Thursday, May 16, 2013

Referer madness: blog owners beware!

My blog stats went through the roof the other day. Cool, thinks I. I noticed that most of the new traffic was coming from one site, whose name made it look like one of those blog-digest sites. You probably know the kind I mean: they pick up stories they like and give them a link; readers simply follow that site and trust them as a source of good articles. When a blog post get picked up by one of them, the blogger gets a spike in their stats.

I made the mistake of clicking on the link on my stats page to see who it was that so kindly was sending me all the extra traffic. Doh! I played right into their hands. I was the victim of referer spam. Don't ask me how it works. No one is actually reading the blog as a result, but apparently it makes it look as if the money-earning referring blog is generating lots of referals, for which they get paid. My head is spinning trying to figure out how they could possibly work this. But the absolute sure way of making it worse is to click on the link ... I got an eye-full of some sad-looking naked ladies for my trouble ... and the next day my stats spike had soared even higher ... I guess I'll just have to wait the storm out ... but in the meantime, bloggers beware: just ignore those referring sites unless you already know who they are!


  1. Is your post title a play on Reefer Madness, the infamous educational film about cannabis (which I've never seen)?


  2. Well spotted! And I've never seen it either ... though I've seen a few clips.