Give Examples: Is Google Lying To Us?

Sep 11, 2013 • 9:07 am | comments (154) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Google Search Engine

pinocchioIf any of you read some of the comments left on the stuff I write here, you will see some of the anger and actual hate some webmasters have towards Google and even myself. They think that I am paid by Google to feed you things that they want you to hear and believe all in an effort to set you up and make you all fail.

A WebmasterWorld thread started by goodroi asks webmasters if they feel Google is actually giving false statements or advice? In short, is Google and more specifically, Matt Cutts, lying to SEOs and webmasters either intentionally or unintentionally, either for the good of the webmaster community or for not.

It is not good enough to say yes, Google is lying to us. You must give examples in the thread.

For example, Google told us links in press releases don't help with rankings but that was quickly disproven. Greg in the thread felt it was Google's Matt Cutts trying to steer webmasters in the right direction, Greg wrote:

In that case I think Matt was well intentioned and trying to help educate newbies who IMHO greatly overvalue press release links. But it was not 100% accurate even though I personally do think the key message he was saying is correct.

So if you think Google is lying to us. If you think Google fooled me or corrupted me. Give examples either in the thread or in the comments below.

To make things fun, I'll also add a poll asking you if you think Google is lying to us.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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09/11/2013 01:24 pm

I think they also over exaggerate the power of there algos


09/11/2013 01:27 pm

I'd love some of the bile-spouting whingers who comment here to post their examples. Until they do, I firmly believe they are angry because they were "found out" and their games no longer work. Come on, examples here please. I don't believe Google get it right all the time, and I also believe there are people who were unfairly hit by penalties, but those people tend to be reasonable, don't spout the bile, and will share their URLs.

Aqueous Digital

09/11/2013 01:43 pm

This will be interesting not least of which because Google can't lie. Google is a company and companies don't lie, people do. Now if we've got examples of people employed by Google deliberately lying then let's out them but I doubt we will get any. We may not like the power Google has nor how they wield it but if you are going to have a go at someone you need a name....


09/11/2013 02:01 pm

You didn't clarify on your initial assumption. Are you paid by Google?


09/11/2013 02:09 pm

Who could really prove such a thing without an actual email, post or other documented form communication from a Google employee? Who could also prove that Barry has been bought and paid for by Google or operates independent? I doubt there will be any irrefutable proof of either, but having a direct line of communication with Google does create a level of suspicion when few others can say the same. As users we are limited to what we observe. Often what we observe is distorted by what we are told, and a certain percentage of people will agree or disagree. For example, when I recently searched for a product I saw 3 Amazon listings in a row and a 4th if you consider the paid listing. We are told this is quality, and for some it is quality as it fulfills its most basic intent of providing a user with a suitable answer to a query. In my opinion, diversity is a component of search quality as it empowers users. When diversity does not exist, such empowerment is forfeited and user choice is limited to whatever motivates the search engine in how it determined which websites to rank or why they are ranking so many pages from a single site consecutively. Since Google is not a charitable organization, it makes sense that they intend to display search results in such a way that both appeals to users and at the same time increases Google's revenue.

Terry Van Horne

09/11/2013 02:30 pm

Google strives to provide results for EVERY query...therefore the Press release stuff is just people thinking that means Google counts those links....haha.... think you should learn how a SE works cuz if that is the only result it ranks DESPITE the link. Besides... who Google was really trying to message are the Press release distributors who are already starting to enable ways to NF the links. Ya know boys it aint always about us! ;-)

Netpig Meg

09/11/2013 02:35 pm

Barry is a tool, part of Google's establishment. Deep down Barry is not a bad person, he's religious and that has it's good sides, but he is too deep in Google and cannot make an exit. FYI: Barry gets paid by Danny Sullivan; they make a killing on useless SMX conferences. Google helps them sell tix. If they went against Google... Oh, Google lies all the time. Like when they say that they care about choosing the most relevant sites and blah blah. Google is virtually all ads in transactional keywords and they want cheesy sites so ads are better than content. Google wants to kill "free" traffic and want to force every webmaster to advertise. That's why they are penalizing smaller sites quarter by quarter, to force them to advertise. Mutt Cutts has zero power at Google, he's just a (rich) loser that is a given a task ("defend this") and he does it like a liar with zero integrity. Amit Singhal, an opportunist and shameless Indian, has a lot of power, Matt's his bitch.

Barry Schwartz

09/11/2013 02:37 pm

I don't make "a killing" on anything I do search related. I make my real money with RustyBrick, building software.


09/11/2013 02:39 pm

Right now I see two different figures, showing AdSense Revenue per today - one figure from AdSense stats, another from Google Analytics. The difference is THREE times. How is that ? Why does this happen on regular basis during the year at least ? Why finally figures will be equal, but always on the lowest side ? Is Google lying to me ? I don't think so. I see this as incompetence. But others, who also see something like this and can't live without conspiracy theories, probably will have another point of view. Anyway this is Google fault. Google became full of faults, as I stated already, and sure it gives ground for the conspiracy theories lovers. So, Barry, you'd better ask Googlers why so many faults ? It would be much more helpful. But as a reporter you found good topic to cause the buzz. The buzz will show Google, that you're kind of the authority. Google will send you more traffic ) As the result we have fake authorities. Google full of faults. Unhappy community. What a wonderful life. Back to work )

Netpig Meg

09/11/2013 02:51 pm

Gee Barry, let's assume what you say is true that you write for free and attend Danny' POS conferences for free, help him organize for free...etc. If you were honest about Google, how would impact your visibility and business at RustyBrick? Get it through your head (remove your yarmulke maybe for 10 seconds just in case): Google is RIGGED, they want every site to advertise and every user to clicks ads, that's why they manipulate like they do. Every year new penalties to get new advertisers.

Durant Imboden

09/11/2013 02:52 pm

I think your headline suggests that you're pimping for page views and comments. In your example, Greg suggests that Matt Cutts' comment was "well-intentioned" and adds: " I personally do think the key message he was saying is correct." Is that the best example of Google's "lying" that you can find? If SEOs and site owners are going to regard every piece of advice from Google as a "lie," then what's the point of Google giving advice? At some point, Matt Cutts & Co. may decide that "transparency" isn't worth the hassle, and that it's easier and more productive to leave the stage instead of being pelted by tomatoes every time they get up to speak.

