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Comment Spam, Cheeseballs and other Thanksgiving Food

Cheeseball

Happy Thanksgiving week U.S. readers. All readers, if you’re looking for something new for the holidays, along with that marshmallow salad or the crazy gelatin thing from your crazy Aunt, you will find the world’s best cheeseball recipe at the end of this post – it’s been in my family for generations.

SPAMSPAM SPAM Everywhere  – How did we get here?

SEO is an entire business and  like many things in our world, as soon as certain people decide to game the system for the sake of making more money, it has morphs into something entirely new. Enter SPAM.

At Murlu, on the post Manufacturing Social Proof: From SEO to Piggybacking & Association, there’s an interesting conversation going on about SEO. In this post there is this statement:

James wrote an engaging post which asked when did we stop thinking about the reader? In my response, I expressed the value I found through his content but told him the harsh reality that it would be passed over because he, like many others, approach content creation against the perceived notion that keyword selection and post archetype is what creates valuable, shareable content. Great posts, such as James created, are passed over every day due to the manipulation of search engine optimization & linkbaiting.

Zencopy note: James, the author of foursides blog, is the brave soul who responded to my post Are You Ready to Get Paid for Your Online Writing?

How did comment SPAM become such a popular food?

The initial idea of optimizing actually began in the yellow pages with businesses giving themselves names such as AAAsomething so they would be found first in alphabetical lists.

In the mid 1990’s we start to see information cropping up on the web about text matching and data mining and by 1997 we start to see some algorithm “cracking,” where people studied the elements on those pages that were coming up at the top of searches. Then, by the late 90’s we knew that search engines we’re going to move away from on-page factors so things such as linkbaiting were bound to become more important. Flash forward to now and SEO being an entire business. You can buy links, sell links, spam links, whatever links. Heck, why don’t we just create an entire Wall Street Link Market and get it over with?

If you run a blog you know that one of the sad uses of your time is getting rid of those  spam comments that are designed to create link backs that are of course totally irrelevant to your site. They are getting more and more clever and many still make it through the filters. I don’t know about you, but I find myself re reading some of them to determine if they are spam or not. Like I said, they are clever.

Tip: Stop Comment Spam

If you run a blog and you’re not already using Akismet set it up now. It’ll eliminate probably 99% of comment spam for you.

Linkbaiting

Good linkbaiting to me is creating content so seductive, that readers feel the need to link to it. Unfortunately, it has come to mean something entirely different. For the sake of ranking and making money people are leaving irrelevant links left right and center.

So, now we’re left with this: a lot of awesome blog content is overlooked, and blogs designed to work the system get bumped up and therefore, are found more often in search results.

Can we just get back to creating awesome content – that also has those important keywords so people interested in genuine content can find what they need? And while we’re wishing big, maybe we could just leave meaningful comments that pertain to the content and actually help build communities of people who are interested in that topic.

Can you imagine how awesome that would be?

My challenge to you

Not to say that all top search results are gaming the system, because all are not. Many deserve to be there. But next time you do a Google, or other engine search, how about looking past the first page of search results to see what you find? Who knows, page 11 of those search results might just have the gem you’re looking for – and you might just discover a new blog, with awesome content that was previously overlooked.

Not to leave you with the taste of Comment SPAM in your mouth

Happy Thanksgiving week, U.S. citizens. For those of you in other parts of the world, it’s a good time for general thankfulness.

Because I’m thankful to zencopy readers for sharing my passion for creativity and writing with me, here’s my gift to you – the world’s best cheeseball recipe. I’ve never had a family holiday – ever – without this cheeseball. And when my dear cousin Ann, who made these cheese balls for years – to perfection – came down with Alzheimers, I accepted the challenge of continuing the tradition. This is for you, Ann!

CheeseballCheese Ball Recipe

  • 12 oz cream cheese
  • 10 ounces spreadable sharp cheddar (Kaukauna or Wispride)
  • 6 ounces crumbled blue cheese
  • 2 tablespoons grated onion
  • 1 teaspoon Lawry’s seasoned salt
  • 2 cups finely chopped pecans (reserve 1  cup to cover cheese ball)

Soften cheese and mix all ingredients together with a beater. Refrigerate overnight. Form into balls and roll in pecans. Recipe makes large ball or several smaller ones. Freezes great!

Happy Thanksgiving!

SPAM photo by داود David

cheeseball photo by freakgirl

About the author: Karen, zencopy creator, is a top 10 bestselling amazon author, creativity coach, and an online content specialist with a masters in psychology and passion for learning and teaching new topics.

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