We are continuing our investigation into the BlogBurst matter.
For new readers, a quick summary of Medgadget.com’s original investigation into the world of Pluck, an aggregator company. So far, we have conclusively shown that Pluck, a San Antonio based company has engaged, through its service BlogBurst, into a practice of deep linking images from bloggers, as well as from completely independent parties, those that have nothing to do with BlogBurst. Moreover, it is incomprehensible, that the nation’s leading newspapers, including but not limited to the San Francisco Chronicle, Houston Chronicle, San Antonio Express-News, the Austin American-Statesman, together with Pluck, are continuing to engage themselves in the practice of stealing bandwidth via deep linking. We have also shown that Pluck, in its service agreement, is essentially appropriating entire contents of blogs, published at the time of the contract, forever for production of “derivative work.” As it stands now, the derivative work–in the world of Pluck–includes the entire post and pictures. Plus, probably, the bandwidth. (If you want to learn what the BlogBurst agreement means in real life, head to this post by Gary Farber.)
Now on to, what we believe, is a new set of lies by the company. According to their reports and “research”,
“…every blogger that reported their referrals showed between a 15-30% CTR [click trough rate -ed.] back to their blog from their full-posts on the publisher sites. BlogBurst’s model of providing full attribution with each blog post appears to be working well…”
Does it, really? This blogger thinks that he gets 1% CTR. (In the comment section to the post, Eric Newman from Pluck, reassures the blogger that it is actually 15-30%. Our conclusion: the blogger is a moron twice over, for giving up the content, and for thinking that 1% CTR is good for his business. And for being spanked by Pluck on his own website.) Then there is the example of Vagablogging.net, a flagship BlogBurst blog. How much CTR does Rolf Potts, an owner of the site, get? Not much. According to BlogBurst, their page impression numbers are “ramping to millions per week.” But lets see how much traffic Vagablogging gets off BlogBurst. According to his own stats, he got 38 (!) visits since inception of BlogBurst’s service. He’s been all over the travel section at the San Francisco Chronicle, and got about as many visits from them as he will get from this post.
In summary, the only ramping that’s going on is in BlogBurst’s Google AdSense account and in the exploitation of desperate bloggers by a hyping company. Call us old-fashioned, but taking away someone’s works and making money off it is unfair, is predatory, and is despicable.
(Neither Pluck nor the San Francisco Chronicle have returned our requests for comments.)
They Own the Aggregator, Now (They Think) They Own the Content
Beware BlogBurst: A “Derivative Work” Decoy; Nation’s Main Newspapers Continue to Steal Bloggers’ Bandwidth (part 2)
BlogBurst Outrage: Broken Promises; Nation’s Newspapers Continue Stealing Bandwidth (part 3)
Major Newspapers Hotlink Images from Unsuspecting Companies; Drain Bandwidth and Server Resources Without Permission
Voices from the blogosphere (the list is growing…):
WROTE: bye bye blogburst
Living the Scientific Life: Beware BlogBurst
Bitch Ph.D.: Caveat Bloggor
Orac: “BlogBurst is a predatory company that is taking advantage of the naivete of bloggers.”
TalkLeft: “I am concerned about the hot-linking of images using my bandwidth and the reprinting of the entire text of my posts… I don’t intend to write for newspaper readers for free. I don’t want them co-opting my posts as their own.” (link)
Stillbop: Cheap crumbs
Fistful of Euros: Beware BlogBurst: Bad for Business
Living the Scientific Life: Beware BlogBurst, Part Deux
The Examining Room of Dr. Charles: “I was approached by a blog syndication service called BlogBurst sometime ago, and considered joining. I guess I’m glad I didn’t.” (link)
Amygdala: The BlogBurst agreement dissected
GruntDoc: MedGadget on BlogBurst: Bloggers be aware
Meryl Yourish: All your blog are belong to Pluck
The Plagiarism Today: Blogburst Backlash
Steve Outing: Blog syndication: Should you or shouldn’t you?
Journerdism: Bloggers get a financial lift from Scoopt, Blogburst has a new competitor
Online Journalism Blog: Bloggers – sell your wares
The LOOSE wire blog: An Agency for the Citizen Reporter