Performancing Metrics

Posts Tagged ‘spam’

Link Removal Requests: How to Respond

Chain LinksOver the past year or so, Google has been clamping down on what it considers bad links and bad linking practices. This includes a wide variety of link building activities that Google considers unnatural. This includes some forms of article marketing, comment spamming, etc.

This has led to a large number of webmasters, including many who didn’t feel they were doing anything wrong, to take severe penalties in Google that hurt their traffic and their bottom line. Many webmasters first learn about these penalties from Google Webmaster Tools and its alerts, while others simply see a drop in traffic and go hunting for an explanation.

But regardless of how it is discovered, once a webmaster learns that they’ve been hit, there’s usually a sense of panic and a rather large mess to clean up. Most of the sites bit by Google penalties have hundreds, if not thousands of questionable links. Removing them to get back into Google’s good graces can be a daunting challenge.

However, it’s not just a challenge and a problem for the people who have their site hit by the penalties, it’s also a problem for the sites where those links appear. Those include many legitimate sites who either were the victims of comment spam or hosted guest posts unaware that the author was engaging in dubious behavior.

Many of those webmasters, myself included, have been getting an increasingly large number of link removal requests and are wondering what to do about them.

Unfortunately, the answer isn’t 100% clear and it depends heavily on you, your site and the situation that you’re in. Read More

Categories: Blogging Sense
Tags: , , , , , , ,

Your Site, Someone Else’s Ads

Sambreel LogoEarlier this week, Ars Technica ran an article about CMA Communications, a rural ISP that, for a time at least, began to display banner ads on all websites a customer visited. This move angered customers, who already paid for their Internet access, but it also was earning the attention of webmasters who were having ads injected into their sites, often covering up existing ad spots.

Though CMA Communications appears to have abandoned the project, it brought site manipulation to the limelight in a major way. It was the first time an ISP, supposedly an impartial intermediary, was interfering with customers’ Internet traffic for the purpose of injecting ads.

But just because CMA has stopped doesn’t mean that your site gets to your visitors exactly the way you intend. Unwanted site manipulation has been a problem for webmasters for some time and it may get a lot worse.

Though most bloggers know to check their theme on multiple browsers and devices, all of that tweaking and fine-tuning may be for naught if intermediaries, either with or without user permission, alter your site and give them a different experience.

So what are your visitors actually seeing when they come to your site? The answer may be more complex than you may realize. Read More

Categories: Blogging Sense
Tags: , , , , ,

Disqus Comments Hook Users In

An interesting story about the way how the Disqus Comments system hooks its WordPress users in, by not communicating with the WP database when a comment has been marked as spam.

Bug or voluntarily hooking the users in by holding the cleanliness of the comment stream hostage?

It will be interesting to see if the Disqus community will fix this spam issue or whether this is a form of locking users in.

Read the complete entry here.

Categories: Linking
Tags: , , ,

Blogging Pitfalls: Why You Should Perform a Blog Security Audit Today

Imagine sitting down to your computer one morning and opening up your blog. However, instead of finding your homepage your admin panel staring back at you, you instead see a bright red warning screen telling you that malware has been detected on the site and you are advised not to enter.

The realization quickly sinks in that, if you are seeing that error, so is everyone else trying to visit your site. You begin to hurry and try to figure out what happened but quickly realize that your site has been compromised and, if you’re even able to log in, you have a very big mess to clean up. Worst of all, when you’re done, you have to apply for reconsideration with Google and other security companies and then wait 12 hours or more for the warning to clear off.

It’s a painful process and, in the best of circumstances it can ruin an entire day and, in the worst, it can destroy an otherwise healthy site.

Still, it is an all-too-common occurrence on the Web. Bloggers learn too late that their sites are vulnerable and are left to clean up the mess an attacker leaves behind. That mess could be as simple as adding malware to the site, inserting spam links into the theme or defacing the site but in some extreme cases, it can go as far as to delete everything the blogger has done.

