@jasonjm75 @randfish feel stupid in retrospect - gonna stop - but I hope google revisits how ALL lyrics sites do SEO! our competition is... doing some ULTRA shady stuff! I have no doubt in my mind that they pay for links
I actually thought rapgenius was a good idea solely because the alternative was spammy almost like before stackoverflow. So yes it is wrong in every way to manipulate the system but how can you get noticed if others are doing it. If anything they shined a light on the problem and the better information should win in google which is fair.
I really don't buy this post hoc justification of RapGenius's actions. I understand the world is a complex place where we often have to make compromises, but saying "Poor RapGenius, forced into using black hat SEO" is kind of ridiculous. These guys (or at least the guy in charge of "growth hacking") enthusiastically made quid pro quo deals for backlinks.
I try to be polite on the Internet, but all I can say is fuck that.
> In all fairness, rapgenius does have some of the best content and it really is the best information for lyrics.
I agree... which is why it's a shame that I'm going to look elsewhere from now on.
I don't understand why you would be willing to abandon that because a claim (although it seems to be justified) that they might be breaking a rule created by a corporate entity that is often used to enforce their own agenda - putting Google+ results up top in results seems much, much worse than this to me!
How can the proprietary Google ranking algorithm be such holiness that a simple infraction causes such vitriol?
I guess I see Google search as this key entry point into the Web. By using backlinks as input for ranking results, Google is tapping into the power of social proof to organize this massive amount of information. When you cheat that system -- when you make deals for backlinks -- you're undermining the integrity of this system, and you're degrading the quality of people's interactions with it.
I might just be overly sensitive about this, but I really dislike when people cheat systems to gain an advantage.
In fact, you or I might not have ever even learned about Rap Genius to begin with without antics like this!
Unfortunately the best content doesn't just win. Rules often favor the people already in power and who abide by the rules - or broke the previous ones to get there. Every "system" is flawed in the same way that connections and money are a "cheat" to help you out in life.
These guys weren't always at the top of results but they managed to get there, and I still recommend the service - I've never recommended another lyrics site in my life.
If breaking rules got them to where they are, I'm glad because damn is it a superior service to everything else out there.
In the entire scheme of things, if RapGenius gets penalized, and their rankings/traffic plummet, and they go out of business, that's a very very small price to pay. If you're Google, fighting this type of spam requires a TON of resources, and they've already done a great job of discouraging it (ppl are actually paying others to remove links now).
I originally asked because he seemed to be personally offended that they may have gamed a system put in place by a private company that has financial motives besides just serving you the best content.
rapgenius might say here, 'don't hate the playa hate teh game son!'
> rapgenius might say here, 'don't hate the playa hate teh game son!'
That's a nice phrase, but I think I'm going to go ahead and hate both.
Well, or Stack Overflow managed to flourish without resorting to those tactics and getting found out.
[subs - please insert dramatic chipmunk here]
Just announce your _mea culpa_, and stop doing it. And, if you need to adopt strategies that do boost your ranks -- _which, given that RapGenius is a great service_, I don't think is long-term necessary -- avoid the patently obvious ones.
You have the power to put these guys out of business, or give them a break and help them find a way to promote their business in a more "ethical" way.
I hate spam as much as you (founded/exited Defensio), but I think it'd be awesome if you took the unconventional approach, had a call with them and gave them a break to whatever extent you deem appropriate.
thanks for taking care about this.
Both sites exchange tweets with each other. Even GotBars' Twitter description says "We showcase strictly #HipHop & R&B lyrics, working closely w/ @HotNewHipHop to shed new light on the bars of your favorite artists."
In all honesty though, Rap Genius is not the only lyrics website breaking Google's rules. The problem is an epidemic and RG only scratches the surface.
Hilarious.."growth hacking" post aka link exchange nonesense lol
what happens if someone is caught manipulating the SERP like this? Does google automatically ban this practice? Why wasn't this caught before? They are backed by $15 million dollars I can't believe they'd resort to this.
RG has seemingly generated a unique URL w/<title> for each line of each of each song listing. Google slurps these up and gives them prominent SERP rankings, though the links are all just doorways redirecting to the main song page. (Albeit, redirecting to an anchor at the lyric queried, with highlighting effect and annotation popup to boot. Pretty friendly UX.)
Thus one song with a remix or two might become 469 search results:
Having multiple urls that go to the same place will get you penalized for duplicate content in a heartbeat.
They should actually specific a canonical url for each specific line-number url.
So, I don't think it's a "growth hack"--I think it's an oversight that may cost them.
What am I missing?
Link to HN discussion: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6904224
So while we're sitting around going "OMG!!! What a bunch of douches!!!", they're sitting on $15 million and thinking...actually I don't think they really even care what we think...lol.
When I saw that video, it was obviously a send-up.
See this - their interview with Ben Horowitz from February 2013:
Compare the two videos - notice something?
