July 2007 Posts

Someone Got a Hold of My Credit Card Number…

So, I logged onto the Bank of America site to check something with my statement and I get a notice saying that my account isn’t available online and that I had to verify some recent transactions at a website or over the phone. Well, I tried to do the website, but my mother’s maiden name wasn’t matching up, so I called. Sure enough, someone had been using my credit card number.

They spent $577 at the Post Office, like $300 at Chip and Pepper (I’d never heard of them before this), like $250 at MyWire.com (again, never heard of them) and a couple other assorted transactions. Not that big a deal. I just have to get a new account number. But, $577 at the Post Office? That’s where you go when you steal someone’s credit card number? lol. Unless they were shipping away what they bought with my number already or something.

Thanks For The Links

45n5 has a post talking about how to show appreciation when a blogger links to you and Darren has a follow up with some suggestions.

Personally, whenever I see a link, I try to thank the person who posted the entry. Usually with a comment. If I have anything additional to say/contribute, I’ll do that, as well. Maybe I’ll start e-mailing people, as well. I’m not linked to all THAT much, so it’s not that big a deal, but it is something I’d like to continue to do, even if I start to be linked to more and more. I appreciate the links, so I express that appreciation. Plus, it gives you an opportunity to create a relationship with the person, as well.

How do I find links? Generally, through two main ways. Technorati watchlist and my traffic logs. I don’t sit there studying my traffic logs of searching for mentions of my sites, so I miss some, I am sure. But, when I see one, I do say thanks.

Being Threatened by SFX Baseball (Mariano Rivera’s Agent)

I just wanted to mention that we are being threatened by SFX Baseball (Mariano Rivera’s agent). I’ve written about it in detail at MarianoRivera.com. It’s a shame.

Yep. Rejected by Google News Again.

Oh well. I thought I’d share the reasons I was rejected this time. They only accept articles from courses that “could be considered organizations”. This means that they generally have multiple writers and editors and available info on their organization (and accessible contact info). They said that my site didn’t have “evidence of an organization.” Is the iFroggy Network not an organization? Granted, I’m the only editor, but we do have 4 other writers, as well, at the moment. It is a one man show, though, so I guess I’m just lame like that.

They also mentioned that they only include articles that “report on recent events” and I have non recent event articles right alongside other kinds of articles. They do have me there.

Seychelles

I was never really much into geography. I had never actually heard of Seychelles until 5 minutes ago when I was looking at the Alexa page for Bad Boy Blog. If you scroll down, its ays the site is the 363rd most popular site for the country. Hilarious. I’m sure that means that it was visited by 1 person from there or something like that, but it’s still kinda funny.

More on Google News

As a follow up to my post the other day, I was in Bloglines just now, reading the latest Diddy headlines and… well… I came across a blog entry from a blog at a major hip hop site. Now, they’re main site is actually a good source of news and they have some standards of journalism and they report news and features accordingly. But, their blogs… well… I don’t think I’ve seen an entry that had anything nice to say about Diddy, ever. Not that that’s a huge deal, but they just bash him and bash him and bash him. But, the real problem is when they repeat nonsense rumors or other garbage. It’s… er… tripe? Yeah, tripe. I’ve seen it from their blogs before and I continue to see it. And this fits in Google News? But, my site, where we do some actual journalism, where we don’t sensationalize, where we label rumors as rumors, doesn’t.

And, I know we’re a fan site and it is true that I’m a fan and we write from a fan’s perspective. But, at the same time, when I don’t like something, I say it. Not everything we say is positive. Most, perhaps, but not all. I actually did resubmit the site last night and… well… I expect to be rejected. But, I’ll let you know.

The Best Article I’ve Ever Written

I’m really proud of this article. I’d say, in all, I spent around 50-60 hours on it. Planning it, contacting individuals and their handlers, conducting interviews, writing it, doing research, scanning documents, formatting it and just everything that goes into it. I have a new respect for people who routinely write articles of this size. It’s over 9,000 words plus photos and I gotta say, I love it now that it’s done. For Diddy and Bad Boy fans, it’s such an amazing, such a cool article and almost every part of it was fun, except for transcribing the interviews, proofreading, scanning and formatting. I actually stayed up until 1:30 AM last night just making sure it was on point (and then I got up at 7:30). I spent like 12 hours on it yesterday, not even close to kidding.

I’m going to be writing some posts here in the future about securing and conducting interviews, etc. So, if that’s something that you are interested in, stay tuned.

New Diddy Video: “Through the Pain (She Told Me): Dear Kim” Featuring Mario Winans

You know me, huge Diddy fan. I actually interviewed one of the Bad Boy acts, B5, this afternoon, which was a lot of fun. I’m a fan of Mario Winans, as well.

