Let’s not get hung up on facts part 2

February 5, 2013

True to his personal motto – Let’s not get hung up on facts – Henry Scott, founder of wehoville in West Hollywood (it’s a news site, not a Zynga game), today speciously trumpets his site’s ranking as the most popular in West Hollywood – without taking into account the ranking site’s poor reputation for accuracy.

Following is an excerpt from his press release…

Henry Scott’s photo could not be used for this article.

Only four months after its launch, WEHOville.com, the website dedicated to covering the news, politics, personalities and life of West Hollywood, is that city’s mostly highly trafficked website according to Alexa.com, a leading independent analyst of website data owned by Amazon.com.

According to Alexa, WEHOville outranks Wehonews.com, which has been in business for seven years, by a 25 percent margin when it comes to traffic from Los Angeles County viewers.

WEHOville also outranks by the same percentage FrontiersLA.com, Southern California’s leading gay website, which provides coverage of West Hollywood’s large and prominent gay community. 

Had Mr. Scott done some research, he would have found that Alexa’s rankings tracks ONLY users who have installed their proprietary tool bar and tracking software. 

(This from Alexa’s own site at “Technology: How and Why We Crawl the Web.”)

The Alexa Toolbar – The Alexa Toolbar is a program written by Alexa Internet that users install into their browsers. Every time the user changes pages, the Alexa toolbar communicates with Alexa servers to retrieve information which is then displayed in the Toolbar.”

In one notorious example, Alexa once ranked YouTube over Google.

Google Alexa yourself for more – the firm has a less than stellar reputation for accuracy.

Worse, various antivirus companies have called their tracking toolbar “adware,” “trackware” and – most damaging to the firm, Windows Defender, by far the largest of all antivirus programs in use today, calls Alexa’s tool bar “malware.”

Do you run Alexa’s tracking adware tool bar on your browser? 

Interestingly, wehoville refuses to provide any tracking numbers from their own server, something that WeHo News has done for years. 

With an average of 80,000 readers each month reading 200,000 pages monthly, WeHo News has long been the best read news source for West Hollywood. 

How many readers has wehoville? They won’t reveal their own internal numbers, relying on an independent firm’s placement of a suspect tool bar on unsuspecting users’ browsers.

But heck, let’s not get hung up on facts.