An inorganic road to quick moolah!

The news about Indian Social networking site Desimartini being purchased by HT Media for a whopping figure (less than $10 Million) may be a bit stale but it raises lot of question on the strategy big media houses and similar such people with lots of money in their wallet are following these days to join the Internet bandwagon. Now $10 Million for 250,000 users, that’s almost $40 per user, which may be peanuts compared to what Microsoft paid but, I mean how stupid can any buyer be? $10 Million for a poor Facebook ripoff? Either HT Media was entirely fooled by Vivek Pahwa or it’s an entirely hyped deal.

Nevertheless, the deal sure brings to light the shortcut people are following to carve their niche. Techgoss quotes Pahwa’s old interview where he had bragged about 300,000 users and about eight million page views a month, just months after the launch of the site. As Techgoss says, “Who cares what was said a few months ago”. However, Vivek obviously is a man who knows a thing or two about creating hype; his is perhaps the only such site to run an advt campaign on national TV. I distinctly remember that when these commercials were being aired the first time the site had a flier saying “Coming soon” and then they came up with this poor site, that looks so awful and yet able to sell it. In this year-old interview, Vivek mentions atleast three sites that he claimed would be launched within 3-4 months of Desimartini’s lauch. You could well imagine the state of these sites, IndiaListed, a classifieds site does’nt exist anymore, IndianRadar, a Digg clone is as shabbily made as Desimartini and Zohho, a Twitter wannabe now redirects to Desimartini. Obviously Vivek had something else on his mind (he came up with an unplanned website instead, which atleast looks a bit decent).

moolahEverybody it seems is in a hurry to heftily add a user base to its kitty and sign treaties with or be sold off to a Yahoo or Google. I am not sure whether it has to do with luck. I had raised apprehension about one such website OneIndia that turned into a lethal combination of News Portal, Social Bookmarking website and Blog Directory/Aggregator just overnight. The growth was evidently inorganic. While I may be wrong about their news source, they apparently subscribe to many news agencies for vernacular news I was right about their swelling blog directory. “Many” if not all blogs were added without asking the blogger. The scarier part was the website changed the permalinks of blog posts it showed and showed them inside frame pages, to a laymen reader it will appear as if the blogs are actually hosted over OneIndia. I could verify simply by the fact that my English and Hindi (removed after I pointed it out) blogs were added there without my permission. No notification was sent to me as the company claims it sends. The intention in changing Blog permalink and avoiding to provide actual blog URL is quite evident. They wanted to show that as their content. And days later I raised this objection the intention was validated. OneIndia had signed a deal with AOL to provide content to them. It is easy to understand why they needed an overnight growth in their content. Despite my objections to date the company has not removed the content they added without permission and still show blog posts in frame pages (though now they added Blog URL as links to close the frame.)

It probably needs guts, tactics, and above all, lack of spine to raise quick moolah. Thankfully, we can raise such concern through blogs, not worthy enough for main stream media that survives on Press Notes. But the way such deals go about and the unapologetic way Oneindia replied to my objections, this is going to be the “rule of the game” in future.

BlogAdda or Spammers Adda?

The new so-called blog platform (though I prefer to call them Blog Leechers since they are resorting to all sort of gimmicks to just get footage, such as showing your blog under frame pages, showing your feed content as their own and so on) BlogAdda has surely gained attention but not due to its content or any novel features (it has got none, anyways, Instablogs should have taught them lessons) but because of their staff let loose on a spamming spree. The BlogAdda people have been adamantly spamming all sort of blogs in English as well Hindi Blogosphere, the intention is probably not so much to promote their product but as an SEO noted at Chandroo’s blog, to gain undeserved Google rank. First, it was the notorious Deepanjali, who even created a fake Marathi blog to pose as a fellow blogger and left poetic Hindi comments on almost all gullible blogs and now Kirans and Adityas have taken over. To pose as bloggers these guys have created fake Blogger accounts so they don’t have to comment anonymously, since many, if not most, users don’t allow anonymous comments.

Tired of their spamming on all my sites, in September 2007, I had written to BlogAdda through their website that they should stop this gimmick Continue reading “BlogAdda or Spammers Adda?”

Hilarious Spam

This blog has pretty much been in a suspended state, yet the spam comments keep pouring in on the older posts; of course, none of them get past Akismet. The spammers meanwhile have devised new methods, sometimes they would post an older comment from the same post or part of the post itself, other time they would write a very meaningful comment and then keep on hammering the same comment by brute force just hoping it makes it.

Today I saw a spam comment who admitted that he was posting the comment through a software (as if we didn’t know that already) and ended up offering me a business proposition. Hilarious!

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