Get Your Blogspot Shit Together Google

It was exactly two months ago I wrote about problems that and really, the entire blogosphere was having with Splogs created and maintained on, with a URL.

Well the Shit hit the fan today.

The blogosphere was hit by a splogbomb. Someone did the inevitable and wrote a script that created blog after blog and post after post.

Im not talking 100 blogs with a 100 posts each.Im talking what could easily turn into 10s of THOUSANDS of blogs pinging out millions of posts !

Do a search for HDNet on or any of the other engines and look at all the Splogs there are. And they have URLs like this So google, at least for the time being, we shut out adding new blogspot posts to our index until we clean all the bullshit you dumped on us out of our indexes. We will turn them on once our filters are in place, which hopefully will be tomorrowSo google, at least for the time being, we shut out adding new blogspot posts to our index until we clean all the bullshit you dumped on us out of our indexes. We will turn them on once we update our filters to resolve this fine mess you got us into, which hopefully will be tomorrow

I apologize in advance to real bloggers whose post might not make it in as quickly as before. We wont lose your posts. They are just going to be delayed.

I also apologize in advance if someones blog or posts got filtered out in our effort to deal with Splogs.

So please Google. Add a challenge system. Dump the flag you tried. It was a nice try, but doesnt get the job done. Its not an imposition to ask a blog poster to confirm their post with a link inside an email, or a word confirmation. It may not eradicate the problem, but it will improve the quality of information available in the blogosphere considerably.

Is that too much to ask ?

And one more point about splogs and the blogs. There is a reason why you dont see list the number of blogs and posts on our site Because no splog filter is perfect, which makes the number pretty bogus.

The same applies to people who evaluate the quality of a blog search engine by the number of posts returned. In actuality, a higher number probably means poor splog filtering, not better indexing.

82 thoughts on “Get Your Blogspot Shit Together Google

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    Comment by ayisha -

  2. There are some problems with the article text. There is some repeated text in the 5th paragraph and a link that is supposed to be there isn’t. (“And they have URLs like this”)

    Comment by Jamie -

  3. ColdChili: MySpace is NOT a Microsoft or MSN product.

    Comment by Robert Scoble -

  4. Blog THIS!

    Comment by Todd -

  5. Good post…though your choice of words is lacking… and your sentence and paragraph structure is so so high school…

    Comment by blogpoet -

  6. With all due respect, spamblog automation software that works with Google has been commercially available for months, I even made reference to it in one of your previous blog entries.

    Its not just Google with this problem, remember when blogs were as hot as podcasting is now? and everyone and their mother setup a blog host, well most use a common source code with very minor variations.

    You’re never going to be able to stop spam blogs. You can minimise it, perhaps putting an encrypted image code before each blog post, but to actual stop it would be impossible.

    WordPress is one of the tools to make spamblogs (though it isn’t as widely used as Blogspot, why spend money on hosting and a domain when someone else can pay?). How do you control software on someone else’s server?

    Its not as if it is illegal to make spam blogs like email spam. The real use for the blogs is actually SEO, any traffic someone receives from the actual blog is just a bonus.

    Do you actually know any ‘spam bloggers’? To call out Google for their search rankings seems pretty obscure, and more like you’re upset about your search terms being used than offering a real solution.

    Has IceRocket found a solution? Not really, the same techniques used against Google work for IceRockets search results. I realise IceRocket doesn’t host blogs but after this post I would have expected them to offer a better solution.

    So OK, i’m calling you out for a challenge;
    You get IceRocket to design a blog search engine that filters out automated blogs from a variety of well known blogging software providers, without blocking more than 10% of real blog posts. I’ll get around it and have my result as the top search result for a keyword of your choosing.

    Comment by Adam -

  7. I had my sites booted off blogspot for “violating TOS”. All my sites, from lingerie to internet filtering. None were spam. Some of them had run for over two years. There was no warning and I was not even allowed to retrieve my archives. If Google can do this to a legitimate user there is no reason at all it should not do it to the robots.

    More generally, part of the spam problem is the fact that Google takes so long to include legitimate new sites in its index and give them proper SERPs. This means that there is very little incentive for webmasters to play fair with Google. Instead the whole phenomena of gaming Google has taken hold.

