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“Pinterest needs to be removed from Google IMO” (reddit.com)
1155 points by obtino on Mar 18, 2018 | hide | past | favorite | 268 comments

I don't see why Pinterest does this to themselves. My main exposure to them is through Google image search and links to their site.

So my first several experiences were like this. It left me with a terrible first impression. It makes me wonder if the whole site plays games and tries to waste my time.

I usually don't sign up for an account the first few times I encounter a site, so in my mind it's a pretty critical time to make a good impression. Instead they annoyed me so much I've practically decided never to create an account.

The main exposure I get from Pinterest is only frustration.

When I click, accidentally, on a pinterest link on google images, I land on a site which does not work unless I enable some javascript. Once enabled, it'll proceed to load several images, none of which are the image I look for because the google result linked to some tag or search result. After the page loaded, I might be redirected to a screen that suggests I should get a pinterest account.

Pinterest is basically search result spam, it isn't what you're looking for but hey, you could send the Pinterestian Prince your data anyway!

Agreed on this. What's surprising to meis their success despite the logged in experience not being better at all.

We're getting married, so my fiancée is (obviously) using pinterest for everything - her dress, themes, you name it. And the wedding planner we work with uses Pinterest too, we (try) to share it with them so they get an idea.

Even such a simple feature as sharing a board is a nightmare and wastes 5-10 minutes in every calls we have so the planner can finally find the board. Or a crucial feature as "pinning" is even bad and obstructive. Be it with the chrome addon or whatever other system.

Really don't see how they got so popular and really wonder why no other competitor is entering the market and crushing them.

Network effect. Pinterest has claimed its niche (arts and crafts, wedding inspiration (the size of this niche never ceases to amaze me), home decoration, pictures of smoothies in mason jars (but never with a matching lid oddly enough), clothing, accessories, etc.), and has its share of loyal users. Any competitor would need to be at least twice as good to attract enough users for the network to shift to them.

My 2 cents : they are popular because they are pretty much the only ones in that pretty specific space.

It does not explain why no other company has tried to copycat them though.

Shout out to the guy that runs pinboard. He posts here sometimes (regularly? Rarely? Often?), and goes into his experience running a site like that by himself.

`idlewords, but that's that got to do with Pinterest?

The comment I replied to noted "they are popular because they are pretty much the only ones in that pretty specific space" while referring to Pinterest. Pinboard is a competitor, is it not? Not at the same scale, of course, but it is an alternative, a paid on at that, and is successful.

I guess I don't think of them as competitors. They're both social bookmarking sites but the interface and the way people use them seem very different.

Yup. Pinterest is less about saving the URLs/pages, than about curating a selection of pictures and visually displaying them in a fashion-magazine looking manner. Pinboard doesn't do that last I checked.

Actually, plenty of people use Pinterest as a way to save curated lists of URLs/pages. My daughters use Pinterest to make Christmas lists. my wife has used it to save interesting looking recipes. Sometimes the display is core, sometimes it's a nicety that makes it easier to browse.

I would hazard that the number of people looking to save bookmarks online easily is a couple orders of magnitude more than those looking for fashion magazine layout, at least.

Beyond that, it's pretty easy to slice up aspects of two companies so they are or are not competitors. I think Pinterest and Pinboard fairly clearly are (and since Pinterest is often mentioned along with Pinboard, I assume others think so as well).

A vast array of companies tried to copy Pinterest, after their usage began to soar. They all failed to gain user uptake. For a short while copying their layout was all the rage. People thought you could just copy the layout (as though that was the special thing), throw together the base features, and you might be the next Pinterest.

Copying & beating competitors doesn't actually work like most people seem to think it works. It's the same mistake people on HN have always made in claiming Uber can be smoked by a weekend MVP, and that they'll just face perpetual endless competition because it's so easy to do what they do.

It's dramatically more difficult to beat the existing competitor, even when they're mediocre, than it is to claim the initial territory (and doing just that, is extremely difficult).

To the extent your competitor is mediocre, you may only need a product several times better than theirs. If they're only slightly mediocre, you'll need a product 10x superior.

That's why the search engine wars were mostly a shit race of mild to severe mediocrity, until Google smashed them all with a 10x solution. Before that, they were all competing with barely better solutions and features. Excite? Lycos? AltaVista? Yahoo (Inktomi etc)? Who cares, it was mostly about who annoyed you the least, because the search quality largely sucked all around.

If you want to beat Pinterest, here's what you need to do, in no particular order:

- Produce a product that is leaps and bounds beyond Pinterest. A product that is slightly better, won't dent the market at all in this case. You'll waste years of your life getting to 100,000 users - what Pinterest accomplishes daily.

- Figure out how to get vast, endless media attention for a now rather boring product that has already been done to death, and for which a giant existing solution is already in place. The media has no interest, forget about that. And, alternatively, you don't have the tens of millions of dollars to bribe their attention. Free media attention is extraordinary for a hungry start-up: every time some media outlet ran an article about the latest outrageous thing (a kidney here, virginity there) to be auctioned on eBay back in the day, it was a boon to their growth.

- Convince millions of users to leave something they already know and are comfortable with. This is nearly impossible unless you're offering something extraordinarily superior. The product segment is mostly saturated by Pinterest now, so overwhelmingly you'll have to steal users from them.

- Plausibly raise venture capital. No VC firms want to back the 37th Pinterest clone. So you can forget about this, they consider that land already claimed. Once again, you'll need a radical new thing here, a 10x outcome, that blows them away versus what already exists.

- You'll need a lot of talented individuals to work with. You'll have to convince them to sign on to the mission - a truly challenging mission that will take years of grinding and struggle. All to work on a Pinterest clone. So there went your talented co-workers, they're not interested at all. They're interested in the next big thing, rather than cloning the last big thing. Can you build a product 5x or 10x better than Pinterest, and build it to scale, without a lot of talented people to do it with? Doubtful.

I don't think any founder that wants to fix a problem is going to talk about and saying 'making a clone'.

I agree with 90% with you, but a founder will never say the word 'clone' in a conversation with a candidate or VC. If you could buy directly ala Instagram shop button but for the web, you could have a chance. E-commerce can help a lot to bring people to your platform. But Pinterest is already doing Buyable Pins

Happy to help you share a board or pin from outside Pinterest. I've absolutely never had a problem with any of the things you mention. My problem with Pinterest is that it is way too commercial now with lots of links to buy and spam contained within images. I used to enjoy it but not so much now.

but you are the average HN user right? I'm sure I'd be able to share a board easily to you if I wanted to.

What I witnessed is constant struggle between my 30yo fiancee and our 50yo wedding planner. It happened multiple time, so there is an obvious issue either on the sharer's side or on the receiver side.

