There’s a lot of people very unhappy with Google right now, and rightly so. We gave them too much power, and it is time to take it back. This post gives you everything you need to STOP using Google today, completely.
Why Say Goodbye?
So this morning I wake up to the refreshing news (thanks to email from a fellow blogger who went to a 0) that I now have a page rank of 0. ZERO. I can’t see what I’ve done wrong, or why I deserve such treatment. But what I can tell you is, I’m finished using Google. Here’s a list of the things I am using instead. If you feel angry at them for how they have treated me and other bloggers, you can feel free to do the same. In my opinion many of the following are actually BETTER than Google’s services anyway.
Goodbye Google Search, Hello Dogpile –
Don’t worry, you don’t have to completely stop using Google. What I suggest is that you use a search engine called Dogpile. It is a neat little search engine that combines results from Google, Ask.com, Yahoo and others. This way Google does not get a “hit” to their site when you search – Dogpile gets the hit and the traffic.
Goodbye Google Search – Hello Scroogle –
Goodbye Google Reader, Hello Bloglines –
In the past I have been a vocal supporter and user of Google Reader. I have suggested it to many fellow bloggers. I know plenty of people who have used it based on my recommendation. I thought “Oh no, I don’t want to switch, I love my Google Reader, it will be difficult to import all my blogs etc”. It turns out that isn’t true. Sephy wrote a post – How To Move From Google Reader To Bloglines. He did it for me and it took him about 2 minutes. I have to say I like the look of Bloglines a lot better than Google Reader. Time will tell if it works as well but I know a lot of people do use it.
Goodbye Google Calendar, Hello Sunbird –
I was a recent lover of Google Calendar but there were a few things about it which drove me nuts – the inability to print off more than 10 days in advance on your agenda was one of them. Sunbird can do this, so I’m all set. You can use Sunbird which is a stand alone program, or if you use Mozilla Thunderbird, you can use Lightning which integrates with Thunderbird.
Goodbye Gmail – Hello Many Options –
I personally am using my own mail server these days but if you don’t have the ability to do that there are plenty of options for free email which don’t have the annoying spam server that Gmail uses. That spam filter often sends legitimate email to the spam bin! Here’s a few of my favourites –
The only thing missing at Fastmail is storage space. You get 10mb with a free email account. If you can keep on top of your mail and ruthlessly delete, this is the best free email on the web. I’ve had many dealings with customer service over there (fastmail supports scambaiters and has been excellent to us over the years) and they are fast, responsive, helpful and brilliant. Unlike Gmail who closed *10* of my email accounts and have not bothered to get back to me re retrieving my lost emails.
Don’t Forget Yahoo –
Yahoo now offers unlimited storage. You can sometimes find it difficult to get the email ID you want, but I was starting to find that with Gmail these days too. If you want POP3 email for free, Yahoo is the best way to get it – just remember that you do not get free POP3 on yahoo.com, it has to be one of the country endings like yahoo.com.au or yahoo.co.uk.
Goodbye Blogger, Hello WordPress –
I personally made the change to a self-hosted WordPress blog a little while ago.
However there are other free blogs out there OTHER than blogger. This article from Mashable – 40+ Free Blog Hosts contains many of the options.
Other Things You Could Do –
- If you have Adsense, remove it from your site.
- Make a decision never to click on an Adsense ad.
- Contact bloggers you know who use Adsense and tell them you object to the use of Adsense.
- Contact advertisers you see using Adsense and ask them to use different methods of advertising
- If you are in Australia and your blog has been affected, contact the ACCC – they are already taking Google to court re sponsored links
- Support your fellow bloggers by saying Goodbye To Google as mentioned above – because who knows who Google will target next? It could be you.
- Spread the word – link to this post, blog about saying Goodbye to Google.
Watch Google Stock Nose Dive
Some of the people being penalised may have owned Google Stock – or perhaps their calls to sell Google stock is working, because Google Stock is dropping – and I for one am applauding that. You can watch it drop yourself at Yahoo! Finance. I hope that is sending a message!
68 thoughts on “Say Goodbye To Google Today.”
VERY awesome post, great suggestions, and I love how you linked to many other spot-on articles. :) Down with Google!
