How Penguin Remediation Can Get You Sued

12 replies
I was reading an article about dealing with Google's Penguin update and how to get rid of perceived low value backlinks. It said to contact sites and demand removal of backlinks you no longer want:

"Often the only way to get them to sit up and take notice, after a couple of friendly initial emails, is to make them aware that you can, and will, contact their hosting provider and request them to shut the site down if they do not comply with your request."
For instance, you think a directory is now too low value and you want them to remove a link (ironically, a link you probably originally placed). The directory refuses. You contact their web host and say what? Shut down the website if a link is not removed?

The legal basis for that is slim to none, and slim skipped town years ago. This is not a DMCA request.

But assume you are successful with a threatening demand and the web host shuts down the directory.

This is what happens next:

The directory owner sues you for tortiously interfering with its web hosting contract. Not only do you have liability for any damages, but also punitive damages.

In other words, this is not a well thought out strategy.

.
#penguin #remediation #sued
  • Profile picture of the author tpw
    Thank you for bringing the voice of reason to this discussion.
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    • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
      Banned
      Originally Posted by tpw View Post

      Thank you for bringing the voice of reason to this discussion.
      Reason and common sense suck.
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  • Profile picture of the author Daniel Thompson
    Google has really opened up a can of worms by implying that links can have negative value. Ignoring them is fine, but it is silly to encourage new industries of negative seo and seo cleanup. It's also dangerous to limit the freedom of linking to sites. It threatens the integrity of the Internet.
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    • Profile picture of the author Paul Myers
      Brian,

      I sometimes wonder what people are thinking when they give out advice like that. Then I remember to replace 'what' with 'if,' and the question answers itself.

      But seriously, folks... "Penguin remediation?" Too funny.


      Paul
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      • Profile picture of the author housewarrior
        I get a request every other day. Prolly from the same place. The links they want removed are on a couple of old auto blogs. I had those pretty much unused domains and rather than let them sit idle, I tossed up the quickie blogs and thought it a neat idea to just turn em loose on auto.

        Well, you know what happened awhile back after panda started sniffing around...

        So now I get these requests.

        Being a nice guy, I did go and remove a couple of links the first time I was asked. Now I just ditch the mails unopened. I didn't put the links on those sites. They did. So...the way I look at it, unless they want to pay me, I don't have time to go clean up their messes.

        But I have to give this SEO company a 1.5 thumbs up for seeing the earning possibilities of charging to REMOVE links before anyone else saw it.

        Norm
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        • Profile picture of the author andreasup
          Originally Posted by housewarrior View Post

          I get a request every other day. Prolly from the same place. The links they want removed are on a couple of old auto blogs. I had those pretty much unused domains and rather than let them sit idle, I tossed up the quickie blogs and thought it a neat idea to just turn em loose on auto.

          Well, you know what happened awhile back after panda started sniffing around...

          So now I get these requests.

          Being a nice guy, I did go and remove a couple of links the first time I was asked. Now I just ditch the mails unopened. I didn't put the links on those sites. They did. So...the way I look at it, unless they want to pay me, I don't have time to go clean up their messes.

          Norm
          Hi HouseWarrior. I have experienced the same thing with one of my forums which have been around since 1995. I agree that unless a person requesting their links is willing to pay to have them removed, then just ditch the request.
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        • Profile picture of the author Andyhenry
          Originally Posted by housewarrior View Post

          Now I just ditch the mails unopened. I didn't put the links on those sites. They did. So...the way I look at it, unless they want to pay me, I don't have time to go clean up their messes.
          Then instead of ditching the emails unopened - why don't you reply with a quote for the work? You might find that many of them are desperate to repair their problems and will happily pay.
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          nothing to see here.

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          • Profile picture of the author TheArticlePros
            Originally Posted by Paul Myers View Post

            Brian,

            I sometimes wonder what people are thinking when they give out advice like that. Then I remember to replace 'what' with 'if,' and the question answers itself.

            But seriously, folks... "Penguin remediation?" Too funny.


            Paul
            Just in case you're wondering Paul (or anyone else), PenguinRemediation.com is available from GoDaddy right now! Here's a link to my search results (no affiliate code): Go Daddy Mobile - Domain Search, Go Daddy Commercials



            -- j
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            • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
              Banned
              Originally Posted by JaRyCu View Post

              Just in case you're wondering Paul (or anyone else), PenguinRemediation.com is available from GoDaddy right now! Here's a link to my search results (no affiliate code): Go Daddy Mobile - Domain Search, Go Daddy Commercials



              -- j
              An idea for the homepage of whoever buys it as well:


              "We'll take care of those links for ya"

              "You know, the links you shouldn't have been wasting your time on in the first place"
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              • Profile picture of the author Andyhenry
                Originally Posted by Joe Robinson View Post


                "We'll take care of those links for ya"

                "You know, the links you shouldn't have been wasting your time on in the first place"
                However - many of them will have been generated by people selling link building WSOs, so many of the poor suckers getting penalised were just normal non-seo knowledgeable website owners who relied on 'experts' and 'google-friendly link building' from others who were just buying automation tools and selling the click of a button to others.

                It's easy to criticise people for this stuff but many people were just the victims of poor service providers who only cared about revenue and not the long term impact of their services.

                I've been saying for a long time that your incoming links can hurt you and lost track of the number of times other people jumped in with "that can't be true otherwise your competitors could hurt you and Google wouldn't allow that" - now that Google have sent enough messages to people telling them that they're being penalised for crap incoming links, enough victims are around that people finally understand that it's not just a crazy idea but a reality. But I bet there are still many others that are blindly buying links now and will only find out their mistake when they get slapped and then come looking on the forum for an explaination only to find we've been warning them for years but they didn't listen until after they got the problem.
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                nothing to see here.

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                • Profile picture of the author Joseph Robinson
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                  Originally Posted by Andyhenry View Post

                  However - many of them will have been generated by people selling link building WSOs, so many of the poor suckers getting penalised were just normal non-seo knowledgeable website owners who relied on 'experts' and 'google-friendly link building' from others who were just buying automation tools and selling the click of a button to others.
                  Oh, I'm in total agreement with you on this, and it's a damn shame that it ever happened at all (and that it's still happening today).
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  • Profile picture of the author E. Brian Rose
    "Penguin Remediation" reminds me of the old movie "Breast Men". It was about the two doctors that invented breast augmentation. After a few years of success, women started getting sick from the silicone. Instead of shutting down their practices, they made a fortune advertising their services to remove breast implants. This is what a lot of SEO shops are doing now with the links they helped place, but they don't get to see boobs all day.
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