Issue #1: Giving Credit
Yesterday I followed a link on Twitter to an article that highlighted something I’d already read on another site. So, I looked for attribution, a hat tip or something that showed the author of the entry acknowledged the original article. Nope. Nada. Zilch. Considering the link I followed was from a well-known news personality, it was obvious that this person was gaining popularity by aggregating someone else’s work (or a bunch of someone elses1) without acknowledging them.
I’m a blogging dinosaur pretty much2 and remember the good old days when bloggers linked out to each other and gave credit where credit was due. I remember reading the now big political sites before they were big or even taken seriously by the big, bad mainstream media (in all forms including, but not limited to, newspapers, magazines and television) and they would see a story on another blog and link back to that blog thusly:
See what I did there? I read an article in the newspaper but linked back to the site where I originally found the article. Why would I do that? I could have framed it without the “h/t” (Hat tip) and you would never know that I followed a link from someone else’s blog thereby failing to admit I read other people’s blogs and making you think I scour the intertoobs looking for older-than-dirt news on which to comment. There’s no need to send a you somewhere else, where you might find content more interesting than mine and potentially causing you to abandon me. By linking to the site that lead me to the content on which I commented I could potentially lose my credibility as a newshound or something. Who would source me when they could source her? I should be working to make everyone think that I find this stuff myself and that others are aping me. I should be working to make people think that I’m the authority on this shit. I want people that don’t better to think these other people are stealing from me.
Now, back in the day people weren’t so selfish with their linkage. They promoted other bloggers along with themselves and happily admitted that they didn’t stumble upon interesting news/stories all by themselves. They believed wholeheartedly in giving credit whether the credit went to some obscure person no one had ever read before or a major blog such as Crooks & Liars. We happily admitted that we weren’t always original and laughed at those blog whores4 who expected linkbacks, but refused to give proper credit and acknowledge that they’re not that original.
Those people aren’t called blog whores anymore, which is sad because they really are exactly that. They find a good piece of news/blog post/whatthefuckever and rush to put it on their own blog. Then they Stumble themselves, send a tweet (and gag beg for retweets), Digg themselves and basically whore the shit they didn’t think of themselves. And they don’t see any reason to send a link to the person who gave them the seed for the fucking post to begin with. The particular blog that sent me over the edge yesterday was top-to-bottom filled with stories the author(s) found somewhere else, but which didn’t offer any kind of credit.
Oooh, you’re so original! Look at you, offering a one line commentary on something you saw on another site and assuming that no one reads those other sites so doesn’t know that you spend your days whoring your stolen shit5. Woo-hoo! Aren’t you spayshul?
Of course, I’m completely in denial about the fact that all the blogging and SEO “experts” advise against linking out because teh Google won’t look favorably upon your blogging endeavors and, apparently, it’s all about getting to the top of teh Google and making the money. Unless it’s all about trying to get popular like the big guys6 so that the MEDIA will notice you and, ohmygod!, ask you to sit on a panel during David Schuster’s show which will cause your followers to fawn on you and declare you the GOD OF THE INTERNETS. With this particular case, I’m going with the desperate need to be popular and getting a talking-head gig.
Hey, maybe if I quit with the foul language and original thinking (ha!) I can manage to whore scratch my way to the top of the heap of Ye Ole Blogosphere and get myself some money and/or interviews? Just copy and past some shit, throw in a comment and voila! What do you think about that idea? I mean, it’s all the rage right now and I am a follower.
Issue #2: Link Shorteners
Another thing that has become popular lately, and which completely irritate me, is the use of URL shorteners in blog posts. Instead of something like “Fab Jinxed” (hover over the link and see the URL) we get “Fab Jinxed“.
What the fuck is the point? Really? You want to see the stats to who clicking your links in your fucking blog posts? Here’s a thought: Use one of those 35 stats programs you’ve got your blog connected to and look at who’s clicking out. Unless, of course, you’re trying to hide something, in which case you’re an ass and I hope you get burning gonorrhea7. But there is no valid reason you’re using a link shortener in your own blog post. It’s annoying. I want to be able to hover over a link to see where it goes before I decide to click it. For instance, if you’re linking to World Net Daily as a source for some “facts” I won’t bother checking because I know WND sucks monkey turds and I’ve also discerned that you’re a cretin.
URL shorteners are for Twitter or Twitter-like services, where the number of characters is, ahem, rationed. That’s it. On a blog post there is absolutely no need for them. I don’t care what your reasoning is, if you can’t figure out how to set up a stats program to check outgoing click then you need teh Google or some other kind of help. If you don’t know how to shorten a link via HTML and use the URL shorteners to do that for you (though you know how to code the link so it’s clickable which is unbelievably strange), I’ll give you a lesson8:
Step 1: Add your tags and opening code
EX: <a href=”
Step 2: Add your URL after the opening quote. Just copy and then paste:
EX: <a href=”http://www.fabulouslyjinxed.com
Step 3: Add the closing quote and then use the closing bracket
EX: <a href=”http://www.fabulouslyjinxed.com”>
Step 4: Add a short phrase or some other character to SHORTEN THE LINK
EX: <a href=”http://www.fabulouslyjinxed.com”>???
Step 5: Close the tag
EX: <a href=”http://www.fabulouslyjinxed.com”>???</a> (The forward slash closes your link…dur)
Then you have this: ???
See? Hover over the three question marks, look in the bottom left hand corner of your browser and you’ll see where the link goes. Stop abusing the URL shorteners.
And so ends my rant against blogging abuses for today. And, no, I won’t join my comrades who have given up their blogs for the greener pastures of Facebook. The blogosphere is still stuck with me and my appreciation of the days of yore even as I consider whoring myself out for a talking head gig. And if I start stealing your stuff and not crediting you, don’t worry as I’m just following the advice of the “gurus”. Just sayin’.
Popularity: 2% [?]
- Misspelled because usually “someone else” isn’t plural, but since when did I care about that shit? [↩]
- I’ve recently discovered that because I’ve been blogging since before 2008 I am a blogging Maven. Can you believe that shit? Heh. [↩]
- We did that back in the day, dontcha know. [↩]
- Bloggers who shameless promoted their own shit, didn’t promote anyone else’s shit, refused to participate in the discussion and BEGGED for page views and/or comments on their own shit. [↩]
- Ok, maybe not stolen. But lazily obtained without acknowledgement, which irritates the shit out of me [↩]
- Too late in the political blogosphere, by the way. They win and you lose. [↩]
- Long-standing, inside joke. If you don’t get it I don’t care. [↩]
- This also works if you use software that allows you insert the link, also known as a Hyperlink, such as rich text editing or visual editing stuff and/or MOST BLOGGING PLATFORMS. [↩]