Spam Blogs Plague Newsweek

    November 14, 2005
    WebProNews Staff

When the Washington Post and Newsweek began working with Technorati to point readers to blogs discussing articles on those two web site, spammers followed close behind.

The idea to link from mainstream publication web sites for the Post and Newsweek looked like a big boost to blog search index Technorati, and a boon to bloggers seeking more readership.

But as with anything else, if someone can find a way to abuse the system for profit, the initiative has been corrupted with people who create blogs that consist solely of spam advertisements.

Newsweek lamented the practice in an article detailing why this happens:

Here’s how they work: first find a subject that draws consumers who may be valuable to advertisers on Google or Yahoo, and register for the programs that let those search companies place ads on your blog. Then set up a blog that automatically sucks in items from the news (via easy-to-set-up feeds) about that subject. If you’ve done it right, Google’s search engines will identify your blog as a prime place for a high-value ad. Then, as (Technorati’s David) Sifry says, “you can pay housewives in India to sit there and click on the ads.”

Blog providers like Google’s Blogger see the problem first hand; spam blog impact on search engines poses a threat to the relevance of search results. “It’s due to the fact that readership of blogs has grown so much,” Jason Goldman, product manager of the Blogger division of Google, said of the growth of spam blogs.

David Utter is a staff writer for WebProNews covering technology and business. Email him here.