ArtsJournal describes being hobbled by Google

The scenario described in this post by Douglas McLennan of the very useful ArtsJournal site, is pretty much exactly what happened to this site last February — and kept inaccessible to most readers for more than a week. I highly recommend reading McLennan’s account of his experience of being labeled an “attack page” if you are the proprietor of your own site. I agree with basically all of McLennan’s points, most  notably this:

In my case (and probably for many others), the Google system for getting unblocked from the rest of the web sucks. Google offers low information about your status once you’ve been blocked and no information after you’ve done what they’ve suggested. For a news site that depends on constant updating, three days being blocked from most of the web is devastating.

Obviously the consequences for a site like mine aren’t that big a deal — I’m just some guy. But for a site like McLennan’s it really can be a serious problem. I’m glad his specific issue finally got resolved, and I hope the broader issue gets some attention.