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Spam The Internet

The Ham and Spam of Weblogs 192

An anonymous reader submits "Will the blogosphere become just as spammy as Usenet? There may be over 10M weblogs out there, most of them seem to be fake spam blogs created to manipulate the search engines. Scott Johnson, CTO at Feedster, complained that "at times we see upwards of 90% of the traffic from Blogspot being spam," and the problem is likely to only get worse. Can blog search engines like Technorati, Feedster, and PubSub filter the signal from the torrent of noise? Or will we have to seek new approaches such as the social filtering used by or collaborative filtering used by Findory to separate the ham from the spam?"
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The Ham and Spam of Weblogs

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:09AM (#12928834)
    I wish Google had an option to exclude blogs from my search. Considering many blogs use b2evolution, phpBB, or whatever, Google could easily determine what IS a blog and what IS NOT and filter it accordingly. Google IMHO would be a much better place if I could exlude blogs and those stupid parked domain search sites from my queries.

    I'm not trying to be flamebait; It would be a nice option though. ::242
    • Check out (Score:5, Informative)

      by Greyfox ( 87712 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:38AM (#12928946) Homepage Journal
      The Customize Google [] plugin. I don't use it to block out adverts and would encourage you not to either, but it is handy for blocking out those obnoxious spammy sites that far too often show up in my google searches.

      It was a bit unintuitive how you add sites to the filter list though -- just cut and paste "http://**" into your extensions list and any search results from will then be greyed out.

    • Welcome to Slashdot. (Score:5, Interesting)

      by ciroknight ( 601098 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:38AM (#12928947)
      Slashdot is a blog, created in the context of a news site, which we all come to and bitch about things we want out of technology, think is/are cool, and/or hate and want everyone to know why.

      That being said, Google (along with other large search engines) have already taken stances on blogging, and are actively pursuing their individual stances. For most, this is creating their own blog service, and doing some shifting in their code to make sure blogs don't come out on top. But this isn't an absolute truth.

      If you want these things, and Google doesn't offer them, make your own search engine, and do it better. No, seriously, don't look at me like I'm crazy; there have been over a dozen "major" search engines created after Google, some are only in serious use by geeky populations (AlltheWeb, as far as I can tell, fits this), some by the trendy, some by the "I hate Google"ites, etc. etc. It's as simple as that.

      One reason I think Google's strayed from taking such a hardline on blogs is simply out of ease of use. Google doesn't want to complicate life with a million more search options, especially ones you can deal with yourself by subtracting out the majorly offensive sites (-livejournal -blogger -blogspot, etc).
      • The vast majority of blog-style web sites are written and controlled by a single user. Slashdot has several editors, and all of the stories are contributed by visitor.

        Make no mistake: Slashdot is not what people are talking about when they complain of the spam that blogs have dumped into Google..

        Slashdot represents thousands of voices.

        Most blogs represent one voice only.

        • by The One and Only ( 691315 ) <[ten.hclewlihp] [ta] [lihp]> on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:45AM (#12928974) Homepage
          God forbid that one voice be allowed to speak without needing to ask the consent of thousands of others.
        • by ciroknight ( 601098 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:50AM (#12928995)
          Wait, how many Slashdot editors are there? Oh right, not thousands. Not even hundreds.

          Secondly, haven't you ever heard of the Freedom of Speech, as guarenteed to us by the Second Amendement in the Bill of Rights of the Constitution of the United States of America? By your comment, I'll assume not.

          Why should we quash out individuality so that one person can get to the content they want better? Why shouldn't we just solve the damned problem, instead of creating more?
          • Freedom of speech is not a guarantee of audience.
            • For fuck's sake, neither is the Internet. Just because I put something on the Internet, doesn't mean anyone's ever going to see it!!!!

              If Google brings it up as a top match, USE ANOTHER SEARCH ENGINE. The problem is you think services should cater specifically to you, while the company that runs the services is trying to think of the greater good of everyone.

