Posts with tag "Knol"

Do I Get To Say I Told You So?

Google Knol - the new home of splogs

Back in December of last year when Google announced the whole Knol idea I wrote a post titled “Knol – a potential fertile ground for smart spammers and marketers?” that like the headline said suggested that this new endeavor from Google would end up be nothing more than a repository of spam links. In the post I said in no uncertain terms

Space changing maybe but I know one thing for sure. Knol; or whatever they end up calling it, will become the fertile ground for the best of the best smart spammers and marketers.

This of course was opposite of what the more popular bloggers were saying at the time that this would be a serious game changer. M.G. Siegler from his ParisLemon blog suggested that this would be because of money

Google obviously is not stupid. They saw all the traffic going to Wikipedia from their searches and likely thought: “why don’t we make our own”? The question would be why, when Wikipedia is already so firmly established? Well because if you read closely, authors will have the option to put Google Ads on the pages. Cha-ching.

Duncan Riley who was still at TechCrunch at the time said it would be a game changer:

this month its a new project called “Knol” (which apparently stands for a unit of knowledge), a user generated knowledge project that combines parts of Wikipedia and Squidoo (and to a lesser extent Mahalo) into what could easily turn out to game changer in this space.

Well the other day Knol finally went public and since that point we have been reading all kinds of posts about how spammy the service was. Duncan who is now the driving force behind The Inquisitr appears to have changed his mind on this game changing idea with his post on July 28 where he suggests Knol now equals spam

Then there are those targeting content in high paying keywords, for example adding Knol entries on terms such as Insurance, their goal being not to provide the best knowledge on the service, but to get high paying clicks via the ads Google show on each page. There’s even a blog dedicated to doing just that.

Mark ‘Rizzn’ Hopkins over at Mashable has been watching Knol as it has moved forward and he as well believes; regardless of what some of the commenters on his posts say, that Knol is indeed becoming a new home for splogs using an email conversation as proof

This morning I received the URGENT ALERT that a mere three days after the launch of Google’s Knol, he’s already created an automated Knol article generator.

[..]

As you can tell, the purpose of this software isn’t to create valuable “Knol units” or to spread the altruistic dream of free knowledge for all, but to create Knols with the purpose to squat on as much namespace as possible while attempting to reap the rewards of high value links from the Google domain these articles will sit on.

As he points out in his demonstration of the automation software, the articles don’t need to be particularly informative or even original, so long as they are long, plentiful, and moderately relevant to the keyword.

This use of Knol to grab keywords has been noticed by others as well. As Aaron Wall from SEO Book wrote on July 28th as well

From the above data (and the aggressive promotion of YouTube content after the roll out of universal search) it is fair to state that house content is favored by the Google algorithm.

For me though had to be Doc Searls’ post today where he comes right out and says that Knol is becoming a den of spam

A knol, Knol says, is a “unit of knowledge”. I don’t think so. But I do think Knol is already becoming a den of spam.

My cursory research, at that link, suggests that the answer is yes. “Anemia“? No results. “Hair“? 12, including several (supposedly) by the top guy at the Beauty Network. “Cancer“? 38, so far, inncluding three in the first page of results for the biggest spam giveaway, Mesothelioma. Search for anything. Watch the results.

See … I told you so :)

From the Pipeline – 7.28.08

The end of the month is just around the corner and if climate change doesn’t just kick in we’ll be starting our slide into the fall season – yuck. In the meantime here’s a few things that I found of interest in today’s FriendFeed pipeline.

The 11 Ugliest College Football Uniforms [nw] :: Campus Squeeze – well I guess if you are going to have a list type post then you might as well have some fun with it.

A Seemingly Square Nebula [nw] :: Astronomy Picture of the Day – I love looking at pictures like this but what a time sink this can be as you can’t stop at just one picture.

20 Most Bizarre Mugshots ever [nw] :: Oddee – another fun exercise in list making posts even though this can be a little on the worrisome side unless the people on the list are still in jail.

