Google responds on Blogspot – and Icerocket.com continues to grow

Update:

I stand corrected. As i have since found out, figured out and been told. The Captcha from Google has been in place. It was only triggered in respone to their spam filters. I hadnt been flagged before. I was flagged today.

Thanks to those who took the time to let me know and to Jason for his updates on buzz

If Im going to criticize for inaction, its only fair to praise for action. Google has taken the very needed step of adding a captcha word verification system to blogspot.I went in today to see if the process of setting up a blog had changed, and it definitely had.

Word verification was part of the process.

Then i went to a blog i had set up which didnt have much of anything in it. I tried to add a post. Same thing. Thank you Google. Are you reading this MSN ? Your turn.

While some in the blog search business like to pretend they are smart and are doing a good jobeliminating splogs, they arent and dont. Which obviously is good news for Icerocket.com.

i think Robert Scoble came up with using Camcorder as a simple keyword search test. No engine elminates all the splog. Some are worse than others. Splogs arent going to just disappear. Sometimes it requires a call to action that benefits everyone, to which good companies, like google respond.

Unlike some with cluttered homepages, Icerocket.com isnt trying to be a portal. We arent trying to be all things blogs. We arent a gateway to the blogosphere. We arent trying to create context. We want to be a simple and easy way to search for information about any keyword or topic and return to you the freshest information available, and then allow you to easily track that information on an ongoing basis.

You can use google, yahoo , A9 , MSN or any other search engine to ask questions that you want answered. Thats not us.

The better way to describe Icerocket.com is as a tracking engine. If you want to track references made about a topic or keyword, we are for you. We allow you to easily subscribe to any website we return that supports RSS, and we enable RSS for any search result. Its incredibly easy.

If you want to track what a specific author that maintains multiple blogs is saying, thats easy. I can track what Dave Caolo is saying across hisKermit the Blog site and Apple blog, and where his posts are being credited on other sites as well.

If you are tracking something and want to go back and see what information was delivered within a certain date range. Thats no problem at all. You can customize any date range.If i want to see what was being said about the Mavs during the playoffs last year and compare that to now. Its easy. Plus, I use Mozilla. Icerocket.comenables all searches to be livebookmarks. I just click on my Links Bar and at a glance I can track what is being said.

Icerocket.com isnt really a blog search engine, although thats the term we use since its the easiest way to communicate what we are doing. We are a tracking engine. We dont just index and accept pings from blogs, we index any and every source of information that is updated on an ongoing basis. Forums. Yes. Corporate RSS feeds. Yes. Better yet, there are some things happening that will enable traditional websites to identify new information on their sites and ping that to us. This way if WidgetsInc comes out with a new Dallas Mavericks Widget, they can update their widgetsinc.com website and we will have it covered.It will show up in Dallas Mavericks topicIm tracking.

If you are looking for some extra reading material to kill time, or you want to roam the isles for a new favorite blog to read, we arent the best place to come.

If you want to know what is being said about anything, by anybody, for any given period of time icerocket.com is the place to start. If you want to keep up with or track the results of that search, we are the placeto stay.

Im happy to let the other blog engines search blogs and try to help you find the perfect blog for you.Turn to them for your bedtime reading. Icerocket.com will help you track the world so you never fall behind on any topic or keyword that is important to you.

24 thoughts on “Google responds on Blogspot – and Icerocket.com continues to grow

  1. I’m sure you see it in the NBA all the time. The “Ron Artest/Stephen Jackson assault”, “MJ admitting to gambling”, and “Marc Cuban gets fined again” type of stories get all the coverage whereas any story involving something good that an NBA player does is lucky to get a mention in the last paragraph of the backpage of the sports section.

    Comment by runescape money -

  2. The blog trends tracking feature is blatently copied from BlogPulse.com. Blog search results take longer to be indexed than on Technorati (which allows you to add searches to your watchlist to keep track of updates).

    Comment by wow powerleveling -

  3. very good!!

    Comment by 11nong -

  4. That would be a great idea mark. I would like to see a feature like that added to the MT blogs.

    Comment by Ashley Bowers -

  5. Human testing is a good start, but it fails the stink test here for one simple reason:

    The splogs are coming from countries where you can hire people for a few dollars a day to sit and type human response words.

