Don’t Make Google Look Stupid – Period

by Jeremy Schoemaker on October 6, 2007 · 168 comments

BTW I post a lot of videos on YouTube that I do not post on my blog. If you would like to be notified when new ones are posted you can subscribe to my youtube profile (currently over 10,000 subscribers)

full disclosure

About the author...

– who has written 2896 posts on

Jeremy "ShoeMoney" Schoemaker is the founder & CEO of the ShoeMoney Blog, Elite Retreat Internet Conference, & the PAR Program. In 2013 Jeremy released his #1 Amazon Best selling Autobiography titled "Nothing's Changed But My Change" - The ShoeMoney Story. Jeremy currently lives in Lincoln Nebraska with his wife and 2 daughters.

Jeremy recommends you check out these amazing posts:

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1 mike


I am normally not a fan of yours but I just wanted to say this is the first post I have seen that is SOOO dead on about Google and how they operate. People get so caught up in the Google grandstanding they lose sight of what Google is… just another advertising company. Thanks for breaking it down.

2 browie

I subscribe. But you’re like 2nd or 3rd on the list… Brigitte Dale is number #1 and then you and Thor are tied at 2. I don’t watch youtube much for “subscriptions”

3 Neil Duckett

Hahaha, total Douchebag comment cracked me up!

4 Sasha Weberov

I agree, never fuck with those that have authority over you. That means the government and Google.

5 Jake

Good point. Use common sense, play the game, get search results.

6 Aditya Kumar Singh

Well Said Jeremy !

7 Craig

You say don’t make google look stupid but recently they have been making themselves look stupid. The rules are enforced to some sites, and then overlooked to others. Many authority sites break the new rules and have seen no affects, but many others have. Also, I agree that search traffic isn’t everything. There are other sites than Google, and it is nice to focus on your users and not the search engine. After all, who is actually using your site?

8 wethead

Hey Shoe,

The whole paid links thing does get weirder by the day, I will agree with that,

I also agree with what you said about google.

If you embarrass them, they will make you look just as dumb,

So, Yea..I just keep telling myself,

Make the users happy and everyone will be happy :)


9 Israel

hmm, makes me think you are calling attention to yourself.

10 Jeremy Luebke

No words truer spoken.

11 Blog Contests

10,000 subs on your YouTube profile? Dang you are doing well!

12 Word Hugger

Yeah, especially since (as far as I know), it wasn’t referenced on the blog. Congrats.

As for the post, you would think instead of completely removing a site from the index, it would just stop it from ranking for anything other than its own name.

Anyone that Googles “john chow” has to have a reason to know his name, so I think he should rank #1 for that no matter what.

13 shy guy

This is first time I see you in youtube..
Sorry coz I’m a newbie…
You like to get exposed huh?

14 Gary R. Hess

So true. Makes you wonder if they edit one by one or do they just click a button that makes all sites terms -30 or whatever (in most cases, since Jeremy obviously was added for that one term). Of course, maybe they meant to do that in this specific case for whatever reason.

15 Brisbane SEO Guy

Maybe Google should have a “naughty chair” index where high ranking sites get sent to if they are suspected of naughty activities like link exchanges.

Rather than having an “I’m feeling lucky” button, replace it with “naughty chair”. Think of the possibilities.

16 Stefano

LOL, I guess this girl is making it look stupid as well :-).

17 LeGo

very nice thoughts. there are lots of interesting aspects to google. they have to walk a thin line.

18 Avromi

Interesting way of approaching link buys. BTW in regard to link exchanges a few weeks ago Google apparently changed the wording in the link schemes page in the webmasters section of the site to “Excessive reciprocal links or excessive link exchanging” See official wording here

19 SEO Training

I wonder what “excessive” means. There’s going to be a lot of link directories who give free reciprocal links mighty angry.

