The whole Google-hating-sponsored-links from link farms (and PayPerPost reviews, perhaps?) fascinates me.
- I always found it funny how much TechCrunch hated sponsored link sites PayPerPost with reviews like this.
- Michael Arrington made sure to review PayPerPost and their offensive ClubMed employee retreat.
- And then there was some alleged abuse in this scathing PayPerPost review here...
- And let's not forget the bad review of sponsored link sites akin to PayPerPost...
- At least the LA Times had a positive review of PayPerPost type sponsored link places today...
Sponsored Links, PayPerPost Reviews and Google Penalties -- What's the deal?
So I know that Google technically defines "sponsored links" as these things, and not PayPerPost reviews with links embedded in the content.
But therein lies the big question:
What's the difference?
One website owner may go buy an advertisement thru Google Adwords so that when a person types in "get sponsored links," the company's ad pops up close to the first page -- they hope.
Another website owner may go thru a place like PayPerPost and buy a review that contains three sponsored links named "get sponsored links" in the reviewee's post.
I guess the issue is the line being blurred between advertising and advertorials. But they do it in magazines and newspapers all the time, and I doubt that it's going away.
PayPerPost Reviews and Sponsored Links Controversy -- Write with personality, honesty and interest...
Basically my rule of thumb with PayPerPost reviews I've written that contain sponsored links is this -- just to be honest and personal and interesting.
I always disclose that it's a sponsored review on my PayPerPost reviews.
And I try to include personal photos and real life stories when I can to entertain my readers.
Will Sponsored Link Sites Containing PayPerPost Reviews Get Penalized by Google?
The next question is that if Google is cracking down on not only obvious link farm sites like mentioned in the above linked-to article -- but also cracking down and penalizing everyday bloggers like John Chow and me -- will PayPerPost reviewers be the next ones bumped to the bottom of Google's search engine results pages?
I don't know why I was penalized by Google -- perhaps because of all the people linking to me with "Paula's List of Blogger Salaries" anchor text, or something similar that I asked for.
Or maybe it was me linking to my own name so much from the same site, but traffic has definitely plunged on this blog for certain anchor text.
(Funny, just when God is exploding my text on the TV site, which He has on hold right now -- mysterious, higher ways than ours indeed.)
So the more this whole game plays out with Google, PayPerPost (who got their $10 million in funding despite the naysayers last month), getting sponsored links and penalization -- the more interesting it will all become.
I'm still writing PayPerPost reviews where people get sponsored links in the mean time, choosing only the ones that let me sleep at night.
Since Google has penalized this blog (for some search terms), it'll also be a good experiment to see which terms I can still rank for.
And I'll continue to be a paid postie for now -- I ain't wasting this good Google Pagerank of 5 that the blessed "Son of Man" blest me with!