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4 SEO Benefits of Going Public (A Unique Study)

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4 SEO Benefits of Going Public (A Unique Study)


The publicity generated by entering the stock market is an often welcome benefit for any company. When we dive deeper into all the media coverage and increased brand awareness, we can also discover some great SEO benefits.

Some SEO benefits of going public are obvious and instantly rewarding; others need a proactive approach to get the most out of the opportunity.

For this article, I analyzed many SEO angles of 11 companies across different countries and industries that went public in 2021 via initial public offering (IPO) or direct listing. And I found it boils down to these four main SEO benefits:

  1. Great links and brand mentions
  2. More sources to establish notability on Wikipedia
  3. More information and sources for Knowledge Graph entities
  4. Increased demand in branded searches

We’ll start with the most obvious SEO benefit that also largely impacts the other ones.

1. Great links and brand mentions

Going public is one of the rare occasions when even a relatively unknown company will get great media coverage. Basically, any media that reports about companies on the stock market is at play here.

The direct SEO benefits of this coverage can be divided into three segments: backlinks to the customer-facing website, backlinks to investor relations pages, and brand mentions. Let’s dive into each of them.

Links to customer-facing website

The first category is the backlinks to the homepage, product pages, FAQ, and other standard pages that potential customers of the business visit. In other words, these are simply the backlinks you’ll be happy to attract at any time.

All the companies I analyzed scored great links from highly authoritative media. I thought that they would often have the nofollow link attribute, but a lot of them didn’t—allowing link equity to be passed to the target URL.

And yes, even companies that aren’t well known globally can get great links. Coupang, the so-called Korean Amazon, got backlinks like these regarding its IPO in the U.S.:

You can see that all of those links are pointing to Coupang’s homepage, and only the middle one has a nofollow attribute. And that’s just for the IPO, which is the beginning of any stock-related coverage.

Links to investor relations pages

Media covering stock exchange news often naturally links to investor relations (IR) pages.

Here’s an example of the highest-authority backlinks (based on Domain Rating scores) pointing to Allbirds pages, all of them being on the IR subdomain:

Backlinks report results

Public companies can easily accumulate some impressive backlinks to their IR pages this way.

The question is what potential these links may have with regards to rankings of other pages. There are two aspects we need to take into account here:

  1. IR content needs to be compliant with guidelines of the oversight regulatory authority (such as SEC in the U.S.). This isn’t the best place to get super creative and leverage the potential link bait by shoehorning unnecessary internal links.
  2. The context of these links is often just about the stock and financial aspects, which decrease its relevance to pages the company wants to boost in organic search.

These backlinks are still great, but I consider them less important than backlinks pointing to the standard pages. Many websites publishing content about stock markets will link to both IR and non-IR pages eventually.

Think of all the quarterly reports, mergers and acquisitions, and stock prices surging and plummeting. The media coverage doesn’t stop once a company goes public.

To illustrate, here’s Seeking Alpha, one of the most popular websites focused on investment-related content, linking to Oatly 36 times already. There are links to both IR and standard pages:

Linked Domains report results

Screenshot taken from Linked Domains report in Ahrefs’ Site Explorer.

Brand mentions

More often than not, a piece of content mentioning your brand won’t link to you. But the unlinked brand mention counts for SEO too:

The rise in brand mentions is often quite significant. Here’s what the peak looks like for NerdWallet, which went public in November 2021 and was already on a solid upward trajectory of brand mentions:

"Page over time" bar graph showing upward trajectory

You may have noticed the DR >70 filter in this snippet from Ahrefs’ Content Explorer. That’s a quick filter to show only brand mentions from domains with a rather high domain authority to filter out most of the spam that all websites get.

2. More sources to establish notability on Wikipedia

Getting a Wikipedia page can be a nice shortcut to establish and reinforce an organization’s Knowledge Graph entities. That’s because Wikipedia is an often-used source of information for Google that can be visible to searchers in Knowledge Panels like this:

Knowledge panel for Allbirds on Google SERP

However, if you’re not lucky enough to have fans who chose to create your Wiki page without your incentive, you’re in for a tricky process of getting your Wiki profile approved.

