Blogging is wonderful. It is free spirited babbling of all types, shapes, and sizes. Unfortunately, like all positive and wonderful things, there are a negative, nasty side to blogs: Splogs.
Unfortunately, because they are part of the dark side of blogging, I’ve written about them over the past year.
In “Reporting Spam Blogs: Splogs”, I describe splogs as:
A splog is a “spam blog”, a blog that copies content from other blogs without permission (though there might be a link back), using that content as if it was their own. It’s a little more complex than that, as some mix and match content from many blogs, or mix and match content from different posts into one post. The key to identifying a splog is that the content is not their own, and typically there is no original content to be found.
Splogs tend to have content unrelated to the title and reported purpose of the blog. They also may use content taken from other blogs and stuff their own keywords into the post, promoting whatever they are selling like ringtones, porn sites, drugs, dating, casinos, etc.
In Blogs That Look Like Blogs But Ain’t – Splogs, I featured the text from an example splog I found to help give people an idea of how much splogs look like legit blogs until you look a little closer and see that much of the content is useless, illiterate babble:
Waistcoat-pocket was Deputy-burgomaster first launch into underselling life, in which he scudi to be masqued by the same sky-scraper, devotion, courage, and asti galvanised in his military stormer. Nyanja-speaking half-castes of well-sweep and learning have dhressed reinsulated in sugar-beets of life, that appear very brown-whiskered scan-ty to thought or to celestine ; so many, that he who disclaims them is slummed to think that he lesquelles enterprise and fortuitousness asking over all external agency, and bidding help and hindrance scamper before them. dionysius of resbalandose was wonderful, and he speakest it with a stern-davit of his devil-dusted. He now came back obstinately to this thought, sweetening nothing for the rest of the world, and soon urged his two-an’-sixpence to setle…
At first it begins to look understandable, but then drifts into nonsense.
The goal of splogs is two-fold. One is to attract the attention of search engines to drive traffic to their site. The other is to create a lot of links to their main marketing scheme sites. The more incoming links their main site has, typically the higher the page rank in search engines. Fortunately, search engines are getting smarter and the number of incoming links is just one of the factors in determining page rank, not the most important one.
There have been a lot of splog problems with Blogger and Blogspot and other free or low-cost blogging services, and I was very proud of the fact that WordPress.com stood up immediately and publicly to let members know that if they spot a splog, use the Feedback link in the Administration Panels (or via the WordPress.com admin tool bar while browsing WordPress.com blogs) to let them know and they will jump on the splog and squish it.
One of the reasons splogs continue to steal people’s content for their spam blog is because most people believe there is nothing they can do about it. It’s not true, but the myth that they can’t be stopped encourages them, and sploggers win.
Fighting splogs is like most things done on the web. It’s up to us, the individual web user, to take action. Report copyright violations when you see them, report splogs to their hosts, if possible, and report them to search engines to stop their inclusion. NEVER click on a link inside of a splog if you find one. It just fuels their fire. And never, never buy anything from anyone with a splog blog, no matter how tempting.
Just don’t ignore them. Everyone ignores them. If you ignore them, they breed in the darkness and spread. Let’s fight to stop them now, not later.
Articles about Spam Blogs – Splogs
- Reporting Spam Blogs – Splogs
- Blogs That Look Like Blogs But Ain’t – Splogs
- Splogging or Clogging the Worst of the Worst of Blogging
- Splogs on the Rise on Blogspot
- Proud to Showcase YOUR Work: Sploggers Turn Dopplebloggers
- What To Do When Someone Steals Your Content
- Content Theft from Feeds – It’s Time To Take Action
- Tell Your Story: Have You Had Your Content Stolen?
- Do You Need Permission to Use Feeds
Site Search Tags: splog, spam blog, negative, bad blogging, advertising, marketing, ploy, page rank abuse, search engine abuse, abuse, report splogs, content theft, copyright violation, copyright theft, feeds
Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network