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Duplicated Content Is A Myth!


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#1 Andrew.Williams

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 07:42 AM

Is this enough proof?

http://jonathanleger...-to-your-blogs/

Is duplicated content a myth?

I mean this is the actual proof:

http://www.google.co...amp;btnG=Search

As you can see two identical articles take the first and second position on Google out of 300k+ results.

#2 BillSlawski

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 08:35 AM

The issue is much more complicated than is set forth in the article that you link to.

Is there a "duplicate content penalty" is a different question than "will sites get filtered out of search results because of duplicate content?"

There are many forms of duplicate content on the web, from wire news stories, to syndicated articles, to the same pages on a site existing at more than one URL, to public domain stories, to official documents (declaration of independence, for example), to mirrored sites.

When a site is mirrored, so that it has exactly the same content, and the same URL structure, then there is a very real possibility that a search engine will decide to not index one version of the site at one or more domains that it may exist at.

When a site uses a content management system that regularly duplicates pages under different URLs at the same domain, that may cause pages from that site to not get indexed. It happens a lot.

The pages that show up in the search results that you point towards are not duplicate content, even though they share a large amount of content between them.

They are a somewhat different problem, known as "near duplicate content" and there are differences upon the pages. Again, this is something that a search engine will likely try to figure out, and possibibly filter out, but it's not the same as duplicate content.

It's a more difficult issue to solve. Is one copy or the declaration of independence on one site more preferable than another? Should a search engine allow the top ten search results to show variations of the same content across all of the top ten results for a page?

I wrote a little about some of the research going on by search engineers, to address "near duplicate content" at:

http://www.seobythesea.com/?p=999

Search engines want to try to index and return results that have unique content. It's possible that pages with near duplicate content will show in search results. I'm not sure that I would build a long term strategy for success on the web solely upon regularly copying other people's content.

#3 Andrew.Williams

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 08:57 AM

Fantastic, It does clear up much confusion that was created, maybe this comic can illustrate it:

http://www.mattcutts...n-the-internet/

Your post in your site is very helpful too. It is nice maybe even vital to see that Google is trying to address the thorny issue of copyrighting on the internet.

#4 projectphp

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Posted 25 May 2008 - 06:06 PM

All three snippets (the easiest filter) are different. Try this search:
http://www.google.co...%...art=20&sa=N

29 are unique enough to get a guernsey, almost 200 are not.

I hate the word penalised. It is too conotative. Filtered is a more accurate word.

Step back, the goal of all this is to supply users with markedly different content so they can choose. Bill has some good comments on this, but another few comments I would have are:
1. Your example was very long. Multiple word searches more than likely have the least factors in the algo, for several reasons, starting with the time it takes to process multi-word searches, to their infreuency (and thus unlikelihood of being cached), and lastly to the fact their is less ambiguity. a search for [Seal] wants what? Animal, navy man or singer? A search for [what is the name of the model seal is married to] likely won't have much ambiguity at all, and really needs just one page: the one with the answer.

2. For some searches, Google probably use multiple algorithms. Not just universal search, with the blending of different content types, but also different regular algorithms, with the goal to specifically increase diversity.

3. Just because having duplicate content isn't causing an issue on some searches doesn't make it a terribly useful strategy to use. I think there are probably better ways to acheive one's goals longterm (short term, no comment!)

#5 matt.bush

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Posted 26 May 2008 - 02:51 AM

Leger's email bothered me, I think its a bit misleading. Keep in mind his motivation here, he wants to sell you his product that is pumping out duplicate content. :)

Matt

#6 Andrew.Williams

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Posted 26 May 2008 - 08:02 AM

And that is why I wanted to clear it up, because it seems people are being misled into believing that duplicated content is fine and Google is fine with it.

#7 projectphp

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Posted 26 May 2008 - 06:28 PM

"Fine" is a weird way to phrase it. They don't want to index duplicate content (wasted bandwidth) nor show the same content multiple times on one SERP.

Of course, as there is only one winner, duplicating content will have a result for at least one site, not neccessarily the most deserving one, either.

#8 JohnMu

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Posted 27 May 2008 - 01:42 AM

Regarding "fine" ... I think the Google Webmaster Guidelines are pretty clear on this:

Quality guidelines
(...)
Don't create multiple pages, subdomains, or domains with substantially duplicate content.