Look I know this is after the fact but it might help other people. You could just create one account and have the wedding planner log into the account. No sharing hassle involved.

I think a lot of their design is aggressively optimized for SEO and growth. Sadly though, this strategy seems to work (up to a point) even though the experience of individual users gets worse.

One of the things that makes me a little bonkers is when people A/B test, find something that works well for, say, 50% of the people, and then dust off their hands and call it done. Because 50% is a lot of people, so it must be good.

I'd rather that they ask, "Hey, is there something that would be good for the other half of the users?" Software being infinitely soft, we can often find ways to serve both groups.

If Pinterest were a person, we'd think it an asshole, always pulling a bait-and-switch and asking us to create an account in the same brusque way. How much would it really cost them to be more neighborly?

I had friends in Groupon who used this technique. They claimed that forced sign ups didn't really result in a high enough bounce rate, compared to the number of sign ups they got.

Data driven does a poor job of capturing user annoyance. Someone will tolerate being screwed a few times to get a discount. But after a while, it builds momentum.

Though in many cases, startups don't care. They just want to sell off their numbers and exit.

50% is overselling the success rate of login-walls from Google Images by a lot - probably multiple orders of magnitude. And I think you're significantly misrepresenting the A/B test's goal. It's not to find what works best for the most people, it's to find what works best for the company running the test.

If a login wall causes an account creation from 0.5% of people presented with the bait-and-switch, that's not compared to a 99.5% failure rate. It's contrasted with an account creation from 0.1% of people presented with the image they wanted with a "Click here to create an account" prompt in the corner, and it's five times as effective as that alternative.

The same story gets repeated here over and over again regarding the email newsletter sign-up form that steals focus halfway through a blog post. Yes, they increase your traceable readership more than anything else you could put in your blog (again, counting 1% vs 0.1%) . But there is a large percentage of the population who will close your blog permanently if you use them.

Yes, I made up an example for simplicity's sake. And my exact critique is that they don't work best for the company in the long term, because the people using them are often obsessively focused on the short term metrics.

The bait and switch may get them 0.5% signups instead of 0.1% for that interaction. But rarely do people ask, "What distinguishes the people who signed up? What effect are we having on the people who don't sign up? Can we serve those people as well?"

As you say, the long-term effect is pernicious.

> It makes me wonder if the whole site plays games and tries to waste my time.

They seem to be desperate for traffic. I've been using it for a while, but recently they've sent me a wave of spam emails "suggesting" to me various content which has no relevancy for me and is not connected to anything I've been doing. I've unsubscribed from all their mails (I hope so) but now I am hesitant to even use the site again, so that I don't get more spam sent to me.

My guess is a very narrow focus on optimizing certain metrics and a mindset that encourages "growth hacking" and any other means to reach those goals, even at the cost of everything else. *

They even described the design process that lead to some of their terrible UI elements in their tech blog: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=16226029

(* which, I suspect, is the kind of mindset spammers need to rationalize their actions.)

Most likely someone was told that his bonus depends on improving the number of sign ups. Which he then did.

Pinterest has no product. They only want traffic.

They seem to have gone to a lot of trouble to insert themselves between the site users visited intentionally to find what they were looking for (Google), and the site that actually provided what they were looking for.

They've essentially become a large MITM attack on Google Image results.

Edit: just tried a few arbitrary search strings on Google Images, it seems improved compared to the past few weeks/months, somewhat.

For some searches, Pinterest results didn't appear at all. For "esp8266 enclosure", only 1 out of 15 on the "front page" points to Pinterest, but the original image is still from Tindie, not Pinterest. The person who supposedly pinned that image describes themselves as "Creative Digital Marketing, Web designer, WebDev, crazy SEO".

Ok, maybe a real pin from a real person, maybe.

Then I decided to see what happens with a handful of more "NSFW" search terms. The number of Pinterest results varied but significantly increased overall.

For some terms, in the 3 rows of images visible without scrolling, there were 19 images, and 11 of them (57%) pointed to Pinterest. None of them were images originally posted on Pinterest, they all have a hover link to the original site.

However, even though Pinterest is providing a link to the original site on top of the image, clicking it doesn't always take you there.

A good bit of the time, Pinterest has chosen to redirect you to a "blocked site" page instead, and only after they have already displayed an image from a site that they deemed "inappropriate". And then shortly afterward a giant popup prompting the user to login or create an account filled the screen.

[1] (safe for work) https://i.imgur.com/XuOvwvi.jpg

Search for things like "Acorn Tattoo", and similar terms and you find pinterest spam is all there is in the google image search results.

Their behavior is eerily reminiscent of expertsexchange, back in the day. They had a similar high ranking for lots of things, but the result-pages were all horrid and non-useful to actual visitors.

Happily stackexchange surpassed expertsexchange, and I hope that something comes to kick pinterest from its niche too - one of only two sites I wish to fail (the other being linkedin, for similar evil reasons).

Replying to myself after doing some additional testing.

I've now seen multiple examples of Pinterest hosting images with the "original link" being a Google Images search result page, complete with the huge URL query string intact.

While it's possible users who don't know how to find the original URL for an image are pinning Google Image pages instead, the accounts that have pinned them do not look like real people.

It really makes it look like Pinterest is crawling Google Images for specific search terms, auto-generating pages to match the results, and then manipulating Google to get their own pages to show up in Google instead.

It should, but this also illustrates a problem with Google Search that they'll need to grapple with in the future. Namely, that while they should treat all sites equally, in practicality there's not really much incentive to on their part.

Think about it. Let's say Google does remove Pinterest altogether, banning the site as a punishment for 'gaming' the system.

What then? The people that do search for Pinterest will find it missing, and likely assume Google screwed up/their search engine is broken. They won't know Google banned the site or what for, they'll just think 'Pinterest should be coming up, it isn't, so Google is broken'.

And I suspect that underpins a lot of instances where Google gives larger more popular sites and services a slap on the wrist for using black hat SEO. Google knows that if they really did treat them 'equally', then the average Joe would think Google's search engine was a broken mess because it doesn't bring up what they expect it to.

However, on the flip side by not banning them or punishing them, you get stuff like this where it seems like large sites are allowed to break rules with impunity and smaller ones are hit with the banhammer for a single offence. It's an interesting conundrum.

> Let's say Google does remove Pinterest altogether, banning the site as a punishment for 'gaming' the system.

> What then?

Pinterest takes 2 days to write some code and start showing us the content that Google indexes and fixes the complaint. They start complying with the same rules that apply to us, get indexed properly, and everybody's happy.

It's not like Pinterest is set in stone and we can never change what it does.

