Media News

CNET removes thousands of old articles

August 9, 2023

Posted by Chris Roush

Tech news website CNET has deleted thousands of old articles over the past few months in a bid to improve its performance in Google Search results, reports Thomas Germain of Gizmodo.

Germain reports, “CNET shared an internal memo about the practice. Removing, redirecting, or refreshing irrelevant or unhelpful URLs ‘sends a signal to Google that says CNET is fresh, relevant and worthy of being placed higher than our competitors in search results,’ the document reads.

“According to the memo about the ‘content pruning,’ the company considers a number of factors before it ‘deprecates’ an article, including SEO, the age and length of the story, traffic to the article, and how frequently Google crawls the page. The company says it weighs historical significance and other editorial factors before an article is taken down. When an article is slated for deletion, CNET says it maintains its own copy, and sends the story to the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine. The company also says current staffers whose articles are deprecated will be alerted at least 10 days ahead of time.”

Read more here.

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