Europe for Visitors Shill

09/11/2013 02:54 pm

The wolf gives advice to sheep


09/11/2013 02:55 pm

Well google does lie to us.. but in some case, not all

Barry Schwartz

09/11/2013 02:55 pm

I guess I am just an idiot and/or too trusting… I really do this search stuff as a hobby. Of course, there is a nice side benefit of visibility and some money. But I honestly love doing it. There is also a negative side, where people threaten my life. People honestly threaten to kill me because I report on Google updates.

Larry Page & Sergay Brin Paper

09/11/2013 03:04 pm

How Google rigs it: "Currently, the predominant business model for commercial search engines is advertising. The goals of the advertising business model do not always correspond to providing quality search to users....for this type of reason and historical experience with other media [Bagdikian 83], we expect that advertising funded search engines will be inherently biased towards the advertisers and away from the needs of the consumers. "But less blatant bias are likely to be tolerated by the market. For example, a search engine could add a small factor to search results from "friendly" companies, and subtract a factor from results from competitors. This type of bias is very difficult to detect but could still have a significant effect on the market. Furthermore, advertising income often provides an incentive to provide poor quality search general, it could be argued from the consumer point of view that the better the search engine is, the fewer advertisements will be needed for the consumer to find what they want. This of course erodes the advertising supported business model of the existing search engines"


09/11/2013 03:07 pm

>> "a search engine could add a small factor to search results from "friendly" companies" That's brands because they advertise. >> "advertising funded search engines will be inherently biased towards the advertisers and away from the needs of the consumers." DUH! >> "Furthermore, advertising income often provides an incentive to provide poor quality search results" DUH! That's why you see mediocre results especially on high priced keywords, to increase ad clicks. As Google gets desperate each passing quarter, they are moving to all keywords with ads.

Ashish Ahuja

09/11/2013 03:25 pm

I really thank you from the bottom of my heart because you are doing work which gets you brickbats from both sides.

Michael Martinez

09/11/2013 03:27 pm

NO, Barry. Matt's statements about links in press releases WAS NOT DISPROVEN. Geeze, I can see this myth being perpetuated for years to come. The experiment that people keep referring to was badly designed and produced no insight whatsoever into Google's RANKING mechanisms. Just because a link passes anchor text DOES NOT MEAN it will help with rankings.

Ashish Ahuja

09/11/2013 03:30 pm

I generally see Google beating about the bush for most questions which involve telling a lie. for eg. Can someone neg seo my website? Goog Answ: We work hard to ensure that these kind of things don't happen. This is beating around the bush instead of saying No. It cannot happen (which would be a lie) or Yes, Negative SEO is possible after penguin (truth)

Ashish Ahuja

09/11/2013 03:32 pm


Durant Imboden

09/11/2013 03:35 pm

Let me get this straight: Barry is a "tool" and "part of Google's establishment," so he writes an article that invites bitter, disaffected SEOs and site owners to vent about the question, "Is Google lying to us?" I wonder what Barry would be writing if he weren't a secret member of the Goo Glux Clan?

Barry Schwartz

09/11/2013 03:37 pm



09/11/2013 03:38 pm

Off hand, Google Analytics were supposed to only show a few percentage, at most, of "Not Provided" keywords. That has blown up to be huge for a lot of webmasters. I'd call it more of a "campaign promise" than an intentional lie, but it didn't prove to be true. This is an observation and not whining. The ONLY thing I count on with SEO is constant change, and I'm okay with the "Not Provided." It's just that their campaign promise and what really happened were two different things.


09/11/2013 03:53 pm

I actually talked to a few Googlers about this. They don't want to say Neg. Seo is impossible because it is in theory possible however, the only one they have came across was when the DNS for the site was hacked. They have said this several times, but people choose to ignore it. Neg SEO is possible but so incredibly rare that its really not worth mentioning. I'd say 99+% of the neg SEO claims we see on the webmaster forums turn out to not be neg SEO. I've not seen a single example that could be reasonably attributed to Neg. SEO.


09/11/2013 03:54 pm

Try not to ask stupid questions, then you will not get shady answers. Googlers just try to be polite replying such questions. Be thankful you didn't get straight answer )


09/11/2013 04:17 pm

I think they cannot control this whole seo thing anymore. It's so big and vast, that they cannot give any conclusive answer for most of your questions. For any showcase site with penalty there is another one, with exactly the same tricks, but without penalty. So this is not exact science and Google cannot control such vast amount of data with high precision. That's why most of their answers are thin, general, without precise directions. They simply don't know themselves.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 04:21 pm

They didn't promise anything. Matt said, at the time of the initial roll-out that only a small percentage would be impacted. He made no guarantees for the future.


09/11/2013 04:26 pm

I think Barry is good guy, him never deleting comments unfavorable to google and just a nice person. However, here is lot of examples how google trying hard to mislead webmasters, and even more - they not give any chance to us to recover. Even after manual penalty removal you will find out what it really not helps. Also I have access to pretty big statistics for some top sites & can see what really is going on. Google even penalize sites for totally natural links (from almost all directories (dmoz/yandex/all smaller where any anchor text), articles (even on good sites & totally natural)). And their "good or bad" algorithms is really very very bad and unable to separate where is white & black hat. I think it because $$$ not because of problem with programmers. It not hard to understand now what the links google think is good and what is bad, based on gwt + dmoz/ahrefs/etc databases. But results is really shocking. Google unable to separate good (and natural) from bad. It just put all what unable to recognize to bad backet & make recovery so hard. Also panda and penguin, it dirty and quick fixes for content problem. It not work really, this algorithms penalizing lot of good sites. Also lot of whitehat sites constantly get links from doorways and other blackhat pages (blackhat link that sites to get some trust) and that white hat sites get penalized, etc, etc, etc. Also in the news only how google make more money, but in the forums how more peoples lost traffic and not have $$$ for living. All what tell us Matt Cutts is pretty basic and often against our experience. So him was catched few times on lie, and I not think what people will believe him anymore. So we can only see what google not giving out search traffic anymore, make more money and penalize more and more sites. And tips from Matt Cutts and Co not help here.