              Freedom of Speech is all the Internet is. Audience is you. If you want to look at the site, go right on ahead, and if you don't, then you know how
              • Plus there are many (and increasing) blogs about that do contain useful content. A lot of writers and grassroots pressure groups are using the blog format to present what previously they used a non-blog webpage format for. There's been a fair few times I've come accross a gnarly technical problem, landed up Googling on the error message/symptoms and found that the most useful result was a blog entry that was either someone blogging "I had this problem and this how I fixed it." or "I've got this problem, h

          • by gbulmash ( 688770 ) * <> on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @03:06AM (#12929211) Homepage Journal
            Secondly, haven't you ever heard of the Freedom of Speech, as guarenteed to us by the Second Amendement in the Bill of Rights of the Constitution of the United States of America? By your comment, I'll assume not.

            If what you say above were true, I'd be careful where you point that mouth. The safety is off.

            The Second Amendment is our right to guns, not our right to free speech. Free speech is in the First Amendment. So

            And be very careful. All the First Amendment guarantees is " Congress shall make no law..." [] abridging freedom of speech.

            If you want to go to a public park and preach religion or recite your political manifesto, the First Amendment guarantees your right to. But it's not absolute.

            If you want to preach/recite on my front lawn, my property rights prevail and I can physically throw you off my property if you refuse to leave voluntarily. If you want to preach/recite at midnight and you're preaching/reciting too loud, city noise ordinances prevail, and the cops can arrest or ticket you if you refuse to quiet down or move along.

            Slashdot is required to allow you a certain amount of leeway in exchange for safe harbor [] protections covering public forums, but that is a matter of them trying to avoid getting sued over any libelous/defamatory content in your posts, not any First Amendment guarantee they are obligated to provide you. And if you go beyond that leeway, they can ban you from posting and erase your posts.

            So if you want to argue in favor of blog spam, find another argument. The First Amendment has nothing to do with whether Google and other blog services should voluntarily clean up their act and put roadblocks/barriers in place to stem the flow of blog spam.

            - Greg

            • If you want to preach/recite on my front lawn, my property rights prevail and I can physically throw you off my property if you refuse to leave voluntarily.

              Only the police can use physical force to remove a trespasser, as any landlord knows. According to Wikipedia []:

              Most jurisdictions do not allow "self-help" to remove trespassers. The usual procedure is to ask the trespassing person to leave, then to call law enforcement officials if they do not. As long as the trespasser is not posing an immediate th

            • Plus the US constitution only really holds sway in, well, the US. Slashdot may be hosted in the US (unless it's been outsourced to a datacentre in India by now) but an increasing portion of the web is outside of the US and US direct jurisdiction, as has been evidenced recently [].


          • No. They can censor all they want. Freedom of Speech is something that the government cannot infringe on. Individuals can infringe all they want. As long as I can get the information elsewhere and not through the almighty google, no right has been violated.
        • Meanwhile in the day slashdot have some outage...

          " I feel a fluctuation in the net, it's like thousands on voices suddenly became silent"... :P
        • Slashdot is very similar to a moderated community on LiveJournal (albeit on a much, much larger scale). People submit posts, the moderator chooses which ones go through to the community, and all community members (and in some, people who aren't members and/or anonymous posters) can comment freely on them.

          I agree that this is not what people are talking about when they talk about spam, but it *is* a type of blogging, and not one that is entirely unique to Slashdot.

      • Seems like a reasonable way to do it to me. (Cue Rob rushing out the door to the patent office)

        Allow users to directly rate the worth of the sites Google returns in a search. Anything from "Not what I was looking for", "This is a crap site", "Nothing but advertising" to "This is probably illegal".

        It would give Google direct stats on the worth of the sites. People marking competitors down could be made difficult through techniques like character recognition.

      • One reason I think Google's strayed from taking such a hardline on blogs is simply out of ease of use. Google doesn't want to complicate life with a million more search options...

