The Beginning

blackshirtseo copy

It all began with Pubcon and my first introduction to Matt Cutts. A fellow SEO told me I had to go to Pubcon, but warned me that I had to be super squeaky white hat around Matt or else I’d get a manual audit. “And if you get a manual audit they will find something that will get you banned, because their rules are impossible…”

I laughed. I couldn’t believe how serious my SEO buddy was.

“So I can’t even joke about black hat around Matt?”
“Absolutely NOT.”
“Okay, then I will joke about Black Shirt SEO. Better yet, I will make my own Black Shirt SEO t-shirt and wear it to Pubcon.”

...So it began and snowballed from there. I bought the domain. I put a fake join button on it, which required an email and a website. After submitting to join, the site sent would-be-members to a page that read:

“Thanks for your application. Your website will now be reviewed by Matt Cutts.”

The form didn’t collect any names, emails, or domains. And Matt Cutts had no part in this, other than he got a couple of his quotes on t-shirts. Which lead to other SEOs getting their quotes on shirts. This has certainly become my longest running and most expensive practical joke ever.

So now, I will compile the collection of custom made BlackShirtSEO shirts here for your viewing enjoyment….

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It's not Black Hat, it's Black Shirt.