    It might be time for Google to accept more general responsibility and, instead of building ever more complicated “filters” into its algo, start paying attention to hand reviewing new sites. I would be surprised if the spammers could create automatic sites which would survive more than ten seconds human scrutiny.

    Alternatively, Google could build a filter into the algo which tossed out sites which looked even a bit spammy for human review.

    The point being that so long as Google arbitrarily penalizes new sites it has to recognize that there will be lots of webmasters who see their only way into the index as being this sort of unhelpful spam.

    Comment by Jennifer -

  8. Scott continues to ignore unimportant person blogging like the rest of the free world and would prefer the solutions to my problems appear in my Google searches instead of blogs linking to my solutions…

    Comment by Scott Griffith -

  9. I know everyone’s really upset about spam blogs right now, but I just want to make you feel worse, just for a second. Right now, computer generated content is easily recognizable from real content. But, there’s nothing which prevents a sophisticated spammer from writing a content-generation system indistinguishable in results from regular copy. Indeed, students from MIT using a grammar-based approach were able to produce realistic scientific papers. Think of a sytem which used production rules to decide overall content and statistical subset matching to smooth out the phrasing? Then you’d have spam blogs with certain objectives that were really … undetectable. And this would be so easy if spammers worked together ala open source…

    Comment by Elliott Back -

  10. IceRocket has been spammed as well….

    Comment by paisley -

  11. Blogger needs to add 2 things…
    1. The ability to turn off HTML in the comments on a blogger blog.
    2. retroactive deletion of trackbacks.

    I understand what the spammers are doing and how they are doing it… they are circumventing the process by creating a blogger user (without a blog to report) and then searching for blogs without word verification then creating multiple links in the comments by numerous bot blogger users which create links to spammy doorway pages to incease the page rank of said spammy doorway pages to trick the Google, MSN and Yahoo! search bots.

    I have notified the Blogger staff on how to circumvent these a$$#013s, this was early last week.. well maybe next time they will listen quicker.

    Comment by paisley -

  12. Unfortunately it’s another instance of a no-go area for anyone with a vague idea of blogging professionally (or at least being recognised and indexed). Though the free blog services are good, and in an ideal world would be 100% legitimate and useful, unless Google et al come up with better solutions, they’ll just become a wasteland that everyone who wants proper content blacklists.

    This is bad for anyone running a personal blog on these services, but if you want to blog badly enough then you have to invest in your own server and domain.

    Google must surely have an interest in sorting this problem out for their own AdWords customers, at least, if not their credibility.

    Comment by Andy Merrett -

  13. MSN’s Myspace has more problems than blogspot.
    Myspace just has a Cross-Site Scripting Worm which created 1 million links in less than 24 hours ( With blogspot the owner has the option of turning on word verification for comments. Don’t blame Google it give the option to the users, blame the owners of the blogs for not turning on a simple switch.

    Comment by ColdChilli -

  14. ‘Twas ever thus. No means of communication has ever existed that has not been tweaked, co-opted and sometimes just plain run over by the scammer, the con artist, the moneygrubber or the sleaze merchant. I’m sure five minutes after Gutenberg printed his first Bible, some scammer was tweaking a printing press to do chain letters. Just on the Internet we’ve seen Usenet taken almost completely by spam, making what could have been a wonderful communications tool useless. The Web has become a minefield. And blogs are next. I have no doubt that if there is some way to come up with universal mental telepathy, the next moment you will have random thoughts about cheap Viagara.

    Comment by Ray Barrington -

  15. I own a journal and using google’s blogsearch brings up appalling results. The blog search is contaminated with redirecting spam sites, keyword stuffing and whatnot.

    I am planning to shift to a wordpress journal and host it on one of my domains. Blogspot needs to get its act together. Too many splogs are ruining the blogosphere experience.

    Comment by Ab -

  16. Unfortunately, you’re sampling the results of clicking “Next Blog”, which isn’t representative of the BlogSpot population. Google filter spam from it:

    My experience with the Flag button was that it’s all-but-worthless.