        So add it to the "Advanced Search" page. A handful of extra checkboxes there, like "No blogs" and "No commercial sites" (anything with lots of currency symbols) would be easy enough to deal with, and wouldn't affect the masses who just want the "one click" experience Amazon babbles about.
    • by aftk2 ( 556992 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:38AM (#12928948) Homepage Journal
      I'm just curious - exactly _what_ would include, if not for blogs? Certainly, I can understand not including those parked domain search sites: they're gaming the system, completely unhelpful, and filled with bogus content.

      But blogs? Sure, much of the content is poorly written, or not applicable to what most people - or, well, rather, 90% of a given population - are interested in. But in searches especially, doesn't it make sense to list results that include those normal people so interested in a particular topic that they blog about them?

      For example, blogs can be very helpful when facing computer troubles, provided you're dealing with bloggers who know how to write for Google. This is a good example []. I mean, this surely has to be more worthy of inclusion in Google than the lion's share of those web-based bulletin boards that get indexed - you know the ones, with the "Next in thread" and the replies that are typically out of date, or altogether unrelated to your original query.

      Everyone's quick to dismiss things lately. Don't dismiss blogs, just because sometimes their content seems insular and not applicable to what you've searched for. That's a problem with the search engines, not the sites they index.
      • The web was around long before blogs. Google was necessary, successful and incredibly useful long before blogs.

        Blogs are fine. But 99% of the time, they are useless to me when I'm searching for something. I'm often after technical data or reviews, and blogs are not usually the best source, or the best venue, for such things.
    • by bigman2003 ( 671309 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:38AM (#12928949) Homepage
      The blogs don't bother me nearly as much as "those stupid parked domain search sites."

      I don't know how many times I have done a Google search, and the 3rd or 4th result comes back with my exact phrase..yay!

      Then I go to some stupid, totally lame site advertising domain names, or listing other sites, or something like that.

      I never have figured out how they get listed in Google the way they do though- because my search phrase is not listed on the evidently they know something I don't.
      • I think that there's a wildcard 'match everything' phrase that google have allowed some advertisers to use. I've typed in some really wacky stuff and got the exact same pages back every time... each time the title of the page is something like 'information about ' and the content is spam.. the URL is something like [].html

        The website side of that is easy... autogenerate the page based on the URL. The google side is something I've been trying to work out with no success yet.
        • Damn slashdot.

          I think that there's a wildcard 'match everything' phrase that google have allowed some advertisers to use. I've typed in some really wacky stuff and got the exact same pages back every time... each time the title of the page is something like 'information about (my search phrase)' and the content is spam.. the URL is something like [] search phrase).html

          The website side of that is easy... autogenerate the page based on the URL. The google side is something I've been tryi
          • Referrers. When you click on a link in a Google search result, your search terms get passed along to the site through the referrer (your search terms are in the query itself). It's fairly trivial to capture each incoming referrer and add it to their network of domains as a link so Google will cache it next time.
      • The domain parking revenue services often use cross-linking between the thousands of domains they control to improve their Google rankings. Speculators buy expiring domains, paying extra to get names with high Google PageRank. The aggregators like Sedo [] and Domain Sponsor [] use pretty advanced search engine optimization strategies to drive traffic to these pages .

        Like email spam, these sites will continue to exist so long as people click on the links, thus supporting the business model.

      • Google for "new idria, ca"

        The first link *is* relevant, and maybe 2 more on the first Google page are as well.

        The rest? PURE CRAP. Lawyers in New Idria, CA? Job listings? Home appraisals? All just SPAM.

        (FYI, New Idria, CA is a ghost town. It has a population of 3. There are no homes being sold, and thank god, no lawyers there either.)

        So, I was looking for further history & photos and I was flooded with marketing garbage. Take a look at some of the URLs. It's clear that they're trying to boost their
    • Separating them might be nice, true, but I thank Google for every time I've found exactly what I was looking for on a blog, especially when it was something really obscure that needed a human opinion, like a stupid setting in Windows I'm looking for, or some review of a concert that I missed. Blogs are information too; often better information than you can get anywhere else. I think what you're really angry at are "those stupid parked domain search sites", which are a little different. Just a bit.
    • What about all the useful content on blogs?