I am behind you 100%. It’s going to be a slow process switching everything over, but worth it I reckon.
Just out of curiousity though, is there a free online mail that groups conversations like gmail? Cause it’s the only reason I use it at all.
WordPress also offers free hosting.
Can I just say that I don’t use gmail, I’ve always used Bloglines, I’m on WordPress – looks like I’m off to a good start! Although I don’t think I’ll be able to stop using Google search – it’s just something I’ve always used and I’ve tried the others, including Dogpile, and just haven’t liked them the same.
Then again, Google hasn’t bit me yet … if it does, I might change my mind, but I’m not all that concerned about rankings and statistics anyway.
I don’t understand how this page rank thing works at all, but I have heard the uproar about it. I’m happy with Bloglines, though. Glad the switch was all good!
Erm….I can emphatise with you but don’t you think that’s quite a drastic reaction to a page rank drop issue? I lost my PRs from almost all my active blogs and they are all zeros. But I won’t let that take away my joy of blogging any bit. That’s because I did not blog to earn any page rank in the first place :D
Pablopabla – which bit do you think is drastic? I’m not suggesting we all cut our wrists or go on a shooting spree at the Googleplex. I’m saying stop using their services – send them a message that you find their actions unacceptable. What way can we – the average internet user, the one person against a company of over 13,000 people – send that message? We can say it with our mouse. We can say it with our traffic.
Why should I support a company who doesn’t support me?
Their shares have dropped somewhat dramatically yesterday – if they have a drop in traffic over the next few months, I can only see their shares continuing downwards. Money talks. Maybe then they’ll realise they are upsetting people by trying to be the Link Police.
Page Rank is meaningless marketing drivel. Anyone who buys into that hype really needs to get out more and tone down the ego a bit. Page rank does not drive people to good websites, QUALITY CONTENT does, and favourable reviews from other sites that link to you. It’s a bit like sites going for the “SEO” options (Search Engine Optomization) … it’s all utter rubbish driven by marketing companies who simply want to earn money.
Snoskred, are you selling a product or service? If not, why do you care whether some piece of software says your page is better or worse than any other of the billions of pages on the web? In the end, quality writing is far more important than buying into the marketing. Content “rank” can only ever be accurately rated by a human reader, never by some algorithm running in a hot shack somewhere in the bowels of a Google office block.
This is awful. I wonder why they would want this kind of press? I’ll pass this info on to my partner. Thanks Dorothy from grammology
I’m so down with this posting…how dare they not rank my blog : )). Not even a bloggy zero.
I’m so new to the blogosphere, that …. …
I actually pulled all my adsense links thinking sponsored money links might be frowned upon.
And THEN of course I rather helpfully notified them that I now complied with their no advertising policy.
well i looked up my page rank and still not sure i “get it” but i know it is important for paid stuff, etc. sorry google hasn’t been working out for you. bummer, dude.
Absolutely brilliant post. Thank you!
The last thing I need to do is switch over from gmail. I have my own mail servers and such, but I use gmail when I’m at the office to email with people, as I only run a spam catcher for my server mail throughout the day.
I’m interested to see how the case against Google goes for the ACCC. As far as I can see, Google are indulging in anti-competitive practices with what they’re currently doing.
I applaud you for taking this stance. Some great suggestions for G alternatives too.
Excellent post thanks so much for listing options. I still am looking for a good option to AdSense… Yahoo?
Congrats to you for the information on how to remove the Googoo from your life. I do think that they need to be removed and have said so in my own blog.
On another note, I was sort of let down to see that you have NO FOLLOW on. :( I was going to blog about your post and put a link to it. Was hoping that was going both ways. I will still do that though because it needs to be talked about until the Googoo gets dropped on it’s collective posterior a few times.
By the way, like the name Googoo? I always thought that the G sounded so much like somebody named it for baby talk. Whatcha think? LOL!
Not that worried here. I’ll stay with Google for now. I’m not one to bounce around. Now, I’ll go off on Hotmail any day…
And I’m all for handcoding. Skip the wordpress etc.
I hope it turns out to be a mid-process blip or error of some kind.
