Category Archives: Blogs

Blog (noun)

I normally think of the term blog as being a web site of dated entries. As a noun, you can have a blog. As a verb you can blog (eg post) something to it.

It would seem there are people out there using the word blog to mean what I would normally call a blog post:

I’m back, starting with an apology for the lack of blogs over the last few months.

Garry McGhie, V/Line

Not to single this instance out, because I’ve seen other examples of this use around the place, too. But it just doesn’t sound quite right to me.

Wiktionary / / Urban Dictionary / Merriam-Webster / / Encarta — All these appear to agree with me.

This is not news, I’m all for citizen journalism. And Cameron Reilly is a good guy — an intelligent, witty, talented individual.

But “Man disputes $66 traffic fine” is NOT news. Something that happens thousands of times a day across Australia is NOT news. Not unless the protagonist is a senior cop or politician.

Certainly it’s worthy of a blog entry. But showing up on a news site (particularly as the top item) just makes a mockery of what citizen journalism could be and should be.

Surely there must be some real news people could be reporting on? I mean, stuff that actually matters to more than one person?

The latest splogging method

A new example:

Basically an excerpt from a blog, with a random introductory paragraph up-front to make it look human, presumably in the hope that the trackback will be accepted.

Random introductory paragraphs:

  • I’ve a passion for X and keep looking for good articles. Today, I checked if I could find more info by entering ‘Y’ in Google and found this
  • People are always asking me to blog more often, well here you go, I looked up some info on ’Y’.
  • Last night I used Technorati to find more info on ’Y’ so I could post it into ‘X’. And this is one of the many results I found
  • Today I was digging for some info on ’Y’ and came across the following section

Of course, it’s pretty obvious if you look at a few posts in a row. Less so if you’re getting the occasional trackback request. is spamming blogs

People are comment-spamming blogs on behalf of The comments I’m getting look something like this:

Name: mirror

Talking of [topic], may be if you want to buy [product] at best price, I have a suggestion to make do look up Online Shopping

I’ve had about a dozen of these today, hitting various entries, where the topic closely resembles the topic of the blog post hit, though the link to [product] is often tenuous.

Apparently (see comment 16 here) the company offers discounts from products in return for people posting blog comments about them. Certainly looking around they appear to be successfully hitting a lot of blogs.

Not mine though.

More examples after the fold.
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More on human comment spam

Comment spam linkUpdate to this post about human comment spam, about a new trend in blog comment spamming, using real life human spammers, to get around the fact that most bloggers can see the robots coming from miles away.

I’ve had a large number of these come through on my blogs in the few weeks. They’ve all been leaving links to sites like the one pictured. This one’s about antioxidants, but some are purportedly about computer viruses, drugs, whatever.

I really should update all my remaining blogs to use NoFollow, so if any get through, they don’t gain any PageRank. Time to chuck WP-Hashcash into the fray on all of them, as well.

Uh, so many blogs, so little time.

Another comment spam destinationUpdate 26/5/2006: Another example added.

Hand-written comment spam

Amongst all the easy-to-spot robot comment spam, I’m getting a bunch that (at first glance) looks like it’s written by humans. Gone are the stupid out-of-context broken-English comments and links to drug sales. These all have comments that look like they’ve got a few milliseconds’ thought put into them, all on new posts, they all leave a rediffmail (Indian GMail-type operation) address, a 209.97. IP address, and a link to a web site featuring lots of links and no content.

So far I’ve been spiteful and kept the comments but wiped the URL link.

I wonder if they’re particularly targetting WordPress sites that haven’t yet been upgraded to use the NoFollow links.

Vegan Lunch Box

Wow, blogging is an insane new media. One gal posts daily photos and descriptions of what she packs her in her kid’s Vegan Lunch Box. The public exposure of this has got to improve the food quality dramatically. If only my Mum was doing this, perhaps I would have opted for something more sophisticated than peanut butter and jam sandwitches every day.

Now, you’re not going to see a column in a newspaper on this, are you? You’d have to be a homemaker like the blogger, but she must be making mad coin given she’s getting 50-80 comments per entry; if I could see the ads it’d be peppered with them! Look at this place. We’re excited when we get one comment!

Does blogging pay?

Charles Wright has made a momentous decision. No, he’s not going to stop writing in plural. He’s closing the Razor blog on The Age/SMH, and asking for subscribers to Bleeding Edge. Some people are taking him up on it. (At least, he’s abandoning Razor. No hint there of him moving on, which seems pretty silly.)

Funnily, Darren Rowse at Problogger has considered this, and from the way he writes about it, has got mixed up by Charles’ writing in plural, and thinks it’s a whole team of people. (“…forms of writing that they could earn money from.“) Some very interesting points made though.

Meanwhile Scoble ponders how to make money off RSS (and blogging in general).

A foray into corporate blogging

I’ve convinced the company I work for to start a corporate blog. So far it’s early days, with myself (blogger extraordinaire) being the only one brave enough to post anything (apart from an introductory “this is what we sell” post), but I’m hoping the others will also contribute, as the company markets a mucho good product, and there’s a lot of good knowledge of B2B, XML, and development in general, locked up in the various brains around the place.

eVisionRSS feed

TBL blogs

Tim Berners-Lee now has a blog. Only one posting so far, which has attracted 400 comments mostly thanking him for inventing the Web.

Digging around, I found one of his old articles: Cool URIs don’t change, which along with Jakob Nielsen’s similar post, form my views on the cardinal rule of web design: your URIs should never change.

(Maybe Tony will blog something about his pain in moving Movable Type to WordPress, and how it’s likely to break his URLs).