Are Ask (IAC) Killing The Golden Goose? (Plus they Should Buy Seesmic)

Yahoo Site Explorer reports over 100M links to Bloglines

The largest chunks of those are subscription links from blogs, many of them nofollowed, and a fair chunk are also from their own properties.

In any normal situation, you might be able to shut down a website, and redirect the domain to some similar content and for some of the link equity to last.

In the case of a feed reader that is a dead goose. Any blogger paying attention (those with authority) is just going to remove the subscription links as soon as Ask take Bloglines offline in 3 weeks – in fact they are going to do it right now.

At the same time it seems someone at ASK/IAC is paying a guy in Pakistan to spam my comments in order to get pages ranking for a concert.

IAC Excite Comment Spam

There also seems some poor judgement such as not allowing commercial use of Vimeo. Tons of people would love to use Vimeo purely like a CDN – absolutely nothing to do with or in any way disrupting their community.
So many startups and web designers are using Vimeo commercially on their home pages. Do they let it slip by unnoticed just for the links?

IAC Unofficial Plan “B” For Bloglines

This is what I would do with Bloglines, and 18 months ago I even mentioned it to a few people.

  • Dump the current service – I agree with that fully – they need to be aggregating more than just Blog RSS.
  • Air app on multiple platforms for RSS (including authenticated feeds) & Social media
  • Sync of subscriptions between Desktop, Mobile and Web applications
  • Offer a high end blogging platform for a particular type of authority high revenue content ;) on revenue share
  • Support for activity streams and Salmon before Google with Bloglines as the home – define

Just 18 months ago it would have been fairly easy to get Bloglines doing 20M-30M visitors of Google search traffic purely as an aggregator. They have so much broad content available to them and in some ways it would make a more logical tag space than one of their dictionary sites.

Things have progressed on quite a bit in 18 months – plenty is still doable but there might be a need to take a few shortcuts.

Buy Seesmic, but make sure you hang onto Loic for a while. The modules system now introduced to Seesmic once expanded to all platforms is the keey to always being relevant. You could look on it as a multi-interface Netvibes.

Google wants everything public – become the defacto platform for authenticated private content

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  1. says

    Thanks for heads up Andy,

    I wasn’t aware Bloglines are shutting down,, I guess just “another one bites the dust”…

    Interesting thing – I have noticed quite a bit of comment spam coming on my blog as well, sometimes for very reputable sites.

    • says

      I think a few SEO firms have persuaded some of the bigger corporate clients that they shouldn’t ask about how they are going to be promoted, so the SEOs can do dodgy things, or they just think they are to big for Google not to list them.

      It could also be an attempt to bowl them out, or for reputation management but this one didn’t seem like that – though that can be disguised by making it look like it is a lot of benefit to the site receiving the links.

  2. Gravity says

    i noticed the same thing on a few of my blogs, a few of them managed to escape the akismet aswell, i wonder whts the latest deal going on…

  3. michelle @ boat graphics says

    Double I, I for Interesting and Informative. I guess this two may be the best description for this blog.

  4. says

    I’m probably the only one finding this quite interesting that they are shutting down, they have a huge amount of traffic according to Alexa. Surely they must be converting some of that traffic into cash? The only rationale I can see for it shutting down is due to a lack of profit.

    • says

      I wouldn’t call it a huge amount of traffic – some certainly, but the problem is they have a very poor content strategy, and have probably detected that Google have discounted a ton of the links – at least that was a case 18 month ago, I haven’t had time to study the internal linking since, but I would have scrapped it all anyway.