A search engine I sometimes use (and should use more than I do) is Webfetch. There’s a co.uk one, and a .com one. It was recommended in the computer magazine I was reading – ComputerActive, I think.
Looks like we’re special Snoskred hehe. Zero is the new 10.
I wonder if your move to wordpress had something to do with the rank going down. Weirdly enough, I have a 3 and I haven’t been blogging for nearly as long as you. I suspect that no one understands the mystery that is the Google.
Thanks everyone for your comments. Let me say this at the top –
I am not giving any of my internet business to a company that thinks it is ok to bully stay at home parents over text links. If they have such an issue with it, they should be speaking to the companies who bought the links. A company of over 13,000 employees taking on individual bloggers, one by one? That’s unacceptable behaviour. So please, join me in saying goodbye to Oogle today.
Jenn – Absolutely! ;) Down with Google.
Kin – The process was a lot quicker than I expected actually. It was really simple to do.
Emily – Yes they do, but there are a lot of restrictions. You can’t use plugins. You are limited as to what themes you can use. You cannot ever monetize your blog – no sponsored posts, no ads. Widgets are also limited. It’s not until you use the full, self-hosted version that you find out just how powerful WordPress can be – wordpress.com has the limits for good reasons of their own and one of those is cpu time, because a lot of plugins can chew that up in a hurry. But when you’re running it yourself, you can keep a close eye on what is going on.
Katie – Scroogle is for you – it is identical to Google search, but it uses a proxy which keeps you safe and means Google don’t get a traffic hit from you. I believe if they did hit you, your mind would be changed instantly and you’d say no more Google. But we all have given them the power – it is time we take it back.
Alynda – I was pleasantly surprised. Change is usually not an easy thing but this sure was! ;)
Just so the replies don’t get too long, I’m going to do them in little chunks. Back in a sec.
Pablopabla – I replied to you right away so look just below your comment. What I didn’t say was I believe I have been a part of the problem by giving Google the power I have. Just me alone I used to visit their sites all day every day. There was usually something Google open in one of my browser windows. Not anymore.
Revolution – Actually yes, I do sell reviews of products. I’ve done it here on this blog in the past, and I have done it on my old blogspot blog. Google seems to think that me reviewing something means someone has paid me for links. That isn’t the case at all. I write an excellent review and advertisers know that – however most of the companies that put you in touch with the advertisers rely on page rank to allow you into their programs at all. I think this will change – I hope it will.
But tell John Chow about how page rank has nothing to do with traffic. He doesn’t even rank in the first few pages on google. For his own name. Google deliberately slapped him and removed him from the results. Google can do this to anyone, at any time. They have become the Internet Police, bullying people when they see fit. I’m not supporting a company that does that anymore.
If you went to school with a bully, and they had bullied all your friends for a long time and then they opened a business, would you use their business? Or would you say up yours mate, I’m going elsewhere?
Dorothy – I think they think everyone loves them so much that there is no such thing as bad press. They are finding out quickly that isn’t the case. Bloggers can get a message out there very quickly these days – and there is a lot of bloggers sending the same message I am.
Back with more shortly.
BlueBlue – Adsense has a major advantage over all the other advertisers – you as a blogger are reminded about it every time you log into your blogspot blog. You’ll never see any of the other advertisers being spoken about in there, and that is because Google want all the business. However I have a couple of links with plenty of options OTHER than Adsense for advertising –
101 Ways to Monetize Your Website or Blog
Make Money Online: 100+ Tools and Resources
I know several bloggers who got within a few clicks of a payout on adsense and were suddenly kicked out of the program for various untrue reasons like click fraud – how can you prove they are wrong and that you never clicked on the links? People get no money when Google kicks them out. How awful! I’ve never used Adsense and I’m glad about it.
I believe it is a huge conflict of interest – a search engine should be impartial and stand alone and should show the search results as they actually are. No search engine should be running an advertising program as well – and trying to eliminate the competition by playing the kinds of games they are now.
Christine – It isn’t just for paid stuff, page rank can also affect how search results turn up in Google. At this stage the 0’s don’t seem to have had that effect, but they could easily drop us all from the search engine at any time.
