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Let’s talk about those “Thanks to our sponsors” entries

Written by Tyme White on July 28, 2008

I have a question and I want you to be honest. Many sites integrate a “thank you” to their sponsors, listing the sponsors and perhaps some blurb about the company, as an entry on their site. These posts most likely will remain in the archive and usually appears in the RSS feed.

My question: Do you read those entries?

Personally, I don’t read them. I asked about 15 people I see online if they read them – they don’t. I don’t read them because they have zero value to me. I’d more likely click on an ad than pay attention to the “thank you” articles. Why? Because they usually aren’t tailored to be of any benefit to the reader. They are tailored more to fulfill an obligation to the advertiser.

As a blog owner, if you do that…why? Wouldn’t it be a win/win situation if the reader paid attention to content and clicked on it? Wouldn’t that make the blog/site more appealing to seek advertising in the future? Wouldn’t that give the site/blog an edge over others?

So tell me, do you read the thank you to our sponsor entries, particularly if they appear in your feed reader?

Round 7: August 6, 2008

Written by Scrivs on July 23, 2008

Yes it’s that time again already! With the new 9rules format we hold a new round every three months and the next round for aspiring bloggers is August 6 so mark you calendars. As usual we will have a page and link up for you to submit your site at midnight and will keep it up for 24 hrs. If you aren’t sure if your blog will make it or not, don’t worry as you can submit during every round and we will keep on looking at your site.

For site improvements, be sure to checkout the great tip articles Tyme has been writing even if you aren’t interested in joining 9rules. If you have any questions don’t hesitate to ask in the comments and we look forward to meeting some new faces.

Securing your WordPress site

Written by Tyme White on July 9, 2008

Reading the 9rules member feeds, I came across an article by Brajeshwar that I think everyone can benefit from. He describes how he found foreign code in the header file.

I woke up today morning to find that my site feed wasn’t validating and the XMLRPC was not responding when I tried to update MarsEdit. Upon doing a quick “View Source” I found a foreign code lodged on top of my site’s header. I knew instantly that it shouldn’t be there and that something is wrong.

Brajeshwar uses his own theme so he knew that code didn’t belong there. For the average WordPress user viewing the source code would be like trying to understand a language he or she does not speak. An example: for those that drive how many people can fix the car they drive if it breaks? Mechanics can but most people have to take the car in to be repaired. Same with a blog; many people use blogging tools but if something goes wrong are unable to diagnose and repair/resolve the issue.

Brajeshwar gives an easy to follow guide on the steps he used to secure his site, even sharing the code for an .htaccess file that prevents comment spam by denying access to no-referrer requests. Take a moment and read the article. You might learn something.

This article isn’t about WordPress being unsafe because honestly, all scripts will have vulnerabilities from time to time. Pay more attention to how quickly the company patches the security issues and informs their user base. When a patch is released, update your scripts as soon as possible.

This article is about paying more attention to your site than just posting entries. This is a situation the average user wouldn’t notice without looking for it. Just like a lawn has to be cared for in order to maintain it, your blog needs attention if your content is to remain safe, no matter what content management system you are using.

Happy 4th of July

Written by Scrivs on July 4, 2008

The 9rules Team would just like to wish everyone out there a happy 4th of July. Well I guess this only applies to the US people, but we believe everyone around the world should skip work on Friday and enjoy some BBQ and fireworks, we won’t tell.