    Comment by James Kew -

  17. A large random sample shows that there aren’t too many of these. 72% real blogspot blogs isn’t too bad, is it?

    Comment by Elliott Back -

  18. I agree that the “Flag” on Blogger sites does not resolve much. Many splogs remain active.

    Comment by Tony E -

  19. Tim Bray was blogging about splogs today too.

    Comment by Gen Kanai -

  20. Tim Bray was blogging about splogs today too.

    Comment by Gen Kanai -

  21. Mark,
    I appreciate your comments on this topic. I’m a satisfied Blogger user, but I too have had annoying splog posts on my blog until I added verification procedure. Hopefully, Chris is on the money with his comments. Glad the community is exerting needed pressure where due for the good of the community.

    Comment by Mark Forman -

  22. Dan Gillmor agrees

    Comment by Kimo Crossman -

  23. Chris,

    Thanks for doing your part! Hopefully this was just a bad weekend and they really will clean it up this time.


    Comment by Blake Rhodes -

  24. Mark, Google contacted me earlier this evening RE: the post & screencast I made today on the exact same issue. According to a Google employee, they’re going to be tackling this problem very quickly. I’d expect to see some resolution tomorrowish.

    Comment by Chris Pirillo -

  25. Yeah, I noticed this today. I have some live RSS searches set up to notify me when me products get mentioned and I saw a ton of fake posts appear that are just grabbing text from the web (I recognize my website text in a bunch of them). I’ve seen this before, but I noticed a big spike today. You’re doing the right thing by calling google to task to clean this junk up.

    PS: In your 5th paragraph you duplicate your words. Copy and paste error?

    Comment by Dustin Sacks -

  26. Mark,

    You have one of the most popular blog sites. If Google is f’ing up with their blog site why not jump all over it and create a site like this one or where people can create their own blogs? You can even link it to and drive traffic to one another.

    I feel like blogs are the next revolution on the www. FIrst email, then instant messenger. Now blogs. You’ve got the power to do it.


    Comment by John Shahidi -

  27. As a Blogspot user, I am appalled at the rampant spamification that you and Chris Pirillo have demonstrated. I hope that they implement measures to ensure that legitimate blog traffic isn’t crippled and that legitimate sites aren’t drowned in a sea of search engine spam.

    Comment by Mo -


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  30. I don’t agree to the post above.
    People who develop malicious scripts not only affect the bigger websites who have the power and money to employ developpers and administrators, but also the smaller ones too who don’t have such an advantage.
    Google must start to seriously stop the utter misuse of it’s system and spend some of it’s exponentially growing income to plug out it’s numerous loopholes.
    Even my blog has started to recieve comments of which I found 90% of them were spams.

    Comment by The Weirdo Stalker -

  31. People who create malicious scripts and software actually give job to quite a lot of people: developers, administrators, etc, so it just looks like an eternal battle… Why eternal? because nobody wants to win here – if you win — you lose your job.

    Comment by telephone verification man -

  32. awsome…

    Comment by thesixthedition -

  33. It might be time for Google to accept more general responsibility and, instead of building ever more complicated “filters” into its algo, start paying attention to hand reviewing new sites. I would be surprised if the spammers could create automatic sites which would survive more than ten seconds human scrutiny.

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  34. great

    Comment by saints and sinner bingo -

  35. ok

    Comment by gala bingo -

  36. Supposedly, blogs with few posts – and I have 300 in one year – but with a lot of links have been shut down without any prior warning by Google. Even Microsoft at its worst has never screwed over its customers this badly.

    Comment by wow powerleveling -

  37. Yes, that is a big problem and even now, a year after, there’re still thousands, and may be even million of blogspot splogs.
    Though I must add that now most splogs get marked and deleted faster.
    Google still have a lot of mess to sort out in their indexes and algorithms..

    – Michael

    Comment by Michael -

  38. im a blogger too.. its really sad to hear that, still many people who are malicious minded are having fun and even generated cash from this Splog thing.. hope immediate action done with it..

    Comment by Chala -

  39. After so much time past, what is the result of the fight against splogs? Is there any progress or what. I really hate spammers but there are so much books, systems and software teaching newbees how to spam sites like IceRocket and so on … Not to mention about the comment spammers. I have 30 a day and I think some of the blog dirs are just info for spam programs where they catch blogs to spam.