I think you're looking at this in exactly the wrong way: Pinterest is already getting special treatment and it's positive special treatment. I think that any other site that didn't have the clout of Pinterest would get explicitly downranked for this kind of behavior if it became as apparent.

That's the idea OP meant.

Google lacks any incentive to screw with a site that has millions(?) of users, as it could have significant consequence, and so Pinterest gets away with what others wouldn't.

That’s exactly what op was saying.

No, it isn't.

remove them only from all search results that don't include the word pintrest.

Search for pintrest, you get pintrest. Search for "widgets," pintrist is excluded. Search for "pintrist widgets," pintrist is included.

Or better, just demote them to the very end of the search results. Occasionally there might be images from Pinterest that are not found elsewhere on the internet. If someone wants to scroll the image SERP down to page 6 (or whatever) it doesn’t hurt to show them there.

Pinterest. Not that spelling is important or anything.

Which is why they should have done it before Pinterest got so big in the first place.

And honestly I don't think any significant amount of people search Google images wanting Pinterest results. People want images, they don't care where they're from. AFAIK there is almost no OC on Pinterest anyway.

>AFAIK there is almost no OC on Pinterest anyway.

And this is the key point. By removing Pinterest from the search results the user doesn't lose almost anything.

This brings up a great point. Why does Google not just extract whatever information Pinterest is providing and provide that directly in Google Images as SERP? If none of the content in Pinterest is original, what value are they providing the user?

Pinterest is the "experts-exchange.com" of digital imagery, except EE at least had (gated) original content.

They're providing negative value by stropping the context from stolen images and repackaging them into mindless streams and ensuring that you can't get to the images without signing up.

> what value are they providing the user?

Curation. Pinterest is brilliant for some users and some uses.

Pinterest (re)hosts the images so I'm not sure what you're suggesting. That Google write custom logic that supposedly unrolls this indirection on this one site where the image sources already exist on other sites?

Is that farfetched? Does Google not have the engineering resources to detect the image canonical source (a la Tin Eye) and point to that instead?

I find that hard to believe considering the resources they’ve put into Content ID at YouTube for copyright infringement identification and takedowns.

The website the image was stripped from isn't even indexed.

But well put: If google wants to pretend it is quality material because it sits on a giant content farm they should indeed credit the original source for it. If they cant find it it should not be listed.

If it was text the entire content farm would be erased from the index indefinitely.

'...is almost no OC on Pinterest'

I think you are being charitable there?

> And honestly I don't think any significant amount of people search Google images wanting Pinterest results.

My guess is, Since search is Google's wheel house, they had this discussion, looked at the data, and found that many users do want it in their results.

Anecdotally, I myself dont care. Most of my image searches are to get an understanding what I am looking for. Some number north of 90% of the time, I dont click the images

> People want images, they don't care where they're from.

Right, which doesn't align with the incentives which push Google to follow copyright law.

> And honestly I don't think any significant amount of people search Google images wanting Pinterest results.

Sure they do, if the picture on Pinterest is relevant to the search term; they wouldn't have clicked on the thumbnail if it wasn't close to (or exactly) what they were looking for.

The issue isn't that people don't want Pinterest, it's that they don't want the closed nature of Pinterest, and even then, it's less an issue with Pinterest and more just a closed web problem in general. Consider certain IT vendors who won't even let you look at their documentation without being a current customer or handing actual information over to a Sales Rep and having it verified, or forums that hide their content behind logins or paywalls. Pinterest is a big target because it's big and has a lot of artsy stuff that might be useful for a simple project, but you can replace Pinterest with dozens of sites and the same rants would apply. The Reddit post to me feels like it's railing against an easy target rather than the actual problem of a consistently closed web with absurd demands for access.

Almost all the images on Pinterest are available elsewhere. If Pinterest results were not polluting Google images, the originals would surface easier.


I don't really see a problem with targeting the biggest worst abuser. Not everything has to be a one-shot solution to grand problems.

'...the originals would surface easier'

Yes, exactly. Try and find the original version of most images these days and you'll just go around in circles.

If Google really think Pinterest need to be in search results (I'm talking text based queries here) why on Earth do they need to return 3 results on page one, all leading to a Pinterest log-in page?

should replace the result~~s~~ with login/register links.

> What then? The people that do search for Pinterest will find it missing, and likely assume Google screwed up/their search engine is broken.

Would that be a problem for Google (or anyone else)? If a group of users specifically expects the results to come from Pinterest, they'd presumably be able to search on that site directly. For other searches, they'd presumably still use Google because there is no good alternative.

Additionally, as the reddit comment notes, the pinterest search results are technically against google's policies anyway as they require a login to be useful.

"...search on that site directly."

Not for an unbelievable number of people (according to my own anecdata.) There exist large numbers (extrapolating from aforementioned anecdata) of people who don't know you can just visit a website - they think it must first be "googled." I've witnessed on a single occasion an individual who accidentally went directly to facebook.com, didn't trust that they'd gotten facebook.com, proceeded to Google, entered 'facebook.com' in the search box, then selected the site from the search results.

I suspect (intuition via anecdata...) that much of the Pinterest's target audience has similar levels of technical awareness and ability.

There's definitely a large number of people who only visit sites through Google's homepage. Not the address bar or anything else (clicking links being the exception).

I worked this out by hearing about customer support calls for a new URL we had which hadn't yet been indexed by Google. All the callers having problems couldn't find the address bar. They thought the Google search box was it.

Not helped by it being the same thing in some browsers. I have the opposite problem - I regularly hit the ‘.’ rather than the space bar on iOS, and then the browser thinks I’m trying to go to that site rather than search for my string (words separated by a period). It’s annoying.

Even then the suggestion further down this thread could work: include pinterest results only if the search query contains the word "pinterest".

If people then still complain because they expect google to read their mind and provide pinterest results for completely unrelated queries, I honestly don't have much compassion for them.

(Though if google wanted to, they could even make allowances for those people via profiling - e.g., if you know user X has clicked on many pinterest results in the past, always permit those results in their queries.)

It almost seems like Google can read your mind at times. They should already know whether somebody is a heavy Pinterest user or not.

It might be a good habit. If you're typing URL manually, you can visit some fakebook instead of facebook and lose your password. But Google will correct you in this case.

Maybe. But it also happens the other way. If you don't block ads, anyway. The top result may give you malware, instead of what you want.

So it would be a good opportunity to learn the web, for those people.

Based on what I remember of their demographics, I would guess that you're right. What scares me is the number of LinkedIn users that are so unsavvy!

It's actually the problem that Google would've had to grapple with in the past when facing off against AltaVista/Lycos/WebCrawler et al holding a measly 5% market share. Google traffic is way way way way more important to Pinterest than Pinterest is to Google search results, and the power flows accordingly. Nobody is switching to Bing for Pinterest image results.

