[okfn-discuss] Terrible Search results for "open license"

Jason Kitcat jason.kitcat at okfn.org
Fri May 20 08:39:53 UTC 2011

Dear Tim

On 20 May 2011, at 08:26, Tim McNamara wrote:
> OKFN is not very friendly to itself when it comes to SEO.
> Most of our big projects live on their own domains. Even our smaller projects are on subdomains. From what I understand, these are considered as separate sites by search engines.
> The upshot is that the organisation's web presences do not support each other. Therefore, each one ends up fighting for ranking.

This is true. In my previous job SEO was one of my main daily concerns and keeping everything under one domain does help the page ranking in the search algorithms (assuming it's a popular and well regarded domain in the linkosphere). But OKFN is a distributed and complex place so not easily resolved.

The Apache Foundation, on whom we loosely model ourselves organisationally, have dealt with this to an extent via subdomains. Which is probably the best compromise between SEO and project independence once can aim for.


> The situation may actually be worse than that. I remember hearing that Google has begun to frown upon syndicated content. This is to counteract spammers adding duplicate content on trending topics. If have copy on a wiki, then duplicate that copy to another area, we may actually be harming ourselves.

It is true that duplicate content is a problem which can get your pages demoted in search engines. I don't think OKFN are guilty of duplicating much content and it is fixable by using the metatag link rel="canonical"

Ultimately because the words Open and Knowledge are rather generic it is always going to be challenging achieving SEO supremacy for OKFN - but there is still lots we can do!

All the best,
Jason Kitcat
Foundation Coordinator
The Open Knowledge Foundation

+44 (0) 7956 886 508


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