How to hide something from Google?
September 13, 2008 7:32 PM   Subscribe

So, there is a lot of information out there about how to get a web page to show up near the top of a Google search results page, but is there any way to get a page as far as possible from the top of the list?

You see, there was this video I was in (not that kind of video) about 15 years ago that someone posted on YouTube, and it would seem that it continues to show up in the top ten search results when one Googles my name. And when one Googles my name, there are literally thousands of results, so it is not as if there are only ten results and that is why this video keeps showing up.

Anyway, I know enough not to click on it, as I have heard doing so will bring it even further to the top of the results list, but is it possible to actually get it to move as far away from the top of the results as possible? I can't imagine how it would be possible, but I had to ask just in case.

(And also, I do not believe that asking the person who posted it to take it down would be effective at all, so I don't want to turn this into a discussion of whether I signed a release or if it is legal or anything along those lines. I just want to know if there is a way to get the thing to stop showing up near the top of the results list).
posted by waywardgirl to Computers & Internet (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
I've had things of mine removed from Google's index before, so the removal tool might be worth a try - it's not there just for show, it really sometimes does result in things getting taken out of search results for good. If you can justify it as not being within SafeSearch guidelines that would probably help your case. I don't remember exactly what info you need to provide, though, and they may balk if the video in question isn't your intellectual property...
posted by crinklebat at 7:47 PM on September 13, 2008

I do not believe that asking the person who posted it to take it down would be effective at all

Asking Youtube to remove it might be very effective though.

The only other thing I know you can do is push it down by putting things ahead of it. Popularize and optimize your own website? When someone Googles you, you want control over what they see, right?
posted by drjimmy11 at 8:32 PM on September 13, 2008

I do not believe that asking the person who posted it to take it down would be effective at all

Not to derail, but the person who posted it doesn't have to take the video down to meet your needs. If I'm not mistaken, they just need to remove your name from the page it appears on, right? Once that's done, Google should eventually forget that your name has anything to do with that video. Would be the uploader be willing to do that, do you think?

I mention this because, well, good luck generating and promulgating content about yourself that has so much Google Juice that it manages to push a YouTube hit off of Google's top results.
posted by mumkin at 12:22 AM on September 14, 2008

Maybe you could build some linkfarms or spamblogs to promote it, and wait for google's anti-SEO algorithms to notice? I don't know if that would lower the page's ranking below what it would be without the linkfarms, though. (If it does, then you'd expect there to be a black-hat SEO industry out there, offering to reduce one's competitors' visibility, and I haven't heard of one...)
posted by hattifattener at 12:33 AM on September 14, 2008

Put up a lot of chaff pages with high google scores which contain search terms likely to yield the page you're trying to hide. I've seen references to a company which will do this for you, but I forget their name.
posted by Estragon at 4:10 AM on September 14, 2008

Maybe YouTube can remove your name if the uploader can't. That's the simplest way. Were it me, I might start by explaining things from the human side of the equation - in other words, it's embarrassing, it's not something I want to remember, and it's killing me when I'm trying to get into a new career. Maybe you're not moving into a new career, but you get the idea. Good luck :)
posted by chrisinseoul at 11:06 AM on September 14, 2008

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