Chocolate and Gold Coins

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Complaining About the Free Ice Cream

Recently Brad Delong had a nice post about someone complaining about Technorati because they didn’t have the most recent links available. Brad said that this was a little like complaining about free ice cream.

Let me join those complaining about the quality of the free ice cream that is Techorati these days,
My experience with the beta site is that large parts of it, like "sort incoming links by 'most authority,'" simply don't work at all; you wait forever for no result. (We [the letter writer to Brad Delong and Brad] both realize this is arguably a variety of complaining about the free ice cream, and yet.)

Well Technorati is like free ice cream and I’ve gorged myself on it for the last couple of months. I use it to find blogs that have linked to my blog. I want to know because I put everyone who has ever linked to Chocolate and Gold Coins on my blogroll - in the “linked to C&GC” category. Also, bloggers that link to me usually have good taste and write interesting blogs that I want to read.

I used to run a Technorati search every day and use the results as a sort of link page. I would just go to the blogs that linked to me to find out if there’s anything new and interesting there. Of course, I could just go to my own homepage, but it’s not automatically updated like Technorati.

But Technorati has always been a mystery to me. It doesn’t find all of the links; I’ve found some overlooked links purely by accident. India Uncut (India’s premiere blog) has linked to my blog at least 19 times, but the only post that Technorati would find was this one from 3 months ago.

Well, if Technorati was annoying before, now it’s useless. Every time I run it, it fails. The free ice cream has melted.

Or maybe this was free heroin. Now that they have us addicted, I can see a fee for service coming. Does anyone remember when Cricinfo was having bandwidth problems and began Cricinfo Plus - a pay site? Cricinfo dumped Cricinfo Plus with little fanfare but not before relieving me of $20.

I remember years ago that there was an anti-drug public service announcement that went something like this:
Punk 1: “How much do I charge?”
Punk 2: “Nothing now. Just give it away. Then wait and see who comes back for more.”
Punk 1: “Then I charge them.”
Punk 2: “You catch on quickly.”

I was thinking, “Great, that’s what we need, a public service announcement showing pushers how to better market their illegal drugs.”

So what became of the punks? My guess is they quit pushing drugs and are now marketing Technorati.

Update: This is ironic: someone linked to this article and I cannot know who did this - Technorati won't say. If someone would please leave a comment about where the link originated, I would be most appreciative.


  • Hi Michael,

    I've been having problems with Technorati too. Whenever I try to claim my blog, it says it doesn't exist. Their tech-support is pretty bad too. I've emailed them three times, and I haven't gotten a single response. Google needs to get into blog searching and show Technorati how it's done.


    By Blogger Vikram A., at 5:08 PM  

  • Hi Vikram
    I had problems with that also but somehow - and I wish I remembered what I did - was able to get it to claim my blog.

    Hey, you get what you pay for, right?

    By Blogger Michael Higgins, at 5:23 PM  

  • I saw a link to this post in (A blog aggradization website.)

    yum yum

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:12 AM  

  • yup....I hear you...

    i've emailed tech support as well, some 3-4 times (telling them about a large bunch of sites that link to me, but are missed by Technorati, including India uncut, which has linked to me atleast 6-7 times). No response (except their automated response).

    And, I use it just like you to link back to bloggers who link to me.....but I can never run the search!

    By Blogger Sunil, at 11:50 AM  

  • This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

    By Anonymous zenegra, at 2:34 PM  

  • At least one blog linking to this post was DesiPundit...dunno about the rest.

    By Blogger Patrix, at 2:48 PM  

  • Hi Sunil
    Well maybe if we ping India Uncut, it will update this search. But my search always fails now.

    Hi Patrix
    Thanks for linking to this post. I should have noticed before. I noticed the link to the post about al-Queda and Pakistan. Thanks

    By Blogger Michael Higgins, at 3:54 PM  

  • Hi, Stephen Baker (over at Blogspotting) has some details; he got them by speaking to Technorati's chief engineer. Interestingly, the first commenter on this post is the CTO of PubSub!

    By Anonymous Abi, at 8:19 AM  

  • Hi Abi
    Thanks a lot for the link. This is helpful. I knew that Technorati was falling behind the growth curve, but I wasn't sure what their plan was. I think cricinfo, which had exactly the same problem, erred in trying to offer a pay service: people prefer free ice cream when it comes on the web.

    Hopefully Technorati comes back better than ever, I have really come to depend on it.

    By Blogger Michael Higgins, at 7:13 PM  

  • Hi Michael,

    great post, and I'm sorry that we've been letting you down of late. How have things been for you lately? We've been putting a lot of time and effort into growing and scaling the service, as well as speeding up a number of core services. We'll be doing a lot more over the coming months too.

    Have things improved for you, or are we still failing you? How can we be of better service to you?


    By Blogger David, at 3:10 AM  

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