An article published by Search Engine Land yesterday depicted details of a campaign employed by Google which promotes the Google Chrome browser, but violates the search engines guidelines against paid links.
Aaron wall of SEO BOOK found that conducting a search for “This post is sponsored by Google” returns over 400 results which have been produced specifically for the Chrome campaign, all with do follow links and video links going through to the target Google Chrome landing page.
This is in direct violation of their guidelines as they state that links purchased as part of an advertising campaign are fine but “should be designated as such, Adding a rel=”nofollow” attribute to the <a> tag” or “Redirecting the links to an intermediate page that is blocked from search engines with a robots.txt file”.
Not quite the case as with their own campaign it seems.
Search Engine Land recieved a response from Google confirming they did agree to the campaign but they “never agreed to anything more than online ads. ” Have a read of the full Google response to their sponsored post campaign for more details.