The key to this is being notable enough to pass the criteria of Wiki editors. And the criteria largely revolve around significant coverage in reliable, independent secondary sources.

Yes, those are exactly the sources that report about companies going public. Here’s an example of such references on Oatly’s Wiki page:

Excerpt of Wiki references

It’s fair to say that many companies going public already have Wiki pages that will stand the test of notability disputes. Going public is just another notable event that should be mentioned there, along with some changes to the company’s Wiki box:

Wise listed as "public company" on its Wiki page; also, there's writeup about it going public

This is an example of additional information about a direct listing that only enriches an already well-covered and well-referenced Wiki page.

I saw a few Wiki pages of recently listed public companies that largely rely on the notability gained from the media coverage of the IPO or direct listing.

But it won’t be fair to show such examples because notability is a subjective matter, and I don’t want to cause any potential notability disputes or even Wiki page removals.

Recommended reading: How to Create a Wikipedia Page (Step by Step)

3. More information and sources for Knowledge Graph entities

Wikipedia aside, there’s a direct influence on a company’s entity in the Knowledge Graph (KG) from the media coverage. I initially planned to write about reinforcing the KG entity as a benefit right away. But this point turned out to be more complicated and nuanced than that. Bear with me.

A lot of articles and news regarding the stock explain what the company does in plain English, such as this intro of a TechCrunch article:

Excerpt from Tech Crunch article about DigitalOcean

Seeing such easy-to-understand information in highly authoritative sources can be a goldmine for Google to update its data about the entity in its Knowledge Graph. I thought this would easily increase Google’s certainty about the entity, which is great for SEO and branding (given it’s fed the correct information).

Most SEOs would probably agree with me here. We could call it a day and move on to another point. But even though it’s a bit tricky, there’s a way to (dis)prove the thesis.

So the nerdy fun begins.

If you call Google’s Knowledge Graph API, it will return an entity, or entities, related to your query with a score reflecting how confident Google is in the relevance. But it doesn’t provide historical data.

Luckily, there’s a tool with a historical database of these scores for many entities: Kalicube Pro SaaS platform run by Jason Barnard, who’s a well-known expert in the field of brand SERPs and entity SEO.

Jason was kind enough to dig into the data and help me make sense of it all, as the results were rather surprising. There was no clear pattern. We even encountered some KG confidence score drops around the period of entering the stock market, as in this case of DigitalOcean:

Area graph showing KG confidence score drops after IPO announcement

In contrast, there’s also this case of Coinbase, which saw a surge in its KG confidence scores, after it announced going public and after the direct listing:

Area graph showing KG confidence score increases after direct listing announcement

What do we make of it? There’s an opportunity to leverage media coverage for reinforcing the KG entity, but SEO and PR teams need to be actively involved in the process. So what’s the catch?

As companies enter the stock market, they change their business and legal entities from private to public. An example is a corporation with the suffix “Inc.” in the U.S. or “Public Limited Company (PLC)” in the U.K.

This information gets changed on the company’s website and profiles. It gets into some of the media coverage and is definitely part of the newly created stock-related profiles such as this:

Wise's stock profile on CNBC's page

On top of that, you suddenly have many search queries related to the stock. The stock queries can become even more popular than navigational brand searches, such as the case of the Coupang stock in the U.S.:

List of keywords with corresponding data

Comparison between search volumes of navigational brand searches and keywords related to the company’s stock from Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer. The list contains only unambiguous keywords, i.e., there’s no irrelevant search intent reflected on the SERP.

All of this contributes to sending mixed signals about the entity to Google, which suddenly has the challenge of joining all the dots in its Knowledge Graph.

If you ever find yourself in this situation as an SEO, here are a few tips to leverage this opportunity and boost your KG confidence scores in the long run:

  • Update information and descriptions on your website and company profiles so that they’re unified
  • Use your PR team to convey unified information to the media
  • Refer to the newly created company profiles related to your stock (Bloomberg, Yahoo Finance, etc.) in your “sameAs” schema property from your entity home (usually the About page)
  • Be patient, as KG data isn’t usually updated that fast

4. Increased demand in branded searches

You’ve already seen some examples of the high search volumes of stock-related search queries in the previous point. But going public increases the search volume of just the company name alone. It’s an extra interest on top of the standard navigational searches.

Now, it’s fair to say that this additional traffic won’t convert well. The visitors aren’t there to learn more about your products because they’re solving a problem. Rather, they’re there to do investment research.

However, as a hobby investor myself, I can tell that I’d likely turn into a customer if the problem the company is solving becomes relevant to me.

For the companies I examined, all showed search demand spikes around the dates they went public. Of course, I only considered unambiguous names like Coupang, Coinbase, or NerdWallet because we can’t segment the data for names with mixed search intent SERPs, such as About You or Wise.

Here’s an example of the clear spike in Oatly’s search volume around its IPO date on May 20, 2021, from Google Trends:

Line graph showing spike occurring around Oatly’s IPO date

And when we take a look at Ahrefs’ Keywords Explorer, we see a clear upward trend in branded searches even after the huge spike:

Overview of keyword "oatly"; notably, clear upward trend seen in Volume graph

In the case of Coupang that IPOed on March 11, 2021, I noticed a significant growth in branded searches over a long period of time:

Overview of keyword "coupang"; notably, significant growth in branded searches over a long period of time

You can see the trend on the small chart, but it’s obviously more accurate to export the monthly search volume data. So I did that and made a year-over-year comparison of its search volume in the U.S.:

List of Coupang's monthly search volumes in 2020 and 2021; YoY difference is 351.33%

It’s important to mention that this significant growth of more than 350% is largely caused by Coupang doing the IPO in the U.S. despite being a Korean company that’s predominantly serving the local market.

There weren’t many reasons to look up the brand in the U.S. before the IPO, but it illustrates the influence that “going public” has on brand searches.

OK, that’s nice, but how does any of this provide actual SEO benefits? Three reasons.

1. Influence on search suggestions, PAA boxes, and related searches

What people search for (regarding your brand) influences the suggestions Google shows when someone types in the brand:

Search term "oatly" in text field on Google

Now, when you perform the search, it also influences what appears in People Also Ask (PAA) boxes:

PAA boxes showing queries about NerdWallet

And in related searches at the bottom:

Related searches about DigitalOcean on Google SERP

It’s worth mentioning that all of these examples were taken from an anonymous Chrome tab to minimize Google’s personalization.

Sure, showing stock-related queries and suggestions doesn’t help much in converting people in your marketing funnel, but it can push away some unwanted queries featuring your competitors or negative sentiments.

2. Controlling more SERP real estate

Related to the previous point, you also get to own (or at least partially control) more pages on the SERPs for branded searches. Here are where you can expand in brand SERPs after going public:

  • Larger Knowledge Panel with more information
  • Investor relation pages
  • Stock-related company profiles and overviews
  • Top Stories with stock-related news

Going public simply moves away potentially not-that-great search results like reviews, alternatives, or affiliate pages. It can also increase the CPC of competitors bidding on your branded terms as your brand becomes more popular and their search ads more irrelevant.

3. Potentially a ranking signal

I’m getting into speculative territory now. If I were Google, I’d consider showing a brand that gains popularity more prominently in the search results. In other words, I think that steadily increasing demand for branded searches may be one of the hundreds of ranking signals Google uses.

Even if this speculation turns out to be false, there’s still a smaller benefit: influence on the personalization of search results. I already mentioned low, if any, conversion rates from the stock-related queries, but that still counts.

For example, if I look up NerdWallet multiple times for investment research, then Google may show its results more prominently any time I look up finance-related queries. That’s because it covers tons of content about finances.

Final thoughts

There are certainly other benefits besides the four mentioned. But I feel they don’t deserve to be in the spotlight. For example, we can’t prove our thesis that the boosted brand awareness and reputation from going public may result in more earned media and higher success rates in outreach campaigns.

It’s not all about reaping the benefits, though. There are SEO tasks that need to be taken care of when going public.

Everyone should expect high traffic to IR pages the day the company enters the stock market.

The problem is IR pages should go live only when you’ve been given the green light during the IPO event. That’s usually when the search demand has already been built up. And as an SEO, you need to get those pages indexed as soon as possible. You can learn about the details of experiencing an IPO as an SEO here.

Got any questions? Do you have any firsthand experiences and insights you want to share? Ping me on Twitter.





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Top YouTube Videos, Shorts, And Ads of 2022

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Top YouTube Videos, Shorts, And Ads of 2022

Examining YouTube’s list of the top trending videos and top Shorts of 2022, as well as the YouTube Ads Leaderboard: 2022 year-end-wrap-up can teach content marketers, content creators, and digital advertisers some important lessons that they can apply in 2023.

But, it helps if you have a secret decoder ring to decipher why there are three lists – and why each one uses a different methodology to come up with the rankings.

YouTube unveiled its first list of the 10 most-watched YouTube videos back in December 2010. Unfortunately, that list taught many marketers that “view count” was the only metric that mattered.

But, I got my secret decoder ring back in October 2012, when YouTube started adjusting the ranking of videos in YouTube search results to reward engaging videos that kept viewers watching.

In other words, YouTube replaced “view count” with “watch time.”

This was a significant shift, because “watch time” gives you a sense of what content viewers actually watch, as opposed to videos that they click on and then abandon.

In December 2012, YouTube shifted from unveiling its 10 “most-watched” videos of the year to unveiling its “top trending videos,” based on time spent watching, sharing, commenting, liking, and other factors.

In other words, “watch time” and “engagements” were now the metrics that mattered.

Today, YouTube’s algorithm rewards “viewer satisfaction.”

In other words, YouTube doesn’t pay attention to videos; it pays attention to viewers.

So, rather than trying to make videos that’ll make an algorithm happy, focus on making videos that make your viewers happy.

This brings us to YouTube’s lists of “trending videos” and “top Shorts” for 2022.

To learn important lessons that can be applied in 2023, we need to realize that YouTube’s discovery system uses both absolute and relative watch time as signals when deciding audience engagement.

Ultimately, YouTube wants both short and long videos to succeed, so relative watch time is more important for short videos, and absolute watch time is more important for longer videos.

Top 7 Trending Videos Of 2022

1. “So Long Nerds“ By Technoblade (6:32 long, 88.3 million Views, 10.2 million engagements)

In this moving tribute, the father of beloved Minecraft creator Technoblade reads a farewell letter from his son.

The gamer lost his battle with cancer in June, but his legacy remains on YouTube.

2. “Watch The Uncensored Moment Will Smith Smacks Chris Rock On Stage At The Oscars, Drops F-bomb” By Guardian News (1:24 long, 104 million Views, and 1.8 million engagements)

It was the smack heard ‘round the world: Academy Award winner Will Smith went off-script and slapped Chris Rock, live on-stage, at the film industry’s most prestigious event.

3. “Hi, I’m Dream” By Dream (5:42 long, 48.5 million Views, and 4.7 million engagements)

Dream’s ingenuity within Minecraft has led him to become a top creator with a devoted fanbase.

But no one knew what he looked like IRL, until now.

4. “ Dre, Snoop Dogg, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lamar & 50 Cent Full Pepsi Sb Lvi Halftime Show” By NFL (14:41 long, 146 million Views, and 3.5 million engagements)

Lose yourself in this epic Super Bowl halftime show packed with some of the biggest artists in hip-hop history: Dr. Dre, Snoop, Eminem, Mary J. Blige, Kendrick Lama, and 50 Cent.

