So long, Elzeviro

Welcome! I'm beginning this new blog by duplicating the salute to my old home. Apologies if it might seem confusing. 

I'm writing with much regret what will be the final post on this blog. Some background might be in order to understand why I'm forced to take this decision, the ultra-condensed version being that my Internet reputation has gone down the drain thanks to a scary mixture of Google and security issues.

A couple of days ago, my wife asked me why Google was showing weird results when looking for my name. I went to check for myself and sure enough what used to be the first result for yours truly, that is my blog, was nowhere to be found. I started to frantically check what was going on, and no combination I could come up with was showing this site in the first five or six pages. I was gone for good, completely disappeared, deep into nowhere's land.  A significant amount of swearing went by before I could understand what happened: some unknown fella, may he rest in peace after a long and painful death, managed to sneak into my WordPress install a nasty redirect page, and presto!, yours truly was now the favourite amplifier for a number of porn sites. What used to be a personal blog was now a link farm for nude girls and webcams: Google noticed it and positioned me right into the Hall of Forgotten Pages.

See, I never took this blogging thingie that seriously: it was mostly a way to cool off, dump my random thoughts and from time to time massage my ego by reading the casual comments and looking at an amazing PageRank of 7. I never had the ambition of running for A-lists, checking my Technorati ranking or – God forbid – running ads on my porch. As such, and being a busy guy, I have to admit I must have been lazy in looking after my install, and definitely naive in thinking about the consequences. As an IT professional, being recognized on the Net matters quite a bit, and I realized how much should I care about my Internet reputation, at least ensuring that I can be found should someone look for me.

A few years ago I was deep into security, and when someone came to me with the idea that a small website is no target for the bad guys as there is nothing to see, my response was always along the lines of defending a reputation and making sure that no abuse was to be performed, as every Internet machine can at least be a relay for something bad. I guess it's time for me to taste my own medicine, yet I can assure you it hurts badly when your key asset, that is your reputation, is zeroed out and there is nothing you can do about it: tracking the moron who did all this is clearly out of the question (I still have a life, though I will duly note any pointers to good hit men), and the only way of getting Google to review their indexes would be by asking Sergey and Larry next time they'll give me a ride on their B767 (not likely to happen anytime soon: I just can't stand their onboard canapes).

With my Internet profile pushing up the daisies, I had little choice but start from scratch and try to climb the ladder again: I'm now moving my blog to a new location, a new provider and a new name, taking this huge pile of stinky matter as an opportunity to up the ante and start afresh, with more content and more commitment. You will be able to find me both at http://boldlyopen.com (primary address) and (in a few weeks, when the storm is over) http://gianugo.rabellino.it. Your help would be much appreciated in adjusting your links: I will try to give back by posting more regularly and dumping my brain more often.  This blog will be around for a few more days, while I'm busy moving stuff to the new location, then it will be officially declared a stiff and will be gone for good.

Thanks for the ride, Elzeviro. It has been fun and it's really sad to see you go.

Comments

comments

10 thoughts on “So long, Elzeviro”

  1. ISTR visiting your blog pretty recently (I follow it on Planet Apache). Would I, as a visitor, have been aware of this nasty, or was it solely for google’s benefit?

    If it was doing anything to browsers, then google must’ve noticed and dropped you incredibly quickly!

  2. Niq, no, as a visitor you wouldn’t have been affected: to that extent, a defacement would have been much easier to solve. With Google completely dropping me from their indexes, problem is, you had to know my address to find me, which made looking for me on the Net something similar to truffle hunting. My old blog is now somewhere in the fifth-sixth page of Google results while looking for something very specific such as “gianugo rabellino blog”, so go figure…

  3. So some bored twit managed to drop your google rank?

    The rank of your ego-massaging vanity blog?

    The rank which you did not pay for?

    The rank which a 3rd company under no obligation to you made up out of thin air and an undisclosed algorithm?

    Get over it.

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