I have no idea why, but these guys seem to invoke HN-fury like no other...lol.
Personally I don't even like rap music, and I can't stand people like that (whether they're putting it on or not), but I have to tip my hat to these guys, they're smart, driven, they have capital and they've actually gone out and accomplished something.
3 founders, all wearing shades indoors. They're not movie stars and what they are doing is somewhat trivial yet they've trumped themselves up a new level with their sleezy tactics. All I can say is that gp invested in immaturity.
Furthermore, it's easier to be a douchenozzle with shades on, because eye contact tends to make one more susceptible to the crowd's feelings.
But then, as my wife says, I have terrible dress sense...lol.
It's fashion - you don't need to get it (and I certainly don't). It's a subjective thing, so to each their own.
And to go on about how they're "douchenozzles" (is that even a word?), or their "boorish debauchery" sounds like you're just looking to be offended.
It doesn't harm you directly how these guy dress, or how Justin Bieber dresses, or does his hair, so I don't see the point of working myself into a sweat over it.
Actually, quite frankly, I don't think they give two cents what we say about them...lol.
But even money aside, they've managed to actually accomplish something tangible, so for that they have my respect.
If there is a point to criticize them on, it would be that they are making fun of rappers and rap/hip-hop culture, the same culture they are no doubt trying to appropriate to the tune of many millions I would guess.
Their tactic may not be to your liking but they aren't the first to adopt characters as a way to promote their business.
As I said, the critic I have of them is that they're slily indulging in stereotypes and I am surprised they haven't been called out on that.
You had better believe that there is room in fashion for clothing without utility.
Being able to be offended by somebody wearing sunglasses is a problem you are going to have to work on. The inability to tolerate the existence of those who are unlike you is a personal failing.
Wear sunglasses indoors and be an asshat, it isn't my problem. A basic facet of communication is to look at those you speak to in the eyes. Maybe you're too far nerd/asspergered or swag-frat to understand. It's alright, one day you'll cope with a thing called 'logic' and 'basic human decency.'
If he is actually serious:
Sorry, making retard jokes is not funny - heck, the term retard isn't even politically correct last time I checked - nor is making jokes about Asperger's syndrome funny...
Still, unlike you, I don't really care if you make jokes I consider unfunny shrugs. Each to their own.
However, it is called "hypocrisy" when you manage to inappropriately insult two minority groups in the process of calling somebody else out for being inappropriate.
A large majority of hackers have aspergers. A friend of mine, the famous hacker Captain Crunch, aka John Draper, is immensely talented yet has problems understanding normal human communication schemes.
It's possible that Crito has aspergers or is a swagtard like the Rap Genius guys. If he has aspergers, it's perfectly reasonable for him to not understand the point I'm making as his ability to pick up on nuances of human communication would be flawed.
In the swagtard case, he needs to defend his habit of wearing glasses indoors, otherwise his self-image would immensely suffer, and his ego would shatter. That's worse than death for those who judge themselves by their ability to be cool.
So how can you compare what I said to a rape joke? Nothing is humorous here, it's all very seriously logical.
It's silly to think I'm going to offend retards, most would not care in the least about some minor point on HN, let alone understand it.
What the hell is the point of flat out lying if you aren't even going to edit your past comments to support your lie?
Go troll elsewhere on the internet.
Here is the thing: I don't. That you think I must is extremely telling however.
I just don't have trouble grappling with the concept of people who are unlike myself. It is not hard for me to conceive of people who dress unlike me for non-utilitarian reasons. That is what fashion is. Further, I don't have to subscribe to a particular fashion to recognize those fashions for what they are; fashions.
Who is really too far "nerd/asspergered" here (seriously, your comments are so steeped in irony it is absurd...)? The person who cannot comprehend that fashion is not about utility and cannot stand those who are unlike him? Or the person who calling that intolerant, fashion-ignorant, bullshit.
Fashion is about more than utility. Your particular way of dressing is not the best way of dressing; stop dreaming up pop-psych self-aggrandizing bullshit to make yourself feel superior. Not everyone who calls you on your shit participates in the fashion trends which you vilify. Grow up.
That's kind of ironic, since you can't seem to get over the fact that someone, unlike you, considers the RG founders douchebags. See how sophistry works both ways?
What they are doing is not trivial at all. They managed to raise $15 million for a very simple idea, that is pretty hard to do.
Just because funding was accomplished doesn't mean they aren't slimy underlings. In fact, given that you mention merely finance, you should acknowledge that funding is totally disparate of their ethics.
>Did you post it??? how about this: attach the HTML to THIS article and I'll tweet this out for you - that would be META!
Named as the same guy as the email exchange, Mahbod.
That will be particularly true when someone's random blog has a bunch of links to Bieber lyrics on it.
The HTML that Mahbod wants you to paste looks pretty similar to what those spam comments were like...
