Thursday, September 23, 2010

Blogrolling has caved, decided to pack it in

Ok, so the last couple weeks everyone with a blogrolling blogroll (which includes about half of all the conservative blogs, and gun blogs out there) has been flagged as a malware distributing site by Google.

No, contrary to some overly paranoid folks (including a couple friends of mine. Sorry guys) this was not some left wing Google plot against right wing bloggers. It was purely a technical issue.

Google updated their malware detection algorithm to detect cross site scripting vulnerabilities. Because of the method that blogrolling uses to post and track their content, it looks like an XSS attack to Googles malware detection.

 This was utterly a false positive, and Google shouldn't have done it the way they did, but Google coded according to proper web standards. They aren't going to change it just to accommodate a few small web services out there, that use coding practices which are common, but insecure and not standards compliant.

Some might say Google did this on purpose to kill competitors, but I really don't think that's the case. It's a case of Google being a standards NAZI (as they have done before on other issues), and using their muscle to make others come into line.

Is it bullying? Not really. It's not playing nice with others either, but Google can always just say "Hey, we did it to standards. It's not our fault that you didn't".

Rather than update their code, blogrolling has decided to end their service. The coders who wrote the blogroll package no longer work for them, and it loses them money, so they've decided not to bother trying to update their code.

Accordingly, I'm removing the blogrolling blogroll from my sidebar. If you use blogrolling, I recommend you do the same.

I'll replace it with a google reader powered blogroll for now. See if I like it.