Google's Gamekeepers turn Poachers - Serious Spam Time!

32 comments

In today's issue of New Media Age magazine a small unobtrusive little snippet of news is included on page 5.

Googlers become spammers

Four Googlers have left Google Ireland to join an SEO company, the interesting part is..

Quote:
The new staff all join from Matt Cutt's search quality team at Google

I doubt they are that great or important but what a press release and coup. Matt, any comments on when you lose staff not just to the competition but the enemy ?

Comments

direct link ?

direct link ?

Netbooster hires SEO specialists from Google

Netbooster has hired four SEO specialists from Google as it looks to focus its efforts on natural search across Europe. The new staff all join from Matt Cutts' search quality team at Google, based in Ireland. netbooster.co.uk ...

Full Article [subscription require]

Print Based Magazine - No

Print Based Magazine - No possibility of a direct link

hmmmm...

1. Now we can get some real Google leaks.

or

2. They are planted there by Google to spy on SEOs.

:D

Google people doing SEO

I think it’s rather good that Google spam hunters join the SEO industry. I don’t think they will turn to evil. It seems more likely that they will evangelize that industry with their ethical principles. If a company hires such people it rather shows that they are gaining some maturity at last.

>staff all join from Matt

>staff all join from Matt Cutt's search quality team

I'm not surprised, for many years now I've seen client-based seos and affiliate managers quietly move to where the money is and just start their own web ventures. (Why should I help them rank when I can rank and resell it to them? I.E., those who can, DO, those who can't, Consult.) I am surprised that G doesn't require 1-year noncompetes that excludes moving to seo firms, though I realize that legal noncompetes may be significantly harder to use outside the US employment market.

I guess they signed a NDA

I guess they signed a NDA for what it is worth to Google.

BTW when was the online users switched on? Every time I have been here today I saw Jason. Stop loafing and do some work Mr D :)

With My HR hat on NDA's

NDA's arn't realy that useful and very difficult to enforce esp as these guys aren’t that high level – and we don’t know how much they knew about the algorithm.

Google may of course may have contingency plans to change the algorithm if it's compromised – hey Matt did work at the NSA :-)

And if the 4 use the insider info (goggles trade secrets) they could be sued for that – though Google might not want the publicity of the court case.

Though losing 4 at once is interesting and suspicious (its common in the city to recruit entire teams like this but I have not heard of it in IT) I bet the company they are joining will have their clients sites given more attention.

Bit stupid of the company to be so blatant that’s asking for trouble and doesn’t give a very professional impression.

I knew stuff like this would happen

If this report is in fact true, it was only a matter of time before Google (Yahoo and MSN) employees would startup or work for SEO firms. If they plastered that one their site 'SEO firm run by former Google Employees' what do you think the response rate would be?

The quality of work doesn't even have to be that good to get people in the door with an entrance like that.

I assume they joined

I assume they joined Netbooster?? Netbooster released a press release about Google web spam team members joining them a few weeks ago. Netbooster is (or was?) the seo company of BMW and DWS. Spammed on info.dws.de with the same door way pages as on bmw.de since 2 day ago .... then it was detected on a german seo forum.

It is NetBooster but I

It is NetBooster but I purposely left out the company name for the reasons just stated.

MrMD, I do not loaf I simple

MrMD, I do not loaf I simple spend a lot of time "researching" :) I am also off to Poland next week so can you please arrange for some decent tea (PG leaf please) to be delivered to my office as coffee is sooooo yesterday :)

ROFLMAO

I wonder how much it cost them?
I know I would pay at least five figures for a few hours of "honest" question and answer with a top google engineer... hint hint...

Jason you obviously have not had any good coffee. ;-)

Portland has a few good coffe shops, but Seattle just North of Portland is the GOOD coffee capital of the world...

I love good coffee but I

I love good coffee but I prefer great tea :)

Unfortunately great tea aint readily available in Poland and my last trip I forgot to take any with me. Those few that have seen me in the morning when I haven't had a cuppa know I am a miserable sod (well more miserable than normal anyway)

I love good coffee but I prefer great tea :)

What kind?? Earl Grey?

bwaaa ha ha ha... Forget it.. he's become a G Fan boy...

weeeeeeeeeeeee

PG tea is for monkeys.

