Friday, February 4, 2011

Are you a Royal Enfield air blower? You might be

Last week I was lucky enough to learn from Royal Enfield's new chief executive officer that the company is working on a powerful parallel twin motorcycle and on a multi-fuel adventure touring bike. He also told me that a kick start lever is coming for Royal Enfield C5 motorcycles imported to the United States.

Royal Enfield CEO Dr. Venki Padmanabhan spoke to me by phone from the New York International Motorcycle Show.

News of the parallel twin and the multi-fuel Himalaya adventure bike quickly spread across the Internet. A few sites linked to the story I wrote, but most didn't, and none I saw even mentioned Dr. Padmanabhan, the source of my information.

That's rude, but here's the funny part:

At least one report I saw was itself ripped off, apparently by automated software of some sort.

"Royal Enfield is definitely on a roll," the original writer enthused. "Latest of all the innovations is an announcement that could lead to massive fan following for this cult bike maker."

The automated software changed this to: "Royal Enfield is really upon a roll. Latest of all innovations is a proclamation which could lead to larger air blower following for this cult bike."

Air blower?

"It's called 'Spinning,'" my wife, a professor of multi-media journalism, told me. The automated software takes a legitimate article, changes some words to synonyms, and re-posts it on the Internet.

The idea is to generate content that Internet search engines will mistake for entirely original material. And the software does this with no effort or expense to the spinner, who thus draws people searching for the term "Royal Enfield" to his site.

It is one thing to be ripped off by careless or inconsiderate fellow writers. It's another thing to be hijacked by software that turns "fan following" into "air blower following."


  1. Haha, that's hilarious, David.
    So, droids are writing blogs now? I, for one, welcome our new robot overlords.

  2. Anonymous2/05/2011

    ...Royal Enfield air-blower...yup...that's me,alright!Thanks for the laugh,David!Matt Law/Bullethead63~


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