Is Google News happy being gamed by The State Column?

Showing 1-6 of 6 messages
Is Google News happy being gamed by The State Column? elReg 3/22/12 9:38 AM
One of our readers pointed this one out. There's a website in the States called The State Column, which specialises in American political news. But lately if you follow the Google News Science section (US edition) you will find that they are very often the top headline on the top story, and so are often pulled through to the main front page which would probably mean a big traffic bonus.

They are achieving this by simply writing up whichever story is top and then publishing it again and again with some very minor alterations to the copy and a different headline and url, until they get ranked as the top headline. For instance today the top story has been the new revelations on the planet Mercury from the MESSENGER probe. The State Column have been plugging away publishing basically identical stories all day - here are a few:

http://www.thestatecolumn.com/articles/mystery-of-mercurys-core-revealed-by-nasas-messenger-spacecraft/
http://www.thestatecolumn.com/articles/the-enigma-of-mercurys-core/
http://www.thestatecolumn.com/articles/secrets-of-mercurys-core-unearthed-by-nasas-messenger-spacecraft/
http://www.thestatecolumn.com/articles/secrets-of-mercurys-core-revealed-by-nasas-messenger-spacecraft/
http://www.thestatecolumn.com/articles/messenger-mission-unearths-mystery-of-mercurys-core/
http://www.thestatecolumn.com/articles/secrets-of-mercurys-core-revealed/

I may well have missed some. They do this pretty much every day - obviously it only takes minutes of work.

This has paid off in the end: as I write they are top of Science and thus through to the front page. Lord knows we've been known to keep an eye on Google News to tell us what stories to cover (we actually are a Sci/Tech website: The State Column doesn't even admit to having a science section, and their writeups are really lamentable) but this is ridiculous. And yet it seems to be being rewarded with good placements by the Google News software. Another annoying thing about The State Column is that every story they run shows as having 6K facebook Likes as soon as it is up, which I beg leave to doubt.

If I was in charge of Google News I might reconsider whether I wanted to include The State Column.

Just a thought.

(unknown) 4/13/12 8:36 PM <This message has been deleted.>
Re: Is Google News happy being gamed by The State Column? Nattering Nabob 5/14/15 9:10 PM
I noticed there is an article from thestatecolumn.com that is currently featured on news.google.com under "US News", as story #2, about John Bolton:


The other sources for this same story are ksl.com, NBC, FOX, Yahoo, concordy.com, theblaze.com, cdanews.com, www.nbcnewyork.com, thelibertarianrepublic.com, Yahoo News UK, talkingpointsmemo.com, reason.com, National Review, jpupdates.com, thehill.com, Politico, Washington Times, Huffington Post and MSNBC.

Since you mentioned the Messenger mission in your post above from three years ago, I also noticed this article a few days ago, which was slightly changed by someone shortly after I blogged about it:

Re: Is Google News happy being gamed by The State Column? That Thing Called Todd Hannah 5/14/15 11:17 PM
State Column did its best to get something Mercury-related up on the front page, but in the end it was Market Business and Times Gazette playing "keep away" with the Mercury MESSENGER story, spamming the hell out of it from Friday, May 8 to Wednesday, May 13.  

Still, that doesn't change the fact that they're one of the many sites "gaming" Google News by posting multiple copies of the same article, albeit with different titles and content.  
Re: Is Google News happy being gamed by The State Column? That Thing Called Todd Hannah 5/15/15 3:02 PM
My bad, I didn't see this post was made way back in 2012.  Saw all that Mercury stuff and I immediately remembered how Market Business/Times Gazette hogged Mercury MESSENGER for four or five days just recently.

So State Column has been around THAT long.  Interesting.
Re: Is Google News happy being gamed by The State Column? IvanH 5/17/15 2:06 AM
The State Column is doing this notorious activity continuously. Some more example are given below.

1. News about Vaccine Bill.


2. News about Stem Cell.


3. News about Warm-Blooded Fish

They publish same topics repeatedly to get traffic and I believe that it's a bad practice.