Don’t Let Technorati Drop Your Blog

Technorati means business with WordPress Blogs, and rightfully so. With all the potential vulnerabilities of older, unpatched versions of WordPress out there, many blogs have become fair game to spammers worldwide.

If you have not upgraded WordPress since 2.3.2, and have a claimed blog on Technorati, you probably received an email from Technorati architect Ian Kallen, who writes:

Ian Kallen

“…Blogs that have been compromised by this security vulnerability are typified by having links to spam destinations inserted onto the blog page. These link insertions may be invisible to casual observations; the links are often obscured by style attributes that render them invisible. These links are still seen by crawlers such as Technorati’s, Google’s and Yahoo’s. You can find these links by viewing the source of the blog pages or, when using Firefox, looking under “Tools” -> “Page Info” -> “Links”. Blogs hosted on wordpress.com are not affected by this issue; only blogs hosted on their own installations of WordPress from wordpress.org require concern…”

The NowSourcing blog was a couple versions back and noticed a couple spam links creeping up here, so we bit the bullet and upgraded to WordPress 2.5. For those of you that have not done so yet, be sure to at least be on 2.3.3.

The WordPress Automatic Upgrade plugin was surprisingly bump-free (be sure to check all the backup files, we noticed that the wp-content folder didn’t backup automatically).

Technorati has often been criticized of not being on top of things, but this time around I must say good job, Ian and crew! Granted that many will be running around like chickens with their heads cut off

Before you say “hey, you write about social media. Where’s the social media?” I was just getting to that 🙂 Technorati authority and blog search coupled with WordPress blogging is at the heart of social media. If you woke up tomorrow and your or your client’s blog was dropped by Technorati, there could be some serious ramifications. Conversation is quickly becoming the new form of metrics in social media (sorry pageviews), and without a guide like Technorati, we’d be up a creek without a paddle.

But what if Technorati removed thousands of authority blogs en masse? Best upgrade soon, all! 🙂

23 Comments

  1. I would love to see the blog results thinned out. Ever since Technorati moved away from their core competency, blog search, I have not considered them as reliable a source as I used to. I hope this changes things up.

  2. There are ways of patching WordPress without running the complete upgrade which updates the version number. Files have been released individually to patch vulnerabilities so that you aren’t running a full WordPress install file copy and you also have the ability to use SVN to pull the individual files you need. Many times this doesn’t update the “version” number even though you are fully patched.

    One of the biggest nuisances to splog Technorati trackbacks occur when the spam blogs pull legitimate site’s RSS feeds, repost, and link back hoping for trackbacks posted from the original posting site. I don’t allow splogs to get trackbacks from me but many blog owners don’t take such defensive measures. I would like to see the RSS feed rippers pulled out of Technorati and only show the legitimate trackbacks to my blogs but unfortunately that isn’t being addressed. I bet that would dramatically change the numbers in their system.

    Christa’s last blog post..WordPress Presentation Video – PodCamp Midwest 2008

  3. I’m gonna have to upgrade my blogs. I have for my main site, but various other properties I haven’t. This gives me a lot more motivation. Thanks.

    Seduction’s last blog post..Confidence (Herbal Game Column)

  4. @Jeredb: agree that it would be nice if technorati would cut down the splogs spawned all over, but the issue here is that if people are too busy or not technically competant to upgrade, they might be dropped. Quality blogs could be lost.

    @Christa: good quality advice. SVN WordPress updates are certainly also a way to go. RSS scrapers suck, and there are RSS anti-scraper plugins that do some help as well.
    Technorati really needs to do a better job at stopping some of this crap, but also being mindful of authority blogs. Should be easy enough – most splogs don’t have good authority, or at least can be weeded out with basic pattern matching.

    @Wayne: you’re on a roll with plugins, you should give it a shot! I’d be happy to contribute / collaborate. Drop me a line.

    @Seduction: thanks for stopping by again. Glad that this motivated you to upgrade, it is very important!