There's even a whole article on duplicate content which mentions

However, in some cases, content is deliberately duplicated across domains in an attempt to manipulate search engine rankings or win more traffic. Deceptive practices like this can result in a poor user experience, when a visitor sees substantially the same content repeated within a set of search results.
(...)
In the rare cases in which Google perceives that duplicate content may be shown with intent to manipulate our rankings and deceive our users, we'll also make appropriate adjustments in the indexing and ranking of the sites involved. As a result, the ranking of the site may suffer, or the site might be removed entirely from the Google index, in which case it will no longer appear in search results.


I think it's probably pretty clear that if you are a serious webmaster, your time is better spent on creating and publishing your own unique and compelling content :).

John

#9 TryMeOut

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Posted 30 May 2008 - 03:35 PM

I think it's probably pretty clear that if you are a serious webmaster, your time is better spent on creating and publishing your own unique and compelling content .



This is a very solid advice. There is no better way to provide value to your visitors than by providing them with useful, relevant and UNIQUE content. :)

#10 earlpearl

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 10:51 AM

Great comments. Thank you Bill and John.

What are acceptable ways to get a third party to remove duplicate content. Also is there a mechanism to contact the Search engines and let them know that original content you developed was copied. If so, how would one verify that the content you claim as yours is the original...and the other version(s) are duplicates.

This is so timely. :thumbs: Someone, with whom we dealt with on a very positive basis recently virtually copied some of our content word for word. We didn't know about it. The original has worked quite well and received positive commentary along with significant traffic and ranks well in all engines for valuable phrase(s) for us.

Dave

#11 BillSlawski

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 11:28 AM

Hi Dave,

Given your positive relationship in the past, maybe starting with a friendly email might not be a bad idea.

For verification, it is possible to officially apply for copyright with the US copyright office for website content, and that might be the strongest evidence that you can supply in the event that you have to move forward to any type of litigation. The wayback machine, and the internet archive may be another place that could be used to show that you were the first to publish specific content on the web.

If a conversation with the people who copied the content is ineffective, a letter from a lawyer, with the lawyer's letterhead on it might be a next step. A complaint to their web hosting company that they are violating the hosting company's acceptable use policy might be something that you may have to follow up with, if they don't remove the content.

Each of the major search engines have pages that describe its DMCA (Digital Millenium Copyright Act) notice, or copyright infringement reporting process. Those are the processes that could result in a search engine ceasing to show their pages in search results.

#12 earlpearl

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Posted 06 June 2008 - 03:30 PM

My colleague had the phone relationship with the guy and described him in great terms. Then we found out, by looking at this guy's site, that he virtually copied something we wrote, subject to making the slightest changes in language.

Our first effort will be to contact him nicely. We will see after that.

Thanks for the advice.

Dave

#13 tropoli

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Posted 23 June 2008 - 08:35 PM

I have one question about duplicate content and I dont know better place to ask this question.

I'll create site about cars and I want at start to optimise site for 3 words (fast cars,exotic cars and electric cars)

I'll create (example) section fast cars url will be something like this mysite.com/fast-car
On this page I'll create some short text introduction about fast cars (about 600 word)and put links to all articles in this section(articles with description of some fast car -ferrari 430...)is this good way to start creation site.

If my article about ferrari 430 is duplicated content,does my site will have bad SERP for term ferari 430 or duplicated content will have an influence on all my site page (can i have a good SERP position for term fast car if on page mysite.com/fast-car content is not duplicated,but on page mysite.com/fast-car/ferrari content is duplicated.

#14 projectphp

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Posted 24 June 2008 - 12:38 AM

Who knows? The specifics, exactly what you do, are important. If you take content that is on some other webpage, it might mean your site is never found. If you create original content, you have the best chance.

#15 dimid

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Posted 26 June 2008 - 12:26 AM

i must agreed,
in real situation it is not possible to avoid "dublicate content" in the case for dynamic sites, still more for blog or product sites. One article cane be found in the main pages, then and the aopropriate category, then on page number 12 and etc.
This is not our problem this should be the problem of search engines, because the real world wants to have this example below.



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