    Comment by Ivan -

  40. i too have felt the sting of the google ,
    thought it was personal because i posted about how we get 100,ooo search results yet cab only from memory read 789 ,still my posts on lots of sites .ok 23 out of the 24 ,maybe 25 ,i got stuffed arround last at the blogspot,coogle owns it of course ,
    yet i found you on a google search 2 or 3 page
    they have a great oppertuinity ,more power than any media ever wiil or should have
    my suppressed words ,and the intellectual capital of millions of others is being abused ,
    for what just so i cant talk ask about things that are abuses to the people ,govt who should be controlling the free speach ,should be protecting us from not protecting crime and collusivly insider traiding of our many but indicative google search
    and our stolen of fraud intelectual capital ,
    im just feeding the beast
    repulse the troll
    guess thats me again
    one day all will be revealed
    possably not before goofball wakes up.

    Comment by jonah -

  41. What about all us forum admins out there?

    I am being flooded with fictitious account applications created in order to spam my forums – no doubt many others are too.

    All those on my boards have supplied GMail e-mail accounts and blogspot URL’s – both of which are Google owned.

    It looks like either GMail has an automated system for creating spam e-mail accounts for spammers, or blogspot have one and GMail are turning a blind eye.

    I’m getting applications from users like:

    So it’s got to be an automated process…

    These spoof users are taking me hours per week to delete and the problem is growing.

    Google just point me to a web form which deals with receiving questionable mail from a GMail user – which I’m not.

    They then say “use that form anyway” and then ignore it!

    Google needs to do something about it – and soon.


    Comment by Baz Capel -

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    Comment by Tim Walker -

  43. I’m very new to and I host my blogs there. I’ve been concerned about the constant splogging going too. I just really hope that whatever Google does, they can do it in a way that won’t make a legitimate blogger’s daily posting a pain in the butt.

    Question then…as of today’s date, how is advancing in their efforts to stop sploggers? Hope they can wipe it out for good.

    Comment by Kenny Allman -

  44. I’m very new to and I host my blogs there. I’ve been concerned about the constant splogging going too. I just really hope that whatever Google does, they can do it in a way that won’t make a legitimate blogger’s daily posting a pain in the butt.

    Question then…as of today’s date, how is advancing in their efforts to stop sploggers? Hope they can wipe it out for good.

    Comment by Kenny Allman -

  45. Looks like blogspot is spotty and down today, but there is nothing there officially.

    Comment by Leesa -

  46. Mark is correct in his remarks that splogging is becoming a big problem on the internet. Major websites, like blogspot, need to take a bit more responsibility in controlling this crap and autogenerated spam that is killing the true content that it contains. I am still a fan of blogspot and its easy of use, but like everything in life, a few jerks are going to ruin it for the rest of us. I do see some word confirmation in posting, which is a least a first good start!


    Comment by Matthew -

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    Comment by Millionaire Richard Quick -

  48. Blogger/Blogspot hit my Sitenews blog with their new, “Spam Filter”. I found this strange, as the blog was focused on what I had implemented, changed, or removed from my Website.

    Initially, I should have simply set-up my own blog software on my Website. However, I figured why go through the hassles and expand the usage of my server, if others have already set-up and perfected an application.

    I have sent Blogger a message asking them review the blog, as it was noted the filter could have made errors. I feel the problem may have been the links to my Website from the Blog. Essentially, I would reference the various updates or changes with a hyperlink. Being integrated with my actual website, I never saw a problem with that. However, I realize they are probably not looking at the subject matter as an integrated section of an external website. The filter probably saw this as promotional effort, although it was intended to keep users informed.

    My mistake, I will have to host my own application to keep users updated with Site-News. Unless they re-activate the blog of course. That made things really nice and easy.

    Comment by Michael Medeiros -

  49. Hi MC,

    I read your 3/20/06 comments on blogmaverick and was struck by your casual use of cuss words. Why do you choose vulgarity when there are thousands of other English words available to you? Vulgarity is low class no matter how popular it is or how successful you are.

    Rapid City, SD

    Comment by Forest Cooper -

  50. very good!!

    Comment by 11nong -

  51. I’ve got a new iMac G5 with Safari, but blogspot tells me to use Firefox for best results. Funny, I tried to eliminate a post in one of my two blogs yesterday and it is eliminated when I look at it with Firefox but it is still there when I look at it with Safari. Now how can that be? And I find it impossible to communicate with anyone about it, and the new help groups don’t have any answers for it. What I want to know is which view do third parties see? The view with or without the edit?

