A reminder about links in large-scale article campaigns

Lately we’ve seen an increase in spammy links contained in articles referred to as contributor posts, guest posts, partner posts, or syndicated posts. These articles are generally written by or in the name of one website, and published on a different one.
Google does not discourage these types of articles in the cases when they inform users, educate another site’s audience or bring awareness to your cause or company. However, what does violate Google’s guidelines on link schemes is when the main intent is to build links in a large-scale way back to the author’s site. Below are factors that, when taken to an extreme, can indicate when an article is in violation of these guidelines:
  • Stuffing keyword-rich links to your site in your articles
  • Having the articles published across many different sites; alternatively, having a large number of articles on a few large, different sites
  • Using or hiring article writers that aren’t knowledgeable about the topics they’re writing on
  • Using the same or similar content across these articles; alternatively, duplicating the full content of articles found on your own site (in which case use of rel=”canonical”, in addition to rel=”nofollow”, is advised)

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Web Accessibility Resources

Free articles, tutorials, tools and software to help make your website or blog accessible.


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Linting HTML using CSS

You can use the following CSS to lint your HTML.

Avoid inline styling:

*[style] {
  border: 5px solid red;

Check to see if a link has no or meaningless href value, and check for empty interactive elements:

button:empty {
  border: 5px solid red;

Check to see if a img has a alt value:

img[alt=""] {
  border: 5px solid red;

Make sure the document has a language attribute value:

html[lang=""] {
  border: 5px solid red;

Check the document meta elements for not being set to UTF-8.

meta[charset]:not([charset="UTF-8"])::before {
  content: " • Bad charset: " attr(charset) " ";
  display: block;
  color: red;

See if its the first element after the opening <head> tag.

meta[charset]:not(:first-child)::after {
  content: " • Bad charset: not first child";
  color: red;

Check for unaccessible viewport attributes:

meta[name="viewport"][content*="minimum-scale"]::after {
  content: " • Bad viewport: " attr(content);
  color: red;

Check for attributes in our HTML that are deprecated or no longer needed:

script[type="text/javascript"]::before {
  content: " • Unnecessary type attribute on script: " attr(type);
  color: red;
link[rel="stylesheet"][type="text/css"]::before {
  content: " • Unnecessary type attribute on link: " attr(type);
  color: red;

Check for unlabelled form elements, and check to see if any form elements are missing both name and id attributes:

textarea:not([name]) {
  border: 5px solid red;
label:not([for]) {
  border: 5px solid red;
form:not([name]):not([id]) {
  border: 5px solid red;

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Google Unveils New Home for Open Source Projects

Google has announced a new home for its open source projects. While the code for Google’s open source projects will remain on its self-hosted git service and GitHub, Google has made a website to index all of its open source projects — currently around 2,000 open source projects.

The new home for Google’s open source projects allows you to search by category and topic, view information about a project, such as the project’s website, license, language(s) and code location.

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20 Social Media Conferences in 2017

Are you looking to learn about social media or network in 2017? Try these social media conferences!

  • Social Media Marketing World (March 22-24, San Diego)

Join 5,000 fellow marketers at the mega-conference designed to inspire and empower you with social media marketing ideas—brought to you by Social Media Examiner.

  • Social Media Conference for PR, Marketing and Corporate Communications (March 27-29, Orlando)
  • Content Marketing Conference (April 11-13, Boston)

CMC’s core focus is to deliver the tactics and techniques you need to grow your business organically–the content marketing way. CMC’s speakers are so great that we decided to call them superheroes this year, celebrating their commitment to rid the world of bad content and help us grow our businesses the right way, with great content that engages fans and keeps them coming back for more.

You’ll find inspiring keynotes, tactical sessions, deep-dive workshops, tons of networking, and killer content that you can put to work immediately after you return to earth from the conference.

  • Social Media Strategies Summit (April 26-28, Chicago)

#SMSsummit, the longest running, most comprehensive social media conference in the US, is the #1 conference choice for social media, digital marketing and communications professionals across industries.

  • Social Media & Web Analytics Summit (April 26-27, San Francisco)

More data on consumer behavior and user journey is now available but without the right analytics strategy, making sense of the data can feel like a guessing game. How can we accurately analyze data in order to understand and respond to the needs and motivations behind it. This summit will demonstrate how you can gain a crucial advantage over competitors, by measuring your social outreach and unlocking key insights.

  • Social Media Camp (May 3-4, Victoria, British Columbia)

Canada’s largest social media conference.

  • Engage Prague (May 17-19, Prague)

Stay ahead with the best social media conference, with the sharpest minds in social media & attend Engage Prague 2017.

  • The Social Shake-Up (May 22-24, Atlanta)
  • WistiaFest (June 11-13, Boston)

WistiaFest is a user conference for businesses who love video.

