A Bunghole of Enormous Magnitude

by LF (6/21/99)

I've bitched before about folks who poach content from the Web pages of others to bulk-up their own shitty locations. Well, I just got jabbed up the ass with an even pointier variation of the same schtick.

This rotter with nothing much useful to say on his lame PGP (Pretty Good Privacy)-specific site stopped by my page and was apparently impressed by the number of hits registered on my visitor counter. So he swiped my search keywords -- every single one of 'em -- and pasted them at the beginning of the "content=" section of his own index.htm.

So now, for example, anyone hunting for information on NATO-spec L110 5.56mm tracer ammunition will as likely as not end up at his page instead of mine. It would all depend on when their favorite search engine last updated its database. And worse, rather than displaying mine as next in the series, some of the most popular tools will instead offer a link to a listing of "more sites like this one". Well, if the curious cannot uncover any of the desired content after minutes of fruitless clicking around, why would they bother to burrow further down the same chute?

Needless to say, this has and will continue to cost me many hundreds of visitors for months to come, which in the final tally might shake out to two or four contacts from people actually worth corresponding with. That's one hell of a lot given my stringent standards for even casual friendships. Raw hits don't mean squat when compared to the possibility of hearing from a small clutch of genuinely interesting fellow malcontents.

What needles me the most about this whole affair is that the skeez who perpetrated the bone maneuver is most likely a dude I traded several e-mails with. And they were pleasant ones, in which I provided plenty of requested information and acted totally polite-like. I tracked down the suspect via the simple expedient of checking his site's host machine address against the entries in my saved_mail subdirectory.

Guess what? The leprous loaf is most likely a student at UNC Chapel Hill, a breeding ground for klepto-socialist trash. No surprises there. I hope y'all can appreciate the rank irony of a sleazeball with a supposedly pro-data-privacy agenda gaining cheap hits by thieving important data from another private individual who never did him wrong.

And y'know, I was gonna cut the ferret some slack and dismiss it as an unfortunate oversight until I caught the butt-end of the pilfered section, which contained the line: "...Thanks to LF I hope he's not mad I stole his idea>". So he actually recognized the purpose of that chunk of HTML code, yet did not care about the pain a rogue replicate might inflict upon his ol' buddy.

So he smashed'n'grabbed the identity of my page, and thereby dicked with an unknown number of innocents who're simply trying to find answers to specific questions. The bulk of the people who track me down via Yahoo! or InfoSeek do so primarily through my technical gun articles and a handful of relatively obscure words and phrases -- all of which were 100% legit content clues. And now most of their worth has been pissed away by this lump of offal.

Right now, he has 48 hours to change his evil ways. If he fails to comply, I'll post up his e-mail and web address, and will rely on the bile drawn from your deep-seated bitter hatreds to beat him into shape.

Failing that, it'd be easy enough to find out where the douche lives and what he drives. And Chapel Hill is only thirty minutes away. Since it's deer season, spraying the front bumper of his car with Buck Lure might could gain him 170 pounds of horned venison through his windshield. That'd be enough payback, even for me.

Tuesday Update

After I confronted the weasel, I got a confession:

> . . . I did use some of the meta information from
> your site as an experiment about two months ago.

To which I replied:

Apparently where you're from, "some" means "all, in exactly the same order". I pulled down a copy, so don't bother to lie to me. YOU EVEN *ADDED* MY GODDAMNED NAME, so anyone searching for "l+f" would find your diaper-load instead!

What the fuck did you THINK was gonna happen? You were draining MY hits, not creating new ones of your own. Cocksucker!

> It was actually an idea to see just what would stimulate
> rankings with the search engine bots. Nothing I have tried
> thus far has yielded any results -- apparently until now.

It took me two years of effort to work up to a decent number of hits per day. Some time last month, it dropped down to about 50. You got the rest. And it'll take many more MONTHS for all of the bots to clean out your shit.

Go die.

Up the spout