Forum posts and comments being indexed by Google

Hello team!
I noticed something that bothered me. I tend to like being in closed communities since i get more in control of what i post and the audience to my posts. It was the main reason why i started using the old forum.

Imagine my surprise when i just saw that in this new built forum/community, all of my posts and comments appear on google searches (which didn’t happen in the old forum). This is also happening to most of other users.
My question is, was this a choice for the admins to open the community and expose it to outsiders and is it possible to prevent this for happening (at least in the future)?

I always took the main site to be visible but the forum more restricted to both users and outsiders. I feel a bit betrayed ngl. Will definitely get more conscious of what i post here :neutral_face:


Wow… I didn’t notice that either. I just did a Google search for my user name. Hmmm… Not sure how I feel about that.


It is a little disturbing…
I look forward to any explanations we can get.



Dang that’s messed up! Thanks for the heads up! Like you said I will be more careful of what I post here.


Just did a casual search here. Didn’t see anything from Postcrossing popping up.

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I searched my username and postcrossing and it came up


I only had to search my user name (without PostCrossing) and everything came up. The more I think about it, the more I don’t like it.


It’s not only Google. I popped my user name into Startpage and, like Google, many of my Forum posts popped up. The difference is the Startpage website allows users to obtain [Google Search] results while protecting users’ privacy by not storing personal information or search data and removing all [trackers]


I have always thought that it would be better if this forum was only visible to logged in users.


One reason can be, to get more visibility?

But I have earlier pointed out that anyone can read the common threads, like the translation thread, where people posted the message sides of cards. (Now it’s better when id’s are blurred, and also names.)

Hmm, I feel a user name change coming upon me. And maybe some flag removal.
Does anyone know if this function can be blocked?

I’m not sure if a username change will have the effect you want.

The posts in the forum will have your new username on it? And if you’re mentioned with @xxxxyyyyzzzz this will change to the new name, too.

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Yes, but there is a reason to distance myself from my original name , expecially as it was a real word in English.


The old forum was as public as the new one. Not all categories are visible though. :lock: indicate it won’t be visible, only for logged in users. It’s by design / on purpose.


I had no idea. I thought all of the forum were only visible to logged in users. And that the :lock: were for the levels of users. That new users can’t see the :lock:, only after a while they get access.

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I don’t see this being an issue – for me at any rate.

Already, I don’t write anything that the public cannot read, so that my posts be searchable by Google has no effect on me.

I also think that making the forum more ‘public’ can help attracting prospect members. If they can see comments / information they appreciate, they are more likely to join this vibrant community.

After all, we are not supposed to share private information like our residential address on the forum. And the moderators do a good job at removing this kind of information when someone posts it.


It’s not that I write things that are sensitive, just that the least Google can find out about me the better.

With the exponential increase in data manipulation abilities, it’s sometimes horrifying what can be deduced about a person by merging multiple data sources.


If I post something I stand by my opinion. No matter who reads it.

A person, who is not a Postcrosser, might not make sense of what I write here, but if Postcrossers are welcome to read it, so are other people.


I can understand your concern. I have the experience of dealing with some very private people in my life – the kind of taciturn people who don’t talk about themselves – and I am always extra cautious when speaking about others.

There are people like you who don’t want to be found, but there are also people like me who actually prefer to be found easily – not that I want to be some kind of celebrity, but just that I have wanted to devote myself to public service for long, so if people need to reach me, I would rather that they can do so easily.

So after all, it’s up to each individual where their comfort zone is when sharing about details about his/her thoughts / private life / etc in a (semi-)public space.

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There’s definitely a difference: If i search for my username, the only thing linked to it before this community are my posts on the postcrossing blog from years ago, which is okay since i considered it a public post on the main site. I assume the older forum managed to avoid being hit by a google tracker.

There was definitely a change for the best in privacy from the main site. As far as i remember, all profiles were visible before without login but now we get the option to hide it from non-users of the platform or they request login first and that’s a great thing!

I just wanted the same principle applied in here too.