PG tea is for monkeys.

NDAs are one thing, a

NDAs are one thing, a non-compete is another... why both weren't used in concert is a complete mystery given Google's propensity towards fine print.

Bit stupid of the company to

Quote:
Bit stupid of the company to be so blatant that’s asking for trouble and doesn’t give a very professional impression.

I can close to guarantee that just saying you have some ex Googlers from Matt's team will lead to enough business to pay their wages for many years to come

interesting how the times

interesting how the times have changed. not sure i would want to be a client of that seo firm. i think there is a chance there might be some extra hand reviews of those sites.

It's not about skill, or

It's not about skill, or inside knowledge of the algo. It's not about SEO.

I'd hire those guys because they have been in the spam team meeetings, listening, and they know how Matt and the Google "anti-spam" team works. They know how ideas are considered. How news is discussed. How long it takes to act. What the sticky points are that cause delays, and the sharp edges that cause immediate attention. They know the history, not of what has been banned, but what has been permitted. In efect, they may know nothing of the Google search engine algo, but they have lived the Google web spam team "algo".

"face time with a competitor...priceless"

John's right on. It's not

John's right on. It's not about the algo at all. Hell, Google could publish the algo and the same people would be successful with it that are successful now. If you don't inherently understand the algo, even without it being published, you shouldn't be in this business.

On the other hand, the most useful skill in the intelligence world is counterintelligence. Everyone can gather information, but those that can interpret or affect the other sides methodologies has the upperhand. So, these guys' and their understanding of internal tactics and debate at Google could prove to be invaluable for non-algo reasons.

I also think Google is smart enough to compartmentalize the direct knowledge of the algo. It's not like they hand it out in a packet at New Guy Orientation in all the groups that touch what we call "the algo".

Isn't that old news? Had

Isn't that old news? Had been posted in the comments on Matt's own blog by Nadir back in November, with a link to a French article:
http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/other-reasons-not-to-post/

And, uhm.. since when does the spam team reside in Ireland? Did I miss something?

And, uhm.. since when does

And, uhm.. since when does the spam team reside in Ireland? Did I miss something?

Yes.

As far as NDAs and Noncompetes go

I'm sure the non-compete is 5x as worthless as it is here in California, although 5x might put it into negative territory which might bring it back to being worthwhile... hmm, anyways:

as for the NDA they don't even have to "discuss" any of what they know and learned at Google, they only need be instructed to perform client analysis, and recommendations, and they can't help but put what they've learned and observed to use. Just as John A said above, it's their mindstate that is invaluable. They will instinctively act in a manner to counteract and avoid based on what they've experienced.

The other thing to think

The other thing to think about here is, "If these guys know so much, why would they go work as consultants. They could build their own web properties and make a metric shitload more money."

That's why I think this is more of a PR thing than a Seismic event.

"If these guys know so much,

Quote:
"If these guys know so much, why would they go work as consultants. They could build their own web properties and make a metric shitload more money."

I know nothing of Google's policies, but if there was one agreement I would expect them to put in front of all hires, it is that they would not use their inside Google knowledge for personal sites while they are employees, or for XXX months afterwards.

(I don't mean good webmastering, or PPC and normal stuff they couldof course do. I mean exploitation)

"Don't Use your Knowledge"

I can just imagine the contractual wording of that one.

John, I would expect that,

John, I would expect that, too, but c'mon...that is about 0% enforceable. Surely some engineer has a couple Panamanian bank accounts registered in his pets names that happen to get a stack of affiliate deposits every month. For all we know, Shoemoney's uncle's cousin's step-daughter's soccer coach knows exactly what the Quality Score algo looks like and wanted to cash out. Chances are he wasn't one of the early Googlers and now has no opportunity for the big liquidity event except for own 75% of a dummy corporation with Shoe.

Granted, I just took some SERIOUS liberties, but like the Weather Channel tells us..."It could happen..."

Sometimes it's refreshing to

Sometimes it's refreshing to play Second Cynic. Thanks for filling in, Scoreboard.

> It seems more likely that

> It seems more likely that they will evangelize that industry with their ethical principles. <

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA!~!!!!~

Jeez, I hope that guy was kidding.

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