Lisa – lucky me I’d already begun to switch over after I found an important email from a fellow blogger in the spam bin. Then Google closed 10 of my scam baiting email accounts a few weeks ago. I sent them an email asking if I could please get the mail out of the accounts because I needed it – surprise surprise, I never heard anything back. That is a big part of the problem I now see – Google can close your blog, your email, your calendar, any of your accounts with them at any time.
Mike – I also am interested because the ACCC changed who they were going after, originally I think it was Google Australia but now it is the US google. It should be very interesting indeed. Thanks – I’m loving the alternatives so far! ;) Especially Scroogle, that seems so.. feisty. ;)
Cynthia – The links I posted for BlueBlue might be of interest to you as well. Here they are again – many good programs other than adsense –
101 Ways to Monetize Your Website or Blog
Make Money Online: 100+ Tools and Resources
Jaz – I use a plugin called Lucia’s Linky Love. The blog is do follow once you’ve made a few comments. That’s to give my regular commentors the link juice but not to give link juice to spammers who drop by once and make a comment then vanish again. Most do follow people I know have switched to using that plugin because they were getting a LOT of one off “great blog!” comments from people who were looking for link backs, as well as being hit by the paid comments people – if they see that the link love plugin is on, they don’t waste their time commenting, because they won’t get paid. I’m not sure what happens with track backs but I’ll try to find out. I’m fairly sure links within my posts count because I can see how much link juice I am giving out and it’s a fair bit. ;) Not that it is worth anything anymore. :( I’ll add your link to the list of links in the post, with a few others I will add shortly.
If my links were no follow, Google should not have penalized me. So I think that can’t be right and they must be do follow.
Misti – If you are willing to support a company that bullies people into doing what they want, then feel free to stick with Google. It’s ok to do that, though I am so mad at them myself, because I’m not prepared to support a bully. If I had a child I wouldn’t allow my child to be bullied at school and if necessary I would remove them from the school. I’m not prepared to be bullied by Google, and I’m not willing to sit by and watch while fellow bloggers are, either.
Change is tough, yes. This change is worth making, because we have given them far too much power. And many of the things I mentioned are BETTER than what Google offers anyway.
Back soon with more,
@ Revolution – Here is the official Google line on PageRank for new users installing the Big G toolbar.
“Wondering whether a new website is worth your time? Use the Toolbar’s PageRank™ display to tell you how Google assesses the importance of the page you’re viewing.”
For the non web savvy user, Google IS search. If they have the Google toolbar installed and see a low PR score, they might assume that the site is no good. Right or wrong, you can’t dismiss that out of hand as being “meaningless marketing drivel”.
Personally I no longer view toolbar PageRank as any kind of indication other than how subservient the site is to Big G. However there will be others that do. That is why what Big G are doing is wrong.
Thanks for writing this and other Google posts. My blog is PR3 – but I have no idea if that’s a rise or a fall in it’s ranking because I hadn’t checked my PR in a long time – not until they rolled out this update. That said, anyone telling me not to use Google is singing to the choir because I’ve been telling other people not to use Google for years. I’m a scroogle.org devotee as well. There’s also another anti-Google site I like but it comes and goes and is gone right now so there’s no point mentioning it, I guess. But it’s the best site around for “why Google is not so great” when it *is* up and running.
I don’t blame you for your reaction. If you check my personal blog (just look up my name, I don’t feel like spamming) you’ll see I get pretty upset (and rightly so) at Google as well. It’s not an illogical thing to be angry at the real harm they cause us in real life – it’s natural. What’s not only unnatural but disgusting to me — it almost makes me sick — is how many people on the Web crawl around in mealy-mouthed fear, praising Google to the high heavens even when you can tell they don’t mean it because Google just hurt their website or online business in some way. They can’t just say what got them mad and leave it at that; the story has to be couched in apologies and flattery and nine yards of bull&*^t to avoid any hint of serious criticism of the great GOOG.
I’m sick of their dominion of the Web. I’m sick of their overinflated stock price, I’m sick of how they try to insinuate themselves into everything like a virus — a parasite, sucking up money as it jumps from host to host. They remind me of AOL when it reached it’s saturation point in the late 90-s-2000 before the crash…you saw and heard so much about them on TV, in newspapers, magazines, and online, it seemed they had finished taking over the world. Can any website maintain that degree of popularity *and* it’s honesty, integrity, and value to consumers for that long? How long did AOL last before it fell off that cliff? It will be the same with Google. I can’t wait for the day when the the Web is truly open again instead of pushed through every filter Google has got or can insinuate somewhere, nor can I wait for the day when to talk about Google like they mean anything is to sound as laughable as talking about AOL in that fashion.
