I knew this already but BoingBoing has a good page on it.
A number of bloggers who cover topics related to human sexuality say they’ve suddenly disappeared (or at least been deeply demoted) in Google search results. Popular “indie” blogs that deal with nonfiction sex ed or indie alt-erotica fare (Tiny Nibbles, Comstock Films, ErosBlog, and others) have suddenly vanished to much lower ranking in relevant search results — even when you have Google’s adult filter turned off. And in practical effect, being buried is just as bad as being filtered out entirely.
The apparent drop appears to coincide with changes Google recently made to their keyword ad program, AdSense.
I saw this sort of thing a couple years ago – google made a change like this and suddenly legitimate sex-related businesses like my friend Doxy’s Phone Slut Diary vanished from the google rankings while sites that spammed and used all sorts of keyword chicanery were still at the top of the charts.
It was fucked up then and it’s fucked up now; they punish the real, valuable sites and do nothing to slow down the cheaters. Our own Chelsea Girl is one of the blogs axed by google, along with Bacchus hisownself, and my man Tony Comstock and a lot of high-profile sex bloggers.
I’m not sure what to do about it; if the team at BoingBoing are head-scratching, i’m pretty well stumped as well. But dammit, it’s yet another reason google are getting up there in competition with m’soft for the title of great satan. Fuck ‘em
Update: Xeni at BoingBoing is saying this is fixed, and it may be for high-profile sex blogs, but google hasn’t fixed the root cause; Chelsea’s, for example, is still google-censored.