Pinterest shouldn't need to be removed specifically — the fact that they (or any aggregator, including say Reddit) reference some image should be a signal that the referenced source is a more valuable search result. (I think there used to be search engine that used a method like that.)

I think Reddit is different. Reddit often has valuable commentary that can be more relevant then the linked content.

However I agree that Pintrest shouldn't be removed specifically. Sites that don't display any useful content to the user should be removed.

I would imagine that Google can approach Pinterest with a deadline.

Take measures to ensure that visitors can see these images without an account after being linked to them, or lose x% of your traffic overnight.

I don't know what the problem is with implementing opt-in community block lists. This gives blocking functionality, and offloads the responsibility to communities that users can subscribe to.

"Show auto-filtered results"

> What then? The people that do search for Pinterest will find it missing, and likely assume Google screwed up/their search engine is broken.

Also, this is censorship. You can say _this_ censorship is good just because it censors something you don't like.

Google has done this kind of ranking adjustment for _years_. It's necessary in order to make sure the search results are relevant rather than hundreds of pages of SEO spam.

Google has removed large sites in the past. The one that comes to mind is RapGenius a couple of years back

Google shouldn’t (and doesn’t) treat all sites equally. This has been the core of their business since day one.

What then? The people that do search for Pinterest will find it missing, and likely assume Google screwed up/their search engine is broken. They won't know Google banned the site or what for, they'll just think 'Pinterest should be coming up, it isn't, so Google is broken'.

A problem that can be solved with a single line, “Pinterest results not included for x reasons” is no problem.

What rules is Pinterest breaking?

And what would it mean for Google to treat "all sites equally"?

The rule they are breaking, is that when you google for an image and they show the image, then you click through to the page.. the image is not shown. If it shows a bunch of images and you scroll down to see more it requires you to login and I never got any further than that because its just annoying, but one of the reddit users says you even have to search for the image with the original search terms again but on pinterest.

Even if you're logged in there's a good chance you won't be able to find the image at all. Due to outdated Google index or some other issue I'm not sure...super annoying though.

Pintrest is projecting Facebook attitude with an AOL product.

They give the googlebot one answer and the user a different one. My understanding is that is a no-no.

Pintrest and Quora fit in this weird category like Expertsexchange; they get high search ranking because of the questions, but don’t deliver the answers.

Call me crazy, but AOL in its prime was a bigger deal than Facebook. Facebook was capturing an existing market, while AOL was creating one. It took the social aspect of the web to the mainstream, while Facebook merely streamlined an existing paradigm. Be kind to thy elders.

The rule is simple. You can't present content differently to the crawler than to a user coming to your site from google.

This is why expertsexchange always had the answer at the bottom of the page and why most paywalls are disabled if referred from google.

Please read the link before commenting!

Don't assume people didn't read the link. It's against the guidelines here and frankly it's insulting. People can read the same article and still have different opinions.

The third sentence explicitly states what rule Pinterest breaks....

That's not one of Google's rules, as far as I can tell. Here are some of Google's rules: https://www.google.com/search/howsearchworks/mission/open-we...

Some might say that Pinterest's behavior is covered under the "Spam and Malware" section on that page, but clearly Google does not agree with that interpretation of Google's rules or else the search results would have been removed by now.

There are other sites requiring logins that appear in Google results, e.g. LinkedIn, and Google clearly doesn't see that as a rule violation either. If that was really a rule, Google would need to block a lot of major news sites as well, e.g. NY Times, WSJ, FT, Economist, etc. I'll believe Google's interpretation of their own rules, rather than someone's interpretation on Reddit.

> "Google search results reflect content on the web"

That's what's being violated. The GoogleBot gets the content, but not a human visiting the site. That's not what a user expects. That's why Pinterest and LinkedIn should be removed from Google search indexes.

Addendum We're not even talking about violating Google's T&C here. It's about how their ranking algorithm works. Try building a site and applying similar black-hat SEO tactics and watch your traffic disappear. Not for them.

You could make the same argument about the New York Times, WSJ, the Economist, FT, and many other newspapers of record: the Googlebot gets the content, and the users get a login page if they don't have an account. Should Google get rid of those as well? How can a search engine be useful if it doesn't include the most popular sites?

News aggregation operates under a very different model, and Google is constantly negotiating with news vendors.

>How can a search engine be useful if it doesn't include the most popular sites?

News has a relatively tiny set of providers. Information has a massive set of providers. Hence why Google can call the shots if you want to be in their engine. Pinterest only recently started getting ranked highly, owing to a weighting change, and it is a negative result for almost everyone.

You repeatedly keep citing the results themselves as validation that the results are correct. That isn't how it works, especially in the face of users saying "these Pinterest results suck and reduce my experience". Google constantly changes these things.

Most newspaper websites let you read N articles for free every month (/week/whatever). The WSJ is the major exception I'm aware of, but IIRC, they do actually show you the content if you click from the google results directly.

Cloaking -- presenting different content to a search bot than you would a visitor -- is against Google's rules, and many sites have been removed over the years for that reason. That they aren't currently removed hardly demonstrates that they've assessed whether it's allowed or not, and is specious logic.

If the search results lead to frustration -- and every pinterest result does -- that doesn't help Google. Ergo, those sites eventually get removed.

Webmaster Guidelines - https://support.google.com/webmasters/answer/35769

> Avoid the following techniques: [...] Creating pages with little or no original content [...] Cloaking

arguably apply to Pinterest to varying degrees. Specifically:

> Cloaking is considered a violation of Google’s Webmaster Guidelines because it provides our users with different results than they expected.

Different results than what I expect is 100% how I would categorise my encounters with Pinterest in Google results.

While they're at it please remove Yelp. The page that comes up on mobile does not appear to be the one Google indexes. It only shows the first sentence of a few reviews. Clicking Read More or More Reviews bounces you straight to the Google Play Store to install the Yelp app.

Yelp has some of the worst practices in the industry. Quora at least shows you some of what you want, while Yelp will stop at nothing to force you to log in and/or download the app.

If they did this, they would get slammed with lawsuits considering their own rating system competes with Yelp.

I suspect if Yelp clearly runs afoul of Google's policies (and "don't compete with Google" is not one of those policies) and the page rank demotions are explicitly documented to be because of chronic violations of such policies, then such lawsuits would be uphill battles at best.

While they are at it please remove LinkedIn. You can't actually view anything on any page without logging in. Why is it listed at all? Seems pretty deceptive to me.

Oh and w3schools.com needs to go below MDN because it's less informative.

Even today I wanted to read about transform-origin and landed on w3schools [0], where MDN article [1] is clearly superior.

