Is Google Making An Example Out Of PayPerPost (… er, Izea)?

It seems like Google isn’t satisfied with not just “doing no evil”, but actively continuing to punish those it deems to *be* evil by pounding some blogs to a PageRank of zero. Just this past month, for example, Google went on the rampage against those who were selling links by lowering their PageRank (the BlogHerald included), and it looks like they’re not quite done.

While the scope if this most recent “correction” has still yet to be fully completed, it seems that the target of Google’s ire are those who are doing paid postings from PayPerPost Izea. Andy Beard, of course is keeping an active track of things, and Ted Murphy, CEO of PayPerPost Izea has gone on record on his own blog, by claiming Google is actually targeting small time bloggers who are using his service to make a humble income. Furthermore, he tries to make the case that larger players are no different, such as TechCrunch, as advertising usually brings a free in-post link at the end of every month.

Now, what’s interesting, of course, is that many bloggers (and blogs) have noticed that after their pagerank drop — indeed, after their pagerank went to zero — their hasn’t been much change, if any, in their traffic levels. In light of this, EatonWeb is recalibrating is algorithm so that it now takes PageRank out of the equation (indeed, it devalues it).

But if there’s been no change in traffic levels, one does wonder what the purpose of this recent action is?

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Getting Link Love From Facebook? Hold Yer Horses, Kids

You have may heard that Facebook has opened itself to advertising and marketing over the past month through several initiatives, one of them being the feature of creating pages for businesses (Microsoft) and/or personalities (Kevin Rose). If you’ve felt tempted to create a page for your own blog, that may have merits on its own as a means to create a community of fans *on* Facebook. But if you did it expressly for link credit, because Facebook pages are visible to Google, you may want to hold your horses, ‘pardner.

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Feedburner Drops Google Subscribers *Again*?

Well, it almost looks like it, as it seems like the numbers are uniformly down, just like 5-6 days ago, when Feedburner’s subscribers had fallen by half.  The reason that was given at the time was that subscribers stats from Google’s Feedfetcher were off line.

Has the same thing happened again?   Many commenters on the same post at Feedburner are wondering the same thing as the numbers seem to be down around 50% again.  More importantly, with these kind of reliability issues the second time in as many days, it does one reflexively wonder what is going on at Feedburner/Google HQ, whether it be security issues, upgrades, or hardware failures or what have you.

Sploggers Get Craftier. Or Should I Say “Sploggers son cada vez más complicado!”

So, as a disclaimer, I don’t actually know if that Spanish translation is accurate for “Sploggers are getting trickier”, because I used Google’s Translation service at translate.google.com to illustrate a point.

In my ongoing fascination with sploggers, I’ve found out that there’s a new kind of “autoblogging” software that has been sending out trackbacks. But I presume you know the usual kind of thing I’m talking about: the offenders are blogs that end in .info, scrape your posts and then reproduce the first few paragraphs that end with an ellipsis and “you should read more over here”, or “<insert author name> has the details”, or some such dreck.

Well, in examining the latest splogging garbage to cross my desk, I have found that some new autoblogging software is doing something pretty sneaky to get past *your* defenses.

I know that when I look back at such blogs to verify that they’re in fact auto-generated (to create adsense income), so that I can add their IP and domain to my blacklist, I usually check “by hand” to see that they’ve scraped a post.

Well, much to my surprise I found that there were some *very* interesting posts that were “tracking back” to the BlogHerald that had very familiar posts — but not quite identical or literal ripoffs of our content.

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Presidential Medal of Freedom Goes To … A Blogger?!

The Presidential Medal of Freedom is the the United States’ highest civilian honor. It might surprise you to know that in spite of its more controversial recipients in recent years, one of its most recent recipients is in fact, a blogger.

Which would make the recipient in question the most distinguished blogger in the world.

Who is this blogger? Gary Beck, an economist who, incidentally, has also won the Nobel Prize back in 1992.

