A Google representative has denied that there was any attempt to instigate CNN.com’s shutdown by updating the Google algorithm.
On 10 June, the popular cryptocurrency news site was shut down due to a marked decrease in its online readership. The search giant responded that some sites might be affected more than others after the Google update.
After Google’s Core Update on 3 June 2019, CCN saw a dramatic decrease in traffic and according to its founder Jonas Borchgrevink: “Our search traffic dropped by more than 71% overnight… With that, we saw a drastic decline in ad revenues”, which Borchgrevink estimated to be a fall of 90%.
As for any intent to blacklist cryptocurrency websites, Google stated on Twitter that a prewarning was given of proposed changes back in October of 2018 that the updates may have different effects on a range of sites and some may be harder hit.
Borchgrevink suggested that the staff may migrate over to another news site HVY.com and the shutdown wasn’t simply a cover-up for lack of operational funding at CNN, he commented:
“You can ask any of our 60+ team members […] They are all offered the same rates over at HVY.com… I think they all have accepted the situation… We have not fired a single person [on] the team.”
Borchgrevink went on to say that he had been in contact with most other news sites over the Google update who also expressed concerns. Mike Dudas, founder, and CEO of The Block stated:
“… we are troubled by the lack of transparency and warning by Google, who seems to have made a change to their algorithm that significantly impacted major cryptocurrency sites but have yet to explain why.”
Google’s record on cryptocurrency related advertising history has been somewhat checkered, although its initial ban on all cryptocurrency-related advertising last June was revised and updated in September 2018, allowing some businesses to advertise on its platform providing that any ads for cryptocurrency exchanges must be limited to targeting the US and Japan.
Earlier this year, there was a suggestion that Google was blacklisting keywords mentioning Ethereum on its Google Ads advertising platform.
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