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How "Disqus.com" got their Google PR9

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by M4XW3LL, Oct 7, 2014.

  1. M4XW3LL

    M4XW3LL Senior Member

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    Source: https://www.jitbit.com/alexblog/241-how-disquscom-got-their-google-pr9/

    Check the comments also!

    I was recently checking my website for unnecessary 404s, 302s and 301s using ScreamingFrog spider and discovered hundreds of outgoing "********" links to Disqus.com. All with the exact same anchor text:
    [​IMG]
    Disqus is a popular blog-commenting engine that is installed by adding a small JavaScript snippet to a website page and - voilà - the page has a comments section now. But where did all these links come from?
    Link in the installation snippet

    Here's what's happened - Disqus' installation snippet comes with a link, that most people don't notice and/or forget to remove:
    [​IMG]
    There's actually two "powered by" links, one inside the <noscript> section, one outside. Those links have nothing to do with the functionality, removing them changes absolutely nothing.
    On a side note, I personally believe there's nothing wrong with adding a "powered by" bottom link to your software, preferably, a "nofollowed" one (we were actually doing it ourselves in the past and got slapped by Google Penguin really hard but that's a different story). Also, Disqus makes a fine product and I don't mind linking to good stuff... But.
    But the link is just one side of the coin.
    The link is shown to Search Engines only

    Except for this is not exactly a "powered by" link, since its being shown to search engines only. Actual users do not see the link. Disqus' JavaScript removes this link during the page render. It's not present in the DOM if you look at the "developer tools" in a browser:
    [​IMG]
    I have actually looked at their JavaScript and discovered the removing code:
    [​IMG]
    So the real question is: why bother placing a "powered by" link just to hide it later via JavaScript?
    The answer is simple: For Googlebot
    This kinda looks like "cloaking" to me but let's just hope they made a mistake. Anyways, don't forget to remove that link when installing the code. Otherwise you're just another page linking to Disqus without even knowing it. Out of a whooping 240 MILLION PAGES:
    [​IMG]
     
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  2. UrsuAke

    UrsuAke Power Member

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    Yep, ye olde link baiting via widgets. Curious how it still works.

    Anyway nice share OP :)
     
  3. Donkey Kong

    Donkey Kong Regular Member

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    Most of my site installed Disqus comment system, I just wondering where they hide that footer from php code, i'm trying to locate those for academic research purpose only but no success yet.
     
  4. M4XW3LL

    M4XW3LL Senior Member

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    Yeah, I was also wondering how they weren't penalized since they hide content from users and show it only to search engines. Google considers this against their guidelines, but not when it comes to big fishes lol
     
  5. prab1996

    prab1996 Elite Member

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    Quite similar to statcounter. There are always conditions applied.They proved you free comment system and in return take some of your link juice.

    -=-
     
  6. M4XW3LL

    M4XW3LL Senior Member

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    They are still doing this. It's exhausting how the big players get away with such things.
     
  7. FutureProofSeo

    FutureProofSeo Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member UnGagged Attendee

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    Fairly common with large services, just take a look at the godaddy websites with the natural outbound anchors of "web design" pointing to godaddy.
     
  8. d3t0x

    d3t0x Jr. VIP Jr. VIP Premium Member

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    Do you guys really think Google plays fair? LOL, this is no surprise.

    Small companies always will get the short end of the stick. If you have money they turn a blind eye.
     
  9. nutserious

    nutserious Power Member

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    Wait a second, so by installing Disqus, it takes away a bit of link juice on your website but Diqus itself is No Follow?

    But can't this be countered by simply making your website Nofollow?