Do 404 inbound urls effect your Google Rank?

I have my site and my comments on the internet scraped by those really annoying zero value add sites (you know with 80% advertising), and the worse thing is the don’t scrape very well. Text on the next line gets mixed into the url, Google see’s these bad links, follows them and they 404 by my server. So now my Webmaster Tools crawl error screen, is filling but with rubbish.

Ideally would be a button to say “ignore this link it’s junk”, and have Google silently ignore that inbound like. Basically down vote the bad link.

But that doesn’t happen, so I’ve been resorting to adding more and more RewriteRules to my .htaccess to make those bad links work, hoping Google will notice, and remove them. But it takes so long.

You can check them with the Fetch as GoogleBot, and it notes success, but this doesn’t feed into the error results.

So another nice feature would be to “requests a recheck of current errors” button.

So I ponder how bigger websites (those that get actual traffic) deal with this, as it reduces that value of the tools provide, and makes you question if it has an impact.

Update: was getting ready to ask about the above on the Webmaster Tools forum, but followed the ‘Please Read First’, and sure enough they have my questions answered in the FAQ, but still it’s really ugly. It’s like lots of warning messages in C++ that were fix in the code 3 months ago, it makes it really hard to notice the introduction of new problems.

Five+ years of Gmail

Today while unsubscribing from NZ mailing lists and deleting old cruff, I went and found my oldest sent Gmail message, sent 26 August 2004, so I’ve been a very happy Gmail user all that time, and it’s better than I originally told my wife:

It’s easy to check from home and work, and I never have to delete any
email because I can store 1gig’s worth of stuff.

I current have 440MB of 7414MB, so all this time I’ve never had more that 5% usage.

Yes Google know lots about me, but it’s been useful. We have changed ISP three times in that period, and I’ve had three different work places, but one email the whole time.

Cheers Google.

Gmail UI updated: I HATE IT!

Gmail have updated the UI, and quite frankly I hate it!

It feels cluttered with the silly boxes in the Labels section
Gmails new UI - Cluttered
But the icing on the cake is the in your face push for chat.  When reading mailing lists, the UI was the good thing about Gmail,  you could click on each item and read things in a nice orderly fashion.  But the new UI now pops up a Chat window on each person. So now you can’t read the first line of the email.
Gmail new UI - Most evil feature

It’s so crap I turned on the keyboard shortcut so I would trigger the UI crap-ness, but that’s got it’s own crap-ness because it jumps around, and it’s disconcerting. I like my scroll wheel.  I like collapsing read emails. I don’t like pop-up UI.

Likely there is an option to revert to the old UI,
Gmail new UI - saving grace

Ahh, the feeling of calmness is returning. If Google switches to the new UI permanently, I’m going to have to leave them, and that’s annoying… because they were good.

Why the big push for chatting via the browser? Where is the setting “I use gtalk, so just piss off with breaking the email application trying to do poor chat” tick box?

Google Analytics – Updated

Google has updated Analytics, and the feature that made this most obvious was the date range picker.  Before you even open it you can see a new Comparing to: Site ? text.
Analytics date picker change 1
On opening the data picker, they now let you choose today in New Zealand time.

Analytics date picker change 2
No more editing the URL to see what is happening now! This is quite useful when I get comments to see how people found my site etc.

I will have to explore to see if I find more features, but for now, my #1 missing feature has been solved.