David Sifry Good, Service Still Not

Technorati Responds to Complaints

Thank you David Sifry for responding to my blog post about my trouble with Technorati and having your engineers take care of my primary concern regarding the Technorati rank being broken for this blog, chrisheuer.com, but you have a bigger problem on your hands then just a colo server move and you need to let people know what is really going on and what you are really doing to address the problems rather than patching on complaints one person at a time (I will be glad to talk to you on the phone BTW, but please note my prior post).

While this one issue was fixed, almost all other parts of the Technorati page about my blog are still way off. In addition to the problems that my fiancee told me about upon my return with not being able to get Technorati customer support to respond to her problems, numerous other people who don’t want to go public with this problem have privately told me about similar frustrations. I like you David, and know you are a stand up guy with good intentions, but I dont understand why you guys can’t get these problems fixed with the money you raised over the past few years. I would like to believe it is a server move causing it, but it really seems like a much deeper problem given how long this has been going on and the pattern of problems we have all experienced over the years.

David must have seen my complaint, and like Rick Klau does regularly for FeedBurner – responded by having his engineers fix at least one part of the broken bit (my technorati rank is now 40,181 (147 links from 68 blogs) and personally responded on my previous post. However, it says it was updated 2 hours ago (correct), but the most recent post listed is from 118 days ago. Also, the most recent outbound links are from a magnolia blog bling link? The popular tags are way off, I can’t even imagine how they came up with that mishmash of a ranking on the tag strength.

When I interviewed Rick Klau for They Get It, a Social Media Club podcast to be published this weekend, he had said to me something that has been nagging at me all week – “when a Blogger complains and a company does something right about it, the Blogger owes it to the company to point that out too.” So David, I am sorry for not getting this up sooner and I am thankful for your personal response, but more sorry to report it still does not work and I don’t suspect you can really fix it by the end of the server move (please prove me wrong). I did however photoblog the reponse right away on Flickr, so I don’t think I was unfair, just slow.
As I said, I like the folks behind the service (and know several socially), but after all this time and all this money, the service should be working normally and it is not. They can not afford to do customer support on issues like this for everyone that cares about this service or they will certainly go bankrupt or provide dismal service as they have done with my fiancee.  While I appreciate David taking the time to respond, I also know he should be spending his time on finding innovative solutions to the company’s problems.  I fear that they have little time left to get this together and save their reputation/credibility but few people are really complaining about it, which is odd – perhaps it is like those other silicon valley darlings that no one is willing to publicly criticize.  It seems that no one really ever wants to point out the pink elephant in the middle of the living room…

The recent design changes at Technorati are great improvements and I am certainly a supporter of their efforts with Microformats due to our work with the Social Media Release, but if they can not get their core indexing and data infrastructure stable, all the remodeling on a shaky foundation won’t hold up the walls when a strong wind blows. I am not switching to IceRocket yet (not even linking to them), but may need to change my habits finally if I can no longer trust Technorati is accuracte.  As Greg Narain said when we were beercasting with John from Swinecast, “no one is fooled when you throw lipstick on a pig” or a pink elephant for that matter… (btw – just thinking about that South Park episode at least brought a smile to my face)

  1. #1 by David Sifry - October 6th, 2006 at 13:25


    Our engineers are actively working on the bug that is causing your blog to be misindexed. Right now it looks like it has to do with your feedburner feed setup.

    More as we know more.


  2. #2 by Chris Heuer - October 6th, 2006 at 17:45

    Thanks David – so if I use feedburner, I dont get indexed? Funny that I referenced them in this post. There are many ways I may to be blame for this, so I won’t discount that as I have learned the hard way too many times, but my feed points to http://chrisheuercom.wpengine.com/feed/ and I use the feedburner plugin to redirect to the feed there, just like thousands of other folks….

  3. #3 by Kevin Marks - October 10th, 2006 at 19:49

    Hi Chris,
    You’ll be pleased to know we have fixed the bug that was causing this. It came down to a complicated series of interactions between our spiders and FeedBurner’s RSS feed generation. We’ve worked with FeedBurner to make changes on both sides to ensure this doesn’t happen again for you.
    http://technorati.com/blog/chrisheuer.com will now update with your posts (though as it is a partial-content feed you may not see your posts fully indexed).

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