Hit or Miss

I’m sick and tired of search engine bots that spider through my site. Even though I have a robots.txt file which tells bots NOT to follow the “hit” and “miss” voting links beneath each post, they usually ignore it and do anyway. Meaning I have to go and reset all the hit or miss counters by hand. Then I have to manually add the IP# of the search bot to a list of naughty folks who aren’t allowed to click the hit and miss links.

Sometimes I don’t know why I bother with the hit and miss voting links, because very few people click on them. I’m having more success with my comments links.

On the otherhand, after responding to reader requests to implement a comment system for Web Queeries, readers don’t seem to be using it. For example, after the Supreme Court’s decision on Gays in the Boy Scouts, many readers wrote about their reactions on their own blogs, but didn’t write feedback on Web Queeries. Of course, not everyone who reads Web Queeries has a blog, so I need to figure out some way to encourage them to write comments…

4 responses so far (Respond)

Gravatar

Matt, I think the Hit or Miss links are still cool. But I also think it would work better if people decided “hit” or “miss” only while sending comments. The only drawback is it would take away the anonymity of who rates the posts. Just an idea.

As for the whole gay scouts issue… it was enough reading everyone else’s views that I didn’t agree with that kept me from posting my own views (at Web Queeries, the best platform in my opinion). I’ve read so many viewpoints, agreed, disagreed, etc. that it was exhausting trying to express my own.

No, I wasn’t happy with the ruling. I do agree that “clubs” can choose who they associate with. I disagree how they arrived there. Basically the Scouts have said that “Gays are immoral people we don’t want to have associated with our club.” And to think what this message is sending to thousands of young impressionable boys. It’s just sad.

jay | 30 Jun 2000
Gravatar

Thanks Jay. I appreciate all the comments that you, Bill, Jason, and others write.

Matt | 30 Jun 2000
Gravatar

I have the same problem with my karma over at metajohn. I use a blacklist of bad IP addresses much like you do, but as you said, that’s a pain to maintain and is an “after the fact” the solution. One thing I have considered is making a list of approved HTTP_USER_AGENTs. Anything that isnt IE, Netscape, Opera, Lynx, etc would get a different page. The problem with this is it may exclude people running some obscure browser. Perhaps serve up a page with no karma-changing links? Or something similar.

Just an idea that I had and never implemented… take it for what it’s worth.

John | 30 Jun 2000
Gravatar

It surprised me to hear you say that few people
click the Hit or Miss links — well, I like ’em and hope
they stay.

Michael | 1 Jul 2000