Recently, Google issued an update to their search engines, commonly referred to as the farmer update, which was supposed to improve the relevance of search results by removing some malicious websites which were full of copied content. Fair enough, but this caused a variety of problems – for example, popular content hosting services seem to be completely filtered out of Google’s search results after this ordeal, which has raised some eyebrows.
One such website reports that the farmer update cut its monthly traffic down by half, since Google no longer showed any pages from that website in its results – no matter what the articles in question were; the filtering is domain-based. So, keeping in mind that many of us who work on the road and publish on the Internet rely on such websites to submit our work to, this can severely drag down the performance of small-time writers who were, until now, relying on the services of these established websites to do their work.
Sure, we understand that unique, relevant content is important to the Internet user’s experience, but when the measures to ensure that start treading on the experience on those who’re supposed to provide that content, we definitely have a problem. There has to be a way to address this in the end, and if it means revising the whole system from the grounds up, then so be it – looks like we’re left with no choice at this point.