[0] https://www.w3schools.com/cssref/css3_pr_transform-origin.as...

[1] https://developer.mozilla.org/en-US/docs/Web/CSS/transform-o...

I know it’s not a popular opinion, but I actually like W3schools. Most of their infamous errors are gone and they are usually more “to the point” than Mozilla docs, which are a sometimes too prolific and not as clear.

It's "to the point" in the sense of being a more concise basic introduction. But MDN hits the right balance of being comprehensive yet accessible in a way nothing else does.

Plus W3Schools' very name is an SEO hack, so their Google rank is built upon fundamental dishonesty.

How is "w3schools" an SEO hack more than any other name?

Because it implies an association with the W3C

All my web platforms searches are now "mdn <web-thing>" cause w3schools is never informative enough for me.

I actually have a couple of bash scripts just for this when I want to look something up specifically at mdn, and thought about expanding it to stack overflow and reddit.

What's that? Why yes I have heard the phrase 'bikeshedding', why do you ask? ;)

DDG's `!` searches are your friend:

`!mdn whatever` will search MDN. Similarly !so, !reddit and a whole lot more.


I like W3schools too, you're correct it's better these days. The site has helped me a lot when I needed to quickly get help usually with CSS or HTML. I like the "try it yourself" feature, and the examples are usually good. Not sure how good it is for JS and Jquery, I usually use Jquery.com and stackoverflow for JS.

The biggest problem with that site is that it's sometimes good. Sometimes. I never know that before I click if the required info is there or not or it's good enough or still relevant. With MDN my expectations are high but they are always matched.

That's why I installed the W3Schools removal chrome extension :)

Does Google manually adjust weights? While I agree with you, I always supposed that Google weights websites according to their own algorithms, not because some moderator thinks that it's less informative. If w3schools is higher, probably there are technical reasons, for example more users prefer it (may be content is easier to understand).

> The Manual Actions report lists instances where a human reviewer has determined that pages on your site are not compliant with Google's webmaster quality guidelines. Google's algorithms can detect the vast majority of spam and demote it automatically; for the rest, we use human reviewers to manually review pages and flag them if they violate the guidelines. Flagged sites can be demoted or even removed entirely from Google search results.


Specifically mentioned on that page is "Redirecting users away from the image on the site when the user clicks "view image" in Google search results" as an example of "image cloaking behavior".

They apply “manual actions” all the time.

Sure, so they need to improve the algorithms in this way so they produce the desired results. In other words, algorithmically driven manual actions.

I use the personal blocklist extension (https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/personal-blocklist...) just to block w3schools.

Exactly the same here!

When searching for things like that, I usually prefix my search with MDN, or even better, just use ddg for technical searches. These days, ddg is getting pretty good at showing results of typical coding/technical questions. If my search is for a very fringe/specific/new topic, I fall back to google (which you can from ddg with the `!g` prefix)

Back when I was writing a lot of C++ professionally I felt the same way about cplusplus.com vs. the (IMO much superior) cppreference.com. I'd love to be able to teach my search engine simple rules like "if a Wikipedia article matches my search, show it first" or "never show results from linkedin".

As a noob I actually prefer w3school's page to start ... and then I'd read MDN.

Maybe the noob clicking behavior is influencing the ranking?

Perhaps, but at least they don't require you to signup just to view a stupid image.

The examples w3schools have are useful, and MDN has less of them. But maybe that's my subjective experience. Still, I've made lots of use from both of them, and looking past the first hit should not be that difficult, especially for us programmers.

Edit: funny that people downvote this.

Both are good and I use both. There's something about the layout of w3schools I find nicer and quicker to read. Sometimes I spend about 10 seconds on the site and I'm done. That's the mark of a good UI when you're in and out in 10 seconds with the info you need.

While we're in the same vein, Google should remove the dumbed-down content altogether for anyone flagged as a "developer" by their algos, and replace it with man pages and source docs. MDN is a step up, but I usually skip past it, because the actual specification papers are most always better (except for ATOM and OpenLayers!).

Generally I prefer specifications too, but ever since the WHATWG-W3C split, it's become a choice between stuff that isn't yet implemented (WHATWG), and stuff that never was implemented (W3C). At least MDN documents accurately what one major browser supports, and includes compatibility tables for others.

LinkedIn is one of the top sites for dark UX patterns. It is 100% purposeful, just like Pinterest, and designed to increase the all important "engagement" metric.

Does anyone actually ‘engage’ in way other than trying to block their spam? Every 6 months or so they seem to break through and the crap piles up. I was just fighting them off this morning.

Yes, 100s of millions of people around the world.

Millions of new posts, job searches, private messages and other activities take place everyday. They do have plenty of spam and a terrible UX but that doesn't mean the site and community is anywhere near empty or useless.

I think so. Not many, but I have seen friends make posts on Linkedin.

IIRC, they were about some technical topics, similar to what you'd expect to see in a blog. Why they close to use Linkedin I don't know, but apparently it does happen.

As a non recruiter that isn't looking for a job I just find it useful for looking into people from 3rd parties I am currently working with.

Things such as who else they work with, their exact position in their company, where they have worked in the past.

All the social features bolted on are useless to me.

The most important rule to use LinkedIn is to never ever log in. Or if you do, do it on a computer and shhh stop pressing those buttons. Just do the minimal and leave.

People take spam for granted. Most people have more unread spam in their gmail mbox than _all_ of my mail archive.

And how about Google finally do something about Quora's aggressive abuse of their quality guidelines:


Quora presents a very different site to Google than it does to the reader ultimately. Google intentionally, knowingly ignores this fact and has for years. They could manually penalize Quora for breaking Google's search quality guidelines in numerous ways and they choose not to.

A user can't freely browse Quora page to page, whereas Google can. Presenting a different site to Google than you do to the user, is about as direct of a violation of their guidelines as you can get.

AFAIK, you always get the same page that was shown when coming from Google results. That IMO is enough - what is shown in the search results is an accurate reflection of the page you reach. Requiring that subsequent navigations within the site are also the same seems excessive (as you don't have the context of a results page that would make it seem misleading) and would be an overreach on Google's part IMO.

The Google spider has an entirely different experience, when going from page to page on Quora, than what the user does (someone not signed in).

Google hammers any normal site that gets caught presenting a fundamentally different experience to the user than they do the spider. Google is not unaware that Quora, Pinterest and LinkedIn present different experiences to the bot vs the user, they knowingly allow it for giant services. That's the hypocrisy and double standard.

That’s because the policy isn’t derived from first principles, it’s a flexing of relative muscles. Google knows that small sites don’t have any choice but to comply with their guidelines. They also know that if they start filtering out LinkedIn results, if people are looking for something they expect to find on LinkedIn, they’ll go and search LinkedIn, possibly even before they search Google. Google will not allow that to happen.