20 Derek

Hmm. I think that was just about the best boiled down, sensical explanation of the whole subject yet.. Lots of good points in there. Looking at it from that perspective, I wonder if Google really wishes they hadn’t bothered opening up this can of worms in the first place, because with the awareness of certain cases like you mentioned, they’re going to end up looking stupid one way or the other sometimes… Can’t blame them for not wanting to look stupid, no person or company does, but they’re going to end up shooting themselves in the foot from time to time if they’re not a lot more careful.

21 Hyder

Right now it’s Google’s game, so we can either play it or be left behind. Tomorrow the whole concept of their “BackRub” aka search algorithm can change and with that so will the entire dynamics of doing business online. But even if they do decide to completely change the way they rank sites, people will still learn how to play the game.

22 Theo

Do Youtube subscriptions count for the bet with John Chow? ;)

23 Collin

Interesting Video Shoe, Makes me think am I wasiteing my time trying to think of ways to increase my search engine ranks if your traffic is only 4% from there.
Thanks for the great info!

24 Gecko Tales

I love the power of the Internet. I cancelled all my text link ads a while back.

25 Justin Cook

For the most part I agree with you. But, a couple things:
1. I don’t think Google frowns on paid reviews. I’ve talked to a Google rep that said it’s OK.
2. I think it’s really only the sites that are popular enough (like john Chow), that have to worry about Google getting on their back.

26 Justin Cook

That doesn’t even make sense! He didn’t once mention himself, except at the end of the post with the note that this site receives only 4% se traffic…

27 jim

Guess you’re not a fan of greenbaum? :) ahaha

28 jim


29 The Dino

That is many subsribers, should be counted to the competition with John Chow.

30 Singapore Athletics

i feel google has grown so big that we have to comply or be left out

true, don’t bite the hand that feeds you

but people will always try beat the ‘system’

31 Singapore Athletics

most of the replies i got from Google rep are usually non-answers and open to intrepertations

32 Tracy Robinson

Google people are not all that hard to deal with as long as you get the right one, so sometimes when dealing with a google review you need to try, try again. Paid links aren’t any worse than other things, but Google does need to keep up the pretense that they are not trading links for money or favors.

33 Joeychgo

I couldnt agree more

34 Joeychgo

Google is Google. The “do no evil” line is meaningless now since they are a public company. Now its “raise profits” – thats it.

35 Compare Credit Cards

Google is the industry leader so the expect us mortals to follow them. The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. What more can I say.

36 CatherineL

I just find the whole backlink thing so confusing. I have links from sites with decent PR etc, on some of my sites but many don’t show up on Google. And I don’t know what I’m doing wrong, but i check out some of my competitors links, and they count – even the ones from spammy link farms.

I don’t optimise my personal blog for the search engines, at all. If I did, I wouldn’t enjoy writing, and nobody would enjoy reading it.

Great video by the way – but it would be good if you could talk a little louder, as I struggled to hear all of it.

37 Archos 605

Shoe, you must be smiling on the inside, Chow being dropped is beneficial for you in your little RSS contest ?

38 CPA Affiliates

as it is always said… he who has the money controls the game….. and right now google has the money in the online world. so they set the rules. Interesting vid.

39 Tod Kilgore

I totally agree and suffered the same fate with my “mass” site posting. I also noticed they will give you a second chance if you play there way. I went from top to bottom in an eye blink and they made me look stupid. lol .. If you mess with the big “G” you better be a chess master and in it for the long term. Tk

40 CFernandes

I also think it is ridiculous that Text Link Ads and John Chow don´t rank #1 for there own names. For a search engine it doesn´t get any more IRRELEVANT than that!

41 Mubin

Shoe doesn’t need to depend on search engine traffic. He’s bigger than the rest of us.

42 Mubin

Chow was dropped about 2 months ago mate, where you been?

43 Justin

That was the best summation of why people get penalized in Google that I have ever heard. It’s one of those observations where once you hear it it seems so obvious.

44 Mubin

Actually your wrong there mate. Text Link Ads and Link Buyers have the money, whereas Google has the authority to nuke your site. You sell links your site gets nuked, you dont and you have a very high ranking site that is worth nothing cuz you can’t sell the links. Your post doesn’t really make much sense and I think you just wrote it cuz your were itching to use that cliche ever since you heard it around the water cooler at the office.

