Suicide Topics Come Up With Google Penguin

Jun 7, 2012 • 8:18 am | comments (18) by twitter Google+ | Filed Under Other Google Topics

Google PenguinSuicide is a topic I honestly do not understand and hope I never can understand but it has come up a few times in the SEM community.

There have been AdSense publishers threatening to kill themselves over smartpricing and related topics. There have been the topic of should search engines censor suicide how-tos and a case where Google even suggested suicide. Google even has a special one box message that shows up when you search for suicide.

But the time has come where the topic of suicide along with a Google update, specifically Penguin has hit the Google Webmaster Help forums.

Our skewed poll suggests a heck of a lot of SEOs were hurt by Penguin and if with Panda 9.2% lost their jobs - money issues can lead to depression and depression can lead to horrible thoughts. There are clearly people who are extremely upset with the outcome of Penguin on their sites.

One webmaster asked in the forums, "have there been any related suicides to Google Penguin?" I hope not. I have not seen any but anything is possible.

Have you or have you known anyone who had an issue so deep related to Penguin or another Google update that considered such an extreme measure?

Forum discussion at Google Webmaster Help.

Image credit to Big Stock Photo for down penguin

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06/07/2012 01:11 pm

My rankings was affected but I'm definitely not going to commit suicide over Panda and Penguin. It has had a negative effect on me as I'm already a depression sufferer, and in knowing that I'm not out to game google's search results makes it even worse. I have now employed a well respected seo consultant to help me grow my traffic again. Hopefully in a couple of months things will look better, then I'll definitly feel better.

stop em

06/07/2012 01:27 pm

Barry, this is normal. People lose their jobs and get desperate. With "one stroke of the pen" Google drove millions (?) of small business owners worldwide to poverty and desperation. Wanna bet that Google's earnings and click on ads will drastically increase this quarter? That's why people see no no hope and do not trust Google.

stop em

06/07/2012 01:45 pm

Do you honestly think you "got me" ? I feel bad for you and your kind.


06/07/2012 02:09 pm

Sorry Ed, but SEO consultant can't do anything after Panda. Well, they can make some suggestions how to improve the website, they probably still can gain some links, they even can increase your publicity with the fake Facebook accounts, but they can't make people return to you, they can't make people love your website in the long run. All of their "suggestions" are temporary, Panda and Penguin are permanent. These animals will come again and again and again to measure how visitors engage with your website. And after that Hippopotamus will come ... One can't be a successful car dealer, if he doesn't know how the car works. Hiring the driver will not help in long run. But probably one car will be sold ) Think about it.

Webstats Art

06/07/2012 02:23 pm

It is really good that there is no google adsense on this site and that it makes tons of money by other means.

Paul Martin

06/07/2012 04:05 pm

I'm sorry, but this is in really bad taste. Surely you have better things to be talking about than asking people to discuss suicide. Very poor show. I don't even think Mashable stoop this low for content generation...

Barry Schwartz

06/07/2012 04:42 pm

I am sorry, I saw the topic, thought it was interesting. It was really late last night when I wrote it. In hindsight, I probably should of skipped this topic. I am sorry.


06/07/2012 04:45 pm

It's all Google's fault ...


06/07/2012 05:42 pm

I agree, this is not the forum for such an article. I really like this blog and usually it's top notch so will not judge by the one post, but no more please!!!

Barry Schwartz

06/07/2012 06:02 pm

I apologized


06/07/2012 07:26 pm

Penguin wasn't a problem for me but I own a high traffic non-English discussion forum with Adsense ads which is my only source of income. I am 100% dependent on the Adsense account, I have failed at everything else in my life, for example I didn't finish school, don't have friends or family, never had a job. Outside the Internet nobody knows me and I know nobody. I think that there are more people like me in the world. You don't understand the issue because you have made better decisions in the past.


06/07/2012 09:13 pm

Not sure how is it related to the thread, but anyway please be informed, that Bill Gates, Steve Jobs and many many other famous people had no university degree. You're geek and I respect such people. Just don't stop, move forward, do what you like at the best. We're making this planet to spin and it's not always easy )

Ben Fox

06/07/2012 10:18 pm

I'm with Late Night Barry on this one. With the possible exception of the choice of image the article treats the subject with care and sensitivity. While the discussion may not lead to any actionable insight it is pertinent to being an SEO - as a profession we are at the whim of algorithmic changes which can cause all sorts of feelings of powerlessness, stress etc. I would personally hate to see difficult subject matters passed over because they simply wouldn't get coverage anywhere. Of the major internet marketing sites that I read SERoundtable is the only one of which that I could imagine this article appearing on. But I read this when I was in the comfort of my own home while drinking a beer. Maybe if I'd read it over morning coffee at work my reaction would be different.

