On Sunday, May 22nd we rolled out the biggest updates to our blog verification system since we started this project. Due to massive demand, we simply could not continue our manual verification process, as it involved some human being checking on each of the blogs you connected – which wouldn’t be so bad, were it not for the fact that verifying and denying blog upgrades was taking us away from developing new features and otherwise improving the site. Also, because we are only human, it led to inconsistencies and percieved unfairness.
That has now changed. We have moved to an automatic verification process where you need to input a specific code to verify ownership of the feed in question. Now, we realize that this is open to abuse, so:
2. We will be much harsher in dealing with offenders of the blog policy. When it was a manual process we were less stringent; now there’s less leeway.
3. We have limited the number of “blogs” a person can have to five. This limit will not make a difference to your score or ranking if you have five (or more) blogs connected already, as we’ve only ever counted the five most active blogs. As mentioned above, this change is to streamline the blog approval process. In exceptional cases where business needs of that individual dictate it, we will manually approve more blogs, but needs must be exceptional. Blogs which have already been approved remain grandfathered into this.
4. Please continue to report blogs that you consider are an abuse of the system we have put in place.
There will also be a change to how Earnings from blogs are calculated. When it was a manual process we gave a very slight precedence for blog posts as contributors to Earnings. Unfortunately, even under the manual process some have abused that courtesy, and with the move to automated systems we want to address this issue now.
From tonight: Earnings for blog posts will be capped at the same level as all the other network connections. In the process, we will also increase some earnings for some of the networks, to bring everything in line. Since Earnings calculations are used for dividend calculations, please realize that there may be a slight difference starting tomorrow.
Do note that in every network, including blogs, auto-posting absurd amounts of content can be seen as spam and we do not reward that in terms of earnings or dividends.
We have updated our FAQs on what constitutes a blog and our changes toward the automated blog policy.
If you have a blog waiting in our approval queue, we strongly suggest heading over to your Connections page and using the automated system and read what is and what is not a considered a blog and request a blog upgrade!