To help keep you, your visitors and your site safe(r) from hackers, you need to make sure your server is secure. Fortunately, it isn’t very complicated but failure to spend the time and energy today can be very costly tomorrow. Read More

Categories: Blogging Sense, WordPress Plugins, WordPress Tips
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

Fire Extinguisher Expert, I Truly Enjoyed The Drinks Last Night

Even nerds and always online people have a life so it was a slight surprise when last night I found myself at the pub instead of online and more so when I found myself enjoying a frozen one while not attending some kind of conference or WordCamp.

The truth though is that I wasn’t the only online specialist there: my fellow bloggers Fire Extinguisher Expert, SEO Expert and Financial Spreadbetting all were there as well and it didn’t take long before the focus changed, switched to the eternal debate around blog traffic.
Fire Ex, that’s how his friends call him, SEO dude and Financial actually are really cool people but the problem is, no one knows who they are or their name and they are obsessed by only one thing: traffic. Traffic to their website.

Every time you meet them it all revolves about the same and they will do their best to engage in a conversation but they resemble those guys you meet at conferences, the ones who always tend to hand out their business card even before saying ‘Hi’. Read More

Categories: Blogging Sense, Blogging Tips, General
Tags: , , ,

4 Ways To Kill Off Human Comment Spam

Blogosphere, we have a problem.

Our spamming foes are switching tactics on us, and are now using humans to market their “enhancement” products, as their mechanical minions are unable to reach their spam quota (thanks in part to awesome anti-spam technology).

Unless we can find a way to thwart these evil beings, we will have to surrender our beloved comment section–or worse–join the various blog cults out there that only allow a select few to comment, while restricting access to the rest of the world.

Since I’d rather downgrade my blogging platform than surrender hearing opinions from my readers, here are a four methods that can help kill off these annoying pests without threatening our thriving communities. Read More

Categories: Blogging Tips
Tags: ,

4 Dumb Ways To Fight Comment Spam (Use Them At Your Own Risk)

In the never ending war against spam, many bloggers across the internet are utilizing tools (both free and premium) to thwart aggressive marketers attempting to sell everyone useless “enhancement products” or adult rated toys.

Unfortunately many bloggers (both seasoned and newbie’s) are choosing methods that are turning potential commenters into lurkers, killing off what could be a thriving community.

So unless you enjoy massive collateral damage while you battle against comment spam, here are four dumb (yet popular) ways to fight comment spam–as well as alternatives for those of you adopting these methods. Read More

Categories: Blogging Tips
Tags: ,

3 Ways To Make Spammers Cry (On WordPress And Blogger)

If there is anything I hate more than content thieves, it’s spammers!

Unlike the former who simply steal your content and claim it as their own, spammers attempt to destroy your site by linking to either “enhancements,” products or their own sad blog.

Since many bloggers power their weblogs with Blogger (aka BlogSpot) or WordPress (both and, here are 3 tips to help keep your blog free from spammers (and perhaps make them cry). Read More

Categories: Blogging Tips
Tags: , ,

Sunday Morning SEO: Using Google’s Spam Report to Fight a Cloaking Scraper

A couple weeks ago, I published my regular post on a recurring event in my niche. The event was a product release that comes out about once every three months. Typically, I rank right away for the relevant keywords because most of my competitors are not very knowledgeable about SEO. However, this time I did not get my usual traffic spike.

So, being the curious cat that I am :), I did some investigating.

I looked at the search engine results page (SERP) for the most relevant keyword and saw that my post was not in the top 50 results. Instead, a site had scraped (copied through automatic means) the opening sentences of my blog entry and was ranking on the third results page. Also, they cloaked their post. In other words, they redirected it to a unrelated product.

Read More

Categories: Blogging Tips
Tags: , , ,

Movable Type Monday: Archives, Comment Spam, CKEditor, and More

Happy Monday, folks! Over the last few weeks, I’ve introduced you to two great new Movable Type blogs: Maarten Schenk’s Movable Tips and Nick’s MT-J. This week we’ve got a bunch of new info from both these sites.

First, let’s take a look at what’s going on over at Movable Tips: Read More

Categories: Movable Type News
Tags: , , , , ,