45 Mubin

Shoe, first things first, you gotta do something about the quality of the comments on your posts, I think either people are just replying to get their name in the top commenter’s side bar, or they reply because they think that it will lead more traffic coming to their site. Some of the more retarded comments that I have come across.

as it is always said… he who has the money controls the game….. and right now google has the money in the online world. so they set the rules. Interesting vid.

That post makes no sense.

Shoe, you must be smiling on the inside, Chow being dropped is beneficial for you in your little RSS contest ?

This guy I guess only found out now about Mr. Chow being dropped from the rankings, when it happened about two months ago.

Google is the industry leader so the expect us mortals to follow them. The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world. What more can I say.

Oh great another comment that can be left open to about 10 different interpetaitons

Sorry for all the ranting shoe.

46 dillsmack

What about your crap-tastic off-topic comment?

47 mubin

which one? give me a better forum where to rant and I wil, the reason for posting in the comments was to make sure some of the readers knew what they were doing was make them look like idiots, much like what my impression of you is now. way. to. go. idiot.

48 ShoeMoney

mubin have you seen how hard i have been trying in this rss contest? have i done anything but announce it was taken place a week ago? Have you noticed how the footer of this site has been broken for like a month?

Im frickin busy man and this blog is about my 7th priority

49 Jay S

Fantastic view on Google. Really appreciated this vid. Thanks!

50 Web Hosting Reviews

Google has some major problems with their stance on paid links – namely:

1 – They can’t possibly enforce their ban on paid links with an algorithm, as it will clearly weed out lots of valid links, undermining the whole basis for their SERP results (trust based on links).

2 – The result of number 1 – they have to enforce these bans on an individual basis, which creates inequity in treatment. What gets site A first page SERPs gets site B thrown out of the index. Google might say that this is great, as it forces design for humans rather than search engines, but that’s not the real world. People have to be able to optimize their site to be found reliably.

Their outrage over paid linking is a bit much for me. Shoe points out 1 of the 2 big reasons why Google takes this stance – they don’t want to be gamed, because they lose credibility. The other half of the story, I believe, is that Google knows organic SERP manipulation through link buying could cut significantly into their AdWords revenue.

51 Clarke Internet Marketing

That was was a long video… but very entertaining, thanks :)

52 Nick Sullivan

I just think it’s better to try and make quality sites and services and really… not focus that much on SEO at all. I mean, apply basic elements etc etc but obsessing on it is really not a good thing, I think it’s better to obsess on viral entity, branding and quality. I get a very very small amount of search engine traffic, most are backlinks and other stuff. I just wouldn’t fuck with Google also. Why bother, you may be able to fool them for a little while, but look at their resources, money, team and all that. You put that all into account and it’s obviously only a matter of time before they figure things out, it’s a game of technical and intellectual catch up between SEO freaks and Google but fucking with them I think will ultimately lead to you getting kicked out of their engine, end of. But It’s definitely wrong that they punish John Chow and not BMW and big companies. It makes them look worse to me, if they did nothing, they would look complacent but the fact they punished… I guess, a ‘litte guy’ in comparison to BMW, it makes them look unfair, favorable of popularity and wealth and ignore their own rules for their own wealth.

53 Garry Conn

The John Chow story is such a prime example. Fortunately for him he can hold his own without Google…. and also even though he has been removed or manually adjusted down, what is left are thousands of bloggers posts that talk about him and provide direct links to his blog. So, all in all… its really not that huge of a loss for him.

The video was great man… I too am breaking free a lot and worrying less about what Google thinks of my blog and more about what my readers think. Thanks for the video man.

54 Bulbboy

10,000 YT subs is a huge amount in such a short time!

I think you should give your first subscriber a prize.