    Blogspot deserves to lose all it’s bloggers.

    Comment by George Thomas -

  52. The Artificial Intelligence will continue advancing in both areas in spaming and preventing spaming.

    If you put some verification to prevent that a non-human reply or post, somebody else will develop a software that recognize characters in a jpg file using neural networks for example.

    Just an Idea.

    Comment by jose -

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    Comment by Ann Gerrits -

  56. Here is my feelings about the whole blog situation:

    Just like geocities in the day, blogspot and other “free blog hosting” sites are ripe for attack by spammers, jammers, and l33tz who will use and abuse the situation for it’s own good.

    My recommendation for icerocket and other blog tracking systems is to not track any blogs that appear on the these “free” services without first being directly requested by the blog author, and only once the content of the blog is established and confirmed.

    Yes, we all love automated tools. We all love that our fine words automatically get picked up, spread around, and shared. But the evil ones have figured out how to abuse the system, and the system must get tougher as a result. This isn’t just a blogspot problem, it is all over.

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  59. Ok guys I hope you are satisfied. Google/Blogger has mass ex-communicated its blogspotters through fuzzy logic. I have had several blogs at blogger for several years. I am not a spammer. Everytime there is a cause I put up a new blog for it. Today I deleted two blogs that got alot of press in 2003, she’s a good egg martha and What would George say? I also wrote blogger that they needed to review me. Days have past. I refuse to word verify every post publish. They have messed up my traffic and my stats. I’ve changed the logo on that blogspot to include uncensored. You can find future bestoftrendy at WordPress is far superior software-wise to Blogger. I wish I had been ex-communicated sooner. WordPress is a timesaver. I will continue to have other blogs. Sometimes companies don’t want other competition on the site and they want you to brand them. I see nothing wrong with having more than one blog. I have never written another blog on behalf of any product I was selling. I have written them an opinion on what they are writing about. Blogspotters aren’t the only spammers. Spammers are all over the blogosphere. I was even spammed many times on an established advertising forum. Imagine that. Yeah so thanks guys for moving me over to Word Press by bullying Blogger scared silly.

    Comment by Elise Miller -

  60. It’s about time someone stands up and yells about this issue.

    While searching for some new blogs on APIs yesterday, all I found was blogspot spam.

    It’s time for Google to start QCing what sites AdSense appears on, that alone would remove half of the spam occuring these days.

    Comment by Brad Geddes -

  61. Blogspot has many blogs among the most popular blogs and some of them as you know are even becoming institutions in the blogosphere.
    PostSecret is one of the.

    Google has the capacity to eradicate spam.
    And Google is doing so already.

    Ironically, many bloggers with legitimate blogs are also on line business spammers. They comment on your posts and use the opportunty to put in links to their affiliates’ business sites.

    My Blogspot account means the world to me and I trust Google to get rid of the spoilers in the blogosphere.

    Comment by Orikinla Osinachi -

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    Comment by The Lexx -

  63. phred:

    Perhaps we have different definitions of sploging (just like across gulf of the net in City of Heroes i have a different definition of Power Leveling)

    I defin a splog as “any blog that promotes or markets a resouces outside of the blog itself”

    brady westwater artical blogs would to me could asa splog, but would they to you?

    Comment by The Lexx -

  64. Since no one at GOOGLE will admit or even tell us to what is going on, I have had to talk to other bloggers to find out why I have not been able to post for two days.

    Supposedly, blogs with few posts – and I have 300 in one year – but with a lot of links have been shut down without any prior warning by Google. Even Microsoft at its worst has never screwed over its customers this badly.

    Now as I write a blog about the media – most of my posts link to the articles I am write about, hence I have a lot of links. But Goggle has now decided to censor my views and no longer allows me to post.

    All I get is this:

    006 Please contact Blogger

    Except – there is no way to contact anyone at blogger support…

    Brady Westwater

    Comment by brady westwater -

  65. Lexx:

    No, auto-posting and “splogging” are never legitimate. That’s one of the reasons that many of us who host our blogs on our own servers (using WordPress, Moveable Type and similar) either require that you post comments as a logged-in user, or require moderation of all comments before they appear on the site.

