By Rudolf Freidlander
Trackback is a system used to associate posts on different
blogs and, in a greater sense, it allows blogs to “share”
An example! Just as a simple example of how Trackback works:
you have just posted an article discussing Admiral Byrd's
Antarctic expedition and then happen to run across a similar
related post on another blog, you could use the trackback
mechanism to notify the other poster of the existence of your
post. When your trackback notification (which is the permalink
to your post and, possibly, some basic information about your
blog) appears on the post in the other blog that blog's
will also be notified that you have something to say on the
subject and they may pay you a visit.
Everyone can have it but not everyone does! Some blogs have
this Trackback capability built in and others do not but the
good news is that Haloscan, a very popular comment tracking
program, now offers a trackback feature for those who don't
have it and the better news is its FREE! If you are interested
you can go to www.haloscan.com/members/join.php to sign
up. Note that signing up for Trackback (if you don't already
have it) will give YOU a trackback capability but you will
still not be able to Trackback to a post on a blog that does
not have Trackback.
Trackbacks vs. comments! Normally you will see a post you have
something to say about and comment on it. Using a Trackback
when you don't have an honestly related post -- one that adds
something relevant or clarifies the subject post -- is not an
accepted practice. If you become known as a “trackback
by sending unrelated trackbacks you may be banned from the
How it works! Trackback works by sending a “ping” (an
electronic notification) from your blog to another blog to
notify them of your post. This ping also notifies their
Trackback program to list your post. Some bloggers moderate
their trackbacks, i.e., they manually review each trackback
notification and verify that it is indeed a related post --
this prevents spammers from relating their junk posts to real
blogs. If the blogger reviews your post and finds it relevant
he or she can permit the trackback and your post will then be
listed as a trackback on the other blog.
The first step in creating a trackback is getting the
“Trackback URL” from the post where you want to send your
Trackback notification. If the post does not have a Trackback
URL, they either don't have a Trackback capability or they
it turned off.
Next, copy that URL into the appropriate place on your blog's
post. This will usually be identified by some reference to
“Trackback URLs“ or ”Trackback pings.”
Next, republish your blog -- your trackback software will
automatically send the Trackback ping to the target blog's
That's all here is to it, your trackback, featuring a
to your post, will be sent to the target post and, after being
approved (if the blogger is moderating trackbacks) your
Trackback will be listed.
Other functions! On some systems it is possible to send
simultaneous Trackbacks to more than one target posts. Another
capability of Trackback allows you to send a trackback ping to
yourself, linking a post on another blog -- this lets your
readers know that the other post is out there and can be
considered a “recommended reading” type function.
Just a review of four important Trackback points!
Not every blogger has a Trackback capability and some that
it do not have it enabled.
Some bloggers moderate their trackbacks to avoid unrelated
posts being linked. Some however do not moderate or even
monitor their Trackbacks, so trackback spammers can sneak in.
Don't be a Trackback spammer and don't tolerate them.
Haloscan is now offering Trackback capability packaged with
their commenting program (both are free).
Installing Trackback on your blog will not allow you to send
Trackbacks to blogs without that capability.
More information on Trackbacks! Wikipedia has a very
comprehensive entry on Trackbacks you can find it at:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trackback. Wikipedia articles are
always comprehensive and will provide you with information you
can rely on.
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