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faceted search
The combination of Boolean operators and parenthesis. Faceted search allows for very specific, powerful searches.

fake copy listing
The practice of stealing content from another web site, republishing it and submitting the duplicate page to the search engines in a hope to steal traffic from the original site. Apart from the obvious ethical problem, copyright legislation is slowly adapting itself to the Internet, making it increasingly difficult for thieves to steal content. The copyright holder may also appeal to the search engine(s) that listed the duplicate page(s) and to the thief's hosting company. It is advisable to display a clear copyright notice (or a link to one) on every page of a web site.

false drop
A web page displayed in the SERP that is not clearly relevant to the query. The most common cause of false drops is words with multiple meanings. If the query gives no indication of context, the search engine has no way of predicting which of the possible meanings the user has in mind. The term "argument", for example, has different meanings in general use and in programming jargon. Other possible causes of false drops include spamdexing and bugs.

Free For All. Referring to web pages that contain links to other pages and very little (or nothing) else. The difference between FFA pages and directories is that directories contain links to sites selected through some editorial process, while FFA pages allow anyone to add a link to any page. For a more detailed look at FFA pages and their dangers, please refer to the Search Engine Yearbook.
Also see link farm

Short for "Macromedia Flash"
A vector graphic animation technology that requires a plug-in but is browser-independent.

flash page
See splash page.

A popular PPC search engine.

An HTML tag construct that allows designers to display two or more web pages simultaneously. The general perception is that frames can greatly improve site navigation, but they are browser-dependant and not search engine friendly. Most search engines do not index framed pages correctly. For a more detailed look at the problems with frames and possible solutions, please refer to the Search Engine Yearbook.

frequency cap
A limit used in Internet advertising. It refers to the maximum length of time or number of times a user will be exposed to a specific type of advertisement.

fresh crawl
Google updates its entire index of web sites once a month. This is generally referred to as the Google Dance. In an ongoing effort to make their results as relevant as possible, Google introduced a "fresh crawl" that runs each day. The idea behind the fresh crawl is to update pages that change regularly. This allows Google to serve results that are up-to-date with current events.
Also see everflux.

Fear, Uncertainty and Doubt.
The action of spreading fear, uncertainty or doubt. It is a fairly straight forward but malicious technique that is typically used to negatively influence the public perception of a competitor or his/her product.

full-text search engine / full-text index
A full-text search engine indexes every word on every document it spiders.

fuzzy search
A type of search made possible by fuzzy matching. The search engine returns results that it predicts will be relevant, even when the terms used in the query does not appear anywhere in the matched document.

fuzzy matching
As opposed to exact matching.
Fuzzy matching attempts to improve recall by being less strict but without sacrificing relevance. With fuzzy matching the algorithm is designed to find documents containing terms related to the terms used in the query. The assumption is that related words (in the English language) are likely to have the same core and differ at the beginning and/or end. A search for "matching", for example, would also return documents containing match, matched etc. Unfortunately it will also return documents containing unrelated words like matchbox etc.


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