A user contacted me through ***Dave to let me know he was seeing extra content in SEB entries that didn’t look like it belonged there. He sent along a screenshot and a copy of the HTML source and, yep, there appeared to be extra paragraphs with spam links being inserted among the other text.
Here’s the screenshot:
Click to enlarge (ha!).
Awhile back there was some WP hacks going around (mainly through compromised plugins) that would insert hidden spam into a template that only showed up when you did a Google search for the blog in question, but otherwise didn’t show on the live site itself. This, however, appears to be something totally new.
I’ve checked SEB pretty thoroughly and it doesn’t appear to be anything generated here. The reader who reported the problem has since followed up saying that it only happens on his work laptop and not his personal machines at home. ***Dave also verifies that he doesn’t see it on any of his machines. I check SEB on a number of different PCs and smartphones regularly and I’ve never seen this happen so I’m assuming it must be something on the user’s laptop, but he says it only happens when he views SEB which seems oddly specific.
I can’t find anything on Google that seems to match this odd situation so I’m turning to you guys to see if anyone else has experienced this with SEB or something similar with some other site. Anyone else seeing this happen or know anything about a possible hack or virus that could cause it? Let us know in the comments.
If you’ve tried to access SEB on your smartphone you may have noticed that it’s not exactly easy to see much of anything. So to make things a bit more legible I have installed WPTouch which reformats the output when it detects you’re using a smartphone or other mobile device. I had the plugin installed previously, but somewhere along the way I took it out for reasons I don’t recall. Now it’s back so you can once again read SEB without going blind.
I didn’t have a smartphone to test it with last time I had it installed, but I do now and the difference is quite dramatic. Alas it does drop the template we use, but you don’t come here for how pretty the site is. You come here to see me say things out loud that most folks would be too polite to dream of saying. Not only is the site readable, but it even improves the ability to leave comments on an entry if you are an avid thumb typist. No idea if it changes things on tablets, which are arguably better suited to display the site the way it actually looks, so if you have a tablet and visit SEB let us know in the comments.
It seems the inclusion of items I’ve shared through Google+ is confusing the hell out of a few people and I’ve had multiple complaints saying that folks don’t want to sign up for Google+ in order to read my posts. Ignoring the fact that there’s no need to sign up with Google+ to read anything I post publicly there or here, the extra but shortened content seems to be more problematic than useful for a lot of folks.
So I’ll shut off the importation plugin and go back to my usual much longer, but less frequent postings. The plugin(s) I was using for this process were a bit wonky anyway so it’ll be much less of a hassle for me. Perhaps this’ll motivate me to put more effort into posting by hand more often. Or at least I won’t have to keep repeating the same explanation to people.
It’s hard to say how much damage they’ve done to their own reputation with this, but it’s good to see so many people standing up for Planned Parenthood. The Koman Foundation bowed to political pressure from Christian zealots and a lot of folks just don’t appreciate that. #seb #politics #backlash
Angry Reviewers Sink Susan G. Komen Foundation’s GuideStar Rating
As you’ve probably read about in the last few days, the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation (also known as Susan G. Komen for the Cure) decided to stop funding breast exams and mammograms at Planned Parenthood locations. This has obviously not gone over well with a number of people who view the decision as a capitulation to Christian conservatives. So in response, some of them have taken to the non-profit world’s equivalent of Yelp to voice their disapproval.
There is a growing number of people in the various entertainment industries that are calling for a different approach to dealing with piracy other than trying to nuke it from orbit. There will always be a certain amount of piracy, but that doesn’t mean you can’t make money from your products. Especially if you can come up with new ways to turn pirates into customers. This is a problem that requires innovation, not legislation. #seb #piracy #videogames
Angry Birds CEO: “Piracy May Not Be A Bad Thing”
While lawmakers and Hollywood execs try to come up with ways to combat piracy in ham-fisted, knee-jerk ways that punish everyone, the CEO of Rovio Mobile — better known as the company that makes Angry Birds — has joined his voice to more sensible suits who see online piracy as an opportunity to learn and grow.
While admitting that his company has issues with piracy and unlicensed products that make money off the wildly popular game, Rovio Mobile CEO Mikael Hed said earlier this week, “We c…
That’s pretty cool in its own right, but the best part is that it sounds like it may have sparked an interest in science for the young girl. #seb #science #discoveries
5th Grader Accidentally Makes Explosive in Class, Gets Co-Authorship on Subsequent Paper
Kenneth Boehr wasn’t expecting more than the usual from his ten-year-old students when he started a lesson on the Periodic table and handed out the molecule modeling kits. Then Clara Lazen handed him a model constructed from oxygen, nitrogen, and carbon atoms, and asked if she’d made a real chemical or not. Boehr found himself stumped. So he took a cellphone picture of the whole deal, and sent it to an old college buddy: Robert Zoellner , professor of chemistry at Humbolt State University.
We’re pretty heavy Redbox users in my house so this is very welcome news. Of course it could result in another rental price bump, but even if it does it’s still one of the more affordable rental options around. Netflix could learn a lesson or two from these guys. #seb #Movies #Rentals #Redbox
Red Box To Warner Bros: Shove That 56-Day Rental Delay Up Your Ass!
The sale of physical movies is way down, as a result: some of the movie studios have been acting irrationally — forcing delays on physical rental services like Netflix, Blockbuster and Redbox. Because if customers aren’t buying your movies anymore, they must be punished.
Earlier this month it was announced that Warner Bros would no longer sell their DVDs and Blu-rays to rental services unless they adhere to a 56-day delay. This move forces film fans to pay full retail to see a new DVD/Blu-ray…
Six states have bills similar to the Indiana one in the process of winding their way through the legislative process. It's a sad statement that in the 21st century we still have people trying to take our science classes back to the 18th century. And we wonder why so many of our fellow Americans are idiots. #seb #Creationism #Science #Politics #Religion
Indiana Senate passes bill putting religion in science class
Yesterday, after almost no debate, the Indiana State Senate approved a bill that would allow its schools to teach the origin stories of various religions when a class touches on the origin of life. It now moves on to the state's House, where one of its cosponsors is currently the Speaker of the House.
Although the bill as written could be used to create a comparative religion class, its sponsor, Senator Dennis Kruse, has made it clear that he hopes to see it foster the teaching of creationis…
Missed this at the time and haven’t had a chance to watch this yet, but I plan to. That said, I’m very impressed not only that the +The White House and +Barack Obama are on Google+, but that they’re using its features to interact with ordinary Americans. This puts the office of the President within reach of so many more people than at any time in the past. Maybe it’ll mean our voices are heard at least a little bit more. #seb #Politics #Obama #Google+