I recently had an eye opening experience with Sphinn. At first I was quite pissed, but now I’ve had some time to reflect, and I’m actually glad this happened so that I don’t waste any more time using Sphinn, which is now officially on my shit list.
So last week I wrote a post outlining my experiment with Fiverr. Now granted, the post wasn’t pulitzer prize material by any means, but still, I think the concept was interesting, and would be worth a quick look over by nearly anyone interested in SEO. So as part of my ongoing effort to become more social, I decided to head over to Sphinn and submit the story. I’ve actually had an account with Sphinn for quite a long time – no idea why I originally created it, but for whatever reason I had an account there. Anyway, I logged in and began to submit my article. I followed all of their steps, and even went so far as to write a nice custom description of the article. Normally, I probably would have just copied a few sentences out of the first paragraph.
Then I got a message stating that since I’ve never submitted an article to Sphinn before, it would have to be approved by a moderator. One day went by. I checked in and saw that my article was still pending approval. Two days went by – I checked in again and my post was still pending. 3 days went by – I tried to log in and, funny, my login information didn’t work. Odd considering I had been logging in daily with no problems. So I put in a lost password request, and a new password was sent to me. I logged in to see that my post was no longer pending approval, rather there was simply a blank white space where it had been. At first I thought it had been published, however a quick search showed that it had not. Then I thought maybe there was some kind of glitch, so I decided to go ahead and try to submit it again – sure enough, there was an error stating that the URL had already tried to be submitted before.
So, my article was not approved by the “editor”, and not only did I not recieve any notice about my article being rejected, they actually locked my password. Now that is just plain fucked up. At first I was pretty mad about it, but then I began to think about it more, and think about the type of content commonly posted on Sphinn, and it made me realize that most of the stuff published on Sphinn is pure watered down crap anyway.
I subscribe to the Search Engine Land Daily Search Recap. First off, for those who don’t know, Sphinn is a branch of Search Engine Land, so the hot Sphinn topics are always included. In general, I have always liked the Search Engine Land Daily Search Recap for no other reason than I can stay up to date on actual search engine news without having to go visit any sites. I actually read an average of about 1 article from the entire recap every 2 days. I mostly just skim the titles and intros included in the newsletter.Most of the information is either News, which is generally not that interesting beyond the headline, or SEO articles, which are almost all so watered down and rehashed that there is no point in even reading them.
So the funny thing about Sphinn, is they obviously are trying to maintain tight editorial control so that their bookmarking site is almost if not more boring then their main site – which, by the way, is also extremely lame.
So to help me illustrate my point, let’s take a look at some of the “Recent Hot Items from Sphinn” from Monday’s email:
5 Things I Hate About Google, Revisited 5 Years Later – Wow. I was actually going to try to read this article so that I could find some things to complain about, but it was so boring, I didn’t even know where to start. Maybe he should have thought twice about revisiting this article in the first place. Honestly, I really don’t know who out there ever cared about search results numbers that don’t make sense – 5 years ago or now. Sorry to all the Danny Sullivan fans out there, but I find this completely useless. Completely worthless article.
Here’s another Gem:
How to Write Product Descriptions that Sell, Boost SEO Efforts – Wow again. What a totally stupid article. If you actually take 5 minutes out of your life to read this article, you will probably find, like I did, that the author’s main point is that you should write unique descriptions of your product. Well no shit, sherlock. Honestly, if you are an e-commerce site owner, and had an ephipany after reading this article, I seriously would suggest changing your profession.
I was going to do more, but this is pretty bad as it is and I don’t want to waste any more time on it.
My main point is that I have realized that Sphinn is operated by people who are only interested in what the “fossils” of SEO have to say, and basically seem content to keep rehashing the same shit over and over again. No I don’t need any more articles on how to write title tags, I understand that Facebook can play a role in my SEO campaign, and I don’t need to read any more stupid SEO checklists that are written for an audience with literally no understanding of SEO at all.
The sad thing is there are some really talented writers out there that don’t get any kind of buzz from these lamestream SEO people. I think as a result I am going to start my own bookmarking/voting site for SEO and Internet marketers. I found a really cool WordPress theme with this functionality built in, and hope to get a chance to start working on it in the next week or so. I would really love to have a place where actual good articles/new stories are collected and posted so that we can all have an easy way to stay updated.