How to Avoid an Unnatural Links Penalty

Editor’s note: The Unnatural Links update would later become known as Google’s Penguin update. Also, this post received 100+ comments when it was originally published on the now defunct

Google is constantly adjusting its search engine algorithm in an attempt to serve up the best websites and most relevant results to searchers.  They’re at it again, and this time it’s a doozy.

What’s being called the Unnatural Links update is rocking the SEO world.  In March 2012 people started receiving warnings from Google about “unnatural links” and then many of those sites’ rankings in search results have taken a nosedive.  Some sites have been de-indexed, which means their site’s pages no longer show up in Google at all. Continue Reading…

Thumper’s Reviews of Glucosamine Treats for Cats

Because my cat Thumper is a bit overweight, a Maine Coon – a larger type of a cat – and 11 years old, our vet recommended I give her glucosamine treats to help her joints so she can be more active and comfortable. Obstacle #1 – It’s hard to find Glucosamine treats for cats in many pet stores. Obstacle #2 – It turns out Thumper is an even pickier eater than I ever realized.

Here are my – well, really Thumpers’ – reviews of the Glucosamine treats we’ve tried. I hope it helps some other “fluffy” kitties get what they need to feel better, and help you not waste money on ones your cat may not eat. Continue Reading…

Twitter only emailing about some @s to hide spam, annoy me

Any popular social network (or blog, wiki, etc.) is bound to become an attractive target to spammers.  People have come to expect spam in their email inbox, but spam can be surprising on a social site where you feel like you’re only talking to and visible to your friends.

What’s interesting to me is how social networks deal with try to hide spam.  In my last post, I talked about how Facebook hides messages from non-friends they think could be spam.  This gives Facebook a sense on non-spamminess at the cost of preventing social interactions from people you’re not connected to.

Now I’ve noticed that Twitter is doing something similar. Continue Reading…

Is Facebook hiding “Other” messages from you? Yes, but why?

A few years ago I got what looked like an important piece of mail in my mailbox, and it was addressed to someone else with a unique name.  I thought about throwing it back in the mail with a “not at this address” note and hoping it would make it to the right place eventually, but then I had an idea.  I searched for that person’s very unique name in Facebook, and sure enough, I found one result and they were in Portland.  I sent them a message, and they were thrilled (it was in fact a very important piece of mail) and we met up craiglist style for the hand-off.  If I do say so myself, this was a pretty helpful and social interaction. Yay Facebook!

More recently, in November 2011, a woman left her laptop in a cab and a good samaritan sent her a Facebook message to let her know, but she never noticed it.

You see, between the time I sent my message and the laptop finder sent theirs, Facebook redesigned their message system to effectively ensure a message like those would never see the light of day.  So Elizabeth didn’t get the message about her long lost laptop until someone told her where to dig to find all her Facebook messages.

Where you can find your "Other" Facebook messagesHave you ever noticed the “Other” subfolder in your Facebook messages?  I haven’t talked to anyone who noticed it themselves, even though it’s been hiding there since November 2010.

Let’s take a look.  You can find it by clicking “Messages” and then the mysterious “Other” option that then appears below it.

Continue Reading…