09/11/2013 04:27 pm

>>>They simply don't know themselves. exactly! They ban everything they see (not thinking what it can be good for other site in other situation) and also they want to make more and more money. Now we see the results.


09/11/2013 04:31 pm

By definition of veracity, the absense of lying is a binary mechanism so "sometimes" votes should be tallied with "yes" -- where I currently sit, that'd mean over 80% of respondants believe Google lies...I'm thankful to see the industry opening its eyes.

Kayleigh Fuller

09/11/2013 04:32 pm

Put an option "Does Google even know what they are saying?". All Matt Cutts keeps saying is create great content and website. Matt why don't you show us an example. Why don't you create a blog, create great content and show us if it can indeed rank high in Google without building backlinks.


09/11/2013 04:35 pm

or without being in white list (as matt cutts blog), but since it main source of information from google - of course this blog will get lot of natural links (but it unnatural by the way). And panda must eat matt cutts site because no facts, information described not from both sides, people not believe that information, etc, etc, etc. Where is panda for matt cutts blog???


09/11/2013 04:40 pm

I really not see reasons why they need to hide keywords from webmasters. But may be they want to cheat adwords buyers to provide them not correct search statistics for keywords? (to buyers unable to verify it). I really don't know it.


09/11/2013 04:42 pm

they not need to promise. They are monopoly and claim themself as world biggest search engine. But looks like their search engine works very wrong.


09/11/2013 04:43 pm

i constantly see results of negative seo on new and even established sites. so somebody lie again (not few sites - LOT of sites!) And negative seo is NOT rare, this days it very popular and common. Check even wikipedia backlinks, you will find HUGE amount of negative backlinks, but wikipedia in google white list, not like lot of smaller sites. I even seen negative seo on new sites, which even not have ANY google rankings.


09/11/2013 04:47 pm

why they not removing organic serp in this case? they know what they wrong??? Wow, they know MFA secret!!!


09/11/2013 04:48 pm

sure, if they lie us everywhere - who will believe them. It like politics, always mix lie with truth.

Ashish Ahuja

09/11/2013 04:49 pm

I love asking stupid questions sometimes they get me the best answers :-)


09/11/2013 04:50 pm

better no comments from them, than such non-sense videos & matt cutts speeches how him cry every night for every tanked site and how they fight spam even when sleep.

Ashish Ahuja

09/11/2013 04:51 pm

Did not wanted to start neg seo war or words. It was just and example to show how google answers tough questions trying to avoid saying outright lies


09/11/2013 05:05 pm

just unprofessionals or peoples who making money lying us. And even unable to make that 3 reports looks in same way.


09/11/2013 05:11 pm

matt cutts speak for company, not as himself.


09/11/2013 05:11 pm

That's fair enough, but also why I said "campaign promise" instead of just "promise." Personally, I found that exploring different data was more useful after a certain point in time, where "keywords" were only a clue toward the pages that blogs were linking to. "Not Provided" was not a very big impediment to me. Overall, thank you for filling in a part I didn't remember.


09/11/2013 05:13 pm

you can be first if you want to initiate. Don't afraid to show your site, since you are starter of such action, may be google not will press big red "ban all sites of this guy" button near your site in their internet control area. but if you posted comment here using browser with google toolbar, google already know who are you, your dob and social number & know full list of your sites.


09/11/2013 05:24 pm

So SEO is "big and vast" or "tricks" ?? How about this scenario : SEOs trick algo, finding loopholes. Then they call another trick they found as the search engine optimization rule. Then they start to ask Google about this supposed SEO rule, being in fact just another trick. Sure Googlers can't give precise reply. They do know, that this has nothing to do with SEO they want to get from SEOs, but just a loophole in algo. What do you expect from them ? To acknowledge the loophole, so every seller of so-called SEO service will start to exploit it ? Do not call tricks as search engine optimization to begin with. Give Google the chance to be more transparent. Otherwise don't blame it.


09/11/2013 05:39 pm

That is crazy. I never would have thought that you would get threats for this. Thank you for reporting. It saves me a lot of time trying to keep up with the changes. I voted sometimes. There is a lot of proof that the links that they say don't work do work still.

Nick Ker

09/11/2013 05:53 pm

Examples please. People TRYING negative SEO is common, but having it actually work against a site that has not already done some of its own violations of the Webmaster Guidelines seems to be a very rare thing indeed.


09/11/2013 05:54 pm

An example would be the Black Hatters still ranking with links that are not supposed to work according to Google. There are tons of sites still ranking with paid links because they still work. Is it a lie? I wouldn't call it a lie but they do not admit that they are basically powerless to stop them. (there are of course the high profile networks that are hit but the rest are fine) What I believe they do is lie by omission sometimes because they don't want the holes in the algo to be found.

John E Lincoln

09/11/2013 06:12 pm

Here is one. I have one big client who we submitted a reconsideration request for. It was only a few lines. The penalty was removed and we didnt even need to do a disavow. I have a smaller client, who has done 5 disavows and extensive reconsideration requests and still has a penalty. Yes, google gives preference to bigger websites 100%.

Matt Cutts Liar Liar

09/11/2013 06:16 pm

Google is entirely a big lie.They claim to have unbiased results and look to show the best results for the users. In reality they show the most profitable results for Google. They are arrogant and desperate for more and more revenue #onetrickpony #thieves #liars #cheats

Durant Imboden

09/11/2013 06:30 pm

Are you being paid by Bing? :-)

Criminal Enterprise

09/11/2013 06:32 pm

Ever noticed how completely white-hat sites lose 75% of traffic all of the sudden? There is nothing wrong with your site, just Google wants more revenue so they add even more ads, make SERPs worse to increase ad clicks or penalize sites to force them to advertise Google is suffering from low CPC so more advertisers means higher CPC. In other words, Google is a extortionist.