      There are also a number of people (including me) who use blog software as simple CMSes even for sites that are not strictly speaking blogs - are you going to exclude us too?

      Finally, how are you going to determine what software a site runs on? If you use generator meta tags, they can be excluded or faked.

      Incidentally thanks for reminding me to remove them from my new theme (I had done it earlier, but forgot this time).
    • Considering many blogs use b2evolution, phpBB, or whatever,

      phpBB is a forum system, not a blog (though I've hacked it up to work like one in the pase). And trust me, half of the most valuable information I've found on line is in forums about specific topics where someone has asked my same question and received an answer.

      - Greg

    • If you're getting results from blogs that you don't like, then Google needs to improve their search / ranking algorithm more - or you need to stop prepending your searches with "current mood"
  • by Mal-2 ( 675116 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:10AM (#12928841) Homepage Journal
    90% of EVERYTHING is crap. It just happens that weblogs trend toward a specific TYPE of crap -- SPAM. I mean you may think JeffK is crap, but some of us find him funny, so anything with actual content has to be not crap to somebody (if only the creator). That means all the crap must be content-free.

    • by trisweb ( 690296 )

      Okay, great, so 90% of it is crap. It's a given, call it whatever you want. My personal favorite is the "long tail effect".

      Built into blogs is a way to tell the crap from the good stuff -- they're linked together intelligently by people who can tell crap apart, and the people who don't write crap don't link to crap. So find one good blog, and you've found a hundred or more good ones just three levels deep in links. Go one more level, and there are a thousand. It's exponential. And chances are, most of them

    • At least he's bettar than Penny Arcaded.
    • This is just one more argument for not having all tehse srevices be free.

      If people had to pay even a nominal fee ($12/year) the majority of the spam blogs would disappear. And probably 90% of the crap blogs, too. They'd either quit because it's not worth the cost, or (in a minority of cases) they'd actually start thinking more before blogging (which has to be one of the stupidest words of the last 100 years, right up there with "bling-bling").
  • by SamMichaels ( 213605 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:18AM (#12928877)
    The guy makes a good point...human validation via captcha. If you're going to spend 10 minutes complaining, whining, bragging and/or loathing about something then you can spend 3 seconds typing in the word "uNFsaQ" to prove you're human.

    If it takes you less than 10 minutes to write in your dear diary--I mean blog--then it's probably a 1 liner to the effect of "i think she likez me omglolbbq!!!" and you need to get off my internet.

    Problem solved. Next?
    • by MochaMan ( 30021 )
      you can spend 3 seconds typing in the word "uNFsaQ" to prove you're human.

      Unless you happen to be a blind blogger. With all the effort people have put into accessibility there's got to be a validation method that can work for the blind as well.

      Just mentioning this because I've seen this complaint several times by blind users on slashdot.
      • What about a sound captcha? A link on the page you click says "Read Captcha", linking to an mp3 file constructed of the letters put together. Not hard to implement, not too harsh on bandwidth. Of course, then the deaf would complain, and you'd have to use both. And of course then the blind and deaf would have to complain... *sigh*
        • by MochaMan ( 30021 )
          No I think you're right on there. From my understanding of it, most blind users are using screen readers to navigate the web, so enhancing whatever software it is that generates the images to also produce a sound file would probably suffice.

          I'm not entierly sure how many blind *and* deaf users there are browsing the web unassisted, but I suppose a broader solution would depend on what technology they're using to browse the web. Some form of braille reader, perhaps? If anyone knows the answer to this, I'
      • Re:Human validation (Score:3, Informative)

        by eh2o ( 471262 )
        The slashdot programming team seems to have a policy of ignoring persistent problems for years.

