that is up to you.

I would also note that I advise using more than one tool for any part of your research and development as trusting a single source for data is often a recipe for failure… now go and start playing!!



Your SEO is weak my foolish friends

Written by David Harry   
Thursday, 10 July 2008 09:45

Another rant to all those SEO Jokers

You know what?…. I feel a rant coming on, either run screaming now, or hold on for the ride.

Ok…. Now listen up my little SEO apostles, stop looking for the secret sauce and the magic bullet. I am getting so damn tired of reading so called ‘tips’ of how you can get a leg up on the competition. I am talking everything from black hat to (so-called) keyword sniping and the LSI bandwagon. Stop creating garbage sites with the hope of monetizing it with some crappy thin affiliate schemes, PPC arbitrage or whatever the get-rich-quick flavour of the day is. Cease and desist with the 3 way links and arrest the development of your satellite sites. Just give it a break!

I am so tired of people posing as marketing professionals writing about how to game the system to make a few bucks. They are not marketers… they are snake oil sales types; so get a grip. The world has always had such hucksters and they have never really been considered savvy marketers. You see dear reader; you must learn to recognize the difference. If your SEO efforts are merely a preface to gaming the search engines for short term gain, your days are numbered. This is not a long term viable business model… I guess that’s why it is getting rich ‘quick’.

Wanna buy some PageRank?

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Hey Google NoFollow this!

Written by David Harry   
Monday, 09 June 2008 09:15


A Monday morning rant

I love Google as much as the next guy or maybe more than most… Not only the search engine and many apps and services I play with, but I also enjoy how the engineers think (Patent hound here ya know)… but the whole link FUD has finally started to irk me.

I have yet to write about the ‘nofollow’ fiasco… today it changes.

Are we simply a gutless bunch of weenies under the spell of the mighty G? Methinks it’s true.

Matt McGee is a guy I enjoy reading and have respected for some time … and still do. BUT this morning I noticed a post of his that was thanking some advertisers and highlighting some of there posts. He not only nofollowed the links to some of their recent posts, but felt he had to state that they were nofollowed. Good lord, is this what we’ve come to?

Eat my shorts

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Link Builders Guide to Historical Ranking Factors

Written by David Harry   
Tuesday, 29 April 2008 08:02

Because it's about time 

When in comes to doing SEO for Google, one thing is certain; you’d better know about backlinks. Given the fact that the core algorithm is based largely on ranking and detecting spam via links, it is certainly an area to be familiar with.

A while ago there was a re-release of a Google patent on temporal ranking factors which really was a watershed back in 2005 when it first came out, as were subsequent related patents. Analyzing the recent (re-released) publication for new anomalies gave life to the thought that it would be interesting to highlight a few areas as a bit of a refresher course.

For this post I am merely going to address the implications of temporal factors on link building programs.


The basics of historical factors

Just because a web page is 10 years old, doesn’t mean it is still relevant. It also doesn’t ensure that it is. In some situations fresh content can be more relevant than older content. The discovery data can be used to re-rank a document in a positive or negative manner…

Search engines, (such as Google) can use temporal data to analyze link profiles for anomalies based on discovery, (inception) dates;

“…it may be assumed that a document with a fairly recent inception date will not have a significant number of links from other documents”

And can be used for Spam detection;

“While a spiky rate of growth in the number of back links may be a factor used by search engine to score documents, it may also signal an attempt to spam search engine. Accordingly, in this situation, search engine may actually lower the score of a document(s) to reduce the effect of spamming


Thus inception dates and historical data can be used for link velocity analysis.

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