Sunday, September 20, 2015

Can the HubPages' Editbot Fool Google and the Public?

"The more humanity advances, the more it is degraded." ~ Gustave Flaubert (1821 - 1880).

The above quote is over a century old and you'll soon understand why I began with it.

A few days ago, HubPages' product manager, Marina Lazarevic, announced the arrival of Editbot.

The gist:

Editbot will automatically fix so-called "common" spelling and grammar errors on both Hubs [articles] and their comments.
Yeah, Edibot will be changing original commentary!
In fact, Marina Lazarevic even emphasized this point in her post stating:
"Lastly, it's worth noting that the majority of Editbot fixes are in Hub comments."
Now Vic Dillinger's signature "wimmen" will become "women" and other changes will sterilize otherwise colorful content.

And any commentary I deleted on my 351 articles on Squidoo (the site I joined), was deleted for good reason: a moron (or similar type) wrote it.

But now, the content that Paul Edmondson imported (with and without the permission of content owners) will be edited by a machine.

Paul Edmondson discusses Editbot Advantages (Satirical Cartoon) by RoseWrites
Satirical cartoon of Paul Edmondson explaining how Editbot benefits him. Created September 21st, 2015 by RoseWrites / All rights reserved (Click to enlarge)

What Editbot accomplishes for HubPages:

  • Search engines, Google, and the public will be tricked into determining that content (that Paul Edmondson took without owners' permission) has been edited. (It's been newly updated, somehow).
  • Search engines, Google, and the public will interpret dubious comments made by morons to be an "intelligent, credible endorsement" of HubPages. 
  • The work of "inactive" authors (you know, where Paul Edmondson keeps 100 percent of any earnings) is revised, updated, and has outside commentary that sounds reasonably intelligent or, at least, believable.
  • Now monkeys can be trained to type commentary and editbot will make their comments sound good enough to fool Google and the public. And yeah, Paul Edmondson gets to keep 100 percent of those earnings on those "inactive" accounts. (Which I believe outnumber "active" accounts).

In the meantime, the minority of active authors on HubPages will be drawn into checking and rechecking every possible edit on their work. Even the edits that authors cannot change themselves, their commentary.

Perhaps it's time that Google revises their Webmaster Guideline violation which states:
"Additionally, creating links that weren't editorially placed or vouched for, otherwise known as unnatural links, can be considered a violation of our guidelines."
To include:
"Addendum: Creating or editing content that wasn't editorially placed or vouch for (or that was artificially changed) can be considered a violation of our guidelines."