Google Penguin Update: Petition Calls For Google To Kill It

    April 30, 2012
    Chris Crum
    Comments are off for this post.

Last week, Google gave frustrated webmasters a place to complain if they felt they were unjustly hit by the Penguin update. While I’m sure Google has received plenty of feedback through that, some are gravitating towards a petition to get Google to kill the Penguin update.

For those of you who haven’t been following, Google announced the Penguin update (formerly known as the “Webspam update”) on April 24th, to target sites violating Google’s quality guidelines.

Here’s what the petition says:

Penguin killedPlease kill your Penguin update!l

With the recent Google Penguin update, it has become nearly impossible for small content based websites to stay competitive with large publishers like eHow, WikiHow, Yahoo Answers and Amazon.

Countless webmasters have seen their livelihoods vanish with this update. Sergey Brin recently came out against “Walled Gardens” of the likes of Facebook. However, the Penguin update has created a similar garden that only admits multimillion dollar publishing platforms.

I’ll sign off with the words of someone who has lost everything in this update:

“I got stuffed by it. I have a 7 year old website with SEO work done on it several years ago. No real SEO done in the past 3 years. So I have been penalised for SEO work done 3 years ago is all I can think.

My website “was” top of its niche, with several hundred multi million pound clients. In the past day we have had a 90% drop in traffic and all but a bare few keywords left with rankings. Over 250 rankings we did have that we monitor each day have gone. These were top 3 rankings, now not even in the top 200.

We have never done any bad SEO, we need to compete, but we have never done black hat. Saying that, what we did do was borderline, but then so does everyone else so we were left with little choice.

Overnight my business which supports my 5 children, 3 employees, pays for my mortgage and debts etc has been wiped out.

Thanks Google. At a time where almost every country in the world is suffering, way to go with applying a little more hardship to people whom have just tried to play the game as does everyone.

The petition, which seeks 500 signatures, has 289 so far. There are also plenty of comments from webmasters leaving their reasons for signing.

We saw plenty of stories about people losing their businesses and having to get rid of employees when Google launched the Panda update, and it appears that the Penguin update is having a similar effect.

It’s still the early days for Penguin. My guess is that we’ll continue to see more adjustments on Google’s part. It’s hard to gauge how well Google’s update did from the outside looking in, in terms of getting rid of webspam and not penalizing the innocent. We have seen some examples where Google results were quite questionable, though Google quickly made adjustments. Of course, examples are always out there waiting to be pointed out, independent from the Penguin update.

Comic image courtesy: DC Comics: Batman Annual #15 (via alternity)

  • Richard

    Let’s all lay off the Kool-Aid and face the facts. Google’s core aim of the Penguin update is to increase exposure of Google’s own properties in their search results as well as those of big brands such as Amazon – while forcing mom and pop businesses to have to pay for AdWords ads if they want any exposure. Pretty sad. Tells you a lot about who Google really is. I for one no longer trust them.

  • http://www.mathatube.com denzil

    “Saying that, what we did do was borderline, but then so does everyone else so we were left with little choice”.

    Borderline is spamming. It is people like him, why small websites like mine get such a hard time with traffic.

    I work hard for traffic I get. I get it the old fashion way, I earn it.

  • Deep Karmakar

    What Google is trying to do is making it’s search engine more user friendly. That’s good. But at the same time Google must consider the fact that there are people out there who are earning their livelihood. Now I’m too a webmaster at a website designing company and now I feel really scared to take up any organic SEO tasks. As a result, I have lost few clients.

  • http://www.properbounce.com Deep Karmakar

    What Google is trying to do is making it’s search engine more user friendly. That’s good. But at the same time Google must consider the fact that there are people out there who are earning their livelihood. Now I’m too a webmaster at a website designing company and now I feel really scared to take up any organic SEO tasks. As a result, I have lost few clients.

