It's just come up in the wake of one Hub author's entire account being moderated that the Hub summaries don't actually ever get seen by people hopping Hubs or reading them as they appear when published like when some asks for help in the forums. This person's account was moderated for massively-keyword-stuffed summaries.
I know there are thousands of Hubs on HubPages just like it.
Isn't this something that could be handled with an automated filter? It seems like it would be important to catch this stuff given that this key text is shown to both search engines and visitors.
I have been checking through various hub summaries since reading this post and am absolutely shocked at what I have been finding. Keyword stuffing in summaries is rampant! I could spend the rest of my life reporting these issues, that's for sure.
What really shocked me is that when I went into a hub to report it for this issue, the entire article was in a foreign language. How did THAT get in here?
This is depressing.
Yes it would be a good idea to let hub hoppers see the summary, so that they can catch this type of ploy. Nevertheless, these people are only hurting themselves because Google will drop their ranking for keyword spamming.
I wouldn't be surprised if some of these people don't even know any better.
But won't this also hurt HP? Anything like this damages our ranking, which is already struggling.
This problem is going to need a filter to solve too, Glenn. The site is rife with spam summaries.
Here's what someone with a HubScore in the 90s has for their descriptions. I found these by doing an internal search, so it's clear that the Featured content on this site is heavily polluted with this behavior.
An automated filter to catch the keyword stuffing would be in HubPages favor.
Sadly, there's a really good chance that users on this very site were the humans who encouraged the summary spammers to engage in that exact behavior. Like the trend for overly-long, keyword strings that aren't actual sentences for titles.
That Toys R Us one for Black Friday is really a piece of work, isn't it? You know how I found that account? Someone recommended a user guide written by that person in the forums, and I went to check it out. Their profile page stopped me before I got to the actual Hub.
If anyone would like to get in on the fun, all you have to do is pick what you think is a hot keyword phrase, go type it into the search box at the top of this page, and when the results come up, go over to the right and narrow the search to just Hubs. Then go look at the results.
Start reading those summaries. When you see a nasty one, go check the person's profile. If you see more of the same when you get to the profile page, flag the account and tell the moderators you feel it needs a review for spam in the summaries.
That's a great idea relache. I just tried it and found one that had many hubs listed in my search, but who I went to their profile I only saw three hubs since the ones with keyword stuffing were already unfeatured. It's interesting that unfeatured hubs come up in a search, however.
These people are hurting the rest of us. So I'm going to do my part, using your method, to try to find one to report.
Admin says UnFeatured Hubs aren't supposed to come up in internal search. If they are, then the engineers have hurt all of us terribly.
I just found one myself that came up in search that is unfeatured. The hub in question was published over three years ago, yet on the profile page it is not listed at all. I would presume it is unfeatured when that happens.
Unfeatured Hubs are available on the internal search according to Matthew M.:
That's not true.
Here's the FAQ:
Is it bad if a Hub is not Featured?
No. Only highly rated and engaging content will be Featured on HubPages. If your content does not get Featured on HubPages that doesn't necessarily mean it is bad content.
Though only Featured Hubs are made available to Google Search and highlighted on related Hubs and Topic Pages, all Hubs are accessible to readers via their URLs (which you may share through email or social media), via HubPages internal search, and in the Feeds of your Followers, so regardless of the status of your Hub, you are still very much able to share this work with your friends, followers, colleagues, and family. For many, this is enough. If you would like your Hub to receive the additional promotion on HubPages that comes with Featured status, we recommend reworking it to improve its quality and make it more alluring to those conducting searches about its subject.
I just took a quick run through and found so many poor quality hubs that, interestingly, come up in the search results ahead of far better work on the same keyword topics. Something is not working well ... how many professional editors are there on staff now?
Wow, I just tried this and on my first go round found one well known author , many of whose summaries are loaded with keyword stuffing. I am truly shocked...and now know why some people are getting so many more reads than I am! I reported it and will continue to do this with others as time permits. No darned wonder HP is having so many problems with Google!
In starting this search I have already found two articles each from individuals who joined 4 months ago, posted one article and then did nothing more. Both have stuffed summaries and both have articles that are substandard and unfeatured. Strange.
I just did a search and was amazed at what I found on a particular account. I never thought of reading summaries before. Staff should definitely include the summary in hub hopper so hubbers can flag these.
Yeah, I found that just now but there's another entry which makes it sound like UnFeaturing takes those Hubs out of the internal search. I can't believe that after hiring new editors that HubPages can't assign one of them to work on the guides/FAQ for this site.
Quite frankly, if those pages aren't worth showing to Google and they aren't worth showing on any of this site's major pages, why would I want to read them or use them for reference? You know?
I know what you mean for crappy hubs.
I was always confused when people seemed to know which hubs were featured, when I don't know a way to tell. I guess you could take the time to search for them on a search engine.
