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Link to a "Refresher" - Screwing my Stats Up

  1. thedarwinexception
    Member

    I went to my blog today to find I had over 2,000 hits overnight. Now, I know the scintillating writing is worth 2,000 hits, but, let's be real....

    So I went to my stats to see what was up, and sure enough, there was a "referrer" that was responsible for over 2K hits. I clicked on it, and there was the front page of my blog "refreshing" every 30 seconds and counting as a hit.

    How do I get rid of this thing? I don't want my blog there, I didn't put it there, I don't know how it got there, and I want it gone. It's screwing with all my stats and all my incoming links - and I'm not even sure if it's legal on WP.

    What I am more concerned about is how my blog got listed there. Did I do something inadvertantly? I looked in all my widgets and didn't see any code that looked odd or foreign.

    offending link:

    refresh.toolbot.com/?r=30&url=http%3A%2F%2Fthedarwinexception.wordpress.com%2F&w=800&h=600&pos=bottom&pos=top&action=Start

    Thanks

    [Link broken - drmike]

  2. That's very odd. Normally that's the kind of thing that people use to game SEO systems or pay per pageview systems, ie people use it on their own blogs.

    They have a Feedback form: if I were you, I'd ask them how they got your URL and ask them to drop it. If nothing else, you can always tell them you're asserting your copyright, which is legalese for you deny them the right to display your blog posts and have lawyers on standby.
    http://about.toolbot.com/#feedback

  3. thedarwinexception
    Member

    Thanks raincoaster. I sent a note politely but firmly telling them to take my blog off of their "list".

    I looked around their site some more - I didn't realize it was something you had to "submit" in order to get the hits - that it originated on *their* site. I was fervently weeding through my blog code trying to see how their code got on *my* pages.

    Aggravating. I love having 2,000 hits, but I'd like it honestly. Now my graphs are all skewed and my count is all off and it's screwing with my "globetrackr" graph of incoming sites.

    Grrrrrr......

    Thanks again.

  4. You're welcome. I hope they listen to you. Wonder if a friend submitted you? That sounds like something my friends would do if they wanted to give me an ego boost, but I can sure see how it would be irritating.

  5. You may also want to send in a feedback to wp.com staff and ask that they looking into this. i don't think staff likes scrappers either.

    Ditto on johncompanies.com, the host of the website.

  6. thedarwinexception
    Member

    Well, thanks again to raincoaster. I received a reply from the "refresher":

    "I can add URLs to a blacklist on request. However, you should
    understand that ultimately it is not "this thing" that is doing the
    laoding of your site, but the browser of the user. If someone is
    determined to repeatedly reload your page (which people sometimes do
    in a stupid attempt at denial-of-service), they have many other tools
    at their disposal.

    I'll take your email as a request to be added to the blacklist, which
    should take effect within 24 hours."

    Does this mean that someone is out to get me? Am I paranoid? What's a "denial of service"? Will WordPress do that to me? Why in the world is this tool useful - if it's an attempt to inflate stats for "pay per click's", well, that's just cheating, and if it's used as a sabotage to get someone "denial of service" well, that's just mean. This is like some kind of virus tied up in a pretty bow. I see no legitimate use for it at all.

    I also did as drmike suggested and left feedback about the anomoly and brought this thread in the forums to their attention so that they know I'm not just doing as raincoaster suggested in his original reply and trying to deliberately skew my stats.

    Now I'm really upset about this. If one of my "friends' did this to me as an ego boost, I'm going to kill them.

    Thanks

  7. Link broken by the way.

    *sigh* No way to really tell how it came to be unless toolbox gives you data and they probably won't.

  8. At least the company is helpful. Have your stats reflected things going back down to normal?

    Somebody might just be out to get WordPress.com, not you; these kinds of things are attempts to overwhelm the servers, but ours can handle that pretty easily. Whoever did this, if they did it for nefarious reasons, was an eedjut and novice.

  9. *cough* "the ones here at wordpress.com can handle" We wouldn't want someone taking that out of context now, would we? ;)

  10. Dr Mike, you should know I LIVE to be quoted out of context.

  11. And that's for sure. ;)

  12. No comment.

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