09/11/2013 06:38 pm

examples please


09/11/2013 06:44 pm

I got warning email from AdSense, saying that I violated the terms. I replied, that I would like to remove violation, but I have no a clue what it could be. Just in couple of hours I got reply, that everything is fine and nothing to worry about. Does it mean, that Sergey Brin is my relative ?

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 06:45 pm

And we must not forget the mermaids need to be protected from navy sonar testing. Just because a company is successful and holds a majority of share in it's market, doesn't mean they're out to destroy the world by evil means. Monopoly doesn't even begin to describe Google, but they are certainly the biggest player. When did the (not provided) discussion degrade down to judging Google's overall search quality anyway?


09/11/2013 06:51 pm

I got 100000+ links in a matter of weeks from at least seven questionable websites. Nothing happened. They were shown in GWT for 3-4 months and then vanished. That's it. Zero influence.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 06:54 pm

Though we're search marketers that are impacted directly by not provided, it's something Google did with good intentions for the overall health of the web. It feels a lot like a slight toward SEO but really, we're just looking at it selfishly if we're really that upset. If you're upset and acknowledge that it's a selfish position, more power to you, but it's important to recognize that your position isn't aligned with the betterment of the web. To go so far as to declare Google is lying with the specific purpose of hurting our industry is just silly. Maybe they weren't as forthcoming as we would like them to be with these issues but we're lucky the talk to us at all. They have no obligation to do so. When Google does share information it's shared with the same explicit purpose, to improve the health of the web. Not necessarily directed at you MrAndrewJ, but I find it shocking that more than 50% are voting 'yes' in this poll. It's an understatement to say that SEO's may need to step back and evaluate their perspectives a little.


09/11/2013 06:56 pm

Me or Barry? Concerning me: I'm not.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 06:57 pm

I have to generally agree with this. Matt Cutts chooses his words very very carefully. He almost never speaks in absolutes. There are so many reasons for that, but it's easy to get the truth of his statements even if they are a bit vague.

Nick Ker

09/11/2013 07:00 pm

No, I have not noticed 100% white hat sites losing 75% of traffic. Got some examples?

Nick Ker

09/11/2013 07:01 pm

You said Negative SEO is common. If it is so common, surely you can prove it with some examples. And just what is it you would like me to demonstrate with an example?

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 07:03 pm

Honestly, Google's a company, any company works for the bottom line. Does google make money from search? Of course. Are they willing to undermine the quality of their products for a short term ad click gain, you'd be retarded to think so. Google's got a solid track record of protecting their products from degrading quality from intrusive ads. Anyone ever use Google Maps? That said, sometimes they'll push that line to it's absolute limits. Google + anyone? Inevitably Google will start to make these errors, but it's not widespread today. Assuming they're willing to blast random sites out of the search results purely to gain more ad spend is juvenile at best.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 07:07 pm

He did, it's called

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 07:08 pm

You send me 1 page that is low-quality and intended to manipulate search results from Matt's site.


09/11/2013 07:23 pm

I actually think you are 100% right. I still see a LARGE group of businesspeople who were introduced to the Internet as "A place to do SEO for money." That was the first thing they learned about the Internet. They came to blogs and newsletters all about SEO and built a wide view of a small segment of the actual Internet. From their perspective, it really looks like that's all the Internet really is. It's not unlike a teenager who thinks the internet is for bragging about his inebriation and personal exploits. That's what the teenager sees. That's what the teenager will join. Many people are unwilling to step back and view the whole of what they are doing. They have trapped themselves in their virtual "neighborhoods." They view going elsewhere as a waste of time, too confusing, or not worth it. This is profoundly dangerous and very probably fatal to marketers. I have believed with what you just said for many years, and even been in some "heated discussions" about it as well.

Kayleigh Fuller

09/11/2013 07:26 pm

His blog gets links because he heads Google's Web spam team. I don't think anyone would have linked to his blog if he was just another webmaster. I would really like to see them create a new website and show that it can rank in Google. All this talk about Great content is BS. I just went ahead and searched for "Chromebook Pixel". Guess what? Matt Cutts' Blog Article titled "30 day challenge: Chromebook Pixel" is ranking above reviews from popular and renowned tech blogs like UberGizmo, Anandtech, The Verge, Arstechnica, Cnet, etc. Please go ahead and compare the articles on these blogs with the one on Matt's blog and please tell me which one/ones are better. I'd certainly like to know Matt's secret sauce on how his blog is managing to do that. That would be offer great help instead of telling what not to do.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 07:26 pm

Well said.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 07:37 pm

Thank you for making my point. If you're an obvious authority, you'll find absolutely no need to link spam will you? There's obviously room for debate on what 'quality is' on a search like this but let me point out., one article showing lower in the results for "chromebook pixel" is obviously monetized, with 2 very prominent ads above the fold. It's an authority but its content is less "user experience" and more feature comparison and spec detailed than Matt's post. If I was looking for a chrome book, I'd appreciate a first hand write up that covered a real life example of the pros and cons of the chrome book like Matt published. To boot, Matt's article is on a highly authoritative site even if it's an authority is a separate search vertical. Matt's post has much more social volume and 764 links (31 rd) to the page (ose data). (Though it's entirely unrelated, social does NOT influence rankings but I'm using it to compare the interest levels of both articles) Zdnet has far fewer social shares and only 177 links (3 rd). I'd say that it's pretty predictable that Matt's post wins that battle every day of the week. So, there's your "secret sauce". Pretty standard SEO stuff there.


09/11/2013 07:49 pm

you need to show us examples what you not noticed 100% white hat sites losing 75% of traffic


09/11/2013 07:51 pm

may be. may be it also mean what they used current google search engine and it why not recognized your status properly ;)


09/11/2013 07:52 pm

it not a secret sauce, it just a white listed site.


09/11/2013 07:55 pm

you can check any article about google. every where you can find lot of violations with posted "panda" guide (their 20+ rules).