    I don’t think anyone is really considering the scale here. Let’s say you outsource the hole idea to, hmmm, Elbonia (Dilbert will love me for this). Let’s say that the daily wage there is $20 per day, which makes it an expensive place. Each person sits in front of a computer, takes pre-configured splog pages, and makes new blogs out of them, manually entering the nice little “human test” words. Each person can probably turn out 30 pages an hour.

    You can still pretty much spam as much as you like.

    Go one step further. Only have the human type the words. The rest is automated. That one person can probably handle a couple of hundred requests an hour.

    The current change has only made it harder for the dumbest sloggers to work. The rest are laughing and splogging away.

    Comment by RawAlex -

  6. thanks for the link Mark…

    Comment by cholo -

  7. Mark,

    I love IceRocket and think that it has a lot of potential to be a powerful tool in tracking the gazillion pieces of information that is out there, but have been consistently disappointed with the amount of blogspam that still shows up there. Why not introduce an advanced search technique where you can limit your search to only blogs that contain X number of linked articles. I think that this would help improve relevence although it would make it harder for new bloggers to be found. The second improvement that I might suggest is an easy link where your readers can report blog entries as spam. If you receive a certain number of complaints about the offending site, then you blacklist it or remove the post from search results.

    Comment by Davis Freeberg -

  8. Mark,

    I love IceRocket and think that it has a lot of potential to be a powerful tool in tracking the gazillion pieces of information that is out there, but have been consistently disappointed with the amount of blogspam that still shows up there. Why not introduce an advanced search technique where you can limit your search to only blogs that contain X number of linked articles. I think that this would help improve relevence although it would make it harder for new bloggers to be found. The second improvement that I might suggest is an easy link where your readers can report blog entries as spam. If you receive a certain number of complaints about the offending site, then you blacklist it or remove the post from search results.

    Comment by Davis Freeberg -

  9. Mark, many of us are surprised that you haven’t commented on REFCO with a blog posting. What gives?

    Comment by Dan -

  10. Here is a comparison for you. My boss decided he wanted to foray into the blogosphere and I was the guy to do it. I know nothing, or didnt know anything at the time, about all this hubub. Long story short after receiving a Feedster account I went through the process of following their information to add the coding to my new blog. After four hours I emailed them for some help. Come to find out hey had sent me some very outdated information in their response email so I was following old directions. OK Im over peing pissed off but the contrary to this little spill is that when I went to Ice Rocket I received the account got the coding, added it and everything was done and working in minutes. This isnt just an issue of time wasting by feedster, it is an issue of inexperienced people like myself who become convinced they are two stupid and unworthy to even own a computer when something like this goes on. I mean surely the company has it right, so I in my ignorance must be unable to comprehend. I say this all “tongue in cheek” but ultimately applaud IceRocket for the simple fact, that it was so easy to implement even inexperienced individuals should find some confidence in using it.

    Comment by DJ -

  11. Hi Mark,

    I use icerocket.com to track current info and relevant discussion pertaining to domain names I own. After you popularized/coined? the term ‘splog’ (spam blog) in a recent blog post, I decided to purchase the domain name splogosphere.com . Similarly, I purchased microbialforensics.com after reading an article about bioterrorism and the latest technologies used to combat terror. (Obviously, I purchased these domain names with the idea that they might have a higher re-sell value in the future.)

    Getting back to my point….I use icerocket.com on a regular basis to track the latest buzz (or lack thereof) on emerging topics. I like the fact that I can always find the most recent news and blog discussion related to keywords that are important to me…i.e. ‘splogosphere’…’microbial forensics’…etc. Using icerocket.com as a tracking search, I am able to monitor the discussion on various topics and watch to see if the buzz grows or fades.

    As an aside, I noticed that ‘splog’ (with a credit to you) is now listed in Wikipedia. Here is a link….

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Splog

    OT…Good luck to you and the Mavs this season…

    Jim Parham
    Yuba City, CA

    Comment by StockMaverick -

  12. One poster attacked Mark about not knowing enough. First I use blogspot, and I was never told that they had a spam block on blogs or post. the CAPTCHA feature was originally only on COMMENTS not BLOGS. To equate the two is stupid.

    Second the CAPTCHA is causing grief for anyone who disagrees with Google’s editorial policy, not necessarily actual spam.