Also, Google doesn’t also compete with those companies. I would bet if it were someone who they were competing with on another vertical , they’d be enforcing this policy.

Quora is shit anyway, StackOverflow&Co is the superior platform.

I agree generally speaking. Quora has raised $452 million in venture capital. It's incredible frankly. There's no actual sound business model there and never has been (which is why eight years later they still don't have a functioning business and are living on VC, while being subsidized by Google abusing its own search policies).

No sound business model? Quora has a sound business model. The same model as many VC backed SV companies.

No, it's not to simply sell ads. You build something slick and shiny, then you pump VC money into it and you keep hyping (otherwise known as "pumping") until you can get numbers that look good. You can just spend that sweet, easy VC money to buy users and spend a dollar to make 10 cents because of that "growth" you are buying.

Then, when those numbers you are buying (and also all those fake accounts you are ignoring) start looking really good, you go public, the VCs make out like bandits and all those institutional and private suckers buy those bloated shares, trade places with the VCs and slowly ride the shares back down to zero where they belong.

Do you have an example? You speak as if this is a very common pattern, but I can't think of any good examples. I can think of some that look like they might fit this pattern if they were to IPO, but that's a big if.

Groupon IPO'd at $28 a share. Currently trading at around $4

Zynga IPO: $23. Now around $3

Snap $22 ... ~$16 (LA not SV)

Blue Apron $10 ... ~$2

Box plummeted more than 50% before coming back up closer to the IPO price but has almost never exceeded the IPO price since inception.

And there are a lot more that are newer and still riding the capital injection from the IPO (like twitter).


> Quora has raised $452 million in venture capital

Wow, really? I figured they're a bit fancier, more serious version of Yahoo Answers. I wouldn't have thought they'd have any venture capital at all.

A lot of their funding is from Adam D’Angelo’s personal piggybank.

if you 3rd party log in w/ your google account you can browse pages the same as the spider. quora knows the google spider is the google spider, so they've got a pretty good argument of equivalence there... plus you can still open links in a new incognito tab if you want to bypass registration like I did for years (kinda clunky though, & I was definitely feeling annoyed w/ them at times too)

Can we also ban Elsevier and get Google to replace their links with Sci-Hub links?

On the version of Internet from the 90's?


Could anything like that happen on the CommerceNet, post EME (Encrypted Media Extensions)? (Sept, 2017)

Hardly. (And your name is now on a list for suggesting something so subersive, citizen.)

Google didn't exist on the version of the Internet from most of the 90's. :)

Those few years of overlap were epic.

Fairly sure google isn't going to promote pirated content over above-board content, regardless of how a large part of the community feels about it.

ScienceDirect articles shouldn't be indexed unless they have a readable abstract. I realise that isn't quite where you're going though ;)

It’s also a trap if you forget you’re logged in and the user immediately gets notified you viewed their profile.

There's an 'anonymous mode' setting which doesn't tell people when you view their profiles. I'm not sure how it works vs. the 'see who viewed your profile' perk that they offer in their premium accounts.

If you come with a google referrer you can still see the basic information of a profile.

Even if that's true, that means LinkedIn is presenting a different site to the reader than they are to the search engine spiders, which breaks Google's guidelines and should be heavily penalized accordingly (as it would be for any mortals).

Google can spider every page freely, going from link to link without having to sign up. A regular user can't. Where's the penalty from Google for that? Why is so much LinkedIn content indexed when the user can't have the same experience as Google does? It's very blatant hypocrisy.

I haven't found this to be true in the last few months

Agree. On my profile page I have option to make it ‘public’ but still requires login to be seen. It’s completely deceptive imho.

There is an extension for Chrome named "LinkedIn for Unregistered Users" that works on the basic profile page.

They didn't used to require this, unless I'm mistaken that started post Microsoft acquisition.

> You can't actually view anything on any page without logging in

I believe you can, actually, in some cases. It's just most of the time they try to lock you out with a login screen.

And while they're at it, any news sites that hit you with a paywall when coming from Google results.

Sometimes you can, and find out personal information or that used to be the case not long ago. I don't know under what conditions it takes but it's a bit like some news paywalls, I think. Incognito tabs won't work.

And Facebook.

In days of old it was pretty easy to ban a site from your Google search results. It looks like they have removed that function.

I wonder why? I know I liked having certain low value (to me) sites not clutter up my results.

A little article about the feature, sorry it is going to try to throw an interrupting DIV at you– https://searchengineland.com/google-block-sites-feature-1464...

It's in the article you linked to, but I suppose Google expects everyone to use their Personal Blocklist Chrome extension now: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/personal-blocklist...

One more reason for Google being a very scammy advertising company (they stopped being a search company years ago):

You can not blacklist entire TLDs, just individual subdomains.

Thanks to ICANN (and others?) there is hundreds of TLDs that are 100% full of spam. And they all are able to game the system.

Google has lost the SEO War IMHO.

If they are not willing to innovate they should be broken up via anti-trust.

It seems the extension is only half-working.

The "Block foo.com" links don't appear in the search result anymore, but if I visit the website and block it through the extension pop-up they are then eliminated from the search results in future searches.

Ah, so they removed it to peddle their Chrome browser.

This kind of extension is available for every browser.

They are usually broken because Google often pushes shady obfuscated updates.

IIRC the OFFICIAL "Personal Blocklist" was broken for a long time due to this.

AFAIK there's still no way to block entire TLDs.

So basically Google doesn't give a shit about you!

I used to use Pinterest regularly. It was a good way to capture ideas and share them with others. Now I cringe whenever I accidentally click on a Pinterest link. The product is dead to me, there is zero chance I'd ever willingly install or open the app.

It's strange to see what was originally a useful tool turn into well-funded SEO spam.

A complicating factor in all of this is the unfolding anti-trust cases against Google and other large digital platforms (see: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/02/20/magazine/the-case-against...). Choices that Google might have once made to improve search results for users are now under extra regulatory scrutiny. I imagine Google executives would be very careful about making any moves that could be cast as freezing out competition, even if that competition is abusing Google's platform.

I hate this business model of using your audience to steal other sites content. Why doesn't Google link directly to the source of the content instead of Pinterest anyway? Maybe they don't care; they did invent AMP, which has some parallels with the way Pinterest works.

Anyway, when I started using DuckDuckGo on my phone to get away from AMP - I noticed that whenever I search for recipes on DuckDuckGo - they generally link to a site called Yummly which is even worse than Pinterest. Please complain to DDG about this if you care!