I do think that the Learning Center and FAQs need updating, but I don't think the new editors should be the ones that do that, since they are new and may not know all the new the policies are, and especially what has been changed.
Because it would be too obviously obvious to give one person a list of the current rules and assign them to review the pertinent pages and get all that fixed in a couple of days?
As the person voted Most Likely To Become An Employee for two years in a row, I could almost do it out of my head without notes. Based on my experience, I feel admin's inability to keep up with their own changes is nothing but willful ignorance on their part, and it could be fixed inside of a week.
When I read a Learning Center entry and find that it is outdated, I do reach out to the team and they do make the correction. But I don't read the entries that often, and you're right, they should be adjusting the entries when they make a change, and they should be reviewing all the entries from time to time to make sure all references to outdated policies are out.
You would be able to do it because you have the history and the experience that the new editors do not. I doubt that such a list exists and even if it does, it is probably even more outdated!
I just emailed the team and referred them to this forum and added the suggestion that they
1. place a filter to address this problem on the QAP
2. put out an all call to writers here to ask for their help in identifying perpetrators
3. set up a new rule requiring people to produce 10 featured hubs within their first six months on the site so that we can dump out all who come, write one crappy hub, then never show up again.
This whole situation is disgusting!
Another site I write on, new members need to have three posts that make the grade before they can be published, to stop the spammers.. The site did not get hit with Panda. I publish a new post there and it gets Google love. I post new articles on HP, and wonder why Google doesn't show the love.
I would suggest the use of the "report" button for the writers in question.
Having summaries like that is not going to help them with google - so you would be doing them a favor by reporting the issues.
Do them a favour. Huh. I'd prefer to smack them in the mouth. Bit tired of people playing SEO garbage games and tricks and then pretending they knew nothing about it. Spammers and cheats move in and ruin it for all.
Shame HubPages can't really crack down. First offence - delete account and ban IP address. That sort of thing.
Second offence. Go round and shoot them.
Yes, but what would you do if you really got serious about putting the big hurt on them?
Well you know, those examples are prime reasons why Google needed to take down our site and others. So those people ruined our income and the enjoyment of the internet for people across the world.
All those searches that turn up page after page of rubbish. That's what those cheats created. They offer nothing apart from some tricks they learned from other spammers.
I honestly hate and despise them. They are the ones who steal my content and turn any trick they can - the stuffing, the linking, the sharing - the endless awful pathetic waste of space nature of these people.
No excuses. Cheats. That's all.
Mark, I'm with you on the Zero Tolerance approach. I now give students an "F" for the entire course when I discover plagiarism. Dishonesty is dishonesty.
I suspect HP "can" do something about it, but there are reasons they're reluctant, or likely "won't" address it. We cannot see the economics end of it, and if those hubs create enough revenue that it would sink the entire site if they're deleted, the staff would be in a tough position to address them. I am not saying I agree with ignoring them - I'm just recognizing they're in a tight spot.
The problems started when HP was first launched and, in all innocence, they invited anyone who wanted to write to publish here. That ended up attracting scammers, plagiarists, con-artists, people using the site to sell adult services and all manner of abuse. It also created a flood of hubs to 'monitor,' with news ones published every day.
The QA program helps, but it doesn't eradicate the old problems here. Also, it might be a better use of time to screen people BEFORE they publish & require them to submit original work - sort of a test. That would require ONE review of someone (with perhaps followups for a while) rather than reviewing a dozen new hubs by a new 'writer' who shouldn't be on the site to begin with.
Your points are well taken, but in the long run HP will not survive if it does not clean the garbage out of this site. The team has made some bad mistakes, and it is time for them to step up to the plate and fix what they can.
I agree, TT2 - when I first joined, I asked about those issues - the staff (via Simone at that time) was gracious, but they weren't considering changing the policies. This was in the aftermath of Panda, and I imagine there was still hope that things would correct themselves at some point.
After a while (what, a year or more?) the QAP process was implemented. I don't know if my suggestion about that was a factor, but I was glad to see it. I am not sure it works the way they planned, though. I still see hubs that were vetted in the program and that have serious issues.
I don't know what it would take to get rid of everything 'bad' on the site. Certainly, there are many, many good hubs and many excellent writers, but the bad apples are really rotting out the whole site. It's a huge task, and I admire HP for staying the course and working on all the issues. They're good people.
LeanMan - I've been 'reporting' summaries with bad issues the entire time I've been on the site. Sometimes they get addressed & sometimes not.
I agree - we need a filtering program to sift through ALL summaries on the site & look for the keyword issues (that should be very doable in terms of programming).
But we also need a review of summaries to search for poor language usage. Just think of the way it makes HP look when there are summaries in broken English, and filled with misspelled words? These are also red flags that can indicate copied content - I've read many hubs that have one writing style (and good usage) in the text and have deeply flawed summaries. But rarely is action taken when they're flagged.
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