It’s been a bit since I posted an update on addressing Panda, so I wanted to let all of you know that we are still working aggressively on it; we are as concerned about this issue as you are, and are committed to finding a solution. Since the Panda update, we’ve been working around the clock and exploring every avenue and source of information. We have reached out to Google several times and have spent countless hours analyzing our data, running tests, and making modifications. Our entire goal is to lift the dampening effect on HubPages’ best authors, who are the people that create expert and enthusiast content that others on the Web enjoy.
Google has specifically pointed us to this line: “low-quality content on some parts of a website can impact the whole site’s rankings.” Low quality has been defined very broadly. There isn’t a list that says which page is good and which one is bad. So, we have focused our efforts and have driven several policy changes on HubPages to help improve quality, while maintaining an open publishing environment. Doing so with a site as large as HubPages, with many diverse authors, has certain tradeoffs.
While we desire to be as open as possible to all types of contributions, the current environment makes that challenging when one piece of content has the potential to depress other content. We have been committed to testing and modifying the editorial policy until a balance was struck. This is a very tricky business and like many things with search engines, the impact of a change isn’t seen right away. We have focused on changes that we believe are good for both authors and readers in the long run, and we can understand the frustration and concerns that some of our users have experienced as result of seeing the rules change. The web is a very dynamic environment that is changing quickly. At times it requires rapid adaptation and innovation. This is one of those times.
We love getting all the emails asking what people can do to help. To those we say: keep creating great Hubs, making suggestions on how we can improve, flagging Hubs that aren’t up to our standards, and letting us know of changes you don’t agree with. While we don’t respond to every forum thread and email, we are constantly reading and listening. We, as a company, deeply value the opinions of HubPages’ authors.
Going forward, we hope to limit editorial policy changes as much as possible. However, we will continue to run tests and make tweaks to improve the site. Most changes we’ve made you don’t see, like the hidden rel=”author” tag we’ve added to Hubs that designates the Hub’s author. Over the next few weeks we will run small tests on pieces of HubPages that work to lift the depression on high-quality content. Improving the experience for Hubbers and readers is our top consideration as we roll out any additional changes.
We genuinely appreciate your patience as we work to get traffic to your high-quality Hubs, and are proud to count each one of you as members of our writing community.