Google recently changed its search algorithm in an affect to weed out spam. At first, the update had no name. Google merely said that it was tweaking its algorithm to help improve search results. It was only later when the blogosphere erupted that Google’s hand was forced and the Penguin moniker was born.
According to Matt Cutts, a prominent Google engineer, “The Penguin algorithm update was designed to reduce web spam, which is when websites try to get a higher search ranking than they deserve by deceiving or manipulating search engines.”