Oh, and if their online dominion and ownership of your search records, email, IM messages, what you surf for online (Google toolbar) and what your hard drive contains (Desktop Search) isn’t bad enough, how about how they’d like to take over the world too? Google newspaper ads, Google TV ads, Google radio ads, Google phones, Google watching from satellites all over the world –tell me any company that tries that hard to crawl into your life and your brain just to store data so they can serve ads to you (and possibly a bit of information on the side) isn’t a company that is already out of control and exerting way too much power unchecked by anyone.
I say everyone against Google get together and leave. Openly. Literally. Draw up a Declaration of Independence for the WWW stating exactly why Google has gotten out of hand, how it caused us harm or will cause us harm in the future, what we’re going to do about it, then do it. A lot of people don’t realize how important that is now, then they’ll wake up one morning and realize they’ve turned the Web, their websites, their online income, and even the most personal details of their lives over to them – to their detriment – forever, irrevocably.
Some of our sites were whacked by the PR slap as well – but our traffic from google hasn’t changed. So we are not quite as upset as you clearly are. However – its nice that you put together a list of alternatives.
Diddums – I took a look at live search, looks like another good alternative. I put it into my new post today.
Brown Baron – Well, I always knew YOU were special.. ;) It’s nice to see a search engine recognises it also. Oh wait.. are they a search engine, or the Link Police? ;)
Cugat – No, because I did get a page rank of 4 on this domain. This appears to be a deliberate slap – and many people who have done paid posting have also been hit by the same 0.
Mike – Exactly – for those not in the know, Google is the search engine to use. Hopefully we can educate people otherwise.
Marah – Thank you for your excellent comment – I agree with everything you had to say. I have to face the facts and admit I am a part of the problem – I gave them the power. We all have to start being more careful who we give power to. Google do not realise they are directly hurting peoples income – and that makes people angry. The power of the angry backlash may come to them as a surprise.
Matt – My search results haven’t changed – I am still getting plenty of traffic. That isn’t what this is about or why I am so angry – this is about bullying bloggers. Having been bullied before in life, I don’t take kindly to it.
The bigger question is – How do I or anyone else know that yanking us out of the search results isn’t their next step, though?
Thanks for the comments everyone. :)
I checked my PR today (for the very first time, since I’m so not concerned about it) and it was -1. I don’t know what that’s about, but whatever. A search engine is not where I really want to get my traffic from anyway, it’s the networking and blogging relationships that do it for me.
I know I still have my blog hosted on blogspot, and I’ve been mulling the switch to wordpress, but my lack of free time to devote to this is standing in my way. Perhaps in a couple months when Boyfriend starts school again and is in class at night I’ll find the time. I like having full html control over my blog, but now I’m wanting more pages so I can do more with it. An extra 20 hours per day would be nice too!
Wow! This is certainly interesting. The reaction is more or less against Google, which is good, IMHO. About the linky love thing, I have it too. Didn’t recognize it, I guess. DUH!
I have had too much spam lately. Guess it’s because of my stand on the googoo police state. At least some of it is. I will be following this blog for a while and will be posting more of my own on this subject. It IS a hot topic today.
Great of you to remind us of all the other options we have available. Thank you for that. Oh, and gotta love Yahoo’s ad – too funny about the drug they mentioned (I tried to say the name of the drug in this comment but it gets caught by your spaminator! – LOL).
I’m still going to use Google no matter what…
Great post! And I have to agree. The Google dictators are on their way down…
But, I can’t let go of Gmail though…
Don;t forget using ad blocking plugins for Firefox, which block out Google AdSense
Kirsten – the move to WP wasn’t the easiest thing in the world – however there are fantastic services that can do it pretty much for you, if you’re willing to pay a little bit for the service. Blog Ninja is one I’ve heard of but there are others out there too.
