[wp-hackers] Trackback Validator plugin now available.

Mark Jaquith mark.wordpress at txfx.net
Wed Aug 24 22:47:43 GMT 2005

Matt Mullenweg wrote:

> And at the same time you're removing the best feature of Trackback, in 
> fact what it was designed for: category aggregation. Trackback doesn't 
> require a link back by design, not as a mistake.

The Pingback specification doesn't require links to be verified (I was 
surprised when I came across this in the specification)... although I 
suppose that is a bit different than outright saying that there doesn't 
have to be a link, like with Trackback.

Although, let's face it... somewhere along the way, people got the idea 
that Trackback was meant to indicate a link... probably because of 
Movable Type's auto Trackback discovery for links.  If it doesn't 
require a link, there is a tendency for some people to use them as 
one-way traffic generators (i.e. you get links from the site to which 
you sent the TB, but send none back).  People are inherently selfish, 
which creates the motivation to send such trackbacks (sometimes in cases 
of borderline topicality), and also gives people reason to become 
annoyed when such a TB is received.  And of course, the REAL spam 
started pouring in, and verifying the link became a good way to get rid 
of the spam and if that also meant that legitimate "one-way" Trackbacks 
got lost in the shuffle, well...  not many people were that broken up 
about it.  With this "Trackback-lite" mentality, people do well to 
ponder what the difference is.  If you're verifying links for both 
Trackbacks and Pingbacks, there's not that much of a difference for the 
user.  Really, it's just a matter of which server does the "work" 
(getting the excerpt and site name).

Mark Jaquith
MCincubus @ #wordpress

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