WordPress Spam Scam Explained is an undated article giving the Hot Nacho side of the Wordpress spam saga from owner Chad Jones. It might not be new, but I just heard about it via Aaron's SEO Book blog. It highlights how while WordPress was back in Google within a day, HotNacho and other sites owned by Jones remain banned.
That's the biggest takeaway, showing exactly what I said in my article about the WordPress case. If a site is important enough, search engines simply cannot ban it despite spamming issues because it will hurt relevancy. If you type in [wordpress], then you want to find the WordPress site. But if you're a nobody site, look out -- spam a search engine, and there's no particular reason for them to let you back in.
Of course, there are going to be people searching for HotNacho on Google and not finding it because of the ban, and that's actually bad relevancy and somewhat troublesome overall for a service that's supposed to be helping organize the world's information.
It's one thing to ban a site for ranking well on non-navigational terms. But if I type [hotnacho] or [hot nacho] into Google, I really ought to be able to find that site as being relevant for that navigational query. Right now, it doesn't come up. It doesn't come up at Yahoo, either, which wasn't impressed with the HotNacho software.
Yeah, it's sucky to include a link at all to something that you feel like is undermining the quality of your service (and sorry Chad, the pages I saw were sucky and being semi-automated rather than fully-automated in creation doesn't somehow make them better). But for some perspective, what do you think is worse, HotNacho or Nazis? Go search for [nazi] on Google, and it will happily send you off to the American Nazi party. But HotNacho? Oh, no -- now that would be evil.
Postscript: Be sure to see Greg Boser's funny observations here, as well.