    I’d happily implement a captcha (word-verification) on my WordPress site, but I’d still end up requiring moderation, because captchas aren’t 100% perfect, and nothing less than 100% is good enough.

    Comment by phred -

  66. So why don’t you use the contact e-mail addresses on to report splogs?

    Oops – you mean blogger doesn’t have any contact information listed? No wonder it’s easy to use and abuse, then.

    Comment by Brian Turner -

  67. i agree, but after this how we can post by mobile phone or e-mail?

    not much faster when we want post by mobile or e-mail. we can’t see a word verification there. lol

    Comment by jardel -

  68. I am a Blogspot blogger as well and agree with what you are being forced to do.
    Sploggers are clueless meatheads who ought to be strung up IMO.
    Google should be ashamed. You would think 500 PHD’s could come up with a blocking software.

    Comment by MikeM -

  69. I currently use for a client software that auto posts but to me i always saw it is lagitimate. Now hold on and let me ‘splain.

    The software takes custom comments and poasts them to blogs based on key words, running a index of links for review later.

    This seemsed like a good idea to me, i coud revisit favoite sites in the bookmark list, and it woud be cross promotion of related services.

    Is that so wrong? To me it seems like resource sharing.

    Guy A makes a blog about the New Harry Potter Book
    Sploger A has site/blog about Harry Potter Movies. Is it so bad to have the sploger then?

    what we need is a code of etiqtte for sploging just liek they started for Spam.

    some Slogs are a ligitimate link right?

    Comment by The Lexx -

  70. I can’t post today. Every time I try I get a word verification box. I type the letters in and the post fails. Can’t get rid of this damned verification form. Help!!

    Comment by businessuncut -

  71. I think part of the problem with Google and blogspot is that they own both and when it comes to spamblogs its possible they have a conflict of interest. On one hand they want to be able to say X number of people have blogs and then on the other hand they supposedly want to deal with the spamblogs … although the motivation doesn’t seem to be there.

    Comment by Greg -

  72. Mark its okay to blame Google, they play there part in this but how about looking in your own back door.

    What is IceRocket doing about splogs? Thats something you should be writing about!


    Comment by Phillip Molly Malone -

  73. How does wordpress or livejournal handle these problems? It’s bizarre that company with so many intelligent people could fail so miserably here!

    Comment by Harris Reynolds -

  74. Mark,
    It is obvious that Blogger and MSN Spaces need a competitor that will fix these issues. You should launch a new blogging system and I own the domain you should do it with – Contact me at your convenience 🙂

    Comment by Austin -

  75. TOTALLY OFF TOPIC…but what are your thoughts about the new dress code for NBA? does it apply to you as well?

    Comment by cali -

  76. Put yourself on google new alert so as soon as some one copy/spam your contains you will get an email alert from them. But again it is all donkeys work.. it is better if google do something about it

    Comment by vivek -

  77. It is another reason to use Tucows’ blogging service, a company you own. Why not talk about their great service that NEVER screws up?? Tucows has a fantastic track record with their blogging service.

    Come on already?.

    Comment by PJM -

  78. I think google should just ban blogs which offer no real value, and no bitching about ones daily life is NOT considered value.

    Comment by TechScam -

  79. I’m for anything that fvcks up blogs. There are too many, and too many of them are filled with too much bullshit. The world was fine before blogs, it would be fine without them.

    Comment by KeithSpinn -

  80. I noticed this when I first used Technorati back in Feb 05. My results were full of splogs from Blogsopt. And here we are 8 months later. What a waste. Who would have ever though Google would make it easy for anyone to create search engine spam?

    Comment by NickD -

  81. This was bound to happen. I would not be surprised if some guy’s script went out and created millions of splogs (I hate that word). This is just something that the blogger division of Google is going to have to deal with soon. They really don’t have any choice at this point.

    Comment by Scott Johnson -

  82. Amen brother! Testify!

    Hey Google, while you’re at it…
    1. Start integrating your products.
    2. Quit releasing poop like that RSS reader cr/app
    3. Sync your apps (Google Earth for MS, not Mac or Linux)

    Oh, and I want all my groceries to be in one bag, but I don’t want the bag to be heavy.

    Comment by Victor Agreda, Jr. -

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