  • tom g

    Webmasters ned to help build up bing and other search engines so they can grow to compete w/g. Until they loose $ they will do whatever they want and no can punish them for it not even Gov.
    We need have our own updates to out robots.txt to forbid g from crawling our sites. They need our content good or bad to have something to show in their searches. We should direct G referred traffic to a page that says “Entry from G not allowed please use Bing Search”. Or redirect it to porno site!(jk) Some how we need to give them a taste of their own medicine…some how!

  • Keith

    I agree with tom g. If every marketer united together (especially those with email lists) and SOLD everyone on the benefits of using bing/yahoo google would get a piece of their own medicine! IMHO Google is SPAMMING and “SCRAPING” content basically, and making a living fortune on it. This is the exact thing they penalize everyone else for doing isn’t it? Does GOOGLE produce any “relevant content” of their own, or do they “SCRAPE” it from every site on the web? The only reason google is as big as they are is because when then invented Adsense, all the marketers ran out and told everyone “Google is the Best” because they wanted to make a little money… Fact is, google is NOT the best, and it never was! Now they have spat in the faces of the same marketers who made them what they are. I for one am REVOLTING and I am on a campaign to EXPOSE google for the fraud they really are! Just look at their financial statements and you will see that what they tell their stock holders about how they intend to increase revenue and what they tell everyone else about this “quality” are like night and day… Unless “Quality” is synonymous with “Google Revenue Stream”

    P.S. All my old spammy affiliate sites and MFA sites that vanished a long time ago and I gave up on have zoomed up the search engines with this update, and my 1 and only LEGIT 100% whitehat site (that is now my main business after givving up on the blackhat affiliate garbage 2 years ago) is now dead in the water! Countless hours or guest blogging and completely relevant high PR sites pointing to mine, now means nothing… Yea… I’m Not sure what their idea of “Web Spam” even is anymore… But my guess is NOT having Adsense all over your site is now considered “Spam”.

  • http://www.fcrau.com FC Rau

    I would like to hear from more people who actually benefited from Penguin. They are so quiet after their listings replaced everyone else’s on the first page, as if being vocal about it will somehow jinx it or arm their competitors. C’mon, speak up!

  • OSB

    Every time there is an update, people cry. People cry about Google and go on about switching to Bing. What the reality is? Google continues in strength. So your site got hit.. it’s an easy fix for the Penguin update. Whether it’s Bing or Google, they’re no different – search engines (a rubbish argument about Google being a scraper – so you’re saying Bing is, too); they provide links to content, not scrape it and present it as their own. Redirecting visitors from Google and telling them to use Bing won’t actually make them use Bing, it will just make them choose the next result instead of yours.

    Your site takes a hit and you can’t see what’s wrong? Then you really need to take a step back and be objective. So far all site owners I’ve helped with the Penguin update are too in love with their sites to see the problems (often it was quite clear on first glance; very keyword heavy sites, landing pages that looked like the typical ridiculously long affiliate pages – 2,000-3,000 words of waffle that largely repeats the same thing, etc).

  • Rupert

    The reason I believe there are no cries of the winners in this update, is because many of them are big businesses. Amazon, M&S, Burtons etc.

    As a searcher, I know where these places are, and what they sell. I search to find something different. I believe there is room for a new player on the search block. It is not only the smaller publishers who have been pushed out…

  • sumit

    you can give Reconsideration Request to google.

  • http://www.seomasterexpert.com Swapan Kumar

    If you are penalize by Google you need to check your website, check webmaster tools to unnatural link if they found. If you are sure than you can go for reconsideration request.

  • http://www.canadaseopro.ca Todd

    Hi Chris, nice post. What are they trying to accomplish? Its apparent that Google would like to relinquish SEO for adwords. Not sure why they just don’t make it a PPC system and not an organic search. Then it then they can soak us all really good by maximizing the click payments. Unless your a corporation your not going to be able to afford a $300. – $500. monthly PPC budget. We best all be brushing up on our Ad-words Training. Is this going to stop any time soon? Have they no compassions for who helped built them? The fact is we added to the success Google has, with out us they would be non existent.