And speaking of searching on my phone, Apple won't even let me change the search engine string to use "encrypted.google.com" which would have gotten me Google results without the awful AMP links.

My point in rambling on about all these different topics is that none of these asshole corporations seem to want to let me have control over anything. I don't want to live like this. Generally, when I get annoyed, I just stop playing their game. At this point I have stopped watching TV and I have left Facebook, Twitter and Reddit and I hope that you do too.

I agree with you. You have to log in to every single website for the 'personalization sake'. I hate personalization and the login.

The most infuriating case is the reverse-image search. When I use reverse search for an image I'm trying to find a source or a complete version or context for an image flying about on social media.

And what I get is often a solid wall of Pinterest hits providing zero info.

>The most infuriating case is the reverse-image search.

Exactly, that is also in my experience when it is the most frustrating.

On "normal" searches (let's say searching for an electronic device of some kind, hoping to find the manufacturer/support/specs) what I find increasingly disturbing is the number of links for Amazon offerings.

I always thought that presenting different content for Google Search Bot and users is bannable offence. Not so much for big businesses, it seems.

That's correct, it is for normal sites. At a minimum it will get you a dramatic downranking that will practically remove all of your content from Google. LinkedIn and Quora are both protected from those rules for example, as with Pinterest. It's Silicon Valley back scratching.

It's also a very clear abuse of the Sherman Anti-Trust Act, in my opinion. As anti-trust moves in on Google in the coming years, this should be held up as one of many examples of persistent market abuse and consumer harm (anti-competitive behavior, using the monopoly to restrict consumer choice).

I search for a lot of DIY stuff and frequently the image search results are on pinterest. Often the underlying link is shown as pinterest and not the original link (presumably because someone saved it from pinterest instead?) and I can't figure out the fucking original site.

Pinterest in search results is awful garbage, it seems.

To me the simplest solution would be to add 'Stop showing domain' in the drop down arrow under where they currently have 'Cached' in search results. It would be useful to users and also help Google understand when a site is annoying a bunch of people.

...Or is this an opportunity for an extension someone wants ot build where you can select sites/domains and it auto injects somnething like -site:pintrest.com into all searches.

There is Google's own "Personal blocklist" extension that does exactly that


It doesn't actually.

The problem with Pinterest is in image results - the extension does nothing for them.

Second, the extension no longer works properly as it hasn't been updated in years.

LinkedIn requires logging in because the Supreme Court rules they couldn't really stop us from scraping public profiles. Forcing us to login makes it easier for them to control who has access to what content.

IAAL. There's been no Supreme Court ruling on the matter, only a district court decision ruling that the CFAA can't be used to charge scrapers with a crime. And that case is currently being appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals (hiQ Labs v. LinkedIn, case no. 17-16783).

(thumbsup). But that's my overall take.

This makes no sense to me. Anyone willing to scrape a profile will create dummy accounts to do so. And even if this step somehow prevented data scraping, the network effect will make it extremely hard to compete with LinkedIn.

It is much more difficult to pretend to be a real person with a real job and real employment and education history with real connections.

Isn’t this the best practice for, like, everyone?

Name one social network that lets you view its content without a significant reg wall being displayed.

You can’t see a single tweet without logging into twitter.

Browsing Facebook? Good luck seeing past that login box that dominates half the browser screen.

Want information about a restaurant on Yelp besides its address? Better login.

Not sure why Pinterest is being singled out here.

Adding -site:pinterest.* to the search works too.

I agree that it's quite annoying, but you can already remove it yourself from the search results by adding "-site:pinterest.com" in the query.

I don't want to do that each time, plus pininterset.in or .br will takes it's place.

Do `-site:pinterest.*` to block all domains.

But I agree, I also don’t want to have to do that every time.

You can use pinterest.

Will this allow different service to get into same space and then we will do "-site:pinterest.com -site:random.com"? Maybe than there will be space for new search engine that will do it for us?

A few weeks ago I shared something very similar from r/Showerthoughts [1].

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=16220638

That's a good exchange between user 'jquery' from Pinterest, assuming they're who they say they are, and user 'xg15'. Nice work raising the issue of nag screen and non-dismissable modal.

> "I'm searching for a specific piece of technical hardware "

What specific piece of technical hardware shows up anywhere near the first page of results in Google that's from pintrest? I can't think of a single time I've seen pintrest in the search results and I search for various technical things all the time? Just curious since this surprises me. I thought pintrest was non technical stuff usually.

I'm a hobbyist woodworker.

I was recently searching for an unusual wood-joint, and I had to give up because the google search results were absolutely polluted with pinterest.

Yep. I've encountered this way too many times. And you'll find the picture you're looking for and it will only be on Pinterest. Then you click on to Pinterest and there is zero context for the picture. WTF? No links. Nothing. I'll never understand Pinterest.

It's a site which allows stolen images to be shown. Showing the context (their origin) would prove that they are stolen, so they don't show it.

It really poisons the results of searches.

it s amazing how many people use it for so many different subjects. or are they paying people to tag images?

It's amazing that people have different interests? Why, it's almost as if they were different people.

Did you try using search operators?

unusual wood joint -pinterest.com

- searches google for "unusual wood joint" minus any results from pinterest.com

Try `-site:pinterest.com` to remove any results from the website, rather than any results that contain the text "pinterest.com". A minor distinction, but one that could change your results slightly.

There have been occasions while trying to filter results from reverse image searches where excluding both Pinterest strings and domains had no effect in my experience. (There's also the problem of Google not searching for a specific string when even double quoted but that's a different one of the search engine's annoying quirks of late).

Interesting! Good answer, thanks :-)

A bunch of arduino and other small easy beginner hardware is stuff that comes to mind. Since pintrest is about cataloguing project type things it can actually be quite relevant. Unfortunately.

Also Interesting! Good answer, thanks :-)

I'm doing research on the GRiD compass and ibm leapfrog and pintrest completely (and uselessly) saturates my search results.

I say don't get rid of it but give me the option to remove it from my search. There's a bunch of sites I would rather not see in my search all the time. Yes, I know I can do a custom search but I'd be happy to have a "not see x domain in my search" option. If I remember right there were other search engines in the past that had the option.

Come on Google give me the option.

From the Reddit comments:

This extension can block domains from Google search and it's made by Google. https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/personal-blocklist...

Unfortunately it doesn't work on image searches.

good tip thx!

There were some ways to block Pinterest continuous pestering for subscription, but it got annoying and rather than supporting a model I consider unfair to the users I removed them from my surfing list.

It should also be noted that most problems I read on the commentary here would be easily solved if Google re-enabled the discussion filter they conveniently removed years ago to prevent users to filter out commercial sites from their queries. That move was pure evil and thanks to it searching has become harder than before.



