Google Blogoscoped

Forum

Techmeme Honors Links... to Techmeme?  (View post)

Seth Finkelstein [PersonRank 10]

Thursday, November 16, 2006
13 years ago3,640 views

My comment:

Forgive me for feeding another beast, but apropos the above, I think you'll enjoy this:

+ Show video


matthew chen [PersonRank 1]

13 years ago #

hi philipp, have you tried Megite? You may like it too.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

Thanks Matthew, I saw the site in Shelley's comments. Link for reference megite.com

Gabe [PersonRank 1]

13 years ago #

Philipp, an important point I should make: links are more than tribute, they're citations. My bot discovers related stuff that it would otherwise miss out on this way. Same reason bloggers use Technorati. (In fact, I considered using Technorati for this, but found checking my access logs was easier.)

BTW, Shelley linked to you earlier this week and now you've reciprocated. If you said there was an exchange of ideas going on here, not just an exchange of traffic, well, I'd agree.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

Thanks Gabe for chipping in. I did not find Shelley because she linked to me, I found her because one of the participants around here, based on a discussion that started in the comments, sent me an email telling me she's an interesting & smart persona. She might've well been missed if I'd base my posts on referrer logs (I didn't check, so I don't know).

My question is: how does a Techmeme reader (not you, not the webmaster) benefit from an algorithm that, however slightly or seemingly as side-effect, takes into account the backlinking to Techmeme? The feature reminded me of Gigaboost – link to Gigablast and you get a boost in the rankings – and if Google would do their own "gigaboost", we'd do good to complain, too.
blogoscoped.com/archive/2003_0 ...

I'm not saying your feature is the same, there are many differences of course. But surely there must be better ways to discover meaningful stories without skewing the sample data towards people who send Techmeme lots of traffic? Do you see how that leaves a bad taste with some people regarding the objectivity of your aggregation algorithms... and adds incentive for webmasters to link to Techmeme for "irrelevant" reasons?

Gabe [PersonRank 1]

13 years ago #

Philipp, I responded to the Gigablast analogy in Shelley's comments. (Thanks for using the "e" word, a first for me!)

I got a simple answer here: have you ever checked your reference logs, found someone pointing to you, read what they were saying, and posted a response on your blog? Or used Technorati to enable same thing?

That's what I'm doing. You already know the value to your readers. Your discovery of something relevant to what you posted informs what you can offer your reader. Maybe an update, maybe a new post. Of course you're smart enough not to link to the junk that shows up – hopefully my system can do that too.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

Gabe, first of all: I think the feature sounds kinda evil, not *you*. I did a lot of web-related stuff in the past which in retrospect I consider "kinda evil"... like adding affiliate links to my blog posts! After being criticized on it and disagreeing, I gave it a night's sleep and found I actually had to agree... it's better to leave them out, which is what I do now, even though this never affected my choice of "newsworthiness" when picking a story.

> I got a simple answer here: have you ever
> checked your reference logs, found
> someone pointing to you, read what they
> were saying, and posted a response on your
> blog? Or used Technorati to enable same thing?

Good point, though I don't check Technorati URL discussion anymore (too much spam), and I also don't link to sites which I see send a lot of traffic to my blog. Do you ever happen to discover sites through your referrer logs? Sure, that happens, very rarely (and not as part of a news algorithm, but rather by accident of a human blogger – if a blogger would regularly check their referrer logs for inspiration what to post on, I'd think it's bad story choice). But really, bloggers have an easier way to ping them: "send an email". Not "link & send a moderate level of traffic". The email won't boost the blog's ranking or traffic. And announcing something like "hey everyone, I check my referrer logs daily, whoever sends a moderate amount of traffic will be reviewed for a post!" would be something altogether different still. I think I'd stop reading that blog because I wouldn't be able to rely on the blogger's integrity for choosing stories anymore.

Hey, I'm not really sure where you want to go with the site. It's your site & decision and you might have a completely different focus. Hope you take this discussion as something constructive, not destructive...

Gabe [PersonRank 1]

13 years ago #

Traffic to Techmeme does not guarantee return traffic. I was careful to make that clear in my post. Various tests are still applied that limit what gets through.

I think my point about the value of checking inbound links, something else I stated in the original post, is something nobody's directly taken on. Lemme rephrase it: if I don't look at inbound links, or inbound traffic, I'm missing out on information that can make my site better. I've seen the results. To say that bloggers can receive emails doesn't answer this point.

No worries, I know you're not in attack mode. I bet you have better things to do than that.

Philipp Lenssen [PersonRank 10]

13 years ago #

The ethical discussion aside, let's say it (=inclusion vs exclusion of heavy referrers) does return much better results in your tests: aren't you worried that by *publicizing* this part of your algo, you're only opening it up for abuse?

I'm also curious if you're not afraid that in the long run, you might be creating a kind of "king surrounded by yaysayers" system, one that may seem like a success on the surface but has the danger of bringing itself down.

Gabe [PersonRank 1]

13 years ago #

Now the publicizing point is a good one. I raised the same thing talking to a friend last night.

I think there are pros and cons, but I'm hoping the pros outweigh the cons. Now I've seen when a good blog post off most people's radar includes a Techmeme permalink to relevant discussion. The blog is visited, the post evaluated, and it may merit a link by my bot, making the discussion better. If a few more people decide to add a Techmeme permalink in those situations, the phenomenon would repeat.

Let's just say I won't sit idly by if Techmeme happens to gets worse.

This thread is locked as it's old... but you can create a new thread in the forum. 

Forum home

Advertisement

 
Blog  |  Forum     more >> Archive | Feed | Google's blogs | About
Advertisement

 

This site unofficially covers Google™ and more with some rights reserved. Join our forum!