Sunday, 24 March 2013

My experience with Google's ban


By RK Rishikesh Sinha
A great relief: Bishnupriya Manipuri Online is now live again.

Since March 2, the day the blog was deleted by Google, till March 23 it was restored, it was a shock for me that the old blog with lot of stake suddenly disappeared with no fault. It took time for me to absorb the reality that the blog has been deleted. I was blank.

I thought that the message of deletion was a prank of Google’s April Fool (once Google played). Or even the message itself was a spam. When I checked, it was not a prank, or a spam mail. It was official.

Deep inside I was not coming to the terms how Google finds the blog as “SPAM”, the official version which the search giant cites. Since whatever was done since 2007 it was for common good with good intent, and not with maligning intention to play around Google.

The sentence letter by Google on March 2

Hello, Your blog at http://bishnupriyamanipuri.blogspot.com/ has been reviewed and confirmed as in violation of our Terms of Service for: SPAM. In accordance to these terms, we've removed the blog and the URL is no longer accessible.

In addition, there was a feeling of “guilty” that I have not been able to guard and protect works of many writers and commenters and readers. Was I negligent in my duty? “Yes” — came the answer. I have not foreseen the eventualities of an online asset. I should have done everything that is required to protect it from Google’s onslaught — change of policy, terms and conditions. I was bit confident somewhere deep inside with my online experience that in any eventuality I will be able to handle it. Nevertheless, I have been keeping close tab on the health of the blog. Despite it, the blog was sentenced to death.

My confidence was dwindled, faith took a back sit.

I was wondering — How a healthy blog could become dead with no symptoms of any disease?

I introspected the activities that I did since the inception of the blog whether those past actions have resurfaced and it was found not in terms with Google. There were technically “some” past actions, but the intent of the action was for “common good”. Like publishing stories of violence and murder, copy-paste news item from blogs, newspapers, etc. that somewhere breaks Google terms and conditions.

Distress with Google’s complete ban on the blog, I submitted the reconsideration request to Google. And the D-day came, on March 23 Google found the blog with no manual Spam and informed me about it.
Reconsideration request for http://bishnupriyamanipuri.blogspot.com/: No manual spam actions found

Dear site owner or webmaster of http://bishnupriyamanipuri.blogspot.com/,

We received a request from a site owner to reconsider http://bishnupriyamanipuri.blogspot.com/.


We reviewed your site and found no manual actions by the webspam team that might affect your site's ranking in Google. There's no need to file a reconsideration request for your site, because any ranking issues you may be experiencing are not related to a manual action taken by the webspam team…
Sincerely,
Google Search Quality Team

Lessons learnt

You and I have heard it many times.

Take back up of your online entity. I will be (have started) backing up the blog on weekly basis. I will be maintaining three back ups: 

  • First offline,
  • Second, creating a mirror blog in draft mode. The mirror blog has been created with complete articles and comments. 
  • Third, articles label has been created in Gmail.
Monitor / follow best practices
I will be more closely monitoring the blog and stringently follow the best practices. Automatic publishing of the comments in the blog has been stopped. All the comments will be reviewed.

Conclusion

I am thankful to all the readers of this blog especially BN Sinha, Prabal, Jyotirmoy, Dhiraj, Pratibha, Ramendu da, Ritwick (he said : Google oto gadda ta), and Kungo Thang.

It is indeed a new journey for this blog.  
We never miss something till its gone. 
Image courtesy of artur84 at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
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