Slapped with the "Dubious" Content Warning...

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  1. TheFuturist profile image66
    TheFuturistposted 9 years ago

    Hello, I recently wrote an article about Herbalife (Yes I know what you are thinking--"well thats the source of your problem right there"). 

    It is a straight laced review of the company.  It is titled "Herbalife - The Good, The Bad, The Ugly".

    In no way is it trying to market the product to anyone.  The only thing good I say about Herbalife is that the products are of high quality; nearly every other thought is about the negative aspects of the company and why it has a generally negative reputation. 

    There are no Ebay or Amazon product links.  The only links I have direct people to other very interesting reviews/critiques by fellow hubbers. 

    They slapped me with the dubious warning the first time and I made it as sterile as I possibly could. I republished and got hit with "overly promotional", "dubious", and "deceptive tags, title, or category"  The article was unpublished and here I am.

    I understand the rules of not writing articles that promote MLM schemes but this is clearly not a promotion.

    I am at my wits end here; I didn't think becoming a blogger would be so regulated.  However, I am willing to completely follow the rules if only I understood the details!  It feels like a web bot is still flagging me, rather than an actual moderator.

    Do you all think just having the word "Herbalife" in my article is what is triggering this mess?

    Thank you for the help.

    1. Marisa Wright profile image90
      Marisa Wrightposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      Yes.  HubPages has several "prohibited subjects".  They're prohibited because Google prohibits them for Adsense users, and if you write about them, you can lose your Adsense account.  Or they're prohibited because Google regards them as "spammy" (over-saturated) topics, which can result in your whole site being removed from their search engine results.   

      Google monitors for these topics using robots.  The robots can't read, they can only look for "naughty" words.  Hence, it doesn't matter whether you're writing in a positive or negative light - you're still using the naughty words, so you're at risk of being penalized.

      You could write to HP and request special dispensation, but it's likely you won't be able to show ads - and it won't protect you, if Google decides to penalize your sub-domain.  So on the whole, it's better to take that article somewhere that doesn't use Adsense.

      1. TheFuturist profile image66
        TheFuturistposted 9 years agoin reply to this

        How do the other Hubpages articles on Herbalife explain themselves then?  Do they all get special dispensation?

        The first I was hit, it was clearly a bot doing the hitting.

        After I republished, they clearly said a human moderator had reviewed it.  I find it hard to believe a human actually read it in its entirety; otherwise, it would not have been hit with "deceptive, promotional, and dubious".

        1. Marisa Wright profile image90
          Marisa Wrightposted 9 years agoin reply to this

          Some of them, possibly. Are they showing ads?  That's how you can tell. Others may be much older Hubs, published before the filter was introduced - and they just haven't been picked up by the moderators yet.

          A year ago, the rules were far less strict.  Then Google Panda hit, and HubPages tightened the rules and introduced stricter filters.

          That means new Hubs are caught as they are published, like yours.  But HubPages has to go through older Hubs manually and there are thousands of them, so it takes time.

          I know it's easy to get caught up in the words, but try not to take them personally.  The moderator doesn't mean your Hub content is deceptive, promotional, and dubious - it's just the name of the category your Hub falls into, because it's about a dubious product.

          1. TheFuturist profile image66
            TheFuturistposted 9 years agoin reply to this

            Thanks for the information and history.

            I will try disabling all forms of monetization for the hub and see if that works.

            1. Marisa Wright profile image90
              Marisa Wrightposted 9 years agoin reply to this

              Also bear in mind that it takes time to get a response from the HubPages team - and they don't run a 24/7 operation, and they don't work weekends (at least, not officially).

              1. TheFuturist profile image66
                TheFuturistposted 9 years agoin reply to this

                I always do keep that in mind.  Thanks for your help.

        2. WriteAngled profile image83
          WriteAngledposted 9 years agoin reply to this

          Recently, after being spammed by a supposed friend on Facebook, I researched a "money-making opportunity" and found lots of interesting facts about it.

          I wanted to warn others, so I published this information on a blog of mine. I did not attempt to produce a hub. I knew that if I tried to make a hub about the subject, it would get stopped by bots, robotic or human.

  2. paradigmsearch profile image61
    paradigmsearchposted 9 years ago

    I won't speculate as to HP. But even if your hub was published, google would rank your Herbalife behind the million other Herbalife's that got there ahead of you. Leastwise, that's the experiences I'm having with my hubs...

    1. TheFuturist profile image66
      TheFuturistposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      I understand, but I am not worried about the competition.  I just want to share my thoughts about the company with any amount of people willing to check it out.  Isn't that what most of us are here for anyways?

      1. paradigmsearch profile image61
        paradigmsearchposted 9 years agoin reply to this

        May The Force be with you. big_smile

        "Herbalife" is probably on HP's saturated-topics list. You'll probably have to drop HP a note to get special dispensation. smile

        1. TheFuturist profile image66
          TheFuturistposted 9 years agoin reply to this

          Ive tried emailing the HP team twice now over the past few days with no response.  Maybe the third times the charm.

  3. Marcy Goodfleisch profile image91
    Marcy Goodfleischposted 9 years ago

    I don't know what the ratio of Hubbers is here who are writing about products, but many people just write informative and general articles.  I haven't looked at your hub, but did you include the word 'review' in it so that it's clear you're trying to inform consumers?  Best of luck - I know there are mysterious ways in bot stuff!

    1. TheFuturist profile image66
      TheFuturistposted 9 years agoin reply to this

      Yes my article was informative and general-at least i thought so!  I did not include the word review in the title.  Maybe that would help...I thought my title "Herbalife - The Good, The Bad, The Ugly" basically read as "Herbalife - Product Review" anyways, but maybe that is not direct enough for the bots ha.

  4. psycheskinner profile image82
    psycheskinnerposted 9 years ago

    I also often find hubpage emails get stuck in the spam filter unless you safelist them.

  5. Will Apse profile image88
    Will Apseposted 9 years ago

    Some subjects are just considered spammy and harmful to the site. Even honest articles tackling that subject can get hit.


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