Google Search Console reported a bunch of structured data errors in a new WordPress blog I began recently. This was a surprise, because I didn't know I was offering structured data. The WordPress theme I've been using, Twenty Twelve, includes CSS styles in blog posts to support the hAtom microformat, which helps search engines recognize the components of a blog post such as the title, author and tags. When Google crawled the blog, the Structured Data section of Search Console flagged 20 pages with the error ... read more

A weird thing happened to me today while I was wandering the streets of Minneapolis on Google Street View. While looking at the street where the New Year's Day apartment fire occurred, I found a photo of this interesting building sign: After some searching, I located the sign outside a charming looking dive called Palmer's Bar. I was moving the view around to get a better look when I somehow ended up inside the bar. Google had sent its reality-indexing cameras inside the building. First, I encountered a patron ... read more

Back in July, I noted how many RSS readers my sites had. I figured that the July 1 closure of Google Reader, by far the most popular feed reader used by my visitors, would show up in the stats at some point and I wanted to quantify the change. The subscriber numbers didn't drop for a long time, but it appears they finally are reflected in the analytics on FeedBurner, the service I use to deliver feeds. Here's the past and current RSS reader counts for my sites and the percentage drop: Drudge Retort: 15,449 ... read more

One of my favorite writers who covers the societal implications of technology, Seth Finkelstein, is shutting down his blog after 11 years. The closure of Google Reader this morning, which will cost bloggers a huge chunk of readers who follow them over RSS, was the final straw: It's been clear for a long time I've considered blogging to have been a failure, for me. I'll skip reciting again my delusion. In sum, while I treasure the occasional indication that someone has enjoyed something I've written, the practical ... read more

I love the smell of democratic governance in the morning. I'm back in Washington, D.C., to meet with members of Congress and their aides as part of the Interactive Advertising Bureau's Long Tail Fly-In. Around 50 web publishers have paid our own way to come to D.C. to explain how Google AdSense and other contextual ad networks power small businesses. This is my third year attending the event. We spend one day talking shop about web publishing and learning about new web privacy legislation, then spend the next ... read more

Several web sites I've visited today, including Time Magazine and Planet 107.3, are triggering a malware warning in Google Chrome: The website at www.planet93.com contains elements from the site bin.clearspring.com, which appears to host malware -- software that can hurt your computer or otherwise operate without your consent. Just visiting a site that contains malware can infect your computer. For detailed information about the problems with these elements, visit the Google Safe Browsing diagnostic page for ... read more

I'm in Woodbridge, Va., this morning about to head out to the Long Tail Alliance Fly-In, a gathering of small web publishers organized by the Interactive Advertising Bureau and Google. As a publisher who uses context-based advertising on the Drudge Retort and other sites, I was invited to come to DC and meet with members of Congress to talk about why this form of advertising is important to online media. The Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) has concerns that Congress is working on regulations that would kick ... read more