Barry Schwartz

06/07/2012 10:22 pm

Thanks Ben.

Brad Dalton

06/08/2012 04:58 am

Start promoting Bing on a regular basis and stop any reference to Google. When its 50/50 with a different algorithm then it will be safer


06/08/2012 09:51 am

Why are people being punished, for doing what worked? that's Google's fault not theirs.


06/10/2012 03:44 pm

This is a Great Topic! Based on the message boards, Barry is correct referencing "small business owners worldwide (going into)to poverty and desperation." The cries and pleas online from people who have made their living online are getting worse as the days go on. go to Google forums and type in "desperate" or "bankrupt"!searchin/webmasters/desperate There have been over 10,000+ post online since Google Penguin and over 1000+ right to the Google message board begging Google to revert to change the result back before 1000′s of small business go under and people lose everything they worked hard to achieve. Some people argue that its just other companies making the money now but that is not true – studies by SPyfu and others show that Big Business primarily AMAZON is now ranking for all products from “candles” “jewelry boxes” “valet stands” “silverware chests" "watch winders" and 1000+ other niche markets. Google controls 70% of online search It pushes over 50% of online sales to AMAZON ( 1 example) What is the rest of the world to do if Google pushes everything to Big Biz? There was a study done after the Housing collapse about foreclosure and suicide rates. Now we have a huge small business collapse happening from the Google update which will cause real job loss and financial distress from real companies unable to resolve woth Google. and are 2 valid companies that Google just wiped out among 1,000+ mentioned on the forum boards. Now Im sure these individuals are not going to commit suicide, but what about all the small town mom and pop online retailers ect. Suicides in the downturn raise worries about recession’s real cost This Google update is a real concern Now take the other 10,000+ and counting online businesses - that is online Genocide. Real companies and businesses from to ? This is sad, but Barry brought up a valid point. When does this online Google Genocide start to translate into real world suicides? 1. Google is not going to change so small business owners do. Cut your expenses - downsize - and possibly move to another country where you can live from a smaller online revenue for say $2000/m like a king like ecuador. or thialand. 2. Go back to before Google What were your hobbies, interest and activities? Start find things that use to make your happy. My advise to anyone really stressed about Google right now is to "take time off" - "do nothing" HOW ABOUT RETIRE EARLY or for a year. this is a great list - Except avoid Nicaragua(went there for a month) check out Belize Listen - Google and Matt Cutts has already made it clear that they a happy with the update and are not going to change. Let them have the world - not your life.


06/10/2012 11:49 pm

When you take 4+ years of hard work away overnight, there will be many thinking about suicide. I was making $500/day+ on Clickbank with "authority sites"... I never even got into the EMD crap, I never spammed besides content distribution. My sites had 4-15+ original articles, mainly hand written by myself. Penguin took out ALL my authority sites, as in, I have only 1 survivor out of over 40+ professional designed and hand written sites. Do you know how many hours that is? I mean really, do you ever REALIZE?? This sounds pathetic, but at one point I did cry about this, as in literally. I put my heart and soul into SEO for the past 4 years, and to see Google take it all away overnight makes me angry, makes me want revenge. Can I request reconsideration? Nope... I have blog network links, I distributed content on Blog networks because it worked. As a marketer, it is not my job to hand write content in these niches, but I did just to "secure" my position against any Google updates, at least I thought. Quality content cannot win in a race of links, if the links are being penalized. Phd's at Google missed this most basic fact. My clients have all taken a hit, I don't even know where to start on the recovery. Explaining to them what happened as been an absolute nightmare, as they think I'm a "spammer" for using content distribution methods that were industry standard for 5+ years. Google calls anyone hit by Penguin a "spammer" even though white hat sites were affected as well. This update has changed my whole outlook on Google. I feel as though my "Google family" has disowned me, again I know that sounds retarded... but remember, almost every waking minute I am doing SEO, learning, researching for 4 years. I now hate Google with a passion. I tell my friends and family to not use them, I show the hacked results to everyone I can, I detail how poor quality their search has become every chance I get. Now imagine Thousands of people just like me tarnishing the Google brand. Over years our voices will be heard, and they will result in the destruction of Google. It's time for a new search championship. It's time we again rely on the folks that brought us Windows and maintain user friendly privacy policies on all their products. It's time for Bing to overthrow Google, or at least control 50% market share & a new algorithm.

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