  5. I don’t mean to come off as a troll here, but I have to say, this is bad advice. There are a lot of problems with WordPress 2.5 that need to be fixed. For example, it’s broken many themes and plugins due to some standard WordPress hooks being broken. Keep in mind, upgrading before these issues are fixed could damage business websites that depend on WordPress if custom themes are broken etc. Also, it’s not automatically more secure than previous versions, it’s just that security bugs haven’t been discovered yet.

    Forcing people to upgrade isn’t the answer. You could always just change the version # from your theme and Technorati won’t drop you. This should not be touted as the answer.

    WebGeek’s last blog post..The SEO Industry Needs a New Term for Linkbait

  6. @Linda – this applies to the WordPress platform only.

    @Bill Hartzer – agreed that Technorati needs to clean up its act. This is a bit more hardcore than I expected from them though.

  7. wow – thats good to know. i didn’t actually see this email from technorati – but I’ll certainly to make sure. i think most of my blogs were upgraded to wp 2.3.3 – but i will go check them all now.

    Matt Ellsworth’s last blog post..Microsoft Updates Live Maps and Virtual Earth 3D

  8. Thanks for the warning!

    Isn’t it unfortunate that it always seems to be the blog/site owner who gets canned, even when they’ve done nothing wrong.

    At some point, we’re going to collectively have to figure out a better way to go on the offensive against spammers, and really make them pay for their malevolent deeds against society.

  9. I hate having to upgrade WordPress constantly…!

  10. I don’t think this is any of Technorati’s business. I cannot see why they should make such a fuss about outdated blogs. To remember to upgrade one’s blog is only the owners responsibility, not Technorati’s.

    Malte Landwehr’s last blog post..Die besten Feedicons und warum sie so wichtig sind

  11. Does anyone use Technorati anymore? Google Blog search is now the default on the WordPress dashboard. Besides that when was the last time you saw a referrer in your log files from Technorati?

    Lees last blog post..The Blogging Wall

  12. @WebGeek – I don’t care for Technorati’s tactics either, and you make some good points.
    Hiding WP version # is also an option.

    @Matt Ellsworth – yes, worth checking out all your blogs to make sure they aren’t dropped.

    @Pedro – agreed. People that are producing good content shouldn’t be punished.

    @Simon Slade – you can always put in the automatic upgrade and it will take care of most things.

    @Malte Landwehr – Technorati is just trying to prevent splogs. It’s a pretty strange way for them to do this, and yes, the blogger shouuld be more resposible. Thing is, many bloggers may not have the knowledge/expertise to prevent against attacks.

    @Pete White – sure they do, for doing blog searches and many use Technorati authority as a key metric.

    @Lee – as mentioned to Pete, people still find the Technorati 100, a function of Technorati authority, to be very relavent. Agreed that Google blog search is great though.

  13. Technorati should do this… It’s like survival of the fittest… evolution… If you can’t keep up you need to get out… Or get dropped.

  14. I am not looking forward to this one…too many things I’ve added in and formatting that can be lost when upgrading. Oh well…

  15. This is great post. Thanks for sharing.

  16. What about Blogger blogs?

  17. I’m not sure why someone wouldn’t want to upgrade anyway.

    It’s always been a relatively painless experience for me, and is a lot better than hackers exploting code in your blog and breaking in.

    Launch Trees last blog post..The Perfect OTO Page 😀

  18. Nice information and understanding of issue thanks for sharing and letting us know.

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Don’t Let Technorati Drop Your Blog | BlogOnExpo - [...] Technorati means business with Wordpress Blogs, and rightfully so. With all the potential vulnerabilities of older, unpatched versions of…
  2. Outdated WP Blogs - Don’t Let Technorati Drop Your Blog | White Sands Digital - [...] unpatched versions of Wordpress out there, many blogs have become fair game to spammers worldwide.read more | digg story…
  3. 100 Blogs using CommentLuv - [...] http://nowsourcing.com/blog/2008/04/08/technorati-will-drop-wordpress-blogs/ http://phonereport.info/2008/04/30/phonereport-on-a-little-field-trip/ [...]