Technorati don’t like their authority system being gamed. If they feel it is being gamed and made less relevant, whilst they might not totally remove your blog from their system, you might be removed from their Top100 list, and also their search results.
Currently Technorati still return an authority rating for your blog, even if they have determined you are gaming the system, but there is no guarantee that that will remain the case indefinitely.
Many blog monetization systems rely on Technorati authority as an indication of the value of placing a link on that blog, and thus there are quite significant rewards for having a high authority, which results in a lower ranking position, “1″ being the top ranking.
Open Source Publishers
One of the best rewards of publishing Open Source software is you can often include a link back to your site somewhere on the pages of the people using your software. These links in turn are used by various search engines to rate the authority of the site being linked to. With Google one indicator is Pagerank, with Technorati it is their authority.
Even the most prominent Open Source Developers are not immune from being banned by Technorati.
Compare Matt’s blog to the “official” top authority blog, and there is a massive divide.
Widget publishers are not immune to the Technorati nerf stick. Even if you are a top rated SEO blog such as SEOmoz, and gaining 100s of editorial links on a daily basis, you might be removed from the top100.
Theme & Plugin Publishers
Theme publishers are not immune from being banned by Technorati if they include live links to the blog from the themes they give away for free.
There are various ways to exchange blogroll links such that they are counted by Technorati, but don’t provide real links that are seen by other search engines.
Whilst joining such blogrolls might not get you banned (unless you hit the top 100), it is more than likely that Technorati will start discounting those links.
Blog Networks get away with some massive interlinking, but the more legitimate networks are making an effort to make those links more relevant.
In this case I am referring to links which appear to Technorati as a blogroll – if you buy lots of obvious “sponsor links”, it is quite possible Technorati is going to ban you.
I can’t say whether that is why John appears to be banned, but it might be one explanation, though the majority of John’s links have certainly come from other kinds of payola.
Unfortunately it doesn’t take much poison to taint a well.
This is a tough question and Technorati are faced with a similar problem to Google. Which links are editorial, and which are purely for pagerank and other factors.
In my opinion, quality reviews are most likely to remain in all indexes, but then I am an open supporter of quality paid reviews which give more value than just links.
All You Care About Is Money?
If all you care about is money, then obviously for as long as Technorati continue to report your authority via their API as being significant, even if you are effectively banned, then gaming the Technorati authority system could be looked on as a good idea to boost your earnings from text links and reviews.
The big problem with many of the ways of gaming the system is that they are permanent. Those links are out there, so if you have some success with a theme you publish, and through your own blogging efforts you start to approach the top100 list, there is no way to fix the problem.
There is no rule saying that Technorati have to continue giving a rating of banned sites by API, thus any “gamed” rating in the future might effectively return a “zero” in the future.
Why Should You Care?
If you are going to publish a theme or create a widget, you need to think carefully whether having a Technorati rating is something you wish to maintain.
I am not referring to whether you are listed in the Top100, but whether you would have a rating being returned at all by the API.
It is easy to say that you don’t care about being listed on Technorati, all you care about is how much you can sell your links for, but what happens if Technorati decide to stop reporting banned sites via their API?
There is a chance you might get reincluded, if Technorati develop technology so that they can discount links from the sidebar and footer totally, but it wouldn’t be so simple to still allow legitimate blogroll links.
How To Avoid Being Banned By Technorati
It is well known that Technorati currently don’t follow 301 redirects, so the solution currently is quite simple.
- Decide on a theme name
- Register a domain name for the theme
- Use the domain name for the link within a theme
- Use a 301 redirect from the domain name to your blog
You could actually just use one domain for all your redirects, or use a 3rd party service that issues a 301 redirect though that is placing your eggs in a basket you have little control over.
Alternatively just use nofollow on the links, but then they will not be seen by other search engines, and that would be throwing away good “Google Juice”.
A 301 Redirect would still be recognised by Google, Yahoo, MSN and ASK.
If in the future Technorati do support 301 redirects, it would most likely be possible to tell them not to follow certain redirects for your themes. The most likely scenario for the future is an interface in Technorati to allow you to tell them that 2 listings are effectively the same.
Note:-Technorati Authority is not the same as Technorati Favorites.
Technorati to my knowledge haven’t banned anyone from encouraging people to add them to their Technorati Favorites.
Technorati Authority on the other hand is the cornerstone of their search results to determine relevance, and thus they are going to defend it.
I have no idea how you could take retroactive action to fix your ratings.
This affects me too, a while ago I created a widget for LinkedIn, and it linked to a static page. As the functionality of the widget was eventually blocked by the service it was intended to promote, I changed the graphic used, and most links have now been removed from sidebars.
In hindsight I would have used a domain name and 301 redirect.
Theoretically any authority gained from that widget will be outside the 6 month rolling window that Technorati use within the next 2 months, and my own situation will be cleared up.
This would be much harder to achieve for theme and plugin authors. Maybe easier for those with paid links.