Discussion  - 
Is dmoz.org 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 http://www.exampleURL.co.uk/

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

Sample URLs:

1. http://www.dmoz.org/Regional/Europe/United_Kingdom/Business_and_Economy/Computers_and_Internet/Internet/Web_Design_and_Development/Designers/S/

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 
Grzegorz Strzelec's profile photoDawid Dutkiewicz's profile photoMichał Jangas's profile photoMohammed ALAMI's profile photo
That particular DMOZ/ODP link-example sounds like a mistake on our side. 
+John Mueller - Thank you for the honesty and quick response. What should my friend do next, resubmit a second RR and reference this?
Keep in mind that these are just examples -- fixing (or knowing that you can ignore) one of them, doesn't mean that there's nothing else to fix. With that in mind, I'd still double-check to see if there are other issues before submitting a reconsideration request, so that you're a bit more certain that things are really resolved (otherwise it's just a bit of time wasted with back & forth). 
+John Mueller  - thanks again for the feedback and insight. Because of the types of links that were flagged in the RR response (which appear to be false negatives . i.e DMOZ/ODP), would it be safe to assume that the disavow file wasn't processed with the RR?
I don't really know what all happened since I don't see the URL :). Usually submitting both even at the same time is no problem, so I imagine it's more a matter of the webspam team expecting more. 
+John Mueller good to know submitting both at the same time is OK.

Like I said in the initial post, a very comprehensive response with data, history, shared spreadsheets and the like was submitted with the RR. Also just before the RR was submitted a 'machete like' disavow was also done. 

Obviously, I'll feedback accordingly and make sure my friend makes reference to this post in the 2nd RR.

Appreciate your time and responses - all very helpful.
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