A few days back, we reported that Google has removed more than 11 million .co.cc websites. Today James Kim, the General Manager of CO.CC, has taken to the Google Webmaster Forum saying that Google made a mistake because 99.99% of the co.cc websites are clean. He also commented that Google ought to remove Blogspot and Facebook if they want to be fair.
James Kim’s complaint is pretty long. So, let us take it part by part and examine it.
(Note: The text quoted are the exact copy of what James Kim wrote. We have not modified it even to correct obvious mistakes.)
I know the reason that Google deindex to co.cc because it has high ration of malicious sites and low quality sites. However, I don’t think it is right decision that Google just block the whole domain which has 10 millions co.cc sites and 200millions webpages without any notice to us.
To ban a domain without any notice is harsh – very harsh. But as James Kim himself has written, co.cc has a high ratio of malicious and low quality sites. If they are giving in the business of giving away 15,000 “domains” for a mere $1,000, they themselves should have seen it coming. Why will any legitimate business buy 15,000 domains? It is only the spammers and malicious website creators who buy them. Moreover, co.cc is not a recognized second level domain and for all practical purposes should be treated as a single domain. So, the number of websites they host should not be of any consideration.
Within total co.cc sites, the fraction of malicious sites is not over 0.01%.
I see two issues with this statement. First of all, the claim that malicious sites at co.cc is only 0.01% goes against the recent report from an independent source - Anti-Phishing Working Group.
According to the APWG report, co.cc is responsible for 4803 sub-domains used for phishing attacks. This number is much higher than the 0.01% that Kim gave. Just to put things in perspective, the domain t35.com is responsible for the second largest number of sub domains used for phishing attacks at just 642 sub-domains.
The second issue is that phishing and malicious content is not the only reason for Google banning co.cc. It is used to host an uncountable number of spam websites. To see for yourself, go to Bing and search “site:.co.cc”.
The APWG report also notes that over 40% of phishing attacks using sub-domains occurs on CO.CC.
We have no right to force internet users making high quality web pages. It is obviously to overstep our authority. Each internet user has their own right to make their website and it is their ability to do so.
This statement just does not make sense. Yes, a legit domain seller cannot do anything about what the owner does with the domain. But this is not applicable in this case as co.cc is not even a legit domain seller. They are simply selling sub-domains of a domain they own. They are the owner of the domain and, consequently, the sub-domains are their responsibility.
As you know, xxx.blogspot.com and facebook.com/xxx have about 70%~80% that have been just setting there without any caring. On the other words, those are actually low-quality sites.
I have a question to you. “Can you deindex those *.blogspot.com and facebook.com/* sites?
This is certainly the most interesting point that James Kim has brought up. Yes, Blogspot is home to many good blogs – including all of Google’s blogs. However, there are also a huge number of blogs which contains nothing but links to illegal downloads etc.
But a comparison between CO.CC, and Facebook and Blogspot is just wrong. Neither Blogspot nor Facebook Pages, give users that much freedom to put anything they want – malwares for example – or make it look completely different for Phishing attacks. Unlike CO.CC which does not seem to have any popular/useful webpages, Blogspot and Facebook do have many high quality pages.
We always supply our all domains information and zone files to vaccine company if request. Whenever they request to us, we are always to prepare for it. We will accept any difficult request from you and we even take serious positive consideration if we need to sell co.cc.
This is actually true of CO.CC. The APWG did note that CO.CC respond quickly to reports of phishing. However the same report also says that the media uptime of a phishing website at CO.CC is 60 hours.
You can read James Kim’s complete post here.
So, was Google right in removing CO.CC?
This is actually a very difficult question to answer. Except the GM of CO.CC, I have not heard any complaint from anyone else. Many seem to think that Google did the right thing by banning CO.CC.
Yes, CO.CC probably had it coming. If you ask me, I have absolutely no problem with Google removing CO.CC from its search index. In its website, CO.CC says that .co.cc works exactly like .com. That is just plain cheating. .com is a legit TLD and when you buy a .com domain, you actually owns the domain. The same is not the case with .co.cc. Since .co.cc is not a recognized SLD, the “domains” they are selling are simply sub-domains. It is like us selling .digitizor.com sub-domains and saying that it is exactly like .com domains. You will call that cheating won’t you?
However, in manually banning CO.CC, Google is going on a slippery slope. Generally they rely on their algorithms to push these kind of websites down the search page ranking. Why did Google remove them manually? Were their algorithms unable to detect them as spam and malicious websites? Does this mean they will do this again?