Blog questionnaire in Finnish smells...

<old-fart-cynicism> Hookay... From Pinseri I got this link to this allegedly first Finnish Blog Questionnaire. However, something is not right. First of all, the blog itself is concentrated on search engine optimization - a practice, which is filled with people from blog spammers to people who just tell you how to make your blog stand out. Second, the blog is filled with typos (mm. "blogikysely" on yhdyssana. Samaten "tutkimustyöväline"), which while forgivable, does not exactly give a professional image. Third, the questionnaire itself wants to know, among other things, how much money you get and what your political viewpoints are, and whether you've ever clicked on ads in a blog. Fourth, and the biggie, is that there is no statement at all on how that information would be used and by whom.

All this makes me wonder about the purpose of this questionnaire. It stinks as somebody trying to gather some more data for marketing and profiling purposes. But, because it's based on being voluntary, it's rather worthless, since the data you get is bound to be biased. So I'm not at all sure of what the point of such an exercise exactly is... For what it's worth, it's about as useful as any of the memes that are flying around the blogosphere.

Now, anyone can make any sorts of questionnaires they want. It's just that anyone who thinks that this might have any significance probably deserves a wedgie. </old-fart-cynicism>




Comments

Enemmän tuo minusta haiskahtaa Google-rankingin vedätykseltä.

--Antti, 21-Sep-2006


Et ole kyyninen, vain terveen varovainen. Vedätystä, vedätystä. ;)

--Mikko, 21-Sep-2006


Vastaava ruotsalaistutkimus oli palvellut hyvin ainakin Aftonbladetin itsensäpromoamistarpeita, bloggasin aiheesta juuri.

--Tuija, 21-Sep-2006


Sad that some people misunderstood this Blog Questionnaire. If it´s ok I try to correct things.

- Typos & Lamguage. Thatnks for the feedback I will correct the typos. My native language isn´t finnish and I have always had problems with yhdysanat. Should have been attending more finnish lessions in shcool :-)

- "search engine optimization - a practice, which is filled with people from blog spammers to people who just tell you how to make your blog stand out". Well excuse, but I hope you don´t mean that SEO is spamming, because then you are quite far away from and sailing. There are things called Black Hat SEO, but that is something totally different. You canb read about that on our blog too.

- Optimointi.com is not a SEO blog. It´s a finnish webmasters and bloggers online community for sharing ideas etc.

- "Third, the questionnaire itself wants to know, among other things, how much money you get and what your political viewpoints are, and whether you've ever clicked on ads in a blog". If you would have read the swedish Blog Questionnaire you would have found the same questions there. I did not invent the questions - the idea is to have comparison data (same questions).

- "purpose of this questionnaire. It stinks as somebody trying to gather some more data for marketing and profiling purposes." All the results will be published and free to use for what ever purpose you like.

Thanks for the feedback about my typos, the other comments just makes me :-( and ?

--nico, 21-Sep-2006


Why isn´t it possible to edit typos in comments :-) (Typos & Lamguage. Thatnks, You canb read...)

--nico, 21-Sep-2006


I have disabled editing for casual users...

Well, Black Hat SEOs claim to be SEOs. And there are many people in between these and the good guys, making the field rather grey in many places. Probably most of the money and traffic even goes to the Black Hat SEOs, too - otherwise they wouldn't keep doing it. Therefore it might not even too far-fetched to say that the SEO field is typically characterized by the Black Hats...

If optimointi.com is not a SEO site, you have a really weird way going about it: the title tag contains the word "hakukoneoptimointi", the front page contains a long description of the subject, the blog contains several news about SEO... I'm sorry, but I'm calling bullshit here. The site is obviously designed to score high on the words typically used for SEO - and in fact is the #2 on Google for "hakukoneoptimointi".

The Swedish blog questionnaire was crap too. A twice bigger pile of crap is still crap, if you get my meaning. You can't get comparable results because the people who come to your questionnaire are different from the people who came to the Swedish one. It depends on which blogs write about it, and who the readers of those blogs are. It depends even on the implementation of the questionnaire. It depends on the kind of reaction you get from people, and at which stage you receive it. The value of the questionnaire is pretty much zilch.

As to whether the results will be published - we'll see about that. But it is not actually stated anywhere on the web site. It just says "more information will be available." Are you also deleting all the individual answers so that people cannot be identified by IP addresses? Are you anonymizing the data properly? The questionnaire raises many questions, most of which go unanswered.

--JanneJalkanen, 21-Sep-2006


Lets take this as a constructive discussion and do not understand me wrong, please and peace :-)

The SEO thing has really nothing to do with this Blog Questionnaire, but I must say your thoughts about SEO vs Black Hat SEO etc. are totally wrong. Hmmm... Since when was the title of a web site stating what the site is all about? The lines in the <title> tag are quite limited for that. Shouldn´t the content speak for itself? As I said before optimointi.com is an online community for finnish webmasters with a forum, blog and a just opened Wiki. This is actually something of an finnish webmasterworld (the big and famous one) or at least we would like it to be like WW. A place where lonely bloggers and webmasters can share their ideas and cooperate. We talk about SEO, but that is not what the site is all about. If you read the about section of the site you would have understood the history of the site and the URL optimointi.com. The site had an focus on SEO before, but the focus is now much more than that.

