Dropping Traffic & Black Hatters

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  1. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image95
    Marcy Goodfleischposted 5 years ago

    Just a heads-up -

    Several of us have found our hubs being copied by thieves and used for what appears to be Black Hat back-link schemes.  It also appears they are using our 'best' hubs - the ones that have the most traffic.

    If you have had a sudden drop in one or more hubs, do a search by using quote marks around a random phrase in the hub (preferably one that reflects your individual writing style).  When I did that, several other sites popped up that had urls totally unrelated to my hub, but had phrases from my hub as part of the search teaser or summary for each result.  The quote marks are very important in order to find what's really going on.

    In some cases, the text of the appeared when I got the link to open (often took a long while to load them).  In other cases, though, the text was entirely unrelated - so I guess they have hidden text or something.  But clearly, it is used to drive traffic to other sites.  They would hyperlink to words like "the" and other words that do not relate to specific content.  And of course, the links were used to drive traffic and get Google points for back links.

    Since I am not a whiz yet at SEO, etc, (and I am by no means a whiz at Black Hat stuff), it was not easy to figure out.  A good friend here on the site helped me unravel it.  But now I know of others seeing the same problems.  I'm thinking they are targeting sites like HP that have plenty of content about a variety of topics, and they're copying our work for that purpose.

  2. Gail Meyers profile image84
    Gail Meyersposted 5 years ago

    I just happen to check Google for a couple of my best hubs and I was amazed at what I found a few days ago.  My original hubs do not even show up in the search results, but several entire hubs were cut and pasted, including the ads and comments.

    1. sabrebIade profile image58
      sabrebIadeposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Fortunately Google's Panda and Penguin updates have eliminated that.
      Wait...they didn't?

      1. Gail Meyers profile image84
        Gail Meyersposted 5 years agoin reply to this

        Nope, they sure didn't.  I don't mind someone adding a link or copying smaller excerpts and integrating it into their own posting, but in this case the entire hubs (including ads and comments) are cut and pasted onto blogs.  The hub is the entire post, then at the very bottom in a tiny font is a link to my hub.

        1. Gail Meyers profile image84
          Gail Meyersposted 5 years agoin reply to this

          I was looking at the traffic - where it was as of the date of the postings on the blog and the more than four months since then.  The traffic dropped by about 90%.  There were more than 1,600 hits from Google previously, but not even one under the "month" tab.  I did report it to Google a couple of days ago, but I have not heard anything and it is still up.

          1. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image95
            Marcy Goodfleischposted 5 years agoin reply to this

            Did you get a chance to check out who the site or blog is registers to?  A guy named Dan Gordon has taken content from several of us.

            1. watergeek profile image98
              watergeekposted 5 years agoin reply to this

              Is there a pattern in the types of hubs he's taking? Maybe hubbers could check those types of hubs to see if they've been stolen and nab him.

  3. rfmoran profile image89
    rfmoranposted 5 years ago

    i have done this random search from time to time often with upsetting results. This is a great question because it prompts me, as it should prompt all of us, to schedule a monthly task for searching on some random test from our hubs.

  4. adjkp25 profile image91
    adjkp25posted 5 years ago

    Hey Marcy, just found another one of mine at a new site:

    http://www. egige.com/index.php (space added to break the link)

    Hopefully this isn't another trend of people stealing our stuff!

    1. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image95
      Marcy Goodfleischposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Oh, geez - I hope you reported it?  My first report to Google didn't seem to get quick results, but the second one got them removed right away.  I think the first didn't have the right form or something.  I know they want to get rid of sites that are 'link farms.'  So irritating to go through this!

      1. adjkp25 profile image91
        adjkp25posted 5 years agoin reply to this

        I did report it but it is such a pain to play Sherlock Holmes with all of these online thief's!

  5. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image95
    Marcy Goodfleischposted 5 years ago

    I just found another copied hub - on RedGage and also on BlogSpot.

    1. watergeek profile image98
      watergeekposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Countering the disadvantage of relatively low traffic, I guess there's an advantage to writing hubs about conservation or the "green" life: No one bothers to copy them. I've only ever had one hub copied and I had that spammer removed from Wordpress. Just now I checked four hubs for copying and last week checked several more. The hubs are all showing up first in the search engines when I put quotes around specific phrases.

  6. ChitrangadaSharan profile image56
    ChitrangadaSharanposted 5 years ago

    This is so upsetting news. I thought Google and HP will take care of that the original content is not copied. This is so frustrating. What can be done to protect our content. I am quite new to online writing and don't know all this SEO related precautions to be followed.

    1. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image95
      Marcy Goodfleischposted 5 years agoin reply to this

      Hi, ChitrangadaSharan - no, HubPages doesn't handle that for us, and while Google will often flag duplicate content, it's up to us to monitor things, spot it and report it.  The people who copy work are good at keeping us in the dark.  I have several search results popping up for at least two of my best-performing hubs that don't even have the content openly published - they have other content, but the search results show up when you enter exact language from my hubs.  So it's taking a while to get Google to act.

      I thought they'd taken the sites down, but now I'm finding them again.  And, because I've already reported things, I can't report the same sites again - the form Google uses won't accept the duplicate report.

      Very frustrating . . .


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