Blogs under attack

This is not a topic Connecting the Dots would normally talk about, and we have a bit of reservation in doing so. But the fact is there are dots that can be connected, it makes it a worthy topic.

Most blogs tend to talk about things that are going on or have happened, and there is a blend of accuracy and distortions. Some blogs talk about personal experiences and others talk about for the most part topics that have only a small following. Then on the other side there are blogs that talk about global events and politics, and for the most part they can draw a lot of readers, particularly so when the content is accurate and not slanted or contains false information. The political blogs that are accurate are indeed the ones that come under attack.

There are a handful of countries that make a habit of attacking blogs, and it does not take too much effort to figure out who they are. They are countries that look to repress people, and countries who are doing things they know they should not according to what their mothers taught them when they were young. All would rather do their dirty work unseen by the public.

The recent denial of service attack on Twitter and Face book was not directed at those services, but at a blog according to the news reports. Those attacks were essentially from a government that the blog was covering.

Quoting the Chicago Tribune;

NEW YORK — The outage that knocked Twitter offline for hours was traced to an attack on a lone blogger in the former Soviet republic of Georgia — but the collateral damage that left millions around the world tweetless showed just how much havoc an isolated cyber-dispute can cause.

The attacks Thursday also slowed down Facebook and caused problems for the online diary site LiveJournal. But Twitter, the 140-character-or-less messaging site, suffered a total outage that lasted several hours.

Twitter crashed because of a denial-of-service attack, in which hackers command scores of computers toward a single site at the same time to prevent legitimate traffic from getting through. The attack was targeted at a blogger who goes by “Cyxymu” — Cyrillic spelling of Sukhumi, a city in the breakaway territory of Abkhazia in Georgia.

Generally speaking if a particular blog has inaccurate information it is little more than an annoyance as the correct information will come out based on inconsistent reports. However when the blog hits the nail squarely on the head, that can prompt an attack by a government. So as a rule of thumb and only a rule of thumb, blogs that are attacked by governments are essentially posting accurate accounts of events. So an attack by a government is nothing short of an admission of guilt.

Blogs from Burma, China, and a few other places around the world are frequently attacked because they side step the government’s control of the media. Even in Iran the attempt to silence Twitter and the tweets coming from Iran is another example.

Connecting the Dots however tends to operate in a slightly different area. We as our name suggests connect the dots of seemingly unconnected events and paint the big picture. Our other unique strength is we make predictions and for the most part we are correct about 80% of the time. That essentially is our niche and we have little competition as it is a skill amongst only a few. Because of our high level of accuracy on future events, our readership had doubled in the last 4 months. Seeing that we only started in late April 2008, that says a lot. Respectively we are quickly approaching 20,000 unique visits (readers) per month from nearly every country. If the trend continues seeing 30,000 to 40,000 unique visits per month before the end of the year is a real possibility as doubling of unique visits seems to happen every 4 to 6 months.

On that note the popularity of a blog is also a factor on getting attacked. Some blogs get more readers than mainstream media. Often but not always the reason is mainstream media has an address that unpleasant people from an angry government can go and visit.

As we predict what will come, we are not a big target as the events have not happened yet. That makes us well insulated from legal attacks as few if any courts could find laws on the books about predicting events that have not happened yet. The only time we may come under attack is if we make a prediction about a very bad thing a government is about to do, so we will not talk too much about the possibility of North Korean nukes in Burma just yet.

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