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Frustrations with

  1. Would it be a worthy use of staff time to assign them to undertake this kind of detection, which in essence amounts to re-writing their job descriptions so they become the "blog police" bent on hunting down offenders?
    How would staff time spent on "policing" stack up against the free service provided by those blogger who are currently informing staff of the existence of offending blogs?
    What data exists to demonstrate how many people are being "run-off"?
    And what data exists to illustrate where they run to?
    Given that a blog from is free, if bloggers who do leave the free blog hosting at simply download a free blog from and self host or hire a web host then what loss has occurred?
    And whom has suffered as a consequence of the alleged loss?
    What effect would expanding the three existing opportunities for blogger to promote "other sites" be likely to have?
    (1) header
    (2) link in sidebar
    (3) link on About page
    IMO expanding the advertising opportunities will give rise to an influx of new bloggers from the legions out there who want to game the search engines, go seo optimization crazy, and spam their blogs with ads all for a dubious few bucks a month. On top of that within the inflow we will probably find blog scrapers who create no content of their own and have strings of blogs acting as prostitutes for gaining minimal ad revenue.

  2. i'm not asking them to start policing, i'm asking them be a little more forgiving about the blogs they do recieve reports on. right now, you could go to my blog, and suggest that i have too many links to my own site, and based on the criteria we saw earlier today, it would be reasonable that they remove my blog.

    also, you can't put a link in your header. expecting people to type something out based on an image? unlikely.

  3. @kamel,
    It's good to be able to dialogue this way - respectfully. And when it comes to linking between your two sites well, you don't offer any means of purchasing of goods or services online do you? If not, then relax.
    P.S. It's snowing on the coast - big time. The power lines will probably go down under the unaccustomed weight so I'm off to eat supper while we can still make it on the kitchen stove, instead of the camp stove. :)

  4. well, enjoy. i can't wait for the snow to get here.

    my point is that right now the TOS says that even just driving traffic to an external site is forbidden. if 'linking' is being read as 'driving traffic to', we're all in trouble.

  5. @ kamel,
    :O please come on now and lighten up a little. I truly can't see a huge purge of blogs like your own taking place.
    *sigh* There is such a sense of urgency and angst here that I can't help but wonder where it's coming from. *sigh*
    And as for snow well, you can have it - our lotus land driveway is a winding 300 meter long unpaved forest trail and the tractor's broken down. Hi! ho! Hi! ho!

  6. Get yourself a nice pair of Cariboo Logging Horses. You can probably get a federal grant, for maintaining BC's cultural heritage.

    I'm supposed to walk a dozen blocks to a James Bond party in four inch heels, but it ain't happening as long as I have a cough and it's snowing like Winterpeg in Vancouver. It looks very pretty from under the blanket though.

    As I said in the other thread, the line's not all that fuzzy. If the obvious primary purpose of your blog is to make you money, either directly on the blog or at one link remove (CLICK HERE FOR BIG SAVINGS! CLICK HERE FOR BIG SAVINGS!) then it's primarily "doing business" and should be on a paid host, rather than this which is a service WordPress provides for personal blogs. They leave blogs maintained by businesses alone as well as long as they are primarily informational, rather than sales-ish.

    You'll note that on the blog in question, they had the option of simply leaving the link to their main site in the sidebar and removing the identical link they'd put in every single post. They refused; it was so important to them that they left WordPress over it. To me, this indicates that the link, not the blog itself, was the primary purpose for the blog, which is indeed a violation of the TOS.

  7. it's really a shame you missed seeing the blog in question. we're talking about a personal tagline at the end of each entry. kind of like how lorelle does. the links were tertiary to any sale, hence my assertation that commercial/non-commercial speech was at issue.

    they didn't refuse, they removed the links. they deleted their blog a few hours later.

  8. @rain
    *sigh* That's exactly my read on the situation too and I said so, politely. Although you didn't know this my horses became dream horses on November 7th.

  9. I understood that the link was like a forum sigfile. It's my understanding that the links went to their business website, so if they had 100 blog posts, their website would be recorded by Google, etc, as having 100 incoming links. That's where the SEO thing comes in.

    While I can't speak to these people's motivation, there certainly have been people on WordPress who've started blogs specifically for this reason, and that is one very good reason for the rule against it.

    If the links weren't of critical importance to these people, why did they leave over the issue? It seems they were treated with courtesy and fairness by the staff, and given the opportunity to come into line with the TOS, which they did, then abruptly left. I maintain that this indicates the links themselves were central to their decision to blog here; it's fair to ask them to get paid hosting for something that is so directly business-promotional.

  10. my guess is that they left, because despite the staff giving them a clear indication of how to avoid being deleted (unfair as it was), certain members of 'the community' continued to call them evil spammers for a couple hours after.

    the reason i'm still arguing this several hours later is that it's ridiculous to be unable to link to a commercial site. i'm not running a blog here to drive traffic to my site, i'm running a blog here to document how i run that site. if i'm unable to link to said site, my posts become pretty empty pretty quick.

    the idea that site owners are somehow under special judgement is ridiculous. if linking repeatedly to a site is grounds for removal, then anyone who posts digg articles with a link to digg should be removed. it's driving traffic to digg, right?

  11. But the poster is not getting anything from Digg. It's the economic self-interest that's the issue.

    Generating a substantial number of links to my internet asset(ie website) increases its value.

    There are sites I link to all the time: gawker, defamer, etc. I am not Nick Denton; if I were (he's the owner of the sites) it would certainly be my expectation that if I were doing something, deliberately or not, to increase the value of my websites, that I would be asked to host it on business terms, ie paid hosting, or to put the links in the sidebar once and for all.

  12. What happened to businessrel ?

  13. But the poster is not getting anything from Digg. It's the economic self-interest that's the issue.

    that's exactly the sort of thing i'm looking for from the TOS. because it's not there. personally, i think tertiary self interest should be ok, but it doesn't matter, because neither of us are attached to automattic.

    and by the way, linking to yourself only increases value if you use proper link text and titles. sticking your URI in a post? doesn't really help. we're not talking about someone savvy in SEO here.
    (google cache)

  14. @kamel

    certain members of 'the community' continued to call them evil spammers for a couple hours after

    I have carefully re-read the three threads on this and cannot find what you allege name calling. You are wrong. There's not a single post in which the yet to depart parties were called spammers.

  15. Is timethief banned from wordpress or what?

    Why have you not linked your blog to your id or username whatever you call it?

  16. She probably removed it herself. If she was banned, it would say 'Banned' where it says 'Member.'

  17. Just an update: the Norfolk tag has been fixed! Thanks to Barry, the tag works as it should.

    Now - how about giving back the WYSIWIG editor for comments?

  18. ALLELUIA! The Norfolk tag is fixed. What great news.

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