Mr. Beck was honored with a number of others, including C-SPAN’s Brian Lamb, former Rep. Henry Hyde of Illinois, imprisoned Cuban dissident Oscar Elias Biscet, Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, scientist Francis Collins and former NAACP President Benjamin Hooks.

It turns out that Mr. Beck had won the Medal of Freedom for his works in economics — not, sadly, in blogging; however, he has been blogging since 2004 with a partner, Richard Posner, who is no slouch himself, being a judge of the US Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit.

Together they write regularly at www.becker-posner-blog.com, which is a blog that focuses on economic theory and world events. At least that’s what I think its on, as it looks to be fairly hard core — from an economics point of view. To me, any post which begins with “Malthus and the many neo-Malthusians of modern times assume that the threat from world overpopulation would show up first in rising food prices … ”

On the other hand, what else would you expect from a pair of dueling minds, both of whom are Professors, and both of whom have published stacks of books on their respective interests.

If economic theory floats your boat, check their blog out; otherwise, you can add “Blogger as Presidential Medal of Freedom Winner” to your list of blogger-related trivia when your friends and family ask you “… but who really blogs?”

What’s Your StumbleUpon Rank? Introducing StumbleRank

Are you a fan of StumbleUpon as a means to share cool stuff — and, perhaps, from time to time, gain a small boost in traffic should your site get Stumbled?

Would you be interested in getting to know fellow Stumblers, particularly by their Stumble ranking?

If the answer to both questions is “yes”, then it may interest you to know of a new service called StumbleRank, which is a new service put together by Muhammad Saleem, uber-social-media maven (and former BlogHerald author, I might add).

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Feedburner Glitch Nixes Google Reader Stats … Temporarily

Did you notice your Feedburner subscriber stats drop precipitously today? Perhaps a little more than it does on the weekend? Perhaps by as much as one-half?

If you happened to remember that everyone’s subscriber stats *doubled* about a year ago thanks to Feedburner recognizing Google feeds, you might have wondered if the opposite happened — and you would have been right.

Turns out that Feedburner has had difficulty in recognizing the subscribers from Google’s feedfetcher over the past 24 hours or so, and luckily this has been remedied.

So, for everyone who has enjoyed the extra hour of sleep thanks to daylight savings, you may rest assured that your numbers will return back to normal, and all has not been a result of over- (or, perhaps, under-) sleeping.

tip: the very-awake-Ryan Coleman 

Become A Blogging Pundit In 5 Easy Steps

In the time I’ve been blogging personally in the new media side of the blogosphere, there have been some unwritten rules that I’ve taken notice of that some bloggers seem to follow religiously.

Of course, there’s the usual “best practice rules” that you’ll find written about here (such as writing with passion, finding your own voice, participating in community, investing time in marketing your blog, and so on, and so on, and so on) — but there are a few others, some tongue in cheek, and some not that are applicable to bloggers in any blogging niche.

If you want to get your egomaniacal gasbaggery on in earnest, that is. :)

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Are You Noticing An Increase In Blogspam Too?

For fans who read the BlogHerald, you might notice over the past few weeks a noticeable increase in blogspam, both in volume and variety. We’re running a combination of Spam Karma 2 and Akismet, but a whole lot still gets through.

I have noticed two particularly interesting kinds of spam, as I have been hand deleting comments of late.

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WordPress To Host Premium Themes Marketplace

The year 2007 might be known for many things, but for the WordPress community, it might be known for one additional thing: the rise in popularity of premium themes. Premium themes are themes which are usually of a high standard of quality, but since you’re paying something for them, it means that they aren’t available to everyone; more than that, paying for the theme usually gets you later upgrades if any should could out, and support when you’re installing them.

At a WordPress Conference in Argentina, its been revealed that WordPress will soon be releasing a WordPress Premium Theme Marketplace, which will allow WordPress Designers to promote their premium themes through a common site — which is in turn promoted throughout the WordPress-o-sphere.

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