Google Penalizing Its Own Google Chrome Search Results For Violating Google Paid Link Rules

from the left-hand,-right-hand dept

Well, this is interesting. Earlier this week Aaron Wall noticed that Google’s Chrome team appeared to be sponsoring blog posts about Google that have direct links to Google Chrome, without any attempt to hide those from search bots… in contradiction to the rules that it has for others against buying links. Danny Sullivan dug into the details a little bit more and found that it was “jaw-dropping” in how it clearly violated Google’s own rules, and just how ridiculous the entire campaign appears to be.

In response, Google has basically said that it never signed up for such a campaign, and appears to suggest that the advertising firm it hired was part of the problem. That firm, Essence Digital, more or less took the blame. However, Sullivan also notes that the actual campaign appears to have been run by a video company called Unruly. The whole thing seems like a mess, with Google not closely monitoring the companies it hired for the marketing campaign.

Either way, Google actually does appear to be taking this seriously — as its anti-spam team is saying that it’s going to reduce the Google PageRank for the Chrome team. That’s actually fairly surprising — as you basically have a company agreeing to punish itself for breaking its own rules, whereas most companies caught in this kind of situation would likely try to brush it off as not important…

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Companies: google

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Comments on “Google Penalizing Its Own Google Chrome Search Results For Violating Google Paid Link Rules”

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blaktron (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

The institutions in general didn’t profit, a few did, a few went bust. The truly sickening thing is how the people involved profited directly with the bonus incentive culture. Even while they were making decisions clearly not in the best interests of their companies they were raking in huge bonuses based on the volume of trades they performed, no matter how detrimental.

Ninja (profile) says:

Now that’s surprising and really interesting. Google has a few other stuff to punish itself for (like censoring the auto complete thing, letting the MAFIAA abuse the ContentID system on Youtube etc etc) but it seems like a good start.

Hopefully it’ll get some momentum and other companies will follow in the self punishment game? I doubt. Meanwhile the financial morons are still doing business with rotten papers.

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Re:

“censoring the auto complete thing…” Personally, I am happy that my 9 year old can go to Google and search for “fu..nny dog videos” or “as..tronomy” without being bombarded by curse words while doing so. If their auto complete wasn’t censored it would be on our blocked site list, and they would be missing out on a great deal of search traffic from many other concerned parents. Oh but you are probably complaining that you don’t get the words “free” or “pirate copy” in your auto-complete. God forbid that you have to type a few extra keystrokes to steal a movie or song.

Jeffrey Nonken (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re: Re:

It’s censorship if the government says you’re not allowed to express it.

Filtering the auto-complete is not censorship.

You may claim otherwise if you like, of course. You’re allowed to express silly opinions based on a misunderstanding of word definitions. But if you start screaming about Constitutional violations because you can’t see dirty words in your Google auto-complete I am going to laugh at you. I expect I’ll have company.

Ninja (profile) says:

Re: Re: Re:

Google has something for that called safe search. And I’m tech savy enough to know how to block connections via DNS and IP lvl on my home network. So my children probably would be less exposed to pornography. If I choose to censor them instead of being a good parent and be open about how the stuff works and why they can and cannot access some sites and why they must do it while I’m with them.

Sorry AC, imposed censorship is very different from censorship by choice.

Oh but you are probably complaining that you don’t get the words “free” or “pirate copy” in your auto-complete. God forbid that you have to type a few extra keystrokes to steal a movie or song.

I don’t use Google for my file sharing needs, not anymore. I’m not your average pirate. And copyright infringement doesn’t equal stealing. But you know that. You also know that most pirates, like me, buy a lot of stuff. But you choose to ignore that. I pity your children. But maybe I pity you more than that because your kids will infringe on copyright, either on purpose or by innocence. And SOPA might be there for them, along with NDAA. Cheers on your bright future ^^

Anonymous Coward says:

Re: Overlords

No. This is why you keep rejecting them because you don’t want them insinuated into every single part of your life before they turn evil. And make no mistake, they will turn evil because some Big Business or Wall Street guy will eventually be tapped to run the company at some point and then things will go bad very quickly.

MAJikMARCer (profile) says:


I hate to be negative as I like Google and their products, but I think this is more politically motivated than anything else. Not to suggest that Google wouldn’t have done anything but perhaps not as swiftly or decisively.

Google is under pretty serious scrutiny right now and they have to react like this to prevent giving their enemies any further ammunition.

PRMan (profile) says:

Re: Re:

If you have purchased links on your page, you have to use rel=”nofollow” (or something like that) so that the search engine won’t give them as much credit because they are purchased.

Google was paying for Google Chrome ads on and wasn’t following the rule that they punish others for. The team that enforces the rule decided that they needed to follow the rule because it’s the right thing to make the internet work organically without being completely bought, so they enforced the rule, even though the enforcement came at the expense of Chrome.

Anonymous Coward says:

Not sure this is good

So, what we essentially have is a 3rd party who has artificially inflated Google Chrome’s pagerank, and Google is punishing Chrome for it?

Doesn’t this suggest that anyone who wants to punish a 3rd party can do this to them as well? I wonder how much investigation Google is doing before they “punish” someone’s pagerank – what if they find out a competitor caused this to happen?

Pranja says:

Google’s share price just shot down 10% and Google is being investigated yet again for massive privacy violations. It is only a matter of time before Google is history and the fucked-up people on this forum can go back to shining shoes for a living. I forgot, most Jews are peddlars so you can go back to your rag picking. I don’t think I’ve ever seen such an ugly bunch of Hebes as are on this forum. Except of course, Sergey Brin and Larry Paige. Both are inbred, deformed Jews out of Russia. Why don’t you do a column on all the inbred Israeli Jews who are suing for “wrongful life”? There are six hundred pending legal cases in Israel brought by deformed and diseased Jews who say their parents should not have married their first cousins.

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