        However there are already some major sites with "sound" captchas for the blind -- craiigslist for example.
  • by XNormal ( 8617 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:20AM (#12928888) Homepage
    With email spam filtering you have to consider each email separately. A blog has a persistent identity and reputation. In theory, this should make it easier to filter blog spam than email spam. On results of this type of filtering is that it will will penalize new blogs in search results, both spammy and real.

    Blog comment spam will remain a problem, of course.
    • I've been blogging for years and have not found comment spamming to be a significant problem. I've received a handful of spam comments in my blog, and they've all been swiftly deleted and the originator banned from posting again. I filter anonymous posts, so if someone tries to post a comment anonymously, I get to see it and OK it first before it the rest of the world gets to see it. I don't mind anonymous comments at all, assuming they're real responses to what I've posted, but if they're spam I just de
      • I'm not sure what causes the difference, but some blogs get lots of comment spam, others get next to none. One that I read seems to get about 5 or 10 per week; another, like yours, almost none. No idea what the difference is (except perhaps that the former is what I'd call a "better known" blog: not one of the really well known ones like, say, boing-boing, but one that a large proportion of blog readers familiar with its specialist subject matter would have heard of).
        • My blog (on LiveJournal) started to get a lot of comment spam when it started to appear in Google results, usually on entries that were at least a few days old. The spam was usually vaguely related to the content of the post, so if I wrote an entry about (say) seeing a pretty girl I'd get a spam comment advertising a pron site but if I wrote about a piece of software then I'd get an spam comment advertising "CHEAP MICROSOFT OFFICE CDs **$10**" &c. I guessed they got my blog URL from search engine resu

  • by lux55 ( 532736 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:32AM (#12928927) Homepage Journal
    I just wanted to point out that so-called "social software" is not social. Person-to-person communication through computers is mediated and indirect. Technology is a barrier to communication as much as it is an enabler. I agree that it is an enabler in situations where it is used to help overcome disabilities and things of that nature, however technology is used moreso by people who are actually avoiding being social. Email is often preferable to a telephone because it creates an additional barrier between ourselves and the "recipient" (aka person).

    A prime example of software in a "social" context is the chatter that accompanies networked video games. This does not form real relationships between people. I heard a teenager recently say that his gaming buddies, who he doesn't even know by name, are like family to him. Technology has helped a whole generation and then some to fail to learn what real relationships are. When a teenager can't distinguish between somebody he's only ever witnessed virtually shoot ze germans and the people who nurtured him before he was able to take care of himself, we have a problem Houston.

    And it's only getting worse. Now we've begun adding "social" in front of all kinds of new web applications. Anything that lets other users see your profile and the items you post and comment on them is seen as a valid replacement for real human contact.

    There was a line from a movie I saw recently called Crash, where Don Cheadle's character says to his girlfriend "It's the sense of touch. Any real city you walk, you know. You brush past people, people bump into you. In L.A., nobody touches you. We're always behind this metal and glass. I think we miss that sense of touch so much, that we crash into each other just so we can feel something.". The next time we use the word "social" to describe a new type of web application, I think we should give that some thought first.
    • Messageboards and IM are very convenient for keeping in touch with people who have moved to other cities. What you've said would imply that we should restrict our social lives to those who live within a 30-mile radius at the moment. I think that's a far more dismal prospect than using another new technology to stay in contact with people.

      People have written letters, sent telegrams, and called each other for hundreds of years. Long-distance communication is part of human social behavior -- regardless of whet

    • by aftk2 ( 556992 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @02:09AM (#12929058) Homepage Journal
      You raise valid points, but what would you have to say to these people?
      For the people who are mourning the loss described in the link, is their grief less meaningful than that of those who knew the person directly, face-to-face? Perhaps, but perhaps not: I know a bunch of people, some of whom I see regularly, but with whom I haven't had as meaningful a relationship as some people I've spoken to online, but have never met in person. Is there a qualitative difference between the two types of social interaction? Probably - but I think it's too easy to say "the way we always used to do things is right" and "This is new, and less personal, and hence, wrong."
      • by lux55 ( 532736 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @02:24AM (#12929098) Homepage Journal
        "Is there a qualitative difference between the two types of social interaction?"

