Fake News as an SEO Tactic

May 23rd, 2008 at 12:00 am

money.co.uk fake news

There’s been a lot of buzz around the story of a "13-year old stealing his dad’s credit card to buy hookers," on a site that commands credibility, Money.co.uk.  However, the story (about the 13-year old) is completely made up as a tactic to drive traffic to the site.

The tactic was successful. It generated about 1500 inbound links and got a lot of publicity in the mainstream (which is why we’re writing it here).

However, the fake news article does not fall into any of the SEO rules of Google.  However, Search Engine Land discusses the possibility of Google penalizing the site for the pseudo black hat tactic.

On the other hand, aren’t we allowed to write whatever we like as long as it suits our purposes, this isn’t print media and there are no rules whether or not we are obliged to write the truth.

From a bloggers point of view, it was brilliant.  Will this start a trend in SEO tactics or will Google be making new rules?  On the long shot, will congress write a law on publishing only the truth?

Anyway, it was simply brilliant.