5. “I Built Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory!” By Mrbeast (17:01 long, 132 million Views, and 5.1 million engagements)

In a “Willy Wonka” inspired warehouse, MrBeast challenges contestants to traverse a chocolate river, climb a candy wall, compete in confection-themed games, and indulge in their sweetest fantasies.

6. “Pranks Destroy Scam Callers- Glitterbomb Payback” By Mark Rober (26:41 long, 55.9 million Views, and 2.2 million engagements).

Engineer Mark Rober exacts dazzling revenge on a scam call center in the latest version of his glitterbomb series.

7. “Being Not Straight” By Jaiden Animations (15:22 long, 17.8 million Views, and 1.7 million engagements)

In this coming-out video, Jaiden Animations depicts a personal journey from adolescence to adulthood, sharing how they discovered their sexual identity along the way.

Top 7 Shorts Of 2022

1. “Diver Cracks Egg At 45 Ft Deep #Shorts” By Shangerdanger (0:56 long, 251 million Views, and 12.3 million engagements)

The ocean floor is a mysterious place. It’s full of unknown sea creatures, strange plants, and…chicken eggs?!

Join Shangerdanger as he cracks up the internet and dives egg-first into the blue depths.

2. “Sarah Trust Challenges” By Hingaflips (0:31 long, 142 million Views, and 6.5 million engagements)

Better than parkour? This is Trampwall: an epic sport where acrobats defy gravity and leap off a wall, onto a trampoline, to pull off mind-blowing aerial stunts.

3. “Come With Me To Shave My Fluffy Dog! #Doggrooming #Grooming #Goldendoodle” By Brodie That Dood (0:52 long, 108 million Views, and 6.8 million engagements)

For years, his long fluffy fur has made Brodie one of the most iconic dogs on YouTube. So, the heartbreak was real when it was decided that he needed a close trim.

4. “Dave and Busters Bet Me 1000 Tickets I Couldn’t Do This…” By Chris Ivan (0:59 long, 83.6 million Views, and 6.3 million engagements).

No one does trick shots like creator Chris Ivan. In this Short, he attempts to land a plunger on a Dave & Buster’s sign.

The prize? 1,000 tickets … if he can pull it off.

5. “That Gap Between Your Car Seat and Center Console” By Jay & Sharon (0:58 long, 182 million Views, and 6.4 million engagements)

We’ve all lost something in the dreaded gap between the car seat and the center console.

In this comedic sketch, creators Jay & Sharon show us what’s really going on down there.

6. “Welcome To The Stomach #Shorts” By Adrian Bliss (0:34 long, 118 million Views, and 7.0 million engagements)

In this bite-sized skit, witty creator Adrian Bliss brings to life all the characters trying to gain entrance – and party in – his space-limited stomach.

7. “This Magic Trick Explained (America’s Got Talent)” By Zack D. Films (0:34 long, 97.4 million Views, and 5.6 million engagements).

How did he do it? The judges of “America’s Got Talent” were confounded by this magic trick.

But not internet-sleuth Zack D., who unveils its clever secret.

Top 7 YouTube Ads Of 2022

Meanwhile, YouTube uses an entirely different methodology to determine the top YouTube ad for its 2022 year-end wrap-up Leaderboard. This makes sense.

The top ads are generally the ones with the biggest budgets, which drive up view counts, but not always engagements.

1. “Amazon’s Big Game Commercial: Mind Reader” By Amazon (1:31 long, 69.7 million Views, and 25,700 engagements)

The creative agency for this ad was Lucky Generals and the media agency was IPG – Rufus.

The ad’s description asks, “Is Alexa reading minds a good idea? No. No, it is not.”

2. “Welcome To Clan Capital! Clash Of Clans New Update!” By Clash Of Clans (1:20 long, 52.9 million Views, and 212,000 engagements)

The creative agency was Psyop, and the media agency was in-house.