If the site would try to get high traffic via SES (search engines) in a way you describe I think there is one thing missing and that´s the ads. I have one small ad block in the blog and one test (sms ad) on the forum. Income from these ads are about 30 euros a month and covers the host - that´s all they do. So please do not accuse the site for Black Hat SEO or money and traffic etc. Your site has more ads than the online community optimointi.com!

"The site is obviously designed to score high on the words typically used for SEO - and in fact is the #2 on Google for "hakukoneoptimointi". Yes and what would be so wrong about that? This SEO thing is clearly misunderstood by some people though they are veterans of the web in many ways. Well you cannot know everything and that is why I do not comment on things I do not know the facts about. It makes you look silly.

Why do people have websites or blogs? Is it only for themselves or do they want others to read or visit the site? If the blog is your secret then I say you should password protect it.

If you want others to read your thoughts then you need readers. Where do you get them? Most people (80 % and depends on situation and country) use search engines to find content they are interested in. Then it would be very od and in fact stupid not to optimize a blog or blog post for things related to that blog post. As an example I blog about Nokia phones (about-nokia.com). I usually put "Nokia N70 User Review" as the title if I review that model (and this is SEO). That´s like a heading for the article and this is normal good writing and web standards - not Black Hat SEO. I´m shure you know Google also has its guidelines and encourage people to do this. Making SEO is a very important thing when it comes to organizing the web content. It´s like meta keywords for knowledge and content management systems.

Using <title> and <description> tags, sturcturing text, making the site "spider friendly" etc. are tools for people to find your articles better and that is what SEO is all about. Black Hat SEO, hidden content, SE spamming, cloaking etc. is Black Hat SEO and that is something I´m totally against and in fact I am one of the few people in Finland that has been fighting Black Hat SEO as much as I do. I have done that before people in Finland even knew what Google is. So again, please do not tell me what Black Hat SEO is. You could read this if you are interested in this topic: http://www.optimointi.com/uutiset/index.php?itemid=235

"It just says "more information will be available." Are you also deleting all the individual answers so that people cannot be identified by IP addresses? Are you anonymizing the data properly? The questionnaire raises many questions, most of which go unanswered."

Good points and I will ad some more info to the questionnaire page.

And once again I think it is good that these things (SEO etc.) are discussed and there is clearly a need of it to prevent more misundersoodings (I´m shure I wrote that wrong).

--nicolas, 22-Sep-2006


Hmmm... "Since when was the title of a web site stating what the site is all about?" and "Using <title> and <description> tags, sturcturing text, making the site "spider friendly" etc. are tools for people to find your articles better and that is what SEO is all about."

So, according to you, it's okay if you include titles which have nothing to do with your content, as long as it drives traffic to your site?

I think you just articulated pretty well why I despise most SEO people. Your customers are robots and spiders, not people.

I'm not accusing you to be a Black Hat. I'm just saying that the SEO business is plagued by people who are dishonest. While I am sure you are part of the honest people, please excuse my scepticism, since I am constantly fighting people who think SEO is about posting as many links as possible onto my websites. As long as these people are around, SEO will have a bad name, no matter how much you try to explain. In addition, I've never met or listened to anyone involved in SEO who did not sound creepy.

I think it might be a good idea to switch names: talk about "improving content visibility" (sisällön näkyvyyden parantaminen) or something - it sounds positive. Search Engine Optimization sounds like you are playing a cat-n-mouse game against Google and other big guys (who, I believe, also hate many people who call themselves Search Engine Optimizers).

--JanneJalkanen, 23-Sep-2006


"Your customers are robots and spiders, not people."

Tämä kiteytti hyvin, mistä SEOssa on kyse. Tärkeätä ei ole sisältö vaan se, miten "sisältö" saadaan keinotekoisesti näyttämään tärkeämmältä kuin jonkun toisen sisältö. Tietysti kuulostan naivilta idealistilta, koska hakukonesijoitus ja sitä kautta saatava taloudellinen hyöty ratkaisevat kaiken internetissä, sehän on selvää.

--AnonymousCoward, 24-Sep-2006


"So, according to you, it's okay if you include titles which have nothing to do with your content, as long as it drives traffic to your site?"

No, that is not what I meant. That would be spamming (Black Hat SEO etc.) and against Googles guidelines. In this particular case I just wanted to say that a blog that has the word SEO in the title tag can of course write about all sort of other topics too. And to be precise I just changed the title to hakukoneoptimointi (SEO) just to see how this changes the listing on that search on Google. The title was Wemaster World Suomi before that. I haven´t yet come up with a good title for the site...

"I think it might be a good idea to switch names: talk about "improving content visibility" (sisällön näkyvyyden parantaminen) or something - it sounds positive." This is something I thought about myself too. Not a bad idea...

Anyway, thanks for the feedback and I think this discussion is important because SEO can be spamming (=Black Hat SEO) and unethical. Sometimes it can be difficult to see were the border goes between "improving content visibility" and Black Hat SEO. We started a topic around this here if someones interested (in finnish) http://www.optimointi.com/foorumi/viewtopic.php?p=2125.

--nico, 25-Sep-2006


Optimointi.com site owner "nico" has several commercial "ringtone" etc. sites with Google ad´s on them. Who owns a web marketing company named N. Fogelholm Oy. No business involved, LOL.

--AnonymousCoward, 28-Sep-2006


We were talking about the optimointi.com site not my other sites and N. Fogelholm Oy is not a web marketing company.

--AnonymousCoward, 03-Oct-2006


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