The Odd Blog

And when our cubs grow / We'll show you what war is good for

My wife is a smartie…

Posted by That Other Mike on 19/08/2008

I knew my wife was smart. Quite apart from the marrying me thing, she also comes up with some damned good ideas.

Following some recent issues with sploggers and scrapers, she’s decided to make a copyright notice.

A splogger, in case you’re in the dark (and lucky you if you are!) on this issue, is a spam blogger. They tend to post things promoting single issues or products, or just link to increase a page’s Google ranking; sometimes it’s a means of artificially inflating click-based ad revenue. Whatever the reason, the articles are fakes done to fool someone or some search engine.

A sub-variety of splog is the scraper, which is a particularly nasty little creation: they go around copying page content from other sites to simply fill space. They do this based around keywords, and this is often used to gain advertising revenue, particularly from Google AdSense, which itself works around keywords. Many of them attempt to get around copyright issues by adding some kind of prescript, like “Mike wrote an interesting post today…” and then posting the entire text. Many bloggers will be unaware of copyright law and issues, or may be flattered by the attention.

My wife was recently the victim of such a blog, which copied her article, Un-benching The Homeless, whole and entire. After much wrangling, the site removed the offending post. She only noticed because she visited a site she had referenced in the article, and saw that there was a pingback identical to hers, which led her to investigate.

All of this led her to create her new copyright page.

So where’s the clever bit? you may be asking. A copyright page is not particularly superduper clever in and of itself, and as much as I love my wife and want to glorify her name, I have to agree.

However, if you look at the bottom of every post of hers now, you’ll see a link that looks like this:

Posted by Lottie —Copyright © Rambling On 2008

And there’s the clever bit.

When scrapers take their content from legitimate blogs, they copy it all, from the text down to the links. That’s how the post at TWUSEA, since deleted, announced its presence – by copying the pingback link.

Now, every time a scraper blog takes the content from Lottie’s blog, it will also scoop up a link to her copyright page at the same time, which tells the person reading the offending article exactly where its content came from. It will also generate an incoming link, thus notifying Lottie of the offender’s address.

It’s a neat and elegant solution to the problem of splogs and scrapers, and I hope it takes off.

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9 Responses to “My wife is a smartie…”

  1. Mike said

    Gary also has a related post here, with interesting commentary.

  2. Lottie said

    Thanks for getting behind this, Honey. I love the free copyright thing that Will linked to at Gary’s blog. Everyone should go and get one of those! Like, right this minute!

    Thanks for getting it working for me too. It’s nice to have my blog taken care of while I shower. LOL

  3. Lottie said

    You know what looks really funny to me? Under your recent posts:

    My wife is a smartie…
    Kill the Americans!

    It gave me a chuckle. 😆

  4. The free copyright thing really is good (as is Lottie’s idea, which I’ve naturally started using myself!)

    As for Lottie being a smartie — which colour? Because I’m not too keen on the blue ones 😉

  5. Mike said

    I remember when they brought in blue Smarties. I was quite offended at the time, and then later even more offended by white Smarties.

    Damn it, now I want Smarties.

  6. Lottie said

    Your Smarties are different to our Smarties. You probably have these and just call them something different, though. But I can’t remember.

    Either way, I don’t mind being a smartie. And I choose pink. 😛

  7. Lottie said

    Oh dear! It seems the guy at twusea has deleted all of his content apart from the two new posts. Wonder why he would go and do something like that?

  8. I wonder! That’ll learn him to mess with the Lottie! 😉

    I think we call your Smarties Refreshers — or we used to when I was a kid. But that was back in the day when a Snickers bar was called Marathon bar.

  9. Lottie said

    LOL Just call me the Enforcer. 😛

    I know we used to have something like your Smarties. My sister used to eat them all the time when we were kids (and not share! Blast!). I can’t remember what we called them, though. Now it’s going to bug me until I remember.

    Also, what you call Bounty bars, we call Mounds. But you guys have lots of good sweets we don’t have. You Brits take your sweets very seriously. LOL

    Now I want fudge.

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