The ad’s description says,

“Welcome to the ultimate clan destination! A place where you and your clan can BUILD and BATTLE together! A place called CLAN CAPITAL!”

3. “Goal Of The Century X BTS | Yet To Come (Hyundai Ver.) Official Music Video” By Hyundaiworldwide (4:08 long, 40.5 million Views, and 886,000 engagements)

The ad’s description says,

“Our ‘Goal of the Century’ can’t be achieved by one individual alone, but we can achieve it if we all join forces and unite.

Just like football players come together as a team to score goals, we aim to use the power of football to go forward together in pursuit of the greatest goal – ‘A united world for sustainability.’”

4. “Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return To Hogwarts | Official Trailer | HBO Max” By HBO Max (1:58 long, 27.3 million Views, and 739,000 engagements)

The creative agency was in-house, and the media agency was Hearts & Science.

The ad’s description says,

“Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts invites fans on a magical first-person journey through one of the most beloved film franchises of all time as it reunites Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint, Emma Watson, and other esteemed cast members and filmmakers across all eight Harry Potter films for the first time to celebrate the anniversary of the franchise’s first film, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone.”

5. “Introducing iPhone 14 Pro | Apple” by Apple (4:20 long, 23.8 million views, and 571,000 engagements)

The ad’s description asks, “What lies beyond a traditional smartphone? Let’s find out. This is iPhone 14 Pro.”

6. All of Us Are Dead | Official Trailer | Netflix” by Netflix (2:35 long, 22.6 million views, and 518,000 engagements)

The creative agency was The Refinery, and the media agency was in-house. The ad’s description says,

“All of us will die. There is no hope.” The school turned into a bloody battleground and our friends into worst enemies. Who will make it out alive?”

7. Sally’s Seashells (Extended) | Big Game Commercial 2022“ by Squarespace (1:07 long, 21.6 million views, and 67,600 engagements)

The media agency was in-house. The ad’s description says,

“See everything that Sally sells in this extended cut of our 2022 Big Game commercial. Starring Zendaya as Sally and narrated by andré 3000.”

Most Important Lesson That Marketers Can Apply In 2023

Looking back at YouTube’s lists of top trending videos, top Shorts, and top ads for 2022, there is a meta-lesson that marketers can learn: one size does not fit all.

Different metrics matter when measuring different types of video, and different types of ads are better for different marketing objectives.

Or, as the British say, “There are horses for courses.”

Now, that’s a lesson that all of us can apply in 2023, and beyond.

More resources:


Featured Image: /Shutterstock



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Meta Reinstates Trump to Facebook & Instagram

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Meta Reinstates Trump to Facebook & Instagram

Meta announced that the suspension of former president Trump from Facebook and Instagram will be lifted within a few weeks, with “guardrails” in place to discourage repeat offenses.

2021 Suspension of Trump

Meta indefinitely suspended the account of then-president Trump after he praised the people who engaged in anti-government violence that ended in several deaths.

The suspension was reviewed by the Meta Oversight Board who concluded that the indefinite suspension was inconsistent with rules in place for dealing with policy violations.

The Oversight Board wrote:

“…it was not appropriate for Facebook to impose the indeterminate and standardless penalty of indefinite suspension. Facebook’s normal penalties include removing the violating content, imposing a time-bound period of suspension, or permanently disabling the page and account.

The Board insists that Facebook review this matter to determine and justify a proportionate response that is consistent with the rules that are applied to other users of its platform.”

Facebook responded to the board that the suspension will last for two years beginning on January 7, 2021 after which the suspension would be reconsidered.

The indefinite suspension remained in place until the announcement that it will be lifted in the weeks following January 25, 2022, just over two years after the suspension.

Why the Suspension of Trump was Lifted

The review of the suspension was timed for two years after the imposition of the original suspension on January 7, 2021. This was by agreement with the Oversight Board.