Some people in this thread are comparing the situation to that of news site paywalls and noting the recent change in google image search. I think there is something to the comparison and it highlights the fundamentally different opinions about the purpose of a search engine:

Users want a search engine to find information they are looking for.

Businesses and sites want a search engine to advertise which information they could provide - but not lead directly to the pieces of information in question.

I think it's worth to make this divide visible and start a discussion which kind of search engine we'd like to have.

Here's what I use to remove bad results:


Unfortunately it doesn't work on image searches.

Just use -site:pinterest.com

Problem solved

Googlers with the power to change things; if you're reading this you will make many people happy and return utility to google searches that currently end up with captive images and no context.

There's a problem bigger than Pinterest here: images AND any content that is not where Google expects them or can link to. The "infinite scrolling" fad contributes to this as there is no longer a page to link to. Google and Bing should penalize sites for making it difficult to link to specific images and content.

For example, they can create a "2 page down" rule. If it takes more than two presses of the Page Down button (or equivalent per mouse/finger) to see indexed content, then penalize their rank score.

what i'll never understand is "why a wall?"

why not just use a non-blocking banner at the bottom or top of the page? the only thing a wall does is piss people off since you are blocking the content that they came to see and it results in backlash like this? besides... isn't the whole pinterest model about getting exposure for the images that people post and getting people to sign up? i think that who ever is in charge needs to rethink what they are doing.

I haven’t had any of these problems while using DuckDuckGo.com

Yeah, I've been sporadically trying them out for many many years and never lasted a week, until last year. I use DDG exclusively since half a year now and rarely even feel compelled to use !g google redirect. Congrats @yegg and the team!

I tried the same but I still find myself using !g all the time when I really want to find something.

I love DDG, but

1) there are plenty of Pinterest results in DDG image searches.


2) there are plenty of irrelevant results in the image search (above [IBM leapfrog] returns many that aren't about the IBM leapfrog)

3) You have to clicky each image to bring up the card to find out what site it's pointing too. The site isn't shown in the status bar when you hover on the image link. Two of these links go to Pinterest:


bing images or yandex images have less spam imho

Just A Bookmarklet that removes fixed elements like annoying signup overlays:

javascript:(function()%7B(function () %7Bvar i%2C elements %3D document.querySelectorAll('body *')%3Bfor (i %3D 0%3B i < elements.length%3B i%2B%2B) %7Bif (getComputedStyle(elements%5Bi%5D).position %3D%3D%3D 'fixed') %7Belements%5Bi%5D.parentNode.removeChild(elements%5Bi%5D)%3B%7D%7D%7D)()%7D)()

I have an account on Pinterest because I like the service but having to sign-in for the simplest of things surely bugs me. Sometimes I just want to see one image and I end up having to navigate a bunch of sign-in pages just to see something. Recently I've found myself skipping Pinterest pages just because of the hoop jumping that signing-in creates.

Meanwhile perhaps the Personal Blocklist by Google ads-on for Chrome can help?

Not sure if it works on image search also.


Whether it works or not, if you think a bit about it, you need to use a google product (chrome) to correct a dis-service that google is making.

Along with istockphoto and the majority of stock photo sites for deceptively using the word "free".

I have an filter to hide pinterest from my image search results. All the white space, it's fantastic.

for ublock origin it's `##a[href*="pinimg"]` to filter on google image search.

But google offers the option to put a minus signal before the name of the site you do not want receive results from. Is a filter better than this?

search: concrete+houses -pinterest

My filter is part of the adblocker and kicks in every single time. That's way better, no need to remember adding it.

Been saying this myself for a while now and reporting Pintrest links when I can be bothered. Complete abuse of the system to use it as the top of their funnel and as usual people who advocate the service don't even realise it's doing this awful behaviour.

The way to exclude Pinterest from your search results, directly from the search box, is `-site:pinterest.`. It excludes all* Pinterest domains, but not other pages that mention it.

But I agree Pinterest should be completely removed by default.

Quora too, please.

What's the issue with Quora?

Is there a Firefox extension that can remove Pinterest links from Google search results?

It really is infuriating when I click them and get a signin page over a bunch of images that seem to have no relation to what I searched for.

as a workaround, if you get very polluted results on a particular Google search, you can add the search term "-site:pinterest.com" without quotation marks to your query, thereby narrowly excluding it.

Same could/should be said about Lyst when it comes to fashion.

Another way to look at it is that you need Pinterest results in google image search in order to help finding content on Pinterest that infringes your copyright.

How many users does pinterest have? Is it popular and still growing? Why are they not going public yet?

I have never knowingly gone to Pinterest and so don’t know much about it.

When I get a Pinterest login popup, I just click the button at the bottom that says "Not now". Then I can browse the images.

It may be unrelated but what I find annoying is how pinch to zoom is so broken for Google image search using Safari on an iPhone.


I for one really dig Pinterest for my artsy hobbies. It's like a internet-curated image search with some quality assurance.

Love it.

So I'm probably not the only one who adds "-pinterest" to my searches. Never signing up for pinterest.

All my google images searches now include "-pinterest". This has only recently been necessary. Why?

Monopoly and complacent governements

And the worst part is, I don't even understand WTF Pinterest is.

[what I want to search] -site:pinterest.com

Someone gave an example of searching for "IBM Leapfrog" and getting numerous Pinterest results.

I tried that search and only got one Pinterest result in the top 10.

I had no problem getting the text and images using a text-only browser. Could Javascript be the enabler for this Pinterest/Google annoyance?

Here is a quick little script to dump all the text from a Pinterest page; note how much is devoted to SEO and ads. .jpg URLs are wrapped in anchor tags for convenience.

    curl https://www.pinterest.com/pin/509469776569152019/ \
    |exec tr '<' '\12' \
    |exec sed 's/, \"/\
    /g;/\":/!d' \
    |exec sed '/ \"/!d;2s/^/<pre>/;
    /\.jpg\"/{s/\"/<\/pre><a href=\"/3;
    s/\"/\" style=margin:40px >viewjpg<\/a><pre>/4;};
    $s/$/<\/pre>/' > 1.htm ;

    firefox file:///1.htm ;
With respect to LinkedIn, here is an amusing experiment to test the theory that your time means nothing to some web developers: Try signing up for a temporary account with a 10-minute email address from 10minutemail.com. LinkedIn will not inform you that this is an unacceptable email address. LinkedIn will proceed to show you Google ReCaptchas for at least 10 minutes, and perhaps longer.

Some throw away email sites accept incoming email on any domain, so if you have a spare one you can just point your MX record to the site and use that as a throwaway email. I believe most sites don't do DNS lookups when checking for scrap email addresses.

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