I believe that would be this great write up on the current situation: http://www.theawl.com/2013/12/the-new-spammer-panic
Where's Matt Cutts? Any comments on this? This is obviously a departure form create great content that others will organically link to. I'd argue that this is just a step above Fiverr SEO.
That will be my preferred business salutation going forward.
Google doesn't seem to care if you're big enough.
I think Google cares more about the user experience (how bad is it if a user ends up on this page after searching) than the exact letter of the law. The truly sleazy sites usually do badly on both metrics though.
I will forward this on for SE to think about improving.
The question may not be answerable, but it doesn't make the question wrong. The question is nothing more than an expression of the users query or intent.
For example, unanswerable questions could give a stack listing if relevant answerable questions.
But it just seems wrong to take highly targeted inbound traffic and send them to a page which basically says 'nothing to see here'.
Or, quite often, substantial positive votes, and the wails of a legion of users protesting the closing. I would guess that that kind of question is more likely to be the target of enough inbound links to lift it into the search results people actually see.
Marking closed, zero- or negative-voted questions as noindex might be a good move, though.
I've run sites with millions of urls spread across a lot of sitemaps, and Google will devour them without any fundamental problems. I found it wasn't uncommon for Google to regularly screwup the indexing of a few sitemap files out of a hundred or whatever, and often it would randomly fail to update a % of sitemaps in a timely fashion.
But more importantly:
Every instance of one-on-one communication I've seen by Rap Genius (this and the aphyr emails) include over-the-top frat boy style phrases. Are they being sarcastic, is it an affectation, or do they really speak like a parody of every "bro" ever?
Fun quote from one of the cofounders:
>Mr. Ohanian asked the panel, “One of the things I see time and time again is that we have companies who went to the West Coast and then come screaming back to New York. What was the driving force to come back to New York?”
Rap Genius’ Ilan Zechory took the question first. “It’s where we lived,” he said. “It’s where our friends were. There are no women in the Bay Area, genuinely. We never considered moving out there. We always felt like our West Coast trips were, like, all of us in a Nissan Xterra, in like a Weston, with some weed, trying to steal bags of money to bring back to the East Coast.”
"MATT CUTTS HATES HIM"
#1 - Justin Bieber All Bad Lyrics
#1 - Justin Bieber Confident Lyric
#1 - Justin Bieber Heartbreaker Lyrics
#1 - Justin Bieber Memphis Lyrics
#1 - Justin Bieber One Life Lyrics
#2 - Justin Bieber All That Matters Lyrics
#2 - Justin Bieber Hold Tight Lyrics
#2 - Justin Bieber Pyd Lyrics
#3 - Justin Bieber Change Me Lyrics
#3 - Justin Bieber Recovery Lyrics
#4 - Justin Bieber Bad Day Lyrics
#5 - Justin Bieber Roller Coaster Lyrics
#7 - Justin Bieber Lyrics
wow, google must have been super impressed ;)
Cuz if you go platinum, it's got nothing to do with luck
It just means that a million people are stupid as fuck
"Brainy Smurf, can you smurf me that SERP with some growth smurfing?"
It is basically a variation of:
"Excessive link exchanges ("Link to me and I'll link to you") or partner pages exclusively for the sake of cross-linking"
"Large-scale article marketing or guest posting campaigns with keyword-rich anchor text links"
To google, this is a one way (non-reciprocal; read: "more valuable") link in RG's favor.
Become affiliate blogger.
Add links as requested.
Get "MASSiVE traffic" from rapgenius tweets.
E.g. so they should say:
"Just include the RapGenius trending songs widget at the bottom of your site! It lists the latest hot songs on our site:
"send that shit out"...
I love it, it's so nice to read an honest text of marketing email for a change.
The other part of me suspects they're actually idiots as they seem - and that Andreessen Horowitz's $15mil investment in them is just proof that the handbasket we're all traveling in has crossed the event horizon…
Except, have they actually tweeted the post as they promissed? Sadly, it does not appear so, it would somehow be especially pleasing if they then tweeted out a link to the post exposing their scheme.
I have clients come to me quite regularly, having been advised to do something exactly like this - often by a daughters boyfriend or the receptionists brother, or some similarly highly qualified search marketing "professional".
I have a list of book marks and questions handy - and always ask them to go back to their original source of the idea and ask questions like "What are the implications of Google's Hummingbird(|PayDayLoad|Panda|Penguin|Caffiene|Vince|Dewey) update on this strategy?" and "Has Matt Cutts (or Vanessa Fox) ever discussed this idea?" - while having primed them to be able to judge whether the person giving the advice knows anything about what they're talking about.
It _almost_ always works.
Am I the only one who thought, "SERP," meant, "Search Engine Result Page?"
RapGenius is cool, people share it. Azlyrics is not cool. (In my best Justin Timberlake voice)
Sponsored blog posts are a thing since blog has been a thing.