Yet another cryptocurrency focused news site is shutting down. This time it’s venerable news company CCN shutting down today, June 10th, according to an announcement on their website.
Jonas Borchgrevink, the founder of CCN, reports that the reason behind his decision to close his publishing business is a change in Google’s indexing algorithms and the resulting 70% drop off in traffic from Google searches following a June 3 Google Core Update.
The founder states that they cannot continue to operate with their full staff due to loss of advertiser revenue generated from traffic – much of which is provided by google search related mobile activity. The post cites data from Sistrix.com, noting that crypto news site CoinDesk saw a 34.6% drop, while Cointelegraph reportedly saw a 21.1% drop on mobile as well.
In the post, Borchgrevink also notes that not only crypto sites have been affected by the Google update, adding that specifically British tabloid The Daily Mail has seen a large drop in visibility as well.
IS THIS A CRYPTO CRACKDOWN BY GOOGLE?
The announcement notes that the reasoning behind certain sites losing visibility is not able to be determined:
“Unless someone – anyone – who actually worked on the June 2019 Core Update at Google explains what is going on, all we can do is to ‘guess, speculate, and experiment’ as far as our bank accounts allow us to.”
According to a post at Premiumleads.com, Google is intentionally downgrading financial and health related websites that are not written by ‘experts’ (their own definition and choosing) suggesting that:
It is obvious that if a website has been written by anyone (for instance, someone without medical knowledge) this page shouldn’t be shown among the first results. In short, the YMYL websites are:
- Websites that offer health or medical information that can have an impact on people’s lives.
- Websites that offer financial information that put people’s money at risk.
According to Google, there is no other solution for the pages that now have a lower ranking, but to continue working on improving their content. With time, it is likely that these contents will get higher rankings again, in comparison with the ones that are currently shown on the first pages.
CCN defended their website and their committment to truthful journalism stating:
We have been cited by many leading news publications, both in America, Europe, and Asia. We have grown organically with 0 funding, from a one-man show in 2013 to a 60+ team in 2019. The more traffic we generate, the more ad revenue we bring in, the more people we can employ, the better CCN gets. At least that was our strategy.
CCN’s post ends with a list of demands to Google, including giving three-month’s notice of expected changes from Google Core Updates, explaining what a company can do to change if it falls into a risk zone for losing traffic, and having national governments create apolitical task forces to inspect search engine updates for “ the conservation of our democracies, our Freedom of Speech, our Freedom of the Press, and our Freedom of Information.”