  • http://publicrecords.searchsystems.net/ Tim Koster

    We’ve been working 14 months to fix our Panda issues, and now we got hit with Penguin. We’ve hired SEO and Panda experts and followed every recommendation– basically working non-stop to find and fix any problems we might have. And every time we see an improvement, we get hit again. It’s daily non-stop punishment and it’d killing us. You can’t imagine what it’s like to spend 15 years developing a useful, helpful, free site and watch it be replaced by “content-rich” sites that will give you a lot of words, but no real helpful content.

    What’s worse is that Google hides behind their corporate shell. They don’t respond to emails, letters, phone calls, queries, intermediaries, even attorneys. They’re answer, when they do answer, is “it’s not manual, it’s an algorithm– they’re nothing we can do.”

    You’re right we’re crying about this. Though we tried to do something good, Chase is foreclosing on our home and we’re about to lose our business– all because of an algorithm.

  • http://publicrecords.searchsystems.net/ Tim Koster

    “It’s” not “It’d.” and “There’s nothing we can do,” not “they’re nothing we can do.” My bad.

  • http://www.treadmillreviews.com Dan

    I’m not angry at the Penguin update because my site got hit. It did. That’s fine. Commenting on blogs, creating some web 2.0 stuff, article marketing with no spun content…these were the tactics employed by everyone. Everyone did it, everyone benefited from it. Google decided to penalize it. Fine, I can live with that.

    What pisses me off beyond pissed off is the arbitrary application. In my niches, all of us got hit but a couple survived. They were no better or worse than us. But they were unscathed, #1 and #2 for everything right now. Why?

    The people who replaced us are utter garbage. My niches are not alone here. I’ve done lots of searches and seen examples of lots of searches where the results are baffling. Google is so against link spam as they now define it that they are willing to penalize almost everyone who ever did it and replace them with horrible content?

    Apparently yes. I could understand this update if the quality of search results went up. And according to Google this was a success. So apparently they have different metrics for quality. I would not consider one’s link profile a quality metric as the average Google user will never see nor understand anything to do with a site’s links. They just care if the information they seek is there.

    Based on that metric, the information I am seeking is not always there anymore. I used to be able to count on Google. Now I can’t. The quality of sites showing up is horrendous. And across many searches.

    So yeah, penalize my site or sites, whatever, I can live with that. I’ll fix them up and get back on track. But penalize me if you are going to make search results better. Don’t arbitrarily say Site A doing link spam as now defined by Google is getting penalized but Site B doing the same link spam will not. Penalize us all. And penalize us only if what you put in our place is better for your users than what we were giving them.

    In that regard, this update failed in epic fashion. Never seen a company make such a pathetic mistake. So obvious to so many, yet PhD’s at Google can’t figure this out. It’s beyond frustrating.

  • http://undercover.com undercover

    The truth is google want to steal all money from internet. But I think google is wrong about that I can guarantee Online Business can make google bankrupt, because webmaster make online business booming and google kills them. Automatically Google KILL all Online Business.Congratulation MISS Google you killed MILLIONS People whole this world. I pray you can be kill to. Regards.

  • Galachio

    I am very glad this update was made, 99% of the people affected and crying are affiliate websites. Crappy websites that spam blogs like mine and just to sell junk stuff from places like clickbank. So you make your living off your spammy website and feed your family, you really think that good site owners didn’t want that money. It’s like feeling sorry for a drug dealer who feeds his family. The bottom line is this update has gives better content and because of it my websites went up.

  • http://www.techdevian.com Albert

    Google wont remove Panda update i think,May be it’s for a better online world without spamming :)

  • http://www.lwww.lewistaylorshirts.com lewis and taylor

    We were top page then someone posted 50 spammy links in China. Now we are nowhere .


  • http://www.lewistaylorshirts.com lewis and taylor

    We were top pages then someone posted 50 spammy links in China. Now we are nowhere .


    Google now makes it easy to wipe out small fry