Meta undertook a review of whether Trump continued to pose a risk to public safety and decided that enough had changed to lower the risk.

The explanation of the decision indicated that multiple factors were considered:

“To assess whether the serious risk to public safety that existed in January 2021 has sufficiently receded, we have evaluated the current environment according to our Crisis Policy Protocol, which included looking at the conduct of the US 2022 midterm elections, and expert assessments on the current security environment.

Our determination is that the risk has sufficiently receded, and that we should therefore adhere to the two-year timeline we set out.

As such, we will be reinstating Mr. Trump’s Facebook and Instagram accounts in the coming weeks. However, we are doing so with new guardrails in place to deter repeat offenses.”

Facebook Public Figure Penalty Guardrails

Meta published updated policies, Restricting accounts by public figures during civil unrest, that describe the new protocols for dealing with public figures who violate Meta guidelines.

The updated rules apply to both Facebook and Instagram.

The new policies outline tiered penalties increasing in severity depending on the content violations.

Meta explained that the goal of the penalties were to deter violations of their policies.

The penalties last from one to thirty days to as long as two years for especially egregious violations.

Three factors will be considered to determine the severity of the penalty:

  1. “The severity of the violation and the public figure’s history on Facebook or Instagram, including current and past violations.
  2. The public figure’s potential influence over, and relationship to, the individuals engaged in violence.
  3. The severity of the violence and any related physical harm.”

 

Heightened Penalties

Public figures who return after a suspension will face heightened penalties, including disabling the account of any public figure that fails to respond to repeated warnings.

Meta’s rules targets QAnon content and outlines specific measures they will take that will limit the reach of penalized public figures.

That means anyone who is following the restricted account of a public figure will not see content posted to those accounts, plus the removal of reshare buttons.

“Our updated protocol also addresses content that does not violate our Community Standards but that contributes to the sort of risk that materialized on January 6, such as content that delegitimizes an upcoming election or is related to QAnon.

We may limit the distribution of such posts, and for repeated instances, may temporarily restrict access to our advertising tools.

This step would mean that content would remain visible on Mr. Trump’s account but would not be distributed in people’s Feeds, even if they follow Mr. Trump.

We may also remove the reshare button from such posts, and may stop them being recommended or run as ads.”

Response to Reinstatement of Trump

Facebook’s announcement stated that they expect to be criticized but that the decision was guided by guidelines set down by the Oversight Board.

The response on social media was predictably passionate, with congressman Adam Schiff characterizing the reinstatement as Facebook having “caved.”

Others accused Facebook of having no rules or procedures even though Meta’s decision was based on rules and procedures.

Many of the top tweets commenting on the Trump reinstatement commented that Facebook’s decision was based on greed while others lamented the lack of consequences from Trump’s action, even though he was punished with a two year suspension.

Read Meta’s Announcement:

Ending Suspension of Trump’s Accounts With New Guardrails to Deter Repeat Offenses

 

 



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Wayback Machine: 5 Alternatives To Try

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Wayback Machine: 5 Alternatives To Try

Much of the web is ephemeral.

Web pages exist until they don’t. The content on them exists until it’s updated – and then it’s gone.

Unless you go digging in an archive.

Archiving the web is important for cultural and anthropological research. It’s also helpful for business reasons, like competitive analysis. It can even help document or monitor political processes.

Your particular reason for seeking archived content might determine which service works best.

The Wayback Machine is the most commonly known archive.

Screenshot, https://archive.org/web/, January 2023.

The Internet Archive is a nonprofit organization, and the Wayback Machine is the web version of its archive, containing an absolutely massive amount of data.

You can request that it save a webpage in its current state, as well as make use of tools, like an API.

As huge as the Wayback Machine archive is, it’s likely not 100% complete. If you’re having trouble finding something specific or wondering if there are alternatives with more features, these alternatives might help.

I won’t be going over paid SaaS subscriptions, as I don’t consider a paid service a true alternative to a free one provided by a nonprofit.

