Tuesday, June 21, 2022

A new algorithm

I'm thinking that it's time to get off of Google services. I just received a number of emails from Google, announcing that five of my posts (from as far back as 2004) have been unpublished because they were related to malware and viruses. The titles of those posts:

  • More VI Tips - this was just a pointer to someone else's web site, which no longer exists
  • Sendmail compiling for the no-server crowd - explains what you need to edit before compiling the sendmail.conf file
  • Google - this was basic research on someone who was spamming my comment section
  • Google Maps - provided links to sites that explained how to add annotations to Google Maps
  • Building honeyd - discussed some of the problems that I'd experienced while attemtping to compile a honeypot (a defensive tool)

The short version: none of these posts discussed malware or viruses. If these flags were implemented manually, HR needs to take a look at the resume of whomever flagged these posts. If it was an algorithm (more likely), Google needs to disable that algorithm and review the logic employed in it.

I don't know about anything nowadays, but we learned in the early 00's that keyword searches have a high false positive rate. My favorite example: blocking the Virginia educational system because the url has "virgin" in it (yeah, that was a $17B project that did that).

In short, I'll fight this once. The more likely event will be that I move the blog off of Google and onto a less buggy platform.

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