        While you did answer your own question ("Probably..."), I do like your response. You raise good questions. I definitely don't believe that only face-to-face communication is real social interaction, but I could have been clearer on this point. I'm not an absolutist, and I'm not pining for the dark ages or anything like that ;) If I didn't believe in communication through mediation, I wouldn't be here on /. right now.

        Anyway, my real point is that these online substitutes are serving more and more people as substitutes for the real thing, to the point where young'uns are being brought up not knowing that there is a difference. Instead of getting together (in cases that are actually able to) they go online and "chat". Mediated communication inherently encourages more mediation because we as human beings form habits. And while mediation can still produce relationships (I can't deny that), they are less rich than direct unmediated ones. And technology is inherently a mediator, no getting around it (pun slightly intended ;).

        To be perfectly honest though, most face-to-face relationships are just as mediated as those maintained through technology. Real-world mediators include our political and religious views, our egos, etc. which inhibit our ability to relate directly and honestly with one another just as much as the inability to see facial expressions on a forum.

        I definitely use technology where appropriate to augment relationships at distances. I only see my family twice a year, but I keep in touch via telephone all the time, and I post photos to flickr for them to see. My sisters email me once in a while, which is great too. These things definitely have value, but they are no substitute for being able to see and hug my family. They simply help make the time between visits bearable.


    • Now we've begun adding "social" in front of all kinds of new web applications. Anything that lets other users see your profile and the items you post and comment on them is seen as a valid replacement for real human contact. has none of these features, and the words "social filtering" are not used to imply any sort of substitution of human contact. It is a system where you can file bookmarks and can find the most popular bookmarks as tagged by other users. "Social filtering" is the phrase tha
      • Off Topic: Guilty. Mostly anyway. It's the term I take issue with, not the site.

        I suspect you were also as disappointed as I was in school when I found out that "Social Studies" wasn't a place to talk to other students.

        I never found out, but I was confused as to why I got kicked out for talking too much... ;) Cheers, Lux
  • People are using blogs and forums to post links to their own sites. These links show up as backlinks to Google, and due to Google's ranking procedure that determines which website is the most relevant to each search, each extra backlink pointing to a website can effectively make that website more relevant in the searches.

    Luckily, Google is one step ahead of the spammers, and has allowed only one link from each forum to contribute as a valid backlink. Therefore, having 100 forum signatures linking to www
    • Simple. Have 8 different domains, or even 8 different URLs from the same domain. One backlink for each in the sig. I'll admit to doing this on one particular forum, but it's a web developer's site, and it's a common practice there.

      The real solution, at least as far as search engine rank goes is the new rel=nofollow attribute for links that Google started using a few months ago. The best link that I could find when I was looking at this a couple weeks ago is this one []. If it grows in popularity and the ma
  • by sdedeo ( 683762 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @01:45AM (#12928973) Homepage Journal
    In the Wired article (I know this isn't about spam, but what the hell):

    "Lately, it seems like almost every time you tune into your favorite Blogger-hosted blog to catch up on the latest gossip, meme, political diatribe or cybersnark, you find that the site is frozen in time. Or, there are multiple posts with identical content."

    Uh, no, not as far as I can tell. "Frozen in time," perhaps, after someone decided to stop blogging, but I used blogger for six months and never had a single hitch. Apparently, googling "blogger sucks" gives you thousands of sites bitching about google's service.

    Sometimes there are outages, when you can't get in to alter a post or something similar, but those were few and far between (at least they happened less than half a dozen times in six months, and it only lasted a few hours.)

    I guess this is a sign about how popular blogger is. I mean, then only way to balance my experience (zero fatal errors in six months) with thousands of complaints is to assume that there are a HELL of a lot of bloggers out there.