Let’s go!

1. The Memento Project

Memento is an exceptional alternative to the Wayback Machine because it aggregates several different sources, including the Wayback Machine itself.

On the website, you can access archives from several sources by using the Time Travel tool.

Wayback Machine: 5 Alternatives To TryScreenshot, http://timetravel.mementoweb.org/, January 2023.

This is the first distinction that makes Memento so cool, and it includes some of the other archives on this list, too. That means it’s a customizable experience and likely one of the most complete.

Memento’s other distinct feature is the Chrome extension that allows you to select the date on which you’d like to view your current page. This brings the tool to where you’re browsing instead of making you put a URL into a form.

You can also create a snapshot of a page and generate a link to it that won’t break. This is particularly useful for citation.

If you’re concerned a page might disappear, or the content might get updated, but you want to use the information, creating one of these links ensures that people will be able to see your original source.

2. Archive.today

Archive.today is another “snapshot” tool. It allows you to save a link to a page as it currently exists.

Following the link will send users to an unalterable version of the page.

Wayback Machine: 5 Alternatives To TryScreenshot, https://archive.ph/, January 2023.

It also features some relatively advanced search queries you can perform on domains and URLs to find snapshots that have been saved with the tool.

This tool also features a Chrome extension as well as an Android app.

Searches on Memento can include results from Archive.today.

3. WebCite

WebCite has powerful applications for authors, journalists, academics, and publishers.

It offers a variety of ways to build and present the archived pages and the URLs.

Wayback Machine: 5 Alternatives To TryScreenshot, rhttps://webcitation.org/, January 2023.

Unfortunately, at the time of publishing, it doesn’t appear to be taking new requests. But you can still access already archived pages. When and if it starts accepting requests again, it’s a very useful tool for that.

Its most powerful feature for authors and publishers is the ability to upload a manuscript directly to the website.

The tool will scan every link in an uploaded manuscript and automatically create archives of each of the pages linked to as they currently exist. This saves a lot of time if you’ve used a lot of website citations.

If you’ve created content that you want people to be able to create snapshots of, then you can add a specific WebCite link to your page that users can click on. This embeds archive functionality into your page, saving users time if they decide to use your work as a citation.

4. GitHub

GitHub is a development and collaboration platform that also prioritizes public projects and open-source code.

It documents and archives open-source code and programs, and is searchable by other archives such as the Wayback Machine.

Wayback Machine: 5 Alternatives To TryScreenshot, https://github.com/explore, January 2023.

But, if you’re looking for something related to code or software development, it might be easier to go straight to GitHub instead of using another archive service.

While it does have paid business plans, GitHub is free for the average user. It even offers 15GB of storage and some computing power in its cloud developer environment for free for your personal use.

5. Country-Specific Web Archives

Several countries run their own web archives.

These can be particularly helpful alternatives to the Wayback Machine if you’re looking for a website highly relevant to a specific location, or the culture of a country.

More focused archives might have more complete information if you’re having trouble finding it elsewhere, although again, I want to mention that the first alternative in this list, Memento, pulls from several different country-specific archives.

I should also note that many archives specific to a country, region, educational institution, or individual library are partnered with Archive-it, a service provider built by The Internet Archive (makers of the Wayback Machine).

They curate specific collections based on relevance, but all Archive-it partners leverage the same source: The Internet Archive.

These are a few of the country-specific web archives:

Conclusion

When you’re looking for alternatives to the Wayback Machine, you might not realize that a great many of them, in part or in whole, are powered by the same archive.

But there are other services out there you can use. Some have more helpful features, depending on what your goals are.

This isn’t an exhaustive list of alternative tools, but it’s most of the easily accessible tools for the average user.

Others require monthly payments, and some are free to academic and legal institutions, but not to individual users.

I chose to focus on the best of the tools that you could go and use right now with no fuss.

More resources:


Featured Image: Studio Romantic/Shutterstock



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