With apologies to Hillaire Belloc, I thought the title of this post to be particularly appropriate. Here’s why.
When it comes to computer gadgets, I’m a danger to myself and others. And this is kinda frustrating because it’s so much fun to push buttons on web sites and download software, files, and attachments. Before the Web really became interesting, I used to routinely disable my computer by deleting things out of the control panel that I ‘knew’ I never used. When the Web finally got into full swing, the number of possibilities became practically endless. That brings me to the subject for today.
This blog is run on or by WordPress. This means that there are an untold number of apps, plugins, and widgets from which to choose. The other day, at the suggestion of someone who judgment I trust, suggested that WordPress users install Twitter Tools. By then, I’d learned enough about WordPress to be able to install this stuff myself.
So, I downloaded the program, put it into the appropriate file on my web page, and went merrily on my way. Unfortunately, there was another program in there that automatically shortened URLs. It seemed like a good idea at the time, so I activated it as well.
After a couple of days, a friend of mine noticed that a sort of continuous loop had been formed on the blog. Because I had the blog connected to various social networks, when I posted something one place it automatically updated posts elsewhere. Unfortunately, this created a kind of perpetual motion. Altogether, about 40 unwanted messages were created.
Now this by itself was a nuisance, but not a huge problem. But, when I sent out the following -”Keyword stuffers are internet turkeys,” it became a self-fulfilling prophecy. It wasn’t long before it looked I was the one doing the stuffing. Fortunately, a friend of mine spotted the problem, told me what to do, and then un-indexed them all from Google.
So, the moral of the story is to not mess with the technology unless you know what you’re doing. There’s nothing more humiliating than living up to the otherwise low expectations of others.