The Spam Clock
in 2011, startup search engine Blekko launched a spam clock that estimated 155 million spam pages had been created since Jan. 1 of that year. Blekko said 1 million spam pages were being created every hour.
How bad was Google’s spam problem then? Big. But as Danny Sullivan pointed out at the time, it was hard to judge whether Google’s relevancy had actually decreased, because:
- We expect more from Google than we do in the past, searching for things we might not have in previous years
- We don’t remember all the successful searches, focusing on when things go bad.
- We probably don’t do a comparison check on Bing or Blekko to see if they performed better, nor do we use those services on a regular basis to understand if they’re also “failing” to the degree we might feel Google does.
- Our expectations of Google are higher.
Read all about it in Blekko Launches Spam Clock To Keep Pressure On Google.
In about a month, Google would start making moves to correct its perceived, growing relevancy problems with the Panda Update.
I don’t even want to think about how much spam has been created since the start of this year – especially with the explosion that is ChatGPT.
Also on this day
2022: Google Ads updated its gambling policy to allow ads for sports betting from certified and state-licensed entities in New York State.
2022: After eight months on pause, AdSense publishers could once again create Related search style experiments.
2021: The new reports provided 6 months of data on how people interacted with you (calls and messages) and how people discovered you (the search term used to find your Google business listing in Google Search and Google Maps).
2020: Google was working on fixing a data issue with the URL parameter tool, a legacy tool within Google Search Console that let SEOs communicate to Google insignificant page variations and direct Google to consolidate those URLs.
2020: The user comments appeared in the search results for queries related to live TV shows. It was similar to Google’s live sporting events feature.
2020: The updated Microsoft Bing Search App also had a new look featuring a carousel of common search categories.
2019: You could now edit the code in the rich results test and see what those edits did in real time.
2019: A new “From the manufacturer” section in Google Shopping product pages could feature brand-supplied rich content.
2019: The tool provided an on-the-spot way to take action on performance changes in your accounts.
2019: The digital marketing agency’s new tool helped SEOs test and deploy SEO-related changes on their own without developer overhead.
2019: GMB messaging, voice search optimization, local inventory data, Q&A and the decline of SMB websites are all explored.
2015: Torrent Freak study reveals the number of Google’s takedown notices were up 75% from 2013.
2015: Yahoo saw a nearly 2 point search market share gain in the U.S. in the past month (10.4% vs. 8.6% year vs. year.)
2014: Google’s John Mueller said, “data in the search queries feature will no longer be rounded / bucketed,” and you will start to notice these changes in Webmaster Tools in the next few days.
WordStream Updates Its Free Google AdWords Performance Grader: Now With Mobile And Automatic 30-Day Reporting
2014: The tool was refined to give advertisers performance benchmarks within their own industries
2014: The Doodle paid tribute to one of the 20th century’s most celebrated African American female writers.
2014: Calling itself a “new way to search,” ultimately, Jelly would follow the path of social Q&A platform
pioneers failures like Ask.com, Quora, Yahoo Answers and Google Answers.
2013: Having mobile-optimized and rendered content was highly correlated with getting organic traffic from Google.
2013: The Library of Congress was working on plans to create a searchable archive of nearly every public tweet ever sent, but the challenges inherent in that task were making it a slow process.
2012: The black-and-white Doodle featured seven characters from “The Addams Family.”
2011: Just in time for the opening round of the NFL playoffs.
2011: Co-founder Charlie Cheever admitted it had been “a big challenge” to maintain Quora’s character while the site has been flooded with new users.
2010: Google sent out its Google Local Business Center updates – but the emails didn’t go to the actual business owners.
2010: AOL’s CEO, Tim Armstrong and former Google executive, said Google (not Microsoft Bing) would get “first dibs” at a search deal.
2010: The two companies reached a settlement prior to judgment, although the terms of the settlement were not disclosed.
2010: Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced that Bing would become the default search engine and MSN the default homepage on HP computers.
2010: Google’s Earthquake OneBox didn’t catch it, but Google was saved by its integration of Twitter results.
2010: President Nicolas Sarkozy was exploring ways to tax Google and other online advertising companies based outside of France.
2010: That was according to Brett Yount, a program manager for Bing, who said “it is well known in the industry that MSNbot is fairly slow.”
2010: Spoiler alert: No, it was not.
2009: Leading Chinese search engine Baidu was sued by Chinese medical B2B marketplace Qmyy.com to prevent its site from being blocked or dropped by the engine.
2009: One tool was named the Search Engine Optimization/KSP tool and the other was a toolbar called SEMToolBar.
2009: Test showed that submitting a sitemap to Google and Yahoo decreased the time it took Google and Yahoo to crawl the page.
2009: Previously if users entered a business name on the Maps client as a directions end point, Google might not recognize it.
2009: Bush should have stopped redirecting requests for his old biography to the current presidential home page. It left that page with a legacy of ranking for failure.
2009: Google and Microsoft were in tight competition for the mobile search partnership.
2009: The latest twist in the Yahoo-Microsoft saga: a new group was trying to takeover Yahoo with Microsoft’s money.
2009: Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced several high-profile distribution deals for Live Search at CES.
2009: Google released “a substantial number” of its contract and temporary employees, but the exact number wasn’t known.
2008: “Widely hyped … it’s really just yet another crappy search service that may, potentially, if all goes well, eventually turn into something useful.” See also: Wikia Search Launches Alpha Version
2008: Why did Google encourage this activity from their employees? Google believed it generated creative ideas from their employees.
2008: David Hirsch, the Director, B2B Vertical Markets Group at Google, was leaving at the end of the month to help invest and advise startups.
2008: There were essentially three pieces to what Yahoo announced: Yahoo Go 3.0, an open mobile widget development platform for third parties, and a redesigned mobile WAP homepage that emphasized personalization and customization.
2008: Google, Yahoo, AOL, and Digg were all sued by Sheldon F. Goldberg for patent infringement.
From Search Marketing Expo (SMX)
Past contributions from Search Engine Land’s Subject Matter Experts (SMEs)
These columns are a snapshot in time and have not been updated since publishing, unless noted. Opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and not necessarily Search Engine Land.
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