    Third, there is already ways to get around the CAPTCHA.

    Even worse some of the CAPTCHA images are impossible to figure out.

    If you are blind, forget it.

    Google is hardly “doing no harm” and the SPAM has not stopped. They have pissed off many many people.

    Comment by Mark -

  13. Interesting idea. I enjoyed reading this.

    http://www.stock-article.com/

    Comment by G Dev -

  14. Brian,

    We have your blog: http://blogs.icerocket.com/search?q=%2BblogId%3A7853663

    Blake

    Comment by Blake Rhodes -

  15. Mark:
    I can’t find my own blog on ice rocket. I can find other people mentioning my blog on their blog, but searches for topics or my own name or the name of the blog brings other blogs, not mine.
    Am I mssing something?

    Comment by B -

  16. With all due respect, considering that this blog is among the top 100 most active blogs, why are you only now finding out about the anti bot word verification google has? It has been around for more than a month, in the comments, and I think the better part of a year for blog creation.

    With the money you make on this page, which I can only assume gets many thousands of hits a day, you could afford to hire an investigator to research this for you.

    http://r2000.blogspot.com
    http://nybathrooms.blogspot.com

    Comment by Alex Dorph -

  17. Thank you Mark, for metioning the word verification option on Blogspot. I just found out about this yesterday when I altered my personal setting on it. Consider yourself linked on my blog.

    Comment by Beau McClelland -

  18. Blogspot added captchas in April, six months ago.

    http://www.kbcafe.com/rss/?guid=20050419094953

    Comment by Randy Charles Morin -

  19. The problem is that IceRocket is not innovative in the least. It deceptively lists Overture sponsored results in the unsponsored results pane for web searches (try a web search for “search engine” on Icerocket and then on Overture). This violates the Yahoo/Overture syndication guidelines and the FTC guidelines for sponsored link disclosure.

    The blog trends tracking feature is blatently copied from BlogPulse.com. Blog search results take longer to be indexed than on Technorati (which allows you to add searches to your watchlist to keep track of updates). Blogdigger.com allows you to subscribe to search results and also seems to be indexed more frequently.

    When IceRocket.com develops a truly innovative feature, I won’t mind you shilling for them in your blog. Until then, try to make your self-promotion a little less blatent.

    Comment by Anonymous Loser -

  20. Mark,
    You scored some big points on magnanimity with this post. This is unfortunately getting to be a rare commodity particularly among pundits(I almost said, “like you”), who like to throw the big rock in the pond for effect, but care little about the resulting splashes impact on the surounding environment.

    Very admirable. Look forward to having my Blogger stuff showing up in IceRocket less hindered by spam debris

    Comment by Mark Forman -

  21. Mark,

    Have you ever consider adding some basic statistical tests to your trend analysis? It might be useful to know at a glance the statistical significance of an upswing in activity, especially as you collect data over longer time periods.

    Comment by Brian Yennie -

  22. Well the fix has been expected for a while and it really doesn’t change much at all.

    Google and pretty much all search engines are ripe for ‘optimisation’ or ‘spamming’, whichever term you prefer. The way they all work means creating useless material is beneficial to the site owner.

    I can see the benefits of IceRocket’s tracking technology but to me it seems exactly the same as a search engine result string. Infact Google allows all the customized results options you just stated; date/source/etc, its just most people don’t know how.

    I’m not trying to cause an argument, but how exactly is tracking different to a search string?

    Comment by Adam -

  23. Mark,

    I commend you for giving Google credit for fixing the problem. Too often in the media, we see accusations and exclamations get headlines while other things go unnoticed.

    I’m sure you see it in the NBA all the time. The “Ron Artest/Stephen Jackson assault”, “MJ admitting to gambling”, and “Marc Cuban gets fined again” type of stories get all the coverage whereas any story involving something good that an NBA player does is lucky to get a mention in the last paragraph of the backpage of the sports section.

    Much respect for being the bigger man and good luck with icerocket.

    Brent
    http://www.brentnet.us

    Comment by Brent Hanson -

  24. Mark,

    I like the fact that you are differentiating yourself from the other blog search engines by branding yourself as a “tracking engine.” There is definitely a market for this and with most of the things I do (time-sensitive) this is a more valuable service than anything else out there.

    Preston

    Comment by Preston Wily -

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