Who Is Your Information Filter? [nw] :: I’m Not Actually A Geek – a very interesting and valuable post by Hutch

Google Knol starting to smell spammy [nw] :: The Inquisitr – I do believe I said something along these lines would happen when Knol was first announce.

The underground world of internet fraud. [nw] :: Mike Fruchter – first post in what is intended to be a series which if the follow up posts are as good as this one it should be a good one to read in full.

Quick Thoughts for 12.19.07

Don'tcha just hate it. It’s a miserable day out there with a mixture of wet snow and rain depending on the temperature fluctuations. Either way it made for a miserable walk downtown and back.

My New Facebook Strategy and the FB Power Level :: Mark Cuban – an interesting post of the value of friends on Facebook and how to possibly make the whole thing actually work for you.

Day 1267: Klingons Around Uranus :: Gorgeous on Life – make sure no drinks are in sight when reading.

Technorati Lacks Authority :: weblog tools collection – some well reasoned points why Technorati needs to rework their ranking algorithm

Kissing Google’s Knol :: Andrew Keenin his mind Andrew equates Google’s move with Knol to be open war against Wikipedia and thinks it is a good thing


Knol – a potential fertile ground for smart spammers and marketers?

And a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to Jimmy Wales and Wikipedia from your favorite wannabe web monopolist – Google; all courtesy of a smashing new idea from the bowels of the Googleplex called Knol.

google_knol

With this news from Google sure to be the hot topic throughout Techmeme and the tech blogosphere it interesting to see that the initial reaction from folks like TechCrunch and ParisLemon is one of getting the headstone ready for Wikipedia because Google will be offering the one thing that Wikipedia doesn’t allow – a way for authors/editors to make money for their efforts.

As ParisLemon points out in his post:

Google obviously is not stupid. They saw all the traffic going to Wikipedia from their searches and likely thought: “why don’t we make our own”? The question would be why, when Wikipedia is already so firmly established? Well because if you read closely, authors will have the option to put Google Ads on the pages. Cha-ching.

Along with this we have Duncan Riley at TechCrunch calling this shot into the port bows of Wikipedia potentially space changing:

When it comes to Google, nothing should surprise us any more. Last month it was Digg style social voting on search results, this month its a new project called “Knol” (which apparently stands for a unit of knowledge), a user generated knowledge project that combines parts of Wikipedia and Squidoo (and to a lesser extent Mahalo) into what could easily turn out to game changer in this space.

Space changing maybe but I know one thing for sure. Knol; or whatever they end up calling it, will become the fertile ground for the best of the best smart spammers and marketers. You know the ones – those folks that are really good at turning a phrase to the point where everything sounds and looks legit. They might be a little busy at the moment working for politicians on the election trail but you can be sure that at the smell of easy money they’ll be on it like a bloodhound.

Why do I think this?

Because Google has already stated in their blog post about their Wikipedia killer that while they’ll share any revenue they won’t be acting as an editor in any fashion:

Google will not serve as an editor in any way, and will not bless any content. All editorial responsibilities and control will rest with the authors.

I can just see the glee forming in the eyes of marketing executives as they start counting their bonus checks. It won’t matter to Google who’s writing what past the initial publicity of a Knol launch after which as Duncan points outs “…. Duplication could become an issue however ..” and that will play right into the revenue machine that drives Google.

Especially when you consider the point; just as ParisLemon did, that any Knol will be featured in Google Search results. Call me cynical and cranky but given Google’s own track record with typosquatters and splogs I don’t see Knol being any different once the shining light of launch day is over and Google opens the floodgates for everyone to have their own Knol.

Sure Wikipedia is going to take a massive hit with this as far as actual casual visitors but when it comes down to authority and reputation in the long run a Pedia will beat out a Knol. The question is will Wikipedia be able to survive the initial loss of traffic.