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Never Break The Blogosphere’s Trust: It’s universal

By J.T Dabbagian of

If you’re brand new to the blogging realm, or if you’re a blogging veteran, please know that there is one thing that stands above everything else in the blogosphere, beyond SEO, monetizing, backlinking, everything. If you only take one thing from my posts on this blog, or on my own, make it this:

Trust is paramount in the blogosphere!

Why am I saying this? I’m writing this because your ability to rise in the blogosphere rests solely on TRUST. Google PR, Technorati, Alexa, all of it, they are all different measures of the way your site is trusted, and if you ever burn your fellow bloggers, you’re slating yourself for a major assault.

Recently, a blogger by the name of Ashwin Kanna decided to run a blogging contest. One person could win $2,500 just by backlinking him with canned text. People believed him, posting backlinks all over the blogosphere, even though there were those who didn’t believe. Unfortunately, they would end up being correct…

Ashwin declared a winner to his “contest:” a blog on that had been made two days before. It had only two posts: One with the backlink text required for the contest, and another post that was a plagiarized article from the New York Times. Ashwin now has a PR rank of 4, a technorati authority of over 400, and an absurd technorati ranking.

Ashwin Kanna lied to the blogosphere.

There are now movements being made to blacklist Ashwin, and take away from him was wasn’t rightfully his in the first place. It’s completely unfair while other bloggers struggle to make it here that Ashwin cheats his way to fame. Please take this lesson seriously: Do not break the trust given to you as a blogger, lest you suffer the fate of Ashwin Kanna.

J.T Dabbagian is an professor in training and Content Consultant working on his Master’s Degree in Communication Studies. He runs his own blog on how to better one’s content and writing ability, as well as offering his views of the Blogosphere Condition. He is Available for consulting for all of your content, blogging and niche determination needs.


  1. Posted August 23, 2007 at 12:33 pm | Permalink

    ZOMG, that’s hilarious. Aswhin FTW.

    Seriously, the problem here is that the “blogosphere” is so trivially manipulated like this. The problem isn’t Ashwin, but all the fools who linked to him as part of a contest. Wow.

  2. Posted August 23, 2007 at 2:18 pm | Permalink

    Let’s look at it this way though. If someone was going to offer me $2500 just for a link, even if it was in a contest that I might not win, I know I’d do it. And just for the sake of argument, it is possible all the blogs were thrown in the proverbial hat and this crappy blog won. Can’t really complain about that.

    My question is this: Did the guy pay?

  3. Posted August 23, 2007 at 3:56 pm | Permalink

    @Chris: He created a fake blog to claim the prize. He “paid” himself.

  4. Posted August 23, 2007 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

    Aside from another ass on the web, the issue of trust is paramount and you’ve again made a very good point, J.T.

    The web is based upon trust, and there will always be those who will corrupt that trust, but more importantly, it continues to be about trust, especially when we expose those who violate that trust and continue to trust. That gives me hope for the web.

  5. Posted August 23, 2007 at 5:27 pm | Permalink

    I agree 100%. Trust is paramount, and the Internet never forgets.

    One of the bloggers in my niche was recently discovered editing other people’s comments to flatter himself. In one particularly egregious example, he deleted all the evidence that his post was incorrect, replaced it with “You are correct”, and then closed the post to further discussion.

    That is one blog I dare not comment on again.

  6. cooliojones
    Posted August 23, 2007 at 8:56 pm | Permalink

    This guy was indeed scum. It will be interesting to see if his Technorati ranking and authority drops as a result of the lost links. I wonder if he thought about the backlash?

    If you all would like to see the video I did that captures his site, contest blogger and how I saw it all coming, check it out here.

  7. Posted August 23, 2007 at 11:49 pm | Permalink

    I thought this was a great “warning” post. I do feel a little weirded out though that you needed to mention names.

    I don’t know if that was necessary.

    Anyway, it was a very enjoyable post.

  8. Posted August 24, 2007 at 8:26 am | Permalink

    Carl: I’m always concerned about such issues, but in this case, the name has been known and spread wide and far. It may or may not be their real name, just a web identity. When someone goes public with such an event as a contest, names are named.

    Does it change the warning? No. We need to continue to trust, but balance that with an ability to avoid gullibility. 😀

  9. Posted August 24, 2007 at 9:22 am | Permalink

    And of course using this domain for any such contests means you lose the blog.
    It’s no loss of course, but he won’t be welcome again.

  10. Posted August 24, 2007 at 9:49 am | Permalink

    Excellent to know Mark, oh, great one of 😀

    I’m glad someone is looking out for all of us.

  11. Posted August 24, 2007 at 4:12 pm | Permalink

    I forgot to add – if anyone sees a blog that is participating in any SEO contest or anything similar (like that mass linking nonsense a few months ago), send in a Support or report the blog using the dropdown in the top right.

    A really fast way out of here is to try an SEO contest blog.

  12. Posted August 26, 2007 at 1:51 pm | Permalink

    If someone was going to offer me $2500 just for a link, even if it was in a contest that I might not win, I know I’d do it.

    I would not.

10 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. […] just got stumped by this post at lorelle, which talks about a blogger called ashwin khanna of , who is convicted guilty […]

  2. […] a loop on the blogosphere. Likewise, always remember that like I said on Lorelle’s blog, Trust is paramount in blogging. If you don’t have trust, you have […]

  3. […] Lorelle on WordPress & several emails. If you enjoyed this post, make sure you subscribe to my RSS feed! […]

  4. […] zawrzało, poza skargami wykorzystanych blogerów, wpis potępiający oszusta, ukazał się na na blogu Lorelle VanFossen – ikony, muzy i dobrego ducha WordPressa. Agregator wszelkiego rodzaju konkursów blogowych, […]

  5. […] Thanks Lorelle for pointing out that people are being sucked into blogging ‘contests’ without doing the due diligence. If it sounds too good to be true, it likely is. […]

  6. […] technorati authority. J.T. Dabagian wrote an article on “Lorelle on WordPress” titlesNever Break The Blogosphere’s Trust: It’s universal. In this post he explains what happened with the now being blacklisted blogger Ashwin […]

  7. […] Never Break the Blogosphere’s Trust: It’s Universal […]

  8. […] Never Break the Blogosphere’s Trust: It’s Universal: J.T Dabbagian dives right into controversy when it comes to the truth of the blogosphere: it’s reliance upon trust. […]

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