For some reason this morning, I was browsing the web and came across the Ping-O-Matic website and noticed in the footer that the servers the site runs on were donated by Automattic. This peaked my curiosity so I browsed the Automattic website to see if Ping-O-Matic was listed as a sponsored project. It’s not. However, if you view the Automattic blogs page, the site is mentioned at the bottom with the following text:
Ping-O-Matic isn’t an Automattic project, but it shares some of the same folks and is highly relevant to the blog ecosystem, so it’s worth including here anyway.
This left me wondering why servers were donated to Ping-O-Matic without it being labeled a sponsored project while the service was mentioned on the Automattic blogs page. As it turns out, Ping-O-Matic is a Matt Mullenweg project created on April 20th, 2004. The purpose of the site is simple. To ping multiple, popular services so that your blog post is indexed on those sites which results in an increase in traffic. The site currently lists 21 different services that you can ping at one time with 5 specialized services. I can’t help but comment that the logo image as well as the overall look and feel of the site scream 1990s to me but it gets the job done.
One thing I did notice though last night is that the stats page for Ping-O-Matic appears to be broken. All I see is a giant, blank, green square. Let me know in the comments if you see the same thing. In the past, this area of the site featured all sorts of data that you could play with.
Another thing that I found a bit disappointing is the Ping-O-Matic blog. Updates regarding the service were frequent from January 2006 to April 2006 and since then, not one update has been published to the site. Some folks would automatically consider the site dead or at least the development aspect of it if a blog hasn’t been updated in over two years. But, Ping-O-Matic works just fine and if you use the following URL http://rpc.pingomatic.com/ in your WRITING SETTINGS under Update Services, WordPress will automatically send out the ping for you to the various services it supports.
So in the end, we have a nice pinging service that can easily be plugged into the back end of WordPress. It’s not sponsored by Automattic and appears to be under complete control by Matt. The blog for the service has not been updated in over two years and while everything regarding the service works just fine, I wonder if Ping-O-Matic is just one of those loose ends that has become forgotten in light of the entire WordPress project. I’d rather have the dev blog for Ping-O-Matic either updated with a post or just hide the thing so it doesn’t look like the site or blog has been neglected for over two years.
Do you use Ping-O-Matic? As for myself, I don’t automatically ping any sites and do things the manual way. Don’t want to get banned for pinging too much. If you don’t want to use Ping-O-Matic, you don’t have to. Check out this article on the Codex which contains a wide assortment of replacement pinging services you can add to the Update Services box.