09/11/2013 07:59 pm

keywords is not a google property. Bloggers need to know how peoples find their blogs. I not see reasons why google hiding this information, may be to cheat webmasters or advertisers (provide them not correct keywords statistics). 83.5% ("may be" - it actually mean yes, because google not always lie us in basic situations) not trust google according this poll. google is search engine. It not about obligations, it about they not do their work well. And interrelation between google & search engines is broken now (in very bad way with bankruptcy of lot of small business) because of this updates and lie to us "content is king, etc, etc, etc".

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 08:01 pm

I didn't say that the entire web is 100% clean of crap. Matt's site is though, despite your accusations to the contrary.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 08:06 pm

Keyword data, from Google, is Google's property. If you don't like it, go to a different search engine. Just because you don't understand why they are not sharing keyword data for organic traffic to your site, doesn't mean that they're trying to steal your 'valuable' information and hurt your pocket book.


09/11/2013 08:18 pm

no, in this case it surfers property. they enter it to google trying to find something. but this days it not work well. and i don't know real motives of hiding keywords data.


09/11/2013 08:19 pm

Not sure if I would call them liars, but with the statement "google has nothing to announce" they provide the rib-tickler of the year

Kayleigh Fuller

09/11/2013 08:21 pm

So, you take the review (from the ones I've listed) with the least social shares to show how Matt's post is better. Great! 1. The Verge Review (1492 Comments, 881 Google+, I can't find other data) 2. Digitaltrends ( 94 comments, 188 FB shares, 257 Tweets, 139 G+) To say Matt's review is more "real life" is plain ridiculous. What do other sites do? Just write up things without actually using the device? The matter of fact is those articles are more comprehensive and detailed compared to his article. You're well within your rights to say "it has a more personal touch", but I don't see how that makes it better than the rest. Also, I haven't seen any such article from other blogs outranking these popular tech blogs for other keywords. Matt's blog has become an authority because he heads the Google Webspam team. I'm not saying that he is manipulating the search results for his blog's benefit, but people are linking to him because he works for Google. Take that Google title away and I'm sure a majority of the links will disappear. I don't see what's "pretty standard SEO" stuff here. You're trying to win an argument based on social shares which you've yourself said doesn't influence search rankings.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 08:23 pm

You've convinced me. Great analysis.


09/11/2013 08:32 pm

i am very sorry, but it looks like "father of internet" speech.

Ashely Smith

09/11/2013 08:37 pm

I wouldn't say they are "lying" but I think they are intentionally overly conservative in their statements & advice-- to the point where their approach to how we should conduct SEO is largely ineffective in the real, grueling world of page ranking.

Ashely Smith

09/11/2013 08:37 pm

great example John

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 08:42 pm

Dude, it's not about social data, it's about links. And my point on a debatable "best result" is that it's meaningless to argue either side. It's not up to us and it's entirely irrelevant. Google doesn't rank these things based off your opinion or mine. They let links make the vote. While I don't even see the Verge article in the serp, I was able to dig it up: More social shares and OSE shoes 179k links on 73 domains. 179,000 links is alarmingly high, that may explain why it's missing. Ultimately, I'm not Google but it's obvious there is more at play with the Verge article not ranking. I don't see Digital trends at all. So it's interesting but it doesn't matter that these things don't show. It's easy to see why Matt's article appears, and that is because he has the links to support the ranking. If he didn't the post wouldn't be ranking. Case and point, search for SEO, I think Matt Cutts blog should be #1 (because there's no way you're going to get bad advice at least) but it's obviously not. Neither is the Google webmaster page - You honestly think they wouldn't want to 'manipulate' that search before they manipulated chromebook pixel?


09/11/2013 08:42 pm

I've been on-line in some form or another since Quantum Link in the late 1980s. I promise, there is no offense taken.


09/11/2013 08:44 pm

ok ;-P

Nick Ker

09/11/2013 08:50 pm

Could someone please translate that to English for me?


09/11/2013 08:58 pm


09/11/2013 09:00 pm

You seem to expect everyone to disprove your claims or just believe everything you say. If you make a claim or accusation, the burden of proof is on you, not the other way around. I think I will try to be like you: Prove that you, Guy, do not molest puppies. Someone said you do, but they didn't provide any evidence. Now I want you to prove that it isn't true. Someone said it, so I believe it until you prove otherwise. Unless you can prove that it never happened, then we should all believe that you continue to do it to this very day, correct? Isn't that the whole point of this article? Wackos post rants about "Google lies" here all the time but never provide evidence. And here you are doing more of the same.

Nick Ker

09/11/2013 09:11 pm

Well they didn't have a "Translate from Irrational & Incoherent to English" option. So I will take it that you were trying to say "I (Guy) have no proof to back up my claims." ... unless of course you happen to have an example or two that would support your argument.

Kayleigh Fuller

09/11/2013 09:13 pm

That's exactly my point. The whole algorithm is heavily reliant on links, so why discourage users from building backlinks. In a majority of his videos, Matt keeps saying build great content and Google will do the rest. It's easy for him to say so....that's the reason I'd like to see him create a new blog under an anonymous name and maybe post a journal at the end of 12 months to show the ideal methods to rank your site in Google. At the moment, he just keeps saying don't build these types of links, that link should be no-followed and what not. As I've already said, I don't think the results are being manipulated to benefit his site. The reason he is ranking well is because of the backlinks his blog receives. Surely he doesn't expect everyone to get such backlinks naturally. There's no way small webmasters will be able to do that. That's the problem...if you don't want us to write guest posts, articles, submit press releases, etc. then what are we exactly supposed to do? Write great content and just sit and watch? Just look at the Link Schemes Webmaster Tools Help Page. "Large-scale article marketing or guest posting campaigns with keyword-rich anchor text links" I don't see what's wrong with this. If you can write 100 guest posts with good content and keyword-rich anchor texts, why should Google have a problem with that? Even if they do have a problem with that, they should simply ignore these links, but instead they bring out their animal updates to penalize such sites. Notice how they haven't mentioned anything about the quality of the articles/guest posts....all they are saying is you shouldn't be doing it on a large-scale.

