possibly some more seo gaming

Ah, so that’s what the invisible Sphere .gif was for. I did wonder.

Isn’t calling these extra links ‘possibly related’ a really weaselly way of avoiding criticism about the inevitable crapness of their algorithms, much as calling the blog surfer ‘beta’ neatly sidesteps any obligation to make it work properly?

Obviously I will be switching off this latest pagerank-garnering device as soon as we have had an opportunity to see and mock the inevitable crapness of their algorithms. Let’s go!

[edit: wahey, either it’s broken already or they haven’t got around to adding it to this theme. OK, now I see why it was only possibly an announcement.]

13 Comments »

  1. possibly the first casualty.

  2. I’m surprised you’re not pointing out how long it took them to add in Sphere to the system. How many times was it requested?

  3. And I love Rain’s take on the issue. Must be Friday. :)

  4. Jarrod said

    And yet some people still swear by the old PR system.

  5. and here i thought the the title related to their actual SEO gaming. i haven’t seen it on my blog either, but i’d really doubt that it’s theme-specific.

  6. options said

    not gaming, actually. rather a partnership, mutually profitable.

    one can possibly see it on every random BOTD; it’s blended with a post body; but thankfully could be styled though (just for “$0.04 per day”, or $.0017/hour, etc).

  7. timethief said

    Here we go again. It’s the global category and local tags situation expanded and it’s no surprise that bloggers are reacting to it as they di to the former

    http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic.php?id=27295

    http://en.forums.wordpress.com/topic.php?id=27298

  8. timethief said

    The new “feature” is not theme specific. It is found here -> Design -> Extras
    These are general extras that you can enable for your entire blog.
    ___Enable Snap Shots on this blog
    ___Hide related links on this blog, which means this blog won’t show up on other’s blogs or get traffic that way
    I have disabled both “extras” on my blog.

  9. Richard said

    I’m not sure how it works, but perhaps if one used categories and tags such as knitting, puppies, family, etc., it might show up. The may have a “feature” that excludes certain tags and categories used by those un-fanboi’s.

  10. I don’t think categories and tags are involved in the algorithm (too susceptible to gaming). Matt shut down the thread speculating on how the links are generated, presumably because that’s not information Sphere would want in the public domain. Also, if they thought too deeply about how the links were getting there, some people might get squicked by the thought of all their content being grabbed and parsed by some random company they haven’t signed up to. (I don’t know what they think Google does, but people can be all kinds of weird and irrational about privacy and content ownership.)

  11. Well there’s one thing that’s been learned form all of this.

    There are a lot of “mature” blogs here at wp.com that haven’t been marked as such.

  12. Inevitable, seeing as it’s entirely policed by users. We’re told so much that global tagegories are a wonderful thing that hardly anyone is going to report themselves, most people probably wouldn’t notice a porn link in their dashboard because they tuned out the ‘recent posts’ spam long ago (like they do with ads), and the proportion of users on ‘next blog’ patrol has to be vanishingly small.

    The only hope of getting a halfway accurate database of mature blogs is asking them to check a box at signup. Even then people are going to lie so as not to break tagegories, and you’re left with a heap of legacy blogs that didn’t have to make any form of declaration.

  13. options said

    I don’t think categories and tags are involved in the algorithm (too susceptible to gaming).

    that’s right — no direct folksonomy. and Rain was also onto something in that closed thread: the new search thing, or rather its tagging subsystem (which is pretty good) is likely involved into the mining relevant tags and feeding them to Sphere (whose algorithm sucked last time I checked it once).

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