State of the Blogosphere Ping, Part I - The RSS Blog
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Copyright 2003-5 Randy Charles Morin
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Wed, 03 May 2006 22:16:30 GMT
State of the Blogosphere Ping, Part I

Last week, I made the claim that the Blogosphere Ping is Broken. Bob Wyman, one of the curators of the Blogosphere Ping and Feedmesh responded that my claim was a bit light on data. I responded in his post with facts that showed the PubSub SiteStats was not keeping up with the blogophere. His response follows.

Randy, we're having some "issues" with our LinkRank and LinkCount applications. At this point is that the statistics we're publishing don't accurately reflect the items we're picking up, processing and "indexing" from the feeds we read. Yes, this is embarrassing... Please note that the various statistics applications we host are layered on top of the basic publish/subscribe content-routing system. Thus, an issue with the statistics does not necessarily indicate an issue with the underlying system. (It might, but in this case it doesn't.) So, it would be reasonable to say that our stats are temporarily screwed up, however, that doesn't make it reasonable to suggest that the core matching system is broken. In fact, in recent weeks, the core system has been running massively better than it has in a very long time.

We then discussed issues offline and came to the conclusion that if I subscribed to a feed using the PubSub subscription list, then I'd be able to see better that the PubSub matching engine was working and that pings, as I claimed, were not being dropped en masse. He suggested that I setup a subscription to "", which should show me whenever new blog entries from my blog are indexed by PubSub. I immediately showed him that I already had a subscription to "kbcafe" which was returning a small subset of the results and was even able to pinpoint blogs which were clearly pinging PubSub regularly, using the term kbcafe, but not appearing in my PubSub results. Bob said he would look into it.

Now we stand a few days later and I've written eight new blog entries, pinged PubSub a handful of times and still nothing appears in my PubSub results. I've emailed Bob twice since indicating my negative results confirming, in my view, that the blogosphere ping was truly broken. He hasn't responded.

Now, proof by example is not really a proof at all, but when you setup a experiment to confirm your analysis and the results confirm your analysis, then the likelyhood that you are correct is growing in strength. Does anybody else have a reason why PubSub SiteStats and PubSub subscriptions, which are both based on the blogosophere ping, are both not working? Otherwise, the ship has docked and the blogosphere ping is official broken.

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Bob, 3 points.

  1. It's not like I invented this experiment, rather it was you that suggested this experiment in our email exchange. Telling me now that it's flawed is B.S.
  2. It sounds like no matter what evidence I present, it's not the blogosphere ping, but rather some other bug in PubSub or the experiment.
  3. The feed you present is missing the most recent entry on The RSS Blog. In other words, you dropped the ping.

It's broken.


Oops, sorry I was wrong on point 3. It's actually missing the two most recent entries on The RSS Blog, not just one.


Now, it's missing the last three entries, the last of which I posted an hour ago and pinged PubSub. That's 3 dropped pings.


Four dropped pings.


Six dropped pings in-a-row. I think that's enough evidence to official declare the blogosphere ping broken. It's also enough to start wondering about Bob Wyman. He continues to insist it's not broken against every measure of proof showing otherwise. That leaves either naive or lying.


PubSub has dropped the last 4 pings in-a-row again. That's 9 of the last 10 pings dropped.


ringtones free
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