I spotted a very interested comment by Google's head of search spam, Matt Cutts at Hacker News. The obvious comment is that Matt Cutts outs thecupcakeblog.com as being impacted in a negative way by the Panda algorithm.
More shocking to me, based on my conversations with Google search quality people is that Google knows clearly if a site is impacted by an algorithm or not.
In August, Google launched the manual action viewer, mostly to appease webmasters who want to know if their site has a penalty or action. But this only covers manual penalties, issued by Google representatives with the click of a button.
I want Google to release an "automated action viewer" to show how much your site is impacted by algorithmic updates. It sounds hard from what I imagined.
I thought that all sites are impacted by all algorithms on some level, but some are more than others. But when it comes to Penguin or Panda, it doesn't appear that it is some, it more appears that it is all or nothing.
By Matt Cutts saying, "looking at the site in question, it has been affected by Google's Panda," it makes me scratch my head. Does Google have a backend tool for themselves to see this? If so, can their dumb it down a bit to add to Webmaster Tools?
It pains me to see so many sites struggling to figure out what is hurting their sites in Google when nothing shows up in the manual actions viewer.
Don't get me wrong... Google's transparency over the years has grown tremendously. But this one thing would be gold for most small webmasters who are lost and being told by "SEO experts" or companies things that may not be true. I see so many webmasters chasing their tails - it pains me.
Forum discussion at Hacker News.