I was trying to figure out how to extend my wireless network down a few floors a few days ago, and one of my queries brought me to experts exchange. The question looked useful: Using Linksys WAP54G as Wireless Repeater. This is exactly what I wanted to do. However, once I actually scrolled down to view the answers, I saw this

Experts exchange

I thought this was pretty weird, since I was pretty sure in the snippet I saw on Google’s results they had part of the solution I was looking for. Now I’m curious, so I hit sign up to view solution, and saw the signup page requires credit card payment.

experts exchange credit cards

Page in question.

I checked out the Google webmaster guidelines, and this is in direct violation. Under “Quality guidelines - basic principles”, it says

Make pages for users, not for search engines. Don’t deceive your users or present different content to search engines than you display to users, which is commonly referred to as “cloaking.”

Avoid tricks intended to improve search engine rankings. A good rule of thumb is whether you’d feel comfortable explaining what you’ve done to a website that competes with you. Another useful test is to ask, “Does this help my users? Would I do this if search engines didn’t exist?”

Hitting the Google cache of this page shows they’re serving up a different version of the site to search engines. To me, letting them rank high for this paid for content is a clear violation of the Google TOS.

I am filing experts exchange to Google’s spam directory. I encourage you all to do the same.

Edit, search term was: Using Linksys WAP54G as Wireless Repeater