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Old 08-12-2004   #1
littleman
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whitehat vs. blackhat, it is all BS

First let's define SE spam...
Anything action one takes to increase one's search engine traffic. If you want to say that isn't true you then have to argue point by point on every aspect of site promotion.

You have to ask all the silly questions:
Is using an H1 tag spam?
Is using a nocode tag spam?
Is writing key word rich content spam?
Is building link pop spam?
Is having the key word in the URL spam?
And so on...

There are about 1000 of these, and the answer to all those questions is:
Yes, if you do it to increase search engine traffic. If you haven't manipulated a website to increase traffic then you are not an SEO.

Therefor:
all SEOs are spammers
all 'whitehat' SEOs are fools or hypocrites, or both
you are wearing a blackhat now and don't even know it
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Old 08-12-2004   #2
NFFC
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"Just remember, there's a right way and a wrong way to do everything and the wrong way is to keep trying to make everybody else do it the right way."

You can keep your great philosophers, can't beat M A S H for getting to the point.
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Old 08-12-2004   #3
Nick W
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Hats off to littleman

Geezer, pure class mate ;-)

Quote:
all SEOs are spammers
all 'whitehat' SEOs are fools or hypocrites, or both
you are wearing a blackhat now and don't even know it
Why dont people get this? Almost by definition you have to have some brain power to be an SEO surely?

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Old 08-12-2004   #4
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I disagree, "Any action one takes to increase one's search engine traffic" is marketing. Any deceptive action one takes to increase one's search engine traffic, is spam.

I am out to beat the competition, not the search engines. That really simplifies my work.
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Old 08-12-2004   #5
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Very well said, yellowwing. It is amazing that everyone who is a spammer thinks everyone else is as well.
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Old 08-12-2004   #6
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>It is amazing that everyone who is a spammer thinks everyone else is as well.

You miss the entire point David, by a wide margin, in the UK we would call it missing the barn door.

Let me try and help.

You are a spammer, LM is a spammer, one of you is man enough to admit it.
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Old 08-12-2004   #7
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been there done that

And what is 'deceptive'?

Let's not take it to the extreme of promoting a porn site under the keyword 'Barby'.

Is adding extra key words deceptive? Is using a style sheet to reduce the apparency of an H1 tag deceptive? Is feeding googlebot a meta-keywords tag while hiding them from the end user deceptive? How about rewriting dynamic URLs so that they appear static?

Often for the newbie the spam line is right out if his/her ability.
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Old 08-12-2004   #8
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the whole black hat vs white hat thing is a marketing angle. nothing more. nothing less. I find it ironic how many people who push the hat issue were angry when I used it (http://www.blackhatseo.com) as a marketing angle too.
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Old 08-12-2004   #9
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Seobook, you are right of course, the problem is that some would be seo types are gullible enough to buy into the concept.

Some are working an angle, some are strung fish.
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Old 08-12-2004   #10
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Deception, IMHO, is directly related to intent, not tactic.
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Old 08-12-2004   #11
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It truly amazes and astounds me and "many" others how "some" people wish to lump together and blur the lines between a spammer and a SEO who follows se guidelines.

These forums will have and do have the most numbers of "guests" who read in here daily. IMO it's not a good thing to be lumping together with this kind of thing. There is clearly a difference between firms who do 'follow' and firms that "don't" follow. People who "don't" follow se guidelines have a vested interest in wanting to be lumped together with those who "do".

That's all I will say on this subject in this thread.
 
Old 08-12-2004   #12
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I think this states a clearer picture of my beliefs
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lex
Deception, IMHO, is directly related to intent, not tactic.
than this
Quote:
Originally Posted by ihelpyou
People who "don't" follow se guidelines have a vested interest in wanting to be lumped together with those who "do".
although both statements are completely true.
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Old 08-12-2004   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NFFC
You are a spammer, LM is a spammer, one of you is man enough to admit it.
Like I said before and will say again..."It is amazing that everyone who is a spammer thinks everyone else is one as well."
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Old 08-13-2004   #14
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Quote:
That's all I will say on this subject in this thread.
Thank you IHY.

This is about concepts not practice. I can nearly guaranty you that NFFC's sites would pass for what you would call clean. Yet I would call him an SE spammer, and I would call you an SE spammer and anybody who does anything to increase their 'natural rank'. To the search engines it is all the same thing, you manipulate your results and you are tampering with their algo which makes you a spammer.
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Old 08-13-2004   #15
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The silliness never ceases to give me shi ts and giggles.

Spammers deceive the search engines. True SEO's do not.

It's simple stuff. No really, it 'is' simple stuff.
 
Old 08-13-2004   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ihelpyou
Spammers deceive the search engines. True SEO's do not.
based on this definition could a "True SEO" promote a site to rank on the first page for stuff like "viagra" or "buy viagra online" or "online casino"

also think you misspelled a word or two or put a random space in your post
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Old 08-13-2004   #17
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Ihelpy, you said you were not going to post again in this thread.

Do you really believe that the search engines are happy with your "clean SEO practices"? Are you not trying to artificially manipulate your sites rank by employing these tactics?


What are your 'clean tactics'?

And here is a hypothetical choice. I have a car site and I want to increase it's rank for the term 'car', tell me what of the fallowing choices are spam and what is 'clean'.

Choice #1
I spend $50k on links from roadandtrack.com and cars.com.

Choice #2
I believe that Google's algo is now wanting specifically 3.5% key word density for a 200 word page so I change a pages content to target those number.

Choice #3
I hire a bunch of 'off shore' laborers to drop links in forums all over the internet at $2/hour.

Choice #4
I write a bot to logspam links to my site.

Choice #5
I build a static alternative to my graphically rich site and make sure it is 'spider friendly'.

