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Scraped Content And Penguin Question


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11 replies to this topic

#1 dannyboy

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 07:52 AM

Hi

 

If a site scrapes our content which includes our internal links and places on a really bad and penalized site could we also get penalised for having links back to our site from the offender?

 

Many Thanks Dan



#2 Alan Perkins

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 08:36 AM

No, don't worry about that.



#3 qwerty

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 10:53 AM

I don't know if this is universally true, but I think it's worth bringing up. There's a site I'm not directly responsible for, but have been helping with while it deals with some problems. It's under a manual penalty for unnatural links, and shortly after I sent in a reconsideration request indicating that we've taken care of all of the issues, I got the standard response from Google saying we still had a number of links that were against the guidelines.

 

I sent the three examples of questionable links that Google provided to some of the people who work on the site, and one of them wrote back that at least of couple of them were examples of other sites scraping and republishing the site's content. He said that they have a WordPress plugin installed that inserts links into their content when it's published on a different site. I haven't seen that before. I know there are plugins that will add a single link when an article is republished, and others that will create links automatically when a post contains words and phrases that you've mapped to specific URLs, but I haven't seen one that will combine those two functions, turning a scraped article into what could become a rather spammy collection of links if you're not sufficiently conservative in setting up how many terms get mapped to links.

 

And these examples are pretty spammy looking. The average paragraph in one of these posts contains about five links to internal pages on the site. I can see why Google would take issue with it, no matter how it was created.

 

But I'm not trying to scare you here. It may be that Google has a problem with these articles because we have a lot of them out there (I don't know yet how widespread this is) and because it's a site that's already in trouble for other reasons.



#4 dannyboy

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 11:02 AM

Thanks a lot.

 

Good info here.

 

We have similar with a site of ours and just trying to do the process of elimination!



#5 Alan Perkins

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 05:12 PM

He said that they have a WordPress plugin installed that inserts links into their content when it's published on a different site.

 

Please give more detail. How has the different site got the content? Legally, or by scraping it?



#6 qwerty

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 05:47 PM

It's scraping (that is, done without permission) but they don't seem to have an issue with it. They see it as a way for people who like their content to share it. It seems to me that if someone likes my content, they'll just link to it, but apparently their stuff just gets copied and pasted into blogs and forum posts a lot. I need them to understand that that's not OK.



#7 Alan Perkins

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Posted 08 December 2013 - 06:07 PM

I don't get how a Wordpress plugin on one site adds links to scraped content on another site.

 

I can only see one way how that could be done, and that's for the plugin to recognise that the request comes from a scraper, and serve different, link-loaded content if so. That would be dangerously close to cloaking. For example. the way a search robot behaves is very similar to a scraper. That could cause problems.



#8 qwerty

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 02:26 PM

I think they may have been inaccurate in describing this plugin to me. But the important thing is that this is content from the site being republished on another, it has a lot of links back to the site, and Google is using it as an example of unnatural links.



#9 chrishirst

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 04:01 PM

Hi

 

If a site scrapes our content which includes our internal links and places on a really bad and penalized site could we also get penalised for having links back to our site from the offender?

 

Fire off a DMCA infringement notice to them (and Google)



#10 Michael Martinez

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 05:48 PM

There is at least one popular SEO plugin (I won't name it but "Y" might come to mind for some) that adds a link back to your site in your RSS feed, so technically it's not "scrapers" that are linking to the site (if the guy is using this plugin) but "aggregators" or "syndicators".

How I define these terms:
  • Scraper - Uses software to get around your blocks to copy your content
  • Aggregator - Republishes part or all of one or more RSS feeds for content
  • Syndicator - Republishes content, either through RSS or direct posting, with permission


#11 Alan Perkins

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Posted 09 December 2013 - 06:31 PM

the important thing is that this is content from the site being republished on another, it has a lot of links back to the site, and Google is using it as an example of unnatural links.

 

OK, if you get a message through Webmaster Tools, then it might be an idea to sit up and take notice. So it's definitely worth

  • having a webmaster tools account
  • configuring your account to email notifications to you when things go wrong

Then if you get a warning about unnatural links you can act on it. Until such a warning then I wouldn't be worried that I was about to get a warning, given the situation laid out in the question. However, if your site (as well as the offending site) is ALSO low quality or has ALSO indulged in some questionable link tactics of its own then the chances of being penalised are higher, 

 

Beyond worrying about Google penalties it would still be worth (as Chris said) filing a DMCA request and taking whatever other action you could in order to stop your content being re-published elsewhere without your permission.



#12 Diligent

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Posted 06 March 2014 - 11:18 AM

Matt Cutts has just came out and said there is now a tool for reporting sites that have scraped content, take a look at it here;

 

http://www.searcheng...-content/92953/

 

Although there is a process now in place it is just the matter of how long it take before the appropriate action is carried out.






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