Is now classed as an unnatural link?

A good friend of mine has a partial warning within GWMT (part of the new section introduced the other week). Apart from 1 or 2 keywords, rankings have remained strong in a very competitive niche over the past 24 months.

It was decided that to restore full trust in the domain and wipe the slate clean, a reconsideration request was to be done on the partial action.

After compiling a very comprehensive response with data, history, shared spreadsheets and the like, he received a message back from Google saying...


We received a reconsideration request from a site owner for

We've reviewed the links to your site and we still believe that some of them are outside our quality guidelines.

Sample URLs:


2. {Example URL} The other backlink came from a comment left on a blog post back in 2007 and the anchor text was my friends name (for example: John Smith)

For more specific information about the status of your site, visit the Manual Actions page in Webmaster Tools. From there, you may request reconsideration of your site again. If you have additional questions, please visit our Webmaster Help Forum.


I did wonder, because my friend has 14 comments from the blog mentioned above that these might be classed as sitewide links or over optimisation on his name (his name accounting for about 5% of his backlink profile) - but logically this doesn't make sense. It's also worth adding that there is no evidence of any blog comment spam in the back link profile.

It's dmoz that's shocked me to be honest as this is one of the few sources that is trusted - or is it?

So the question is, is this an error or is this genuine?

Hope to get some answers, feedback and help - thanks everyone.

cc/ +Matt Cutts and +John Mueller 
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