Choice #6
I feed the SE bots text while I feed the humans graphics.

So, tell me ihelpy, DW and other self proclaimed 'clean SEOs' which of the above is spam and which is not? Do you think Sergey and Larry would agree with you?
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Old 08-13-2004   #18
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Quote:
First let's define SE spam...
Anything action one takes to increase one's search engine traffic.
...
Therefor:
all SEOs are spammers
all 'whitehat' SEOs are fools or hypocrites, or both
you are wearing a blackhat now and don't even know it
Are, definitions that make an entire argument.<sigh> I miss doing philosophy.

"therfor" (sic) is such a wonderful word. Therefore is suppossed to mean "As I have proven", not "from this definition I conclude". IMHO, the definition of spam presented is erroneous and open for debate, as is your (never given and pre-assummed) definition of the "hats". Therefore (and I do mean to use that word), as I do not agree to your definitions of the two most important words in your argument (white-hat and spam), any conclusions drawn from such a definition are not worth anything.

As spam is so difficult to define, lets talk instead about a far more real and tangible issue: deception and deceptive advertising as it relates to search engines. You rightly ask in a later post:
Quote:
And what is 'deceptive'?
Which leads to a bunch more interesting questions that I am going to number for future reference:
Quote:
1. Is adding extra key words deceptive?
2. Is using a style sheet to reduce the apparency of an H1 tag deceptive?
3. Is feeding googlebot a meta-keywords tag while hiding them from the end user deceptive?
4. How about rewriting dynamic URLs so that they appear static?
The definition of deception:
Quote:
de·cep·tion
n.
1. The use of deceit.
2. The fact or state of being deceived.
3. A ruse; a trick.
So, if you use a technique that is deceitful, a ruse or a trick, that deception.

Lets relate this back to the questions numbered and raised. IMHO, and we are all free to debate this, neither 2 nor 4 is deception. Number one I don't really understand, so IMHO that makes 2 out of three not deception.

Number three, however, while deception, is ineffective. Showing Google a "meta-keywords" tag will have zero effect. A trick? Yes. Done with the intent to deceive? Yes. Does it acheive anything? No.

It is like all the American 20 year olds that come to Australia and buy alcohol with a fake ID because they think the legal drinking age is 21 (its 18). They may have aimed to deceive people, but the deception has no effect.

Some of your questions are not only not deception, but the right way to do things. The Hippy in me thinks the web should be free for all to use, and clearly defined page elements, headings 1, 2 and 3 are all useful for accessability reasons. Controlling the way they look with CSS is fine. If, however, all text is in H1 tags and made to look like normal text, in teh belief this will influence SE results, this may become deception. The technique of using headings is not in and of itself deceptivem, but it can be. The devil is in the detail.

It may surprise many, but there have actually been complaints on this very issue, and an FTC response issued.

Alan Perkins, way back when in a bit of too and fro with Danny Sullivan, made the comments below @ IHelpYou that I think are interesting in the context of this debate:
Quote:
I think it's time we stopped talking about spam and cloaking and started talking about deceptive advertising....
By way of example, let's consider Google's organic SERP for "search engine optimization resources":

#1 www.lilengine.com
#2 www.searchenginewatch.com
#3 www.searchenginestrategies.biz
#4 www.seoconsultants.com
#5 www.pandia.com/optimization/

There we see the home page of www.searchenginewatch.com in the #2 slot. Here are three ways it could get there:

1) On merit - it is one of the most relevant pages on the Web for that phrase
2) By paying Google in some undisclosed way
3) By deceiving Google using cloaking or some other technique
Now, of these three, the later two are not very good.

The second, the labelling of search results, is not the focus of this debate, but if it is up your alley, this is an interesting thread on labelling of search result (warning: 11 pages worth of interesting).

The other deceptive means, "deceiving Google using cloaking or some other technique", is what is really interesting. In terms of spam, these are both well worth reading, but in the end, I think Spam is a ruse that this industry throws up to muddy waters. Spam shouldn't be the issue, the issue should be deceptive advertising.

Under such a debate, whether all SEOs are spammers is irrelevant. The real question is are all SEOs deceptive? To that, my answer is no. I have seen many SEOed sites that I would not define in anyway as deceptive.

The second conclusion drawn, that "all 'whitehat' SEOs are fools or hypocrites, or both", is also not true if the definition of a white-hat SEO I someone that does not use SEO techniques create deceptive results.

My $0.02 on the subject anyway.
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Old 08-13-2004   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by littleman
So, tell me ihelpy, DW and other self proclaimed 'clean SEOs' which of the above is spam and which is not? Do you think Sergey and Larry would agree with you?
littleman, I just don't get it.

Why is spam, in your opinion, a problem? Are / should Search Engines, most specifically Google, be the only definer of what is right or wrong?

I just don't get where you are coming from on this issue at all, and perhaps a little clarrification of your views and perspective will go a long way to helping me understand what you hope to achieve from this debate.

I have another question for you. You originally defined spam as "Anything action one takes to increase one's search engine traffic". Does that make writing an extra page spam? Does any action ever taken in which search engines are even considered a spammy decision? If not, where is the line you personally draw?
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Old 08-13-2004   #20
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"therfor" (sic) is such a wonderful word. Therefore is suppossed to mean "As I have proven", not "from this definition I conclude". IMHO, the definition of spam presented is erroneous and open for debate, as is your (never given and pre-assummed) definition of the "hats". Therefore (and I do mean to use that word), as I do not agree to your definitions of the two most important words in your argument (white-hat and spam), any conclusions drawn from such a definition are not worth anything.
You wanna say that in english mate?

>>Alan Perkins

Oh, I do hope old perky turns up, I really do ;-)

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