The Internet is so large and vast that we simply can’t help duplicating some sections of text that are in other sites from time to time, however when Google tells us that “duplicate content” is a no, no they are mostly referring to large blocks of text that completely match the content of another website or article etc. This is the most obvious area of duplicate content and the easiest to discover. If you’re unsure if you’re using a block of text that may not be original simply copy that text into a search engine and see if it exists somewhere else. If it does then honestly it is not original and using it could put you in hot water or at least cause a penalty to your site implemented by Google.

Another example of duplicate content are the very many (but fast declining) Internet web directories that simply take a dump from the likes of the ODP (  because it’s easy and fills multiple categories while making their directory look busy. Thankfully Google is aware of this and if not already done so will soon devalue that directory, kill any Page Rank that it had and simply make it so low down in the search engines that it will become unviable to even bother to renew the domain name!

An example of duplicate content in a big way was Google’s own very powerful and at the time Page Rank 9/10 directory that was a complete mirror of the Open Directory Project (ODP) This was launched in 2000 to compete with the successful Yahoo directory, however Google must have realised that that because it had been talking openly so much about their own actions against sites of duplicate content they just had to bite the bullet and delete their own very powerful directory.  The Google directory was completely removed in July 2011.

Of course Google being Google they were not going to admit that this was the reason that they had to kill their own site, they simply left the message behind on an almost blank page that said that the Google directory is no longer available because it is now believed to be faster and more beneficial to search through their search engine than to use such a directory. Simply a coincidence then that clashed with Google starting to condemn other websites for duplicate content!

Many say that they should have killed but that’s another argument.