Living without Google

I’ve spent the last year in a kind of “Being and Nothingness” state on the Web. Google de-indexed this site in about March, for reasons I can’t begin to fathom. Friends have tried to help me with my plight, suggesting I look for robot blockers in my site code.  Nothing of the sort exists.  I’m just not in the index. It’s become clear to me that one of the flaws of Google is how it delists a site. You don’t get a notice from Google warning you that your site is about to be de-indexed, no hints as to what you should change. Nor do you have much recourse once it happens.  I have tried both the basic help tool and the Webmaster re-index tool, more than once, with no luck.
A friend tells me I must have written something Google didn’t like, so it got rid of me, offed me from the virtual world. “Google is evil,” she said with conviction.  I doubt it.  Google is callous, perhaps. I’d say it was terrible at customer service, except I’ve never purchased an ad. And while I almost never search at Google anymore, relying almost exclusively on its competitors, that can’t possibly hurt Google. Indeed, Randall Stross, writing in the New York Times this weekend, noted that Google was, if not already a monopoly, a near-monopoly. Perhaps someone will take it to court for being deindexed without warning. In fact, I’m surprised it hasn’t happened already, given Google’s power over online businesses.

Here’s an example of Google’s power, that happened when my family took a brief trip to New York late last year. We stayed with friends. Their 10-year-old was on Yahoo reading his email, and I asked him to check on a place we were thinking about visiting.

“Okay,” he said, and started to type in the URL bar.

“Wait a minute,” I said. “You’re on Yahoo, why not just its search engine?”

He looked at me and said “Yahoo has search?”

I showed him its search bar and we found what we were looking for.

So there it is. Google is terribly inconsiderate to individuals. But when people think you’re the only game in town, apparently you can get away with that.

One thought on “Living without Google

  1. a friend asked whether Russian link farms had linked to me. I don’t really know, but I did decide to go through the blog and eliminate any weird comments, whether or not they looked like spam. Maybe that will help.

Leave a Reply