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I'd published an article with the permission of the author. But when I search in Google from India for title: "How to Test Payment Gateway Functionality" my site is ranking first eventhough it is a copy.

Isn't there any penalty for this?

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2 Answers

up vote 2 down vote accepted

This is an area where Google is trying to improve. The "panda" updates deal with this exact issue. You may rank well for that content right now but eventually Google will (supposedly) filter out your duplicate content. Basically I wouldn't count on that page ranking well for too long.

What you should be doing as a good webmaster is use canonical URLs to give the original website credit as the content's original author. You should also link to the main article on the author's website. That way Google knows who the original publisher is and give them their deserved rankings.

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I've no problem in giving credit to whomsoever. But main question is whether my site is getting penalized due to copied but duly attributed content... –  AgA Jul 14 '11 at 18:38
    
As we discussed in your other questions entire websites do not get punished for duplicate content. –  John Conde Jul 14 '11 at 18:47
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It could also be due to personalization. Since it's your site you've presumably visited it enough that Google knows you like it and trust it, so Google favors it in your search results but may not treat it the same way when others search.

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I've just now checked with a new browser after clearing it's settings and changed the IP address but still the same result. You can also check giving the title in google search: "How to Test Payment Gateway Functionality" . Also if you are correct wouldn't it require tremeduous resources to track and maintain such data? I don't think this is even done for Adsense ads( or may be done partially) –  AgA Jul 14 '11 at 15:36
    
Google has been personalizing search on a variety of different factors for quite a while now. Beyond your search history they also personalize based on location, for example if you are searching in India the results you get are likely biased differently then I would get here in the US. –  Joshak Jul 14 '11 at 17:50
    
I agree but those are fixed factors: location, profile(age,sex) etc. –  AgA Jul 14 '11 at 18:36
    
Sure the personalization factors are fixed (you can spoof some of them IE location via a proxy etc.) However, that's my point: (1. Your page is not penalized if it's ranking #1 and (2. Even if it is an exact duplicate Google may prefer to rank it higher then the original for a variety of reasons. (On a side note I did your suggested search and I get a slideshare.net result first, if that's what you're referring to then it ranks first simply because Slide Share is an authoritative site). –  Joshak Jul 15 '11 at 12:51
    
Did you search from within India? Using Google.co.in? –  AgA Jul 16 '11 at 9:08
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