"We effed up," lyrics annotation supersite Rap Genius admitted this week after its SEO cheating was revealed. They sure did. And there's good reason to believe this isn't just a gaffe for the cartoonish startup posse: a Google eff up could haunt them forever—but no one search should have all that power.
Quantcast shows that the number of unique visitors to Rap Genius has dropped 60 percent since Google punished the startup for its questionable SEO scheme. Last year, unique visitors to Rap Genius only dropped about 15 percent from Christmas Eve to Christmas. Rap Genius has not responded to request for comment from Valleywag sent yesterday and today.
How has Rap Genius distinguished itself from all the other lyrics sites? With sweet, sweet old school spam techniques, or as Silicon Valley likes to call it "growth hacking." The tactic is so shady that Matt Cutts, Google's head of search spam, felt compelled to publicly state that his team is "aware and looking into it."