Search Engine Land Hiding Text & Spamming Search Engines, Said Sullivan

Jun 1, 2007 - 11:44 am 10 by
Filed Under Spam

Danny Sullivan's Search Engine Land site has been caught hiding text and performing "poor man cloaking" techniques. A WebProWorld thread called attention to the fact that Search Engine Land was hiding text in a CSS file:

text-indent: -9000px;

But Danny Sullivan didn't know about it. In fact, someone had to call this thread to his attention, and then he wrote in.

Still scratching my head, I then wondered, "Wait a minute. Is this about my site?" Surely not. But yep, there in our style sheet was the damning code. It's true. We were totally hiding text and technically might be considered spamming the search engines. Curses -- just when I hoped not to be counted among those other search spammers like Google and Yahoo that have been outed for using hidden text.

So what happened? Apparently, there was an H1 tag that was visible only to users who have images and stylesheets disabled. That's why regular users typically don't see it. Danny continues by saying that he doesn't approve of this technique and will fix it after SMX next week.

We'll look at a way to make the logo be a hyperlink that doesn't involve using a hidden style, though our permanent solution might have to wait until next week as we're sort of busy with the upcoming conference we have this week.

Sorry for anyone that somehow thought we were endorsing some spamming technique. We're not, of course.

Yeah right.

Danny Hugs Spam
Image of Danny Sullivan (on left with beer in hand) endorsing Mr. Spam man

Forum discussion continues at WebProWorld.


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