Google Slow To Remove Legally Seized Sites?

Sep 3, 2010 • 8:48 am | comments (0) by | Filed Under Google Search Engine Optimization

Have you ever stumbled upon a web site that was legally seized by the U.S. government? Sometimes, not always, they contain an image on the site that looks like this:

Google & Seized Web Sites

Some folks at WebmasterWorld are saying that Google has been ranking these web sites for their original search terms, the search terms they ranked for prior to the take over, months after they have been seized.

The first complaint read:

Great that piracy is being cracked down on, but what I don't understand is why do Google still return the URLs within the SERPs, even though there isn't any content on any page. So no internal links, no copy, no headers, high bounce rate - but yet I have lots of examples of 'seized' websites returning high up in SERPs - which leads to the main issue - external links.

Personally, I think I have seen it come up once in my search history. Robert Charlton from WebmasterWorld said, "I've seen sites with content taken down rank for a fair amount of time afterwards, at least in situations where there's at least a place holder page online and there are residual links pointing to the page."

Maybe the issue with these take down notices is that the server response is often not set to a 404 page not found? But technically, the page is found, just was taken over by the U.S. government.

Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld.

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