55 lyricsreg

In order to be able to make google look stupid, you must have a high-impact website. It cannot be accomplished with a website that gets an insignificant amount of visitors. If you are at the point where you CAN make google look stupid, you should … just to prove a point :)

56 Jonathan Volk

You have some great videos on youtube! Thanks. :)

57 Mubin

Shoe, wasn’t ripping on you. Was trynig to hate on the commentators. I know your a busy man bro RELAX!

58 Seo Next

Google is not doing good thngs this days, even one of our site is anned , with same content other big sites are running.

59 Seo Next

Ya if we whant to make sites never try to go against google presently.

60 LeGo

There is either a comment missing or the reply to comment was not handled properly… It makes the internet ranting hard to follow.

61 Gecko Tales

The paid links issue really ticks me off. Google tells Webmasters that if they want to be listed in the SERPS to get similar sites to link to you. Then they ban sites that do what they suggest.

62 ShoeMoney

I have been doing youtube stuff way before this blog ;)

63 Modern Worker

Damned if you and damned if you don’t, I feel your pain. Now there are rumors about non-paid link exchanges hurting ranks *sigh*

64 Gecko Tales

Google would love to get away from link pop completely. I’m sure they are researching day and night to add more social media to their algo.

65 Googlelady

But why he will be ranked well when someone broke their rules? If someone broke the rules of your company you will not kick his A**?

66 Googlelady

The best way to “Play their game” is to write to your users and not trying to get higher ranks. If you have a blog just write to your readers and forget about rankings (if it is new) for awhile.

67 Googlelady

Oooopss that will be hard to Mr Chow :P

68 Googlelady

everyone depends on search traffic when they first start. and 4% of his traffic is a lot believe me ;)

69 Googlelady

For my point of view, Google will not care about reviews but “trying to manipulate their ranks” and that is difficult to Google knows 100% about Mr Chow is because he mentioned and if he was doing what he did slowly I am sure this will not happened. But he got tons of links every week and I mean TONS.

70 Beauty Girl

People have started thinking of google as god .. the sole reason of this being their kind of monopoly in the internet arena.
Let us find a way to break this monopoly and make internet better for us.

71 John Loch

You made a few valid points, you speculated, you made a few valid points. Didn’t look all that great (you’ve done better vids :) ) but that’s life.

In the end Google does as Google wants. Kinda like your blog. If it serves your purpose to post about xyz, you’ll do so. They have the same disclaimer as you, just a little more convoluted ;)

72 Marc Eilbeck

great post. I hate the way google have that power but hey what can we do about it…

73 Ryan Trembath

all true. without the “Google” brand they don’t have much to roll on. $600 a share?

74 Wendy Piersall

Hey – can you turn up your mike next time you put up a great video like this? Even with my speakers turned up all the way, I only caught about 75% of what you said. ;)

75 Conversion Matters

Interesting take on the whole paid links issue, I like how you’ve stepped back to look at the bigger picture.

76 Carsten Cumbrowski

RIght, and that’s why did I titled my post about the paid links debate with Google at SEJ “Reign of Bread and Whip. The New Google Aristocracy”. Don’t make the “king” look stupid, if it is your “king” or zack.. and you will be about 12 inches shorter. :)

77 max

Cool, I am subscribin’ today.

78 bobby9101
79 MR Butts

Google is a joke… and matt cutts an even bigger one to think he and google will be stopping anything any time soon. Build backlinks and reach the top of googles great ego…. sorry ALGO

80 Web Hosting Reviews

The problem is the penalties for sites that aren’t trying to make Google looks stupid, but are honestly trying to improve their rankings. Google has this ill-conceived view of the internet – they think it exists solely for the purpose of being indexed by Google and that its rankings have some inherent goodness to them. Not the case. Google needs to realize that the internet exists in large part for commerce. It’s not an evolving encyclopedia that should be advertisement free.

81 Web Hosting Reviews

This comment doesn’t even make any sense. It’s like you take completely random words from your head and slam them together to make spam comments. Are you a native English speaker?

82 Vickywebworld

We should not worry much. SEO will take it course

83 Joeychgo

ive been a subscriber

84 Instant Community

Yup, especially with google working out new stuff for PR and paid links.