Once I moved, I realised how bad Blogger really is, and how little control I had over anything there.
Jaz – there has been a major increase in spam to wordpress blogs lately – I can’t tell if you’re on wordpress because Bumpzee is holding up your page load (and more than likely mine too, damnit! I only just put the widget back on and now it has to go again because it isnt a short delay, it’s a good couple of minutes.) but I am using a plugin called tantan noodles, which I have modified slightly.
I was getting a lot of drug spam and every time I blocked one of the words, they’d mis-spell it slightly in order to get the comment past the tan tan. But I noticed the name of the URL they were linking to was always spelt right, so we fixed the plugin to work with urls as well as the words in the post.
More replies in a moment –
Teeni – They do seem to have a good sense of humor at yahoo. Plus, they’re not trying to kill off paid links, so that’s a big plus. ;)
Ruchir – that’s your choice. I find it a bit disappointing that you’re not willing to consider alternatives which might actually be better than what Google offers, but it is your life, so enjoy it. ;) As long as you don’t own a blog or website, or want to own a blog or website at any point in the future, and possibly advertise on it or something. In which case I have to say you’re being incredibly short sighted, because who knows who google will target next?
Malin – Yes you can! Trust me you can. When I tell you this, you’ll want to. I used to use gmail on my old blog. The Gmail filter put a mail from a potential buyer into the spam bin – it was pure luck I happened to find it, because I was logged into my google reader and I accidentally clicked on gmail. I normally got my gmail via pop3, so I rarely logged into the accounts at all.
That buyer who was in spam – who would have been deleted after 30 days if I had not found out they were in there by accident – has since spent almost $1,000 with me. Mostly reviews, but they also loved some of my images enough to want to buy them.
Yet that same week, I got several enlarge your manhood emails which managed to find their way through the filter.
GooglePhobe – Absolutely! I’ve used Adblock before, I should have thought to mention it.
Thanks for the comments everyone – I appreciate ya’all dropping in and taking the time to comment. You’re all now in the draw for my competition as well, so hopefully you might win some cash!
I never was too fond of Google even when I had a PR ranking. I was originally a 5 this past April. I think some of their practices are questionable.
I have eight active websites. All of my websites went down to 0. I only do sponsored reviews (occasionally) on two of them. I’m not dependent on the Big G to get traffic or make money online so I wasn’t upset about it.
I think my other websites were penalized because I have linked to them or it could be possible that I was penalized because I use affiliate marketing on those websites?
They make me a lot of money. I’m not about to take them down. I set up my newer websites so that they weren’t solely dependent on search engines. That is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.
Those are my websites. I paid for them. Google isn’t about to tell me how I choose to run them.
I think Google is aggressively going after the smaller blogs because they think they will be able to make them change by yanking their ranking. That’s not going to happen to me. I’m not intimidated by them.
Yes, I am on WordPress. I have had a lot of spam lately on all of the active blogs and one inactive blog. Much of it is drug related but not all. I get this one that says something like “I didn’t understand all of this but it seems interesting”. Not sure if I got it right because I delete all such comments but that’s close.
Yes, Bumpzee does come in slowly much of the time. I have had to remove it a couple of times myself just to load a page. Sigh. Not good. But then, I have Myblogcatalog and that does it too, from time to time.
My anti-googoo campaign will continue. We can win this!!!
An excellent idea, I’ve already started.
Thanks for your reply Snoskred! I’ve been away on a long weekend and just got back to check your reply. I do understand your stand on this matter. I guess it’s just two different views on this matter.
For me, Google does provide me with a lot of services for which I am comfortable with. One of which is Gmail. It is difficult to change one’s use of familiar services. Whilst I know that the Google PR is most likely a flawed exercise, I would not boycott all their other products just because their PR is flawed or seems to victimise or derogate the value of my blogs. They cannot bully me unless I allow them to bully me. If I don’t subscribe or believe in their PR, PR means nothing at all to me. Your blog has a PR of 0. But as far as I am concerned, it is worth at least a 5 or 6 on your convictions and expressions alone. I humbly believe that much of the PR evaluation by Google is computerised. You simply cannot rate a blog or site based on lifeless computers.
By the way, thanks for the link love :D