This seems to be proof that Google does not favor big brands of major media outlets when it comes to obeying the quality guidelines. Even the BBC has been getting unnatural link warnings from Google.
A representative from the organization posted in a Google Webmaster Help forum (as noticed by Search Engine Roundtable):
My URL is: www.bbc.co.uk
I am a representative of the BBC site and on Saturday we got a ‘notice of detected unnatural links’.
Given the BBC site is so huge, with so many independently run sub sections, with literally thousands or agents and authors, can you give us a little clue as to where we might look for these ‘unnatural links’.
Later in the thread, he adds:
Yeah the problem is that the site is so big, and has so many agents, that something stupid might have been done, but without being given a clue to what or where, it is kind of hard to track the culprits down and ‘advise them to be a better web citizen’. I have certainly been involved previously is stopping people before they do something ‘unwise’ in relation to the site.
Of course, I’m not saying someone connected with the site has done something naughty, just that it is a possibility.
He says he sent a reconsideration request, and explained the situation to Google.
At SMX West, earlier this week, Google’s Matt Cutts made a point of saying that big brands are penalized often. Of course, we recently saw UK flower site Interflora get penalized, though that didn’t last long.