85 Hasan

I love you for that one! Muah

86 uttoransen

you know what, my spellings are bad! when i need to go to MR craw’s page! i type in jhon more often, and ends up reaching nowhere! so for most sites i usually go to google and type in and search and reach the sites!

But now since google was not taking me to john craw’s site so i used yahoo, and reached that site! now, for a lot of sites i use to search. i mean i always type textlinkads, instead of text-link-ads, i can’t make bookmarks for all the sites!

So, at the end of the day, google will sure lose, if they keep nuking the big guys!

87 Labrocca

Personally I think all these responses are just kissing your arse. I think you come off as just guessing and there isn’t much you really know. “don’t make google look dumb”…boy that’s not obscure!


I am very new to blogging and while I do want to be ranked well with Google I am with you that I am creating content for readers and not just for search. For me it goes back to what you say about being passionate for what you do.

89 Beauty Diva

very nice thoughts. there are lots of interesting aspects to google.

90 Chip

I’m looking forward to the day you will be able to advertise and monetize your YouTube account. Richness will come in waves.

91 Nate Hill

Looks good if there is more of that to come im subscribing!

92 Web Marketeer

Big Bad Google seems to be following the same path as Microsoft. The honeymoon period is over and more and more individuals are starting to be concerned about their overwhelming monopoly of the search market and their bully-boy tactics in enforcing their
agenda. No wonder so many of their whizz kids are leaving to go play with Facebook, inter alia.

93 Gotta get that Money!

Great to know that you are on you tube, never thought to check.

94 Frank Richard

Thanks for your interesting video, Google is clever anyway coz they have so many wonderful engineers.

95 Bispo

As far as I Know, and I was penalized very recently by google, it´s a matter of time for those who doesn´t follow goole terms to be penalized…

96 Kate Vickers

Great video! Thanks for posting.

97 8pets

I like you for that one! Muah

98 seo specialist

thanks for sharing this video, i just love it. Now days other search engines (like Bing or Yahoo) also improving their search algorithm and therefore it would be tough for Google to retain there visitors.

99 Chappie

This is absolutely bang on. Google is, ultimately, an advertising company, a business. It’s their house and they run it how they like. Too many people seem to have the wrong impression of what Google actually is.

100 Rhode Island Affiliate

Google needs some competition and then they will let anything go :P

101 Stephaine Lavesque

I’ve been reading the information on your site for quite some time now, just wanted to do a quick post and say thank you for all of the useful information you have been providing your readers all this time.

102 ARCHOS 7 Home Tablet

Ultimately I found the Archos 7 Android based tablet to be an interesting idea but had way too many issues to keep the unit, so I returned it.

103 town

I agree that search traffic isn’t everything. There are other sites than Google

104 free makeup

never make google look stupid :)

105 Toronto

Some things should remain unknown

106 Tactical SEM

When we have something as open sourced as the internet it’s nearly impossible to employ a perfect algorithm. There’s very little google can do for paid links, but in the end, only the naturally content rich sites are the ones who hold long term success.

107 Beauty Tipster

Interesting video! Its common that those with power never play clean with others, its a world sadness!

108 estetik

I am happy to find this very useful for me, as it contains lot of information. I always prefer to read the quality content

109 Diflucan cheap order online

There are certainly a couple more details to take into consideration, but thank you for sharing this information.

110 ek gelir

Good website.i love this post.Thank you…

111 Beauty Advisor

Don’t make Google stupid & don’t make your customers look stupid.

112 Natural Beauty

Nice information and excellent method of sharing. I really enjoyed this post.

113 ggaus

Great information and well presented, cheers

114 Beauty Diva

I like this post and the way you wrotte it.

115 Tim Miller

Thanks for your video Jeremy, totally liked it. I don’t know if Paid links through paid articles do really have huge impact to our blog negatively.

But i think we always need to be picky when it comes to choosing what websites that we should recommend on our blog. Linking to low quality SPAM blogs, say, with duplicate contents, then it’s definitely will be dangerous.

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