    Oh, and to those bitching in general about blogs: please shut up. Yes, there are annoying vanity blogs, but blogger -- and the blogging concept -- has been a godsend to specialists, as well as to political organizing.
  • Livejournal, for one, has such a setting where your entries are "friends only". Likewise, you can allow people who are anonymous to not post, or otherwise have various restrictions.
  • Blogspot (Score:4, Informative)

    by dedazo ( 737510 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @02:05AM (#12929043) Journal
    Blogspot is fucking overflowing with these fake blogs. Here's one [] example.

    If you have a few minutes, click on the randomizer button at the top of the screen that reads "Next Blog" a couple of times. I'd be willing to say that at least 2 out of every 10 blogs is a spam farm.

    It's just fucking sad.

    • I did what you said and you were wrong. Six out of 10 were spam.
    • Or we could /not/ click the spam blog, and not Slashdot the shit out of their page load count.

      Just a thought.
    • 404 Not Found. Way to go! You found one very effective way to take down spam blogs: Slashdot 'em!

      Still, I wish I could have studied that page for comparison. I found [] one day in my blog referrer logs. I wondered why people interested in Bob the Builder had linked to me. They hadn't. The whole page is nothing but spam - all posted on one sunny day this month. If you can help me see what gonorrhea has to do with Bob the Builder I'd be very much obliged.

      At any rate
    • Re:Blogspot (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Relgar ( 598222 )
      I wonder if Google is letting it remain easy to make spam blogs w/ Blogger in order to get more data samples, to fine-tune their filters? i.e. replicate the internet problem in the small, with controllable parameters.

      After all, why run through the entire gamut of blog styles and presentation formats, when you can just examine content-only from your own servers.
  • All these services like technocrati just measure quantity and not quality. That is why they are so easily spammed and abused. Just by crawling blogs and counting links and cross links won't do it.

    And since most bloggers simply recycle and rephrase current events you need a different approach.
  • I hope it goes where 'cyberspace' and 'surfing' went.
  • by Animats ( 122034 ) on Tuesday June 28, 2005 @02:33AM (#12929130) Homepage
    Actually, Usenet is doing quite well. The spam battle has been won; there's very little spam in the technical groups. Serious workers in difficult fields are on there. Check out, say, "", where the people who write physics engines discuss how to do it. Or "comp.std.c++.moderated", where proposed changes to C++ are discussed. Usenet has far lower advertising content than the Web, where, today, "content" seems to be a little box in the middle of the page, surrounded by blinking ads.
  • I use Blogger to manage my blog.

    The fact that I know how to enter the necessary information for Blogger to SFTP to my server demonstrates that I am not seeking to link farm.

    Bottom line? Educate bloggers on how to integrate with alternative service providers, and aschew blogspot hosted blogs.

    The legit will rise to the top, and the rest will be safely ignored.
  • by Alioth ( 221270 )
    I wish there was a way of stabbing people in the face over the Internet when they use that awful buzzword "blogosphere"!!
  • Trying to view blogspot, and at some point, it harassed me for a login at some point (maybe I wandered in the wrong direction). So I used the firefox BugMeNot plugin, and voila`, I had a blog. Okay, so it was more of a wiki than a blog, I really didn't post anything, and it was always being covered by folks writing crappy poetry.
    Then some dweeb from canuckistan changed the password and uses it to boost the google ratings for his pathetic little torontine blog about getting drunk with ron jeremy.

    The "random
  • Surely it's only a matter of time before we start seeing tags getting link spammed :(
  • It's called "using my brain/eyes" and "communicating with people".

    On sites that I already know and like (including some blogs), people mention and link to other sites, like, say, blogs. Since I then go over there for real content, well, guess what, it's not a link farm; it's good.

    Problem solved ;)
  • Am I the only one who find the term "blogosphere" almost as annoying as "cyberspace" and "e-{insert whatever word you want here}"?
    • > Am I the only one who find the term "blogosphere" almost as annoying as "cyberspace" and "e-{insert whatever word you want here}"?


      (Next someone will come up with the idea of filtering communications by the ratio of quoted to original text, no doubt...)
  • You can't stop the signal.

Forty two.