Anyway, he premiered a new video yesterday on BET’s 106 & Park and well, I like it a lot. I’m a fan, so I guess that’s expected, but even so, I like the video a lot. It’s below.

One cool thing about it is that it’s directed at Kim Porter, Diddy’s girlfriend that he recently split with and I got tipped off to that pretty early and was probably the first to report it. Not that it’s a huge deal. But, for fans, any details and exclusive information are always cool and I enjoy breaking stuff.

Come On, Google News!

I’ve written about my attempts to get into Google News before. I saw something this morning that really kills me.

Bad Boy Blog is an awesome site. I don’t mean to sound full of myself, but it’s a cool site and I like it a lot. I’m proud of it. We do some great things. As I mentioned last week, we break stories, we do interviews, we get the truth out. I have developed a ton of Bad Boy related contacts. Artists, producers, managers, label people, PR people and so on. This allows me to do all of the stuff that a good journalist does with my own twist on it. I have a good system in place that allows me to get all of the news and when it comes to Bad Boy Entertainment related news and information, there is no better source on the internet today. We are the best.

Last October, Google News rejected Bad Boy Blog. Fine, alright. They’ve rejected the rest of my stuff, so I was expecting it.

In Bloglines, I have it set up to alert me when a Bad Boy related keyword shows up on Google News, to ensure that I am finding all of the stories that I can. Well, this morning, I saw a news entry from another Bad Boy fan blog. Now, I’ve seen this site before and I know that we run circles around it. It’s not personal, but they don’t cover anywhere close to as much as we do and they don’t cover what they cover as well as we do. They don’t have the unique features we have. They’re even breaking Yahoo! policy by having both Yahoo! Publisher Network ads and Google AdSense ads on the same page. The ads are styled similarly, so they might even be breaking AdSense policy, as well.

To make matters worse, the homepage design that they use is a clear and obvious rip of the design/previous design of a major, major website (top 50 Alexa). So, my question is, why is this guy in and I am not? To recap:

  • He terms his site a “fan blog”, as do I.
  • His blog is run by 1 person, so is mine (though that may change).
  • We cover more stories.
  • We cover those stories in more detail, contacting sources when need be.
  • We have more unique features and interviews.
  • We have a better design. Our main site design was not lifted from one of the most visited websites in the world.
  • We operate within the policies of all of our partners and ad networks to the best of our knowledge.

So, why do I get rejected… and this guy doesn’t? I know they receive a ton of submissions, so it’s a tough job. I respect that and I’m not meaning to imply anything about Google. Nor am I trying to get anyone kicked out of Google News. But, I’ve been trying to get into it for a while and I’m frustrated that I can’t, despite being far superior to this site and others in the directory already. Maybe it’s time I submitted again. I think I will. But, if anyone has a contact at Google News, please let me know, as well.

I’ll post back when I get rejected again. (But, hopefully not. :))

The Angry Video Game Nerd T-Shirt Suggestions

My brother and me are big fans of the Angry Video Game Nerd. When I’m a fan of something, I spend money on their merchandise, whether it be Homestar Runner, Ze Frank or something else. The Angry Video Game Nerd has a t-shirt (warning: vulgar) for sale through one of his partners. Suffice to say, it’s not something I can wear. I realize he curses – a lot. But, I would like to buy a shirt that has something funny he said that wasn’t vulgar. So, I sent ScrewAttack an e-mail a while back with some suggestions (see below). Unfortunately, I never heard back. Still, I hope they add some new t-shirts eventually. Ones that I can buy.

Hello,

Me and my brother are big fans of the Angry Video Game Nerd and we’d love to support him by buying a couple of shirts, at the very least… however, while his choice of language is often times funny during the show… the front of the shirt is a little strong for us to wear. So, I wanted to suggest a shirt that could be worn anywhere. Perhaps instead of the F rating, there could be some sort of quoted text or spoken line from the show, a sort of inside joke. For example, maybe:

“You have completed a great game.”
“Bimmy and Jimmy?!”
“Bimmy isn’t even a real name!”
“Remember when Marty goes around throwing bowling balls at people?”
“What were they thinking?”
“Spiders! Punch ‘em!”
“Is Freddy coming? He sure is!”
“Conglaturation!”

Or, failing that, how about a shirt with just the Angry Video Game Nerd logo on the front and nothing on the back? I guarantee that we’d buy at least 2 pairs and I definitely would think there are people in a similar boat to us… who’d like to buy an AVGN shirt, but who couldn’t really wear the one that’s up for sale now.

Thanks,

Patrick

(Note: I didn’t mean to say “2 pairs”, just “a pair”. :))