Chase Anderson

09/11/2013 09:18 pm

I can see your point but it's not the same to tell him to go create a blog in some random corner of the internet and don't tell anyone about it or put his name on it. The point is, build great content, and get people to see it. If it's great, they'll link, given enough time and enough people see it. That's the theory, but it's not really that easy any more. You could have amazing content that only one in 10,000 people who see it even operate a website to be able to give you a link. Google assumes the ecosystem of the web is still fair linking but it's become much more popular for social to be the preferred method of 'linking' so it creates a complicated situation for Google's algo. Matt wants you to go viral, get random news coverage for awesomeness, make great contacts who will talk about you, etc. They want the links to come as a result of other people thinking you're awesome, not because you think you're awesome. Agree with them or not, that's their stance and it always has been. It's not easy, but nothing worth doing is.


09/11/2013 09:23 pm

this is thing like "you not real men because real men not will do it?" Just check seoroundtable articles,, other forums and you will see examples. If you have own sites (not penalized) - in this case I can understand your reaction.


09/11/2013 09:37 pm

wait my comment will approved by mod. also look into name of this poll, and results of this poll. looks like this comment not auto-moderated, so i will add few things here to my previous comment (still on moderation). I not think I need to prove anything to you. If you need examples, hire somebody and you will have it. Webmasters get tired work for google (disavow/find bad backlinks/reconsideration/site changes/etc) and nobody not will work for free for them. But at least 85% at current moment think what google lie us sometime (53% sure in it). This is very very big numbers. So it google problem to prove us what they not lie. Also we see how our sites get tanked in google, lot of such topics & online cry, no real recovery reports, so small webmasters not need additional extra-evidence.

Durant Imboden

09/11/2013 09:45 pm

No, it's just a popular site with zillions of inbound links.


09/11/2013 10:14 pm

One small webmaster will tell to all his family and friends what google provide now only paid & big brands results and it not a search engine anymore ("knowledge" engine), they tell to other their friends. I think this process already started. Really when I tell my friends about it, all times I have listen next answer - "yes, long time I see what something is wrong on google, but not understand what. thanks what you tell me exact reason".


09/11/2013 10:47 pm

LOL ))) Recently one kid wrote here " my revenue dropped 800% ". Now another one : "MLM ("multi level marketing") against google already started" ))))) Barry, where do you get such audience ??? Just curious, promise not to compete with you ))


09/11/2013 10:50 pm

MLM used for fun here, as joke. One people tell to another, gossips, scandals, investigations ;-)


09/11/2013 11:37 pm

they need to become open-source, it only way nobody will blame them. But spam signatures can be closed information, if it possibly to confirm - here is no ability to manipulate rankings using this signatures.


09/11/2013 11:40 pm

They've been doing this all along... they DON'T like SEO's.... period.


09/11/2013 11:47 pm

Fact 1 : SEO's compete with adwords. Fact 2 : Google is a listed company and therefore is obliged to raise the share price for it's shareholders anyway possible without breaking the law. Combine those facts and what conclusion do you come to? It really is simple as that. A lie told by Matt Cutts or anyone else at Google does not technically break the law but it can have a positive affect on the bottom line.


09/12/2013 01:23 am

Could you please provide at least one reason why like SEOs.... question )

The Big K

09/12/2013 03:43 am

Well, I won't say they're lying, but some of their confirmations doesn't go well with what we experience. For example, on September 4, 2012; our site saw a steep rise in 404 errors created by a JavaScript bug in Disqus plugin. It was the same day our traffic declined by about 50%. Google's officials (on the webmaster forums) kept on saying that 404s won't affect the site's traffic; but what we experienced was totally different. I found out that several other webmasters too had similar experiences; but Google didn't agree. It could be that their representatives aren't fully aware of the way Google's algorithms work.


09/12/2013 06:25 am

There was a google update on 4th September


09/12/2013 06:41 am

Google just want to increase Adword business by hook or crook and in second Google just help brands more than small business. Here is example for Matt Cutts Lying: Before some days ago he comment that multi result of same websites on 1st page is not fair and now Google just take the steps that users find multi website result instead of only one website result... but if you see that if any keyword carry "brand" name then they just simply display 7-8 result of brand website only. which is indirectly help to big brand that user just go to their websites more often and buy the things from that only. Matt Cutts can you explain why your rules are difference for normal websites and for brand websites? I think big brands pay to Google to do such a things.. right?


09/12/2013 07:03 am

It seems he wrote September 4, "2 0 1 2", not 2013.


09/12/2013 09:42 am

How about asking for examples of Google not telling the whole truth ? Because I am sure that a large quantity of their statements are only partially truthful.


09/12/2013 09:59 am

What happens here is that there is no real competitor for google. This is a monopoly, so they can do whatever they want and as long as they get benefits they can change the algo and play with us, the small businesses. With a real and strong competitor for them that really showed the best results for users, the comments on this topic would end, at least for some years. The more competitors the better the service for users in any business, that means, the real best websites showing in rankings in this case.

Charles Floate

09/12/2013 10:28 am

Yup, almost definitely.. Ranking sites in Google has no benefit to Google itself! The only way Google actually make money is from the ad positioning... I've always said the Cutts videos shouldn't ever be taken seriously and to do your own testing to see what does and doesn't work, I managed to rank for "Matt Cutts" on the 2nd page with about $20 worth of spamming and a cleverly optimized title/description, really not hard...

Yogita Aggarwal

09/12/2013 11:11 am

Hey.. Did anyone notice the major ranking changes? One of my work related website's keyword are now below 50 drastically. Till 3 pm IST it was fine but suddenly after some time the site disappeared from Google top 5 pages. Help ! Help ! Help


09/12/2013 11:44 am

@Tannuty:disqus give your website address and your contact details....

Amit Kumar

09/12/2013 11:47 am

@Tannuty:disqus give your website address and contact details....

Rob jH

09/12/2013 11:50 am

Barry my problem is not the spread of disinformation we seem to sometimes get from Google but the now lack of information on the Algorithm updates, it's difficult to recover from penalties when there is no info on what changed. I am personally getting a bit tired of playing the Google SERPS game and now concentrating on traffic from alternative sources such as social, forums, answer / question sites etc. I think this is a better game plan in the long run, people get annoyed as all their eggs are in the Google basket so when Google leaves the nest they are left with a broken business, webmasters need to stop concentrating all their efforts on SERPS and Google. Your thoughts Barry? It seems even Google are confused with who they are (See attached picture)

Amit Kumar

09/12/2013 11:51 am

Its not like that a site running with ads and getting ranking and click from google its revenue indirectly going into google's account..

