Matt Cutts, Google’s head of search spam, answers a question about content in his latest video where a user writes in to ask:
Can a site still do well in Google if I copy only a small portion of content from different websites and create my own article by combining all, considering I will mention the source of that content (by giving their urls in the article)?
Matt is fairly straightforward in his answer by saying this is not a good practice. Yahoo especially used to really hate this technique and coined a phrase for it, calling it “stitching.”
Stitching is taking various sentences from different websites and combining it all into one article that essentially includes none of your own unique content.
Yahoo considered that technique spam, and after listening to Matt’s answer in this video Google doesn’t seem to think too highly of it either.
There’s not a lot of added value in doing this, Matt says. He suggests taking a step back and asking yourself why you’re doing it in the first place. Matt compares it to watching a clip show on TV; people would much rather watch original content.
Matt says it is possible to pull content from different sources to create a good article, giving Wikipedia as an example of a site that does it well. Wikipedia does a great job at this because the rewrite a lot of the content rather than just copy and pasting sections from different websites.
Creating articles by stitching content together is a high risk practice, and Matt encourages content creators to avoid doing it.
You can hear Matt’s full response in the video below: