Archive for October, 2012

Google’s new terms to reduce spamming is really taking effect

October 22, 2012 Leave a comment

I don’t know about you, but in the latest months, I’ve received a series of requests which follow the same pattern:


Dear Website Owner:
It has come to our attention that a number of links exist on your domain which send traffic to our website [].  We have determined that these links may be harmful either to the future marketing and reputation of [], or to our users.

Accordingly, we kindly request that you (A) remove all existing links to [] from your domain, including, but not limited to the following URLs:…

(B) Cease creation of any additional links to []

(C) provide us with prompt notification once links to [] have been removed by return email.

We do apologise for this inconvenience but [] has been warned by Google of quality issues with their backlinks and we need to remove link that are simply not a good fit for [].

Thanking you in anticipation of your co-operation in removing these links at your earliest convenience.

If you have a forum, if you’ve followed a little bit about this SEO stuff and the new rules used by Google, basically you’ll realize that these sites originally hired very cheap human spammers to come and fill (and I really mean fill, like filled-to-the-top-with-something-still-on-top-of-the-top kind of filling) your forum with crappy messages linking to their site to try and help their ranking get better so they could sell more than lawful businesses while not bothering about anything.

Now that Google changed their rules, these links act in the opposite way, bringing down the ranking of those sites which have used unlawful/unethical practices to promote their sites in the first place, and now they have the nerves of still asking you to remove their crap! This is my suggested answer to them.

Dear Sirs,

Our site has suffered for several months of moral damages (we have several e-mails of complaints from our users) and countless hours lost, caused by your clearly intentional, clearly unethical low-cost spamming campaign in order to cheat the system and bring your site on top of others.

Now that Google changed the rules and that these same links are harmful to you, you are requesting us to spend valuable time cleaning your mess, which was created by your organization’s very obvious lack of good intentions and lack of respect for others.

Chamilo is an educational free software and a non-profit association which’s reputation has suffered severely from your past actions. However, considering the damages caused, we will consider removing those links in exchange of a US$20,000 fee (paid in advance) + our normal rate of US$xxx/h charge (which will depend on the amount of time it will take us to remove the links). The money received from this cleaning operation will be used to benefit the development of the free Chamilo LMS application.

Best regards,


I don’t know about you, but I’m actually even wondering if I should give them the opportunity at all… Come on, you cannot honestly let people like this on the loose, destroying the good sides of Our Internet…

Update 20130814: Actually, a more interesting answer might be “We are not responsible of the content put on our website by third parties. You are welcome to contact each such third party to ask them to remove the links they placed on our website, apparently infringing our policies of fair use.”

Categories: Best practices, English Tags:

Chamilo: Groupes, Classes et Sessions

October 18, 2012 2 comments

Courrier utilisateur:

Ces trois notions session, classe et groupe ) sont dans la version 1.9.2 de Chamilo
Je cherche de la doc pour bien comprendre les différences.
Est-ce que les trois peuvent être actives en meme temps ?
Une classe DOIT elle etre associée à une session  ( Qu’est-ce qui est obligatoire et qui ne l’est pas )
Les guides administrateur et enseignant que je possede ne traite pas de cela ou du moins, je n’ai pas trouvé.


Il n’y a pas encore de documentation à ce sujet (bien qu’en fait, les trois notions aient été présentes dans 1.8 mais avec des options légèrement différentes).

Petite définition rapide des 4 entités de regroupement d’utilisateurs:

Groupes (dans un cours)
Ce sont des petits groupes d’étudiants (généralement de 2 à 4) qui peuvent utiliser un espace privé de groupe au sein du cours (avec quelques outils communs)

Groupes sociaux (général)
Ce sont des groupes d’intérêt (selon les options, seuls les administrateurs ou tous les utilisateurs puvent les créer) au sein desquels on retrouve une espèce de mini-forum. Ils permettent plusieurs types de visibilité (publique/intermédiaire/privée) pour l’inscription des membres

Ce mode de regroupement existait avant les sessions dans Dokeos, mais il était mutuellement exclusif avec celles-ci (donc si tu utilisais les sessions, tu ne pouvais pas utiliser les classes). Ce sont des regroupements “administratifs” d’utilisateurs, qui permettent de les inscrire rapidement dans des cours ou des sessions, en inscrivant directement la classe au lieu d’inscrire étudiant par étudiant. Ça marche aussi pour la désinscription.

Ce sont des “contextes” qui permettent à un étudiant de suivre plusieurs cours en parallèle pendant une période de temps donnée (qui n’est pas forcément limitée, la période). Par extension, on peut aussi y inscrire une classe.

Categories: Chamilo, Documentation, French Tags:

More free software and open source good news from Europe

October 16, 2012 Leave a comment

On the line of my latest post about Linagora, a European data researcher recently published the results of a study concluding in that the European Community is saving 450 billion euros per year thanks to Open Source software.

In the same orientation, the APRIL (French Association for digital freedom) published a study reporting the substantial savings of the French Government thanks to Open Source and Free Software.

These are all good news that have taken too many years and financial crisis to come, but let’s rejoyce in their presence at this point.

Congratulations to Linagora for a 15M€ contract with French Ministry

October 13, 2012 Leave a comment

Linagora won a call for tender with the French Ministry of Finances for around 15 millions €, covering the maintenance and development for 260 different pieces of software! Congrats. Let’s hope Chamilo gets included too :-)

See the original article on Le Journal du Net, in French, here:

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