How to accidentally erase your ad filter

When you’re adding sites to the Google Adsense “Competitive Ad Filter” please do not do what I just did.

As my filter has the maximum 200 urls I have to delete entries before adding new one, but I had deleted a couple of urls so I thought I’d have space for just one more slightly-dodgy low paying ad site. Unfortunately I didn’t and the familiar “Too many lines” error showed.

Normally I would search out another url to delete but I wanted to be done with it and not bother with my last change so I hit return on the url, this url, https://www.google.com/adsense/filter-save.do – thinking that it would reload the old list. It certainly did. It brought me back to day 1 when I had no entries in the filter! You know that sinking feeling? That moment when something has gone really wrong? That was me a few minutes ago.

Thankfully hitting BACK on my browser and confirming the POST operation restored the list and I quickly removed the offending LCPC site. Phew.

Someone should tell Google, this would be a rather quick and easy way for a malicious someone to mess with a person’s filter. They should check for the existance of some POST variables before overwriting the filter. It’s a bug!

Simply because a blog post isn’t a blog post without a link, here’s where I talk about my competitive ad filter. MFA and LCPC sites galore. The MFA sites listed in this post finally made it into the ad filter this morning.

How to graph your Adsense Earnings

adsense-graph.gif

Michele blogged about a new simple and easy to use Adsense earnings graphing tool this morning that generates nice graphs.

Besides graphing the average earnings per day it also displays two moving averages which are useful as another indicator of growth. Finally, the gold line is a trend line for the future based on the data submitted.

Before you try it, read the blog post with a more detailed explanation and instructions, then give it a whirl for yourself.

What I would love to see are width and height parameters so I could resize the graph before it’s generated. Resizing afterwards antialiases the text and makes it difficult to read.

Yes, as you can see from the graph, December was a good month.

Thinkhouse PR – what's up?

As Damien’s post is missing from Google I think it’s up to the rest of us to spread the word.

Despite contacting them several times over the course of a few weeks Thinkhouse PR continued to spam Damien with product announcements and press releases. On August 23rd he sent a formal complaint to the Data Protection Commissioner and being a blogger, wrote about it too. It is this post that has disappeared from Google’s search. It might be something as innocent as a Google refresh or it might be banned.

If you live outside Ireland, please search for “Thinkhouse PR” and leave a comment here if you see Damien’s post on the front page. Thanks.

Tom has also covered this issue and found out that the Data Protection Commissioner apologised to Thinkhouse PR for investigating them.

Bizarrely, Jane McDaid of Thinkhouse PR in a comment on James‘ site said that the Data Protection Office had apologised for having to follow up the complaint!

Later.. Damien posted the letter he received from the Commissioner. They did investigate, but I think someone in Thinkhouse PR needs to come up with another reason. They stated that it took up to 2 days to remove a user from their lists. Unfortunately for them Damien received his last spam correspondence from them 14 days or more after contacting them. Someone should get a slap on the wrist for this.

Ping Google Too!

Google announced that they will accept pings to their blogsearch service. Hopefully Pingomatic will support it soon so you don’t need to update your “Update Services” in WordPress. I’d say Matt’s sleeping off the jet lag from his trip to Vienna but it’ll probably be there in a few hours!

If you can’t wait, add “http://blogsearch.google.com/ping/RPC2” to the “Update Services” in your WordPress Dashboard under Options->Writing.

Why is this good? By pinging Google you can tell them that you have updated your blog. That will get your post into the Google Blog Search index that much faster.

Update! Matt has already updated Pingomatic. WordPress users can rest easy that their posts will show up quickly on Google Blog Search now!

Essay on Google, information, …

Essay on Google, information, humans and computers.

How much ass does Google kick? All of it.

Remember when searching the Internet was hard? The dark days when we relied on dumb-as-sand machine intelligences, like those on the back-ends of AltaVista and Lycos, to rank the documents that matched our keywords? The grim era before Google, when searching was a spew of boolean mumbo-jumbo, NEAR this, NOT that, AND the other?

God, that sucked.

Lucky for the Internet, Google figured out the One True Way to make sense of the Internet, to defeat gamers of the system and send info-free brochureware plummeting to number n – 1 out of n results.