Pradeep Kumar

09/12/2013 11:58 am

yes jemin Google want to increase Adword business!

Amit Kumar

09/12/2013 11:59 am

@disqus_Tk8jYwYY7v:disqus they people doing constantly white hat and loosing traffic from last year september.

Amit Kumar

09/12/2013 12:07 pm

Well said @Kayleigh23:disqus totally agree with you...


09/12/2013 12:20 pm

Future!!! I am now redirected to, even when I am not signed in, not only in Chrome, but in all browsers I can think of IE, FireFox, Opera, Safari etc. Is this the future???


09/12/2013 12:22 pm

Good Intentions??? Then why blocked only in Analytics why not for Adwords also?


09/12/2013 12:33 pm

"They came to blogs and newsletters all about SEO and built a wide view of a small segment of the actual Internet." This make searchengineland and seroundtable? Right or wrong? SEL is still making money selling the so called what SEO is. If you are OK with "not provided" than you must have removed any Analytics you have installed? For you "not provided" doesn't matter. Means you are happy, if people are coming to your site with some sort of keywords and your bounce rate is 100% and the keyword is shown as "not provided" you would still be happy. This shows you are not interested to serve your users the best to hold them to your website by knowing and analyzing what is the keywords that result in 100% bounce rate to specific page.


09/12/2013 12:51 pm

Don't post your site links in public forum like this. No one is going to help you here. They are here to tear you apart piece by piece.


09/12/2013 12:54 pm

@disqus_E3U9ZL4SjG:disqus thanks for advice dave but its not my site but i am observing this site as competitor


09/12/2013 12:55 pm

Most of the contributors on the forum you're talking about, are the same Google users as you are. Recently Barry presented some of them : the girl, working for Cicso and the guy, selling software to spam Google. Obviously statements by such "representatives" can't be considered as "by Google's officials". Furthermore, not sure why do you believe, that two facts presented by you, have any other correlation except the time frame. Furthermore, 404 error is the response from YOUR server. Disqus plugin, as any Javascript, is client side software. Means it can cause 404 error only if it requests the URL, that is not valid on YOUR server. Furthermore, Disqus no doubt is a piece of junk, but I don't remember a massive outage in its service on 9/4/2012. Conclusion : find the problem in yourself.

Amit Kumar

09/12/2013 12:55 pm

Dave thanks for advice dave but its not my website i am observing this site as competitor..


09/12/2013 01:00 pm

Dave, keep you website offline. This is the best way to avoid critic.


09/12/2013 01:14 pm

"Here is my example with almost no information or background on either site discussed, let alone what I was doing for them after they hired me. Cleary, this shows that Google acts in the way I am already predisposed to thinking they do...100%."


09/12/2013 01:19 pm

No, it isn't any kind of example at all. This finding information that suits your opinion and calling it great and, forgive me for assuming, parroting it to others/god-forbid your clients is absurd. How do you honestly look at what John posted and think, 'gee, that's a great example'? It is a nothing example with no information about the sites in question and no background to work being done before-hire/before penalty/during penalty. It isn't a great example, it conforms to what you already believe. It is fine if you want to believe it, but I hope you have more justification than from some random SEO who may or may not be a total spam artist of an SEO. Not assuming anything about John here, he just happens to be the catalyst and I really wanted to use the term 'spam artist' because it is fantastic. 100% fantastic, actually.

Jerry B

09/12/2013 01:24 pm

You think it is OK for someone (you) to just make any claims you want and everyone is supposed to believe you when you provide no evidence to back up your claims? And then you want the people who don't believe you to do YOUR homework to try to prove what you say. You are not a person who can be taken seriously. The title of this post even says "Give Examples". You are unable to give just one example of Google lying, or an example of these "100% white hat" sites that have lost 75% of the traffic. Do you understand that you appear to be like one of those street people who stand on the corner and shout that the end of the world is coming soon?


09/12/2013 02:37 pm

They don't lie so much as dance around the issues, speak in half-truths, pass on wishful thinking as hard and fast guidelines. Example? "I wouldn't expect links from press release web sites to benefit your rankings, however." - Matt Cutts. You wouldn't expect them to help. But they do. That's why 6 months later they come back and say you should no-follow all links in press releases. Which is it? Either they don't benefit rankings and therefore aren't a problem or they do benefit rankings and therefore should be no-followed. Logically, it can't be both ways. The bottom line is they're trying to make off-page SEO more difficult and risky - especially for small businesses - so that webmasters just give up and buy ad space.


09/12/2013 05:22 pm

I AM serving my users with the information above and beyond just keywords. I am learning about what the humans do after Google has left the equation and adjusting the site to fit their needs. The rest seems like a non-argument. Yes, really learn SEO if you want to practice SEO. Really learn the Internet if you want to do business on the Internet. SEO is only a very, very small part of the Internet. Seeing only keywords and SERPS is a dangerous form of tunnel vision.


09/12/2013 08:52 pm

i not need to collect examples, i seen enough of examples in the stats, seen lot of topics/forums and articles on this topic. I am also visitor here, and not a topic starter, so i not promised anything to anybody. Want examples from me? ok, lets speak about hourly rate first. So it not my responsibility/etc to provide you any examples. Just use bing and you will find lot of examples yourself. That phrase about "100% whitehat sites and 75% of traffic", it was not my comment originally, recheck comments by date and you will see it. It was some other guy who wanted examples. After it just check forums like webmastersworld and you will see what him wrong (lot of white hat sites is affected). >>>Do you understand that you appear to be like one of those street people who stand on the corner and shout that the end of the world is coming soon? I tell you better, if your site still not penalized by google animals - it only temporary, soon google will find reason to penalize more sites (updates with new animals is coming soon, and $$$ appetites only increases). After your sites will affected, you will better understood what is going on really on google. Also check the poll, looks like ~ 88% of peoples think same like me, so reconsider your last phrase in correct way. (just joke). Also on this site (seoroundtable) you can find fresh (today) example of matt cutts lie. Him tell what the "good content will protect against panda". If you think it really true, we can go deep into how google in current moment recognize content quality, what is behavioral factors and how it related to panda penalties, and why content is unable to protect you from panda, etc. So if you have deep knowledge, welcome.