  • Social Media Week (June 12-16, Los Angeles, Mexico City, and Milan)

Social Media Week is a leading news platform and worldwide conference that curates and shares the best ideas, innovations and insights into how social media and technology are changing business, society and culture around the world.

  • Corporate Social Media Summit (June 15-16, New York)

Returning for its 8th year, #CSMNY gives you a unique opportunity to learn from, and network with, senior leaders from the biggest brands in the world. Join over 400+ corporate peers to discuss the pillars of social success in 2017.

  • Digital Marketing World Forum Expo Global (June 19-20, London)

#DMWF Expo Global 2017 will showcase the latest Digital Marketing Technologies and Strategy, Virtual Reality, Artificial Intelligence, eCommerce, Influencer Marketing, Content Marketing, Data, Analytics and Mobile Marketing across three dedicated conference streams.

  • VidCon (June 21-24, Anaheim)

In 2016, over 26,400 fans, creators, and industry leaders got together to celebrate the power of online video. 2017 will be even bigger and better.

  • Content Marketing World (September 5-8, Cleveland)

Content Marketing World is the one event where you can learn and network with the best and the brightest in the content marketing industry.

  • INBOUND (September 25-28, Boston)

INBOUND’s purpose is to provide the inspiration, education, and connections you need to grow and transform your business. This September, they will host thousands of marketing and sales professionals from almost every industry imaginable and from all corners of the globe at the Boston Convention & Exhibition Center. In 2016, INBOUND had 19,000+ attendees from all around the world.

  • SpredFast Summit (October 2-4, Austin)
  • Social Tools Summit (October 18, Boston)

The Social Tools & Best Practices Summit is a unique conference that focuses on social media best practices and technology. The Summit showcases the wide variety of social media tools available for companies large and small, how they can be fully leveraged, and real-life examples of how businesses are deriving ROI from them.

  • PubCon (November 6-9, Las Vegas)

PubCon, the premier search and social media conference and expo, holds multi-track events in various United States and European cities, always including a November conference at the Las Vegas Convention Center in sunny Las Vegas, Nevada.

  • Social Fresh Conference (TBA)

Social Fresh is where the world’s top social media marketers go to get inspired.

  • CMX Summit (TBA)

CMX Summit helps organize and equip a global movement of community professionals, in order to shape a more connected, collaborative and compassionate world.

Twitter’s New Default Profile Photo

Twitter announced it has changed it’s iconic default profile photo, which was an egg; the egg has been around since 2010. This is a snippet of what Twitter had to say about the change:

For the past seven years, everyone who has created an account on Twitter starts out with their default profile photo as an egg. This was a playful way to reference how eggs hatch into birds that send all the Tweets you see on Twitter! But now it’s time for something new – something that encourages people to upload their own photos for more personal expression…

Twitter stated that there is three reasons why they are doing this:

Last year we refreshed our brand, with a new look and feel highlighting the diversity and expressiveness of the people around the world who make up the Twitter community, in all its color and vibrancy. As part of our work to bring these ideas into the product, we realized it was time to change the default profile photo, to help prompt more self-expression.

We noticed that some people kept the egg default profile photo because they thought it was fun and cute, but we want people to use this space to show us who they are! The new default image feels more like an empty state or placeholder, and we hope it encourages people to upload images that express themselves.

We’ve noticed patterns of behavior with accounts that are created only to harass others – often they don’t take the time to personalize their accounts. This has created an association between the default egg profile photo and negative behavior, which isn’t fair to people who are still new to Twitter and haven’t yet personalized their profile photo.

New default profile photo:

Twitter's Default Profile Photo 2017
Twitter’s Default Profile Photo 2017

Why Your Testing and Optimization Team Needs a Data Storyteller

Not to get too philosophical, but that’s one of the big challenges of building a culture of growth and optimization: getting the word out. That’s why a data storyteller is one of the key members of any testing team.

In fact, “communication and data storytelling” was noted as a critical skill for a person who leads testing and optimization efforts, according to a survey of marketing leaders who conduct tests and online experiments.1 The must-have skills rounding out the top three were leadership and, the obvious, analytics.

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YouTube Viewership Hits 1 Billion Hours Of Content A Day

On YouTube’s official blog, they announced that YouTube has hit a remarkable milestone: people are now viewing over a billion hours of YouTube content a day!

A few years back, we made a big decision at YouTube. While everyone seemed focused on how many views a video got, we thought the amount of time someone spent watching a video was a better way to understand whether a viewer really enjoyed it. It wasn’t an easy call, but we thought it would help us make YouTube a more engaging place for creators and fans. And last year, we hit a big milestone on that journey: people around the world are now watching a billion hours of YouTube’s incredible content every single day!