For a long time phillyfuture.org was blacklisted by Google – a previous owner of the domain abused it and Google reacted by banning it from the index.
For months, after getting the domain back, I attempted to get Philly Future indexed by Google. I followed its instructions, not realizing we were blacklisted. Philly Future had links pointing to it across our community, and as far as I knew, we followed Google best practices – no stupid tricks. Yet for almost a year I could not get Google to send searchers our way.
I came to the conclusion we must have been blacklisted. I found the appropriate instructions on handling that – - emailing firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject ‘reinclusion request’ with a summary of my problem – but I got an automated response. A week or so of waiting I put out a call to the community here at paradox1x, at Webmaster World, at Search Engine Watch, at Ask Metafilter and on Philly Future itself.
The email I had sent to Google was the appropriate course to take it turns out. A Google engineer replied in Dan’s comments that it was the correct way to get unblacklisted – and that they were in the process of reviewing the site.
Some were telling me to give up the domain name. Start all over again. That it was hopeless. I’m happy to report that was not the case. But the fact that I did not have a way of confirming we were blacklisted and for what reason was frustrating and more than a little scary.