09/12/2013 09:18 pm

i don't know what happen here, looks like my huge post with response was again sent to moderation. Barry, can you take a look into it, please?

Barry Schwartz

09/12/2013 09:19 pm

got it, approved. give it a couple of minutes…


09/12/2013 09:39 pm



09/13/2013 05:23 am

And ad space from Google preferrably ;)


09/13/2013 06:13 am

I have offline business buddy. You don't have to worry about my website status. You are one of the worst SEO critic hiding behind the self proclaimed wall of expertise.


09/13/2013 06:13 am

Even though this is your competitor, why show them in a public forum. Even a person who claim that he talk to Google guys below had past linking schemes that is not right in today's scenario. Bringing out mistakes is an easy option and any one can do that, like the critic above.


09/13/2013 06:31 am

You are talking about after Google. Right? Do you forget before Google step? Before step involves users going to SE and imputing some text in the search box that is termed as keyword(s) or key-phrase. Keywords is the base of Search Engines and for Users who visits them. NO one type not provided to search for anything on any search engine. They type keywords. So you don't want to manage users behavior then you are the best of all who curate world's best content, as per Google, compelling others to link you.

Yogita Aggarwal

09/13/2013 11:16 am

Thanks @disqus_aDkLjxT0Np:disqus and the Guest buddy for your concern but i can't share the site name. After researching a lot we found that its a manual penalty and now we are working on that to recover ASAP.


09/13/2013 02:17 pm

In 11 years I've come to value the importance of keywords. I've also learned to treat all of them like my most important keywords. Again: Around 75% and growing of all searches with intent to purchase happen at Amazon or eBay. They do not happen at Google's search engine. They happen in the Search box at those sites, trusted by consumers. Those keywords were already lost, and it had nothing to do with Google. Before a person types anything into Google that person is born, has life experiences, and develops biases. 25% or less of them type keywords into Google because of those biases. One big for-instance: I was able to optimize for feature phones and then for smartphones early on by watching those trends develop. I now enjoy a lot more mobile traffic than any "industry average" says I should. A LOT more. I served those customers based on other metrics including but going beyond keywords. (Even the boss said it was "BS" but I had some free time while the boss was on vacation. I could either optimize for phones or argue with people on blogs.) Keywords ARE important. SEO is important, and Google is still important. Doing business, here in the middle, is the extremely important. The Internet at whole is important to watch out for. The people who turn the Internet from a series of connected bits of plastic into thriving communities and economies are very important. For that reason, I prefer to take a broader look than just what they type into Google. You will not change my mind on this. And yes, in the grand scale of "doing business," I fear the keywords lost to Amazon and eBay a LOT more than the keywords lost to "Not Provided." The goal is doing business, not getting the best of Google.

Gary Lee

09/13/2013 09:35 pm


Lucas Garvin

09/16/2013 01:37 am

I'm surprised that almost 55% think that Google is spreading misinformation.

Gracious Store

09/16/2013 04:32 am

It is had to believe that Google will be lying to webmasters, if they do what is their reason for lying just to mislead webmasters?

Lord of SEO

09/16/2013 05:10 pm

Cutts is best ignored, the guy has millions in stock options and heads their anti algorithm manipulation squad aka as a vested interest, maybe when the tit retires he will write an autobiography about his google bullshit. At the end of the day google is a shit librarian that moves the books about all the time, at best its good, at worst its a flawed system full stop.

Lord of SEO

09/16/2013 05:25 pm

they show it if you pay, most corrupt fucking company around to date

Brett Dixon

09/17/2013 01:53 pm

Your logic is flawed. Without searches there would be no one to click ads. If good sites didn't rank well and people didn't get results, no one would click adverts because no one would use Google. You can run as many of your own tests as you like, if they don't conform to Google Webmaster Guidelines you'll eventually get spanked. Yes, they may work, but may not forever, so listen to Google, listing to the Webmaster Guidelines and perform sustainable SEO.

Brett Dixon

09/17/2013 01:56 pm

Technically it's nearer 89%! I can only assume because things Google tells us not to do actually do work some regard that as Google telling lies. It's not that Google is lying, it's that they aren't catching every offender. Its like saying there are two ways to get rich: Rob a bank, or work hard. Both work but one might get you in serious trouble. Law enforcement agencies are not lying by saying robbing a bank doesn't pay. A bank robber would probably disagree. Similar logic.


09/17/2013 03:35 pm

to make more money

Gracious Store

09/18/2013 04:52 am

It will be a big shame if Google lies to webmasters and SEOers or anyone for that simply to make money. Hope Google can never afford to stoop so low

Facebook User

09/18/2013 10:58 am

Let's face it, Google has got a tiger by the tail. The internet is expanding like a big bang universe, and trying to patrol and police the incredible growth of search sometimes seems like petrol is being thrown on the flames. Excuse the mixed metaphors!


11/05/2013 09:48 pm

google is biased search for your domain name in Bing then google.......I have a website domain name with same title and relevant content yet in google non-related website come up on top four. In Bing the domain name comes to top. Ironic that the ones on google are or have been paying sites in the past but now you don't know if they are or not.

Spook SEO

12/03/2013 01:31 pm

I believe that the whole algorithm is reliant on links. Therefore why discourage users and even SEOs from building backlinks? Matt keeps saying that we need to build great content and Google will do the rest. But I guess it is not that easy.

merphy jones

01/07/2014 05:44 pm

why does Google lie about giving related search results ? It gives ONLY unrelated search results ! If its programmers deny this , then they are lying too ! the shit about algorithms just that ! A pile of shit !


06/21/2014 03:50 pm

true my website title and google won't even index that rather indexing my domain name .... this is stupid


06/25/2014 10:31 am

Someone gets it....

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