Thursday, August 20, 2015

Indeed, search engine arguments seem to be disappearing from websmaster server logs with end user encryption

I have looked at my own stats this evening on both my Wordpress sites and on my legacy site (which is on a Windows server).

It does appear, to the best of my knowledge, that Google search terms are no longer being logged.  I cannot find them (as far as I looked) on a sample logfile this evening (in Notepad).  They don’t show up in Jetpack statistics from Bluehost on Wordpress, which seem to update almost in real time.

So it does appear that Google is encrypting all search arguments so that domain owners can no longer determine what searches are done from the logs.  As I explained on August 10, in the past if has been very useful to me to see what a user searched for in a “forensic” investigation, and that would no longer be possible.  It was also possible to see if users were looking for "quirky" observations I had made (especially in some movie reviews). 
I do see search engine arguments in my Urchin reports on “doaskdotell” that appear to come from Bing and a few other engines. 

I found surprising interest in my 1968 Masters Thesis from the University of Kansas, “Minimax Rational Function Approximation”.  I can’t tell if this is really “legitimate”. 

I also saw quite a bit of activity from Baidu, China’s search engine, indexing my site.  That’s rather interesting since I am supposed to be banned in China.   

I’ll keep more of an eye on this as time goes by.
I also just got Final Draft 9 (two machines at a time) and have started my “Do Ask, Do Tell: Epiphany” screenplay (formerly called “Conscripted).  I’ll be doing progress reports on Wordpress.  I want to have this finished before Halloween.

Picture: Sagamore Bridge, for getting onto Cape Cod, a real bottleneck on summer weekends.  

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