Improvements to ratings

November 16th, 2014

We’re refreshing SiteTruth. Over the next months, our results will become more accurate.

  • We now recognize and check Better Business Bureau seals from more BBB regions. Due to some changes at BBB, we were not recognizing some major markets, including New York City. That’s fixed. Sites with a BBB rating of B or better will get a green checkmark. Sites with a BBB rating of C or worse will get a red do-not-enter icon. Fake seals will negatively affect ratings.
  • SiteTruth now recognizes major Internet content delivery and network management systems, notably Cloudflare and Impervia. Previously, we were identifying some sites hosted through those services as being those services. Many sites were mis-located as being at Cloudflare’s corporate headquarters in San Francisco. That’s fixed. More technical details are in our paper “Who am I talking to?”

More to come.

SiteTruth API now FCGI only.

September 24th, 2014

The  SiteTruth API for developers is now FCGI only. The long-obsolete CGI interface has been deleted. Users of the API should update their REST URLs.

Over 4,000,000 site ratings

September 21st, 2013

The SiteTruth system has rated new web sites over 4,000,000 times.  Users with our Ad Limiter and Ad Rater plug-ins drive the rating system, so each of those ratings is for a site that someone saw in a search result or an ad. Once a site has been rated by request, the rating is good for a month.  This is a count of sites rated or re-rated, not requests to SiteTruth. (That number is much higher.)

Rating number 4,000,000 is for Hardisty’s Homewares in Santa Rosa, California.

Problems with Ad Limiter preferences panel in Firefox 23.

September 3rd, 2013

Due to Firefox Bug 886329, “drop-down list in Jetpack add-on breaks entire UI”, the preferences menu in Ad Limiter is not working in Firefox version 23 only. It worked in Firefox 22, and is  fixed in Firefox 24, which is now available. We suggest not using Firefox 23.

AdLimiter 1.6 released for Google Chrome

June 24th, 2013

We’ve now released Ad Limiter 1.6 for Google Chrome. This brings the Google Chrome version up to the same level as the Firefox version, and supports versions of Google Chrome scheduled for release in the near future.

Users should not notice any changes.

Astral plane support improved

May 2nd, 2013

Pages with glyphs from the Unicode astral planes will no longer be ignored by the rating system. Until recently, few pages used those exotic characters. Now, at least one major content management system is using glyphs such as “globe” from the upper reaches of Unicode character space, so we now support them.

Support for single-word domains such as “amazon” has also been added, along with partial support for internationalized domain names.

The trouble with online advertising

March 17th, 2013

“The best minds of my generation are thinking about how to make people click ads. That sucks.”
Jeff Hammerbacher, Facebook

Facebook Confirms 83 Million Fake Accounts

August 2nd, 2012

Facebook now admits they have at least 83 million fake accounts. That’s where all those fake “Likes” come from.

This is why social signals won’t improve search.  As we wrote last year, Social is bad for search, and search is bad for social. If it can be spammed, it will be spammed. Only hard data that advertisers can’t manipulate, the SiteTruth approach, can clean up search.

We hang a dog tag on every site on the web

May 11th, 2012

Starting today, we give “Know who you’re dealing with” some teeth. With our Ad Limiter add-on installed, mouse over any rating icon. You’ll see a “dog tag”, like this:

SiteTruth "dog tag"

SiteTruth "dog tag"

We tell you the name of the company behind the web site, its location, and its annual sales. Clicking on “SiteTruth profile” will bring up even more information about the company. Now you can easily decide if you want to deal with a strange company.

Companies that don’t clearly disclose their identity get a dog tag which is mostly blank. Do you want to deal with them?

Business database update underway

April 4th, 2012

The database of US businesses is currently being updated with 2012 data to improve the accuracy of results. Over the next few months, we will be adding additional business information and displaying it through our browser add-ons. When we say “know who you’re dealing with”, we mean it.

Update: The database update has been completed.

Update: April 26 – a major system update has been completed. Please let us know of any problems.