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March 20, 2006

Monday ‘Musements

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It’s hard to know what you’re walking into on Monday morning. Sometimes they start off a little rocky. But not this one — it’s been an amusing Monday morning in the world of SEO. We’ve heard about all the lawsuits pending for poor Google, but today Search Engine Rountable gives us a Google lawsuit with a twist! KinderStart, a ‘directory’ aimed the parents of 0-7 years old, filed a lawsuit with the U.S. District Court in San Jose that claims Google violated its free speech rights by blocking some of its pages, resulting in a 70 percent drop in traffic and a significant loss of revenue. Poor guys! You know what they’re asking for? Financial damages (okay, maybe) and Google to explain its super-secret, patented algorithms to them. Oh, those kids.

The folks at KinderStart alleged Google of the following:

    1. Violation of the right to free speech
    2. Monopolization
    3. Unfair competition under California Business & Professional Code 172000
    4. Unfair competition under California Business & Professional Code 17040
    5. Breach of implied good faith
    6. Defamation and libel
    7. Negligent interference with prospective economic advantage

Now that’s pretty ridiculous. So ridiculous that it’s not the issue at hand here. Because even more outlandish to us, is that had KinderStart bothered to look at their site they would have seen what Google saw. Countless pages of comment spam, redirects, thousands of purchased sub domains and severe duplicate content issues. All spiders saw while crawling were useless pages of incoherent keyword text and redirects, so they removed it. That’s what Google is supposed to do when they catch someone spamming, remove it. I guess that’s what the guys at KinderStart get for not reading Matt Cutts blog last week.

I’m not even sure what KinderStart is. I know what it’s (not so convincingly) pretending to be, but it looks like half link farm/ half spam farm to me. If that’s not the case, why do they link to Viagra sites? Is this a problem for children ages 0 to 7? Why the links to the various poker and gambling sites? Why is breast augmentation mentioned just one too many times? That doesn’t sound like relevant content to me.

Sidenote: It looks like Sergey and Larry are having an amusing conversation about this very topic.

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