Good to Know: Search Engine Robots, and others, 2017

There's a comprehensive assessment, from a webmaster perspective, of search engine robots detailed in a thread on WebmasterWorld.

Google is Testing Removal of First Organic Result in SERPs if it's a Featured Snippet, or Answer Box

There are several reports of Google testing removal of the organic listing if the same site is in an aswer box, or featured snippet.

The conversation is over at WebmasterWorld

Snap eats a 2.2 billion loss, disclosing sharply slowing user growth

Is the party already ending before is started for snap?

Google showing Events in App and Mobile Web in the U.S., and how to get your event listed

Google is now showing events in its app and mobile web in the U.S., so if you have an event you can add your code and, hopefully, it'll list the event.

Have you moved back from HTTPS to HTTP

Over at WebmasterWorld there's a thread about a member considering moving back from HTTPS to HTTP because of the site and pages dropping in the SERPs.

Google Raters get a cut in hours and start to speak out

We all know about Google Raters, but there's an interesting article where some raters have spoken out over a cut in their hours. There's some interesting detail in the full article.

Google talks about its latest search quality improvements

Google has decided to talk about some of the search quality improvements it has made to improve search quality.

Has to time arrived to Break up Google?

The big question asked: Is it time to break up Google?

New York Business Owner Arrested for Sending Google Forged Court Orders to Remove Negative Reviews and SERP Results

Man oh man oh man - this is pretty sleazy. A New York business owner received a court injunction in 2012 to get some negative reviews removed from Google search results.

Princeton and Stanford Say They've "Ended the Ad Blocking Arms Race"

A team of researchers has invented a new kind of ad blocker that "reinvent[s] how ad-blocking works."

Mobile-First And the Link Graph

You probably already know this, but the mobile web uses a lot less links than the "desktop" web.

More Evidence That Disavow Files Are Not as Valuable as They Used to Be?

With the way automated Penguin works (by devaluing incoming links) webmasters have been asking for months about their disavow files. Are they still useful? Should they still be maintained?

Fact Checking Rich Snippets Come to Google

To fight fake news and "alternative facts," Google is highlighting other fact checking sources in rich snippets for certain queries.

Bing is Testing a Janky (But Kinda Clever) Chatbot in Local Search

If you do a local search, you might see Bing's latest test where you can ask a chatbot questions about the businesses listed.

Organic Mobile Traffic is Hard to Get!

A member of WebmasterWorld makes a good point - there are some big differences between mobile and desktop SERPs. Mainly, mobile SERPs have had the crap monetized out of them.

Search News Central is BACK - times three!

I'm sure some of you remember searchnewscentral...  well, I bought it from Dave Harry and am reviving it, as well as UK-centric and Australia-centric versions.

Watch Your Store Locator Popups

...if they're too big, Google might consider them to be intrusive interstitials.

Fred is Confirmed as a "Quality Update," But Not Everyone is Buying That

Well...everyone seems to have interpreted John Mueller's comments as confirming that it is a quality update anyway.

Google Wants the Mobile First Index to Launch "Quality Neutral"

That basically means that they want to make sure the mobile first index won't negatively impact search results.

Your Forums Are Probably Not Bringing Your Site Down

Think that your forums and the loose, user-generated content generated there is bringing your whole site down?