This evening, Mon, April 28, 2008, the Rational Recovery website is back in the Google index, ranking first on the key search terms as usual. For exactly one month, since March 28, 2008, we were invisible to searches for Rational Recovery and AVRT.
I haven’t got a clue as to what really happened, whether it was a fluke, an accident, or malicious prank. Many also wonder why Google would pick on Rational Recovery. I have only speculated that possibly a low-ranking employee committed an “oops” that wiped us off the Google index. A more likely explanation is proxy hacking, but I doubt I’ll ever know what really happened.
We have been busy for the last several weeks sending out inquiries, pleas for help, and filing complaints about the vulnerability of small businesses to Google error or negligence. I’m not sure what we’ve learned from this crazy experience other than how dependent we are on a giant corporation that has outgrown its original purpose.
Thanks to everyone who expressed concern, and particular thanks for the contributors who referred me to important resources for webmasters who have gotten banned. Yes, it truly was a ban, and the result some reported above was a paid/sponsored ad with a yellow background.
Since discovering the ban, I pushed as many buttons as I could. Maybe one worked; I doubt I’ll ever know.
To me, the Internet is a mystery. The Google algorithm is a gigantic, self-serving monstrosity that is probably the closest thing I can think of to the sci-fi tales of artificial intelligence in cyberspace. Although it may be written somewhere in code, it travels autonomously as an electronic entity in a universe consisting of servers and clients, arranging data in such a way that its own existence is insured. It has an innocent skin, seeming to serve the clients, but ultimately has the predatory mission of corporate profits = power.
In sci-fi, the drama centers around man versus monster, and the AI entity, seeming to have consciousness, works its magic and destruction as it zooms through cables, antennas, and receivers while hapless humans fret, wildly pushing buttons and double-clicking to stop the madness before the entity gains control over the world.
Oh, well, crisis over for now. Back to work, but I keep searching for myself to make sure I really exist. Do I really exist, or am I a figment of Google’s imagination? Oh, dear!