Tim Dietrich

Custom Software Developer

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FileMaker News Aggregators, or Agitators?

Imagine my surprise when I saw this on my Twitter feed this morning: "FileMaker 13 Absolute Beginner's Guide Released."

And imagine my further surprise when I clicked the accompanying link, only to find a "Featured" blog post titled "FILEMAKER 13 ABSOLUTE BEGINNER'S GUIDE RELEASED."

And apparently I wrote the article. The tag line reads, "Written by Tim Dietrich." I know I've been working a lot lately, and not getting much sleep as a result. But I think that, had I written the article, I would remember doing so.

The real kicker is that the book has not yet been released. (We're getting really close, and it's been quite a journey - but that's another story for another time.)

So apparently, in a moment of desperation, this FileMaker news aggregator decided that they would not only publish an incorrect (let's call it "fictitious") story, but make it appear as if I wrote the damned thing.

This isn't the only FileMaker news aggregator out there. There are several others, and you've probably seen them, too. Some of them link to the original content, but to get to it, you have to click through two or three intermediary sites. I suppose that they do this to earn ad revenue, or in some cases, to promote their own FileMaker services and products. It is, without a doubt, a very unprofessional and underhanded thing to do.

It's entirely possible that those who run these sites truly think that they are providing a valuable service to the FileMaker community. Sure, it would be nice to have a single, reliable source for FileMaker-related news, something that you could turn to get a quick overview of what's going on in the community (interesting new techniques, upcoming events, new products, etc).

However, the sites that simply re-publish content from other bloggers, or whose slow-loading, terribly designed WordPress-based blogs cleverly (or not so cleverly) require two or three additional clicks in order to arrive at the "real" content, add no real value to the community.

So where am I going with all of this? I'm not entirely sure. I guess I'm still shocked and a little frustrated by this morning's "surprise."

Your thoughts?