Article | Date posted : 2 February, 2014 | Updated on : 2 February, 2014

What defines a link network

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I think most people have heard of Google’s crackdown on link networks and rightfully so. I absolutely hate people trying to wing the system. But I actually don’t understand what a link network is? So this article is to try to understand what a link network is. I’m a simple Web Developer and only share on Google+ Emmanuel Flossie, so I don’t use any bad techniques, or do i?… My big question started when I read an article about Buzzea, a network I have never heard of but apparently Google has black listed the site, and thus the site has shut down its services and gave the world a contradiction in Googles statement, that Buzzea is not a link network.

What is a link network, the bad ones.

What I found interesting is that Wikipedia has no pages on this topic, so I had to research tons of data and have concluded the following. A link network is a site, blog or a single article that is interconnected with each other. These connections are owned by an individual or a group of people.

The obvious signs of linked network page are

  • Links that point to several sites which point straight back
  • A footer note demonstrating that they belong to a group
  • A page that lists other sites

Now this is starting to get more confusing to me, does that mean that if you have a group of friends and you list all your friends on a page, that you are part of a link network?

Yes and no, think of it as a circle where every link spreads to every page or site and back again. So if 10 people link to each other, that means that there are 100 links in total. This would be considered as a link network.

But wait just one more minute, there is one more point what a bad link network is. All the networks that have been shut down are networks where you actually pay to get a link on. Ok so to me this is starting to make more sense why placing links on a link network is bad.

What about good link networks?

But what about the other types of link buildings and now I’m talking about the good type. I mean are directories with links also a link network? Sites such as


or any directory listing for that matter? Are these than link networks?

I think while writing this article I’m getting confused again, but lets continue anyway.

Google’s policy on linking schemes

Google explains with simple words in their content guideline covering linking schemes.  The guideline explains our undefined question. You are not in violation if the links have rel=nofollow. Basically explaining that as long as you are not unnatural passing through page rank to other sites. Than you are within the guidelines.

This does not mean that you can start posting thousands of links with no follow and be considered natural. You still have to have quality content. A good rule of thumb is to have no more than 10 outbound links per page, with do follow. Ok but now I am talking about our own sites, rather than other sites. This does not cover sites such as If we follow one of the guidelines it states that you should not build links unnaturally. This means that is actually an unnatural linking system. Would you agree?

Social sites, are they link networks?

This was another question I had, everybody shares content on social platforms, most of the social platforms don’t have rel=”nofollow”.

  • Google+  do follow
  • Tumblr do follow
  • MySpace do follow
  • Facebook no follow
  • Twitter no follow

Does this mean that social platforms are link networks? Theoretically I don’t see the difference between a social networks, directories, and the paid link networks.

So is Google going to black list social networks too, or simply just not give any page rank to these links. Google officially states that page rank is not giving to any links that come from social networks, but what I don’t understand is why Google blacklists other networks from having tons of links. What is the difference?

Is it now socially acceptable that Google can do what they want, of course they can do what they want. But we can still stand up and point to Google when they are doing something wrong.


If you think you are doing something to manipulate or gain any ranking or traffic in a way that is socially unacceptable than don’t do it. Regardless what you think is right if its unnatural than don’t do it.

These are my views only and does not represent others, but please comment as I’m interested to hear your opinion.

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