Saturday Shortstop: Dave Concepcion

Dave ConcepcionAn integral member of the Big Red machine from Cincinnati in the early 1970’s, Davey Concepcion won a total of 5 Gold Gloves and is the only player to have jersey #13 retired in all of baseball.

Seth Godin has written a new e booklet in conjunction with a Skillshare class that he has created.  He has further suggested (a most excellent suggestion) that we share it.  You can read it right here.  Think and enjoy!!

How many have noticed the new CSN City from Cash Surfing Network? A build a city game, and so far, it looks really cool. The bad news? They haven’t posted one word of ‘how to’ or ‘what to do’ or rules or instruction. So I propose that we all post up when we figure out how something works or what it does. It’s gotta be way more fun if you know what to do…

Anyway, leave a comment here if you are interested in learning how to play. I’ll make a spot on this website if there is any interest at all…

Will the US government require hacker arrests in exchange for Ukrainian aid?  How do you you feel about that?  Article here.  It seems a couple of Senators would like to force the Ukraine to clean up hacker heaven…

Of Note:  Amazon has settled their collusion suit with several of the major publishers, and I got a payment of $8.36 added to my account at Amazon.  If you have bought Kindle books over the course of the last 3 years you should be eligible too.  May be worth checking into.

Speaking of Kindle.  I have something over 3000 titles for my Kindle.  I understand and love books, but I can carry all 3000 with me all the time.  I can get a new book in 30 seconds without leaving the house.  And look at all the trees I have saved.  Who knew I would be a ‘greenie’?  No electrons were damaged in the transmission of this message…

Once more on Kindle.  My book “The Art and Science of Motorcycle Touring” is available exclusively at Amazon.right here.  Amazon makes it incredibly easy to self publish, and I strongly recommend it to anyone that is considering writing a book.  It has worked out incredibly well for me.

Did you hear about the 3rd grader in Colorado that was suspended from school because she shaved her head in support of a friend and classmate with stage 4 cancer? (article here)  In a sudden burst of sanity, the school board voted to reinstate her.  For what it’s worth, is the reason I started wearing my hair like I do in 2001.  Support for my sister in law.  Turns out it’s easy care and I like it just fine….

Davey Concepcion was a fine journeyman ball player with a long career.  5 Gold Gloves and a couple of all star appearances to go with 2 World Series rings.  No where near Hall of Fame, but a darn fine ballplayer with a good career.

I’m not the best at anything.  But I can have a fine result and a good career by staying the course and putting in the time like Dave Concepcion.  Good enough for me!

I’m just sayin’


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Working with WordPress

WordPressWordPress.  No doubt it is the single most used website entity on the net.  It is industry standard for a blogging platform, and a lot of sales sites use it too.  Incredibly flexible and customizable, it is capable of doing what most of us will ever require for a website.  And yes, it is free.

Done properly, a  WordPress site can be as effective as any on the net.  Done poorly, it can be the most expensive free product ever delivered.

Why WordPress?

I have 3 sites currently online.  Tom Wacker dot com is a WP site that I built entirely myself, Motorcycle Backroads is a WP site that had lots of professional help, and TrackeryMe is an LFM script (Log In Frequency Marketing) that was done entirely by Sunny Suggs and Rhonda Pizor.

Which is Best?

I’m going to say it right here, right now.  Sunny Suggs and Builtjust4U is the obvious answer.  Her rates are so reasonable and she and Rhonda do such a terrific job that I’m sure I’ll never build one all by myself again.  TrackeryMe cost less than just the header on Motorcycle Backroads.  Really.  All done.

So if you hafta have it right and on time, see Sunny.  Even me, tighter than a tick on a bear’s butt, can see the obvious value in Sunny’s service.  End of story.

But, if you just want to have a place to try your creativity and wish to learn new things, building your own WP site is fun and (relatively) easy.  You can sign up at WordPress and have a site up in 24 hours, easy.  You can also spend 8 hours per day for 2 years getting it perfect.

What do you Need ?

If you are still with me at this point, I presume that you are interested in building your own WP site.  This series will be aimed at you.  It will not be regularly scheduled, I will try to have one installment per week, but make no promises.

Next time I will do a quick overview of hosting and why you need to host your own site.  I’ll talk about your site name and signing up for WordPress.  As the series goes on, we will visit lots of the ins and outs of building and maintaining a WP site.

And in the End

I have the two WP sites listed, and have built 2 others.  Fortunately, they no longer exist and I will have lots of ‘don’ts’ to share with you as we develop this series.

I’m just sayin’


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Stolen Content: What to Do? Part 3

“I am not a lawyer. I have never played one on TV or anywhere else for that matter. No part of this post should be taken as legal advice, it is meant to be educational in nature only. That is all.”

So now we know that you are the victim of stolen content (part 1), and we know how to find the thief (part 2). What can you DO?


Send a letter to the site owner. Explain that you have found content that is being used illegally. Ask that he/she take it down. If they do, it is problem solved. The letter should be short and direct. It should also give a date to respond by. That date doesn’t need to be far down the line, a week is plenty. If they don’t respond or don’t take the content down, you have to move on;


Contact the hosting company. Hosting companies are deemed liable for copyright infringement in the US if they knowingly host improper content. Makes them much more willing to take down offending content or even offending sites.

First contact with a hosting company can be fairly informal, just stating your claim, identifying the offending site, and stating that you can prove that it has been done. Legitimate hosting firms are real willing to help you out.

If the host does not take fairly rapid action on your request, ask them (the hosting company) to file a Digital Millenium Copyright Act (DMCA) complaint. You have to provide proof of copyright (a copy of the material and proof that you wrote it before the offending site posted it) and the site itself. It’s pretty straight forward, and almost always works. Then next step is clear, if a DMCA complaint doesn’t get it done.


Hire a lawyer. It’s time to decide just how much that piece of content is worth. Not just dollars and cents, but emotionally. If the number is big, hire a copyright lawyer and file a case. Know that this will cost thousands.

Hint when hiring a copyright lawyer. As about ‘Fair Use’. If they can’t explain it simply and completely, find another lawyer.


If you write, and especially if you write unique content, it will probably be stolen at some point. I would wish otherwise for you, but that is the case. There are really quite a few things you can do prior to hiring a lawyer and scheduling court time. Try all the other options first.
This article has been significantly influenced by 2 excellent blog posts written by Olivia Rose on Kissmetrics and Lori Soard at Web Hosting Secret Revealed. I most definitely recommend them to you…

Works Cited
“5 Easy to Use Tools to Effectively Find and Remove Stolen Content.” 5 Easy to Use Tools to Effectively Find and Remove Stolen Content. Web. 14 Mar. 2014.
“What To Do When Someone Steals Your Unique Site Content.” Web Hosting Secrets Revealed. Web. 14 Mar. 2014.


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Saturday Shortstop: Troy Tulowitzki

Troy TulowitzkiTroy Tulowitzki.  Best shortstop in the game right now?  He’s pretty darn good, in the field and at the plate.  Time will tell just how good he is.

Stop the Presses!  Wait!  Start the Presses.  Crap.  Look at THIS.  The Pizza Plan 2 has been updated and re released.  This is the remake of the Jon Olson classic for newish internet marketers.  If you haven’t read it, well, you probably aren’t real serious about this business.  PP2 is a get down in the dirt, hands on blueprint for starting your business.  It’s free, and comes with two great bonuses.

Pizza Plan 2 had a very profound impact on me, and my outlook toward the world.  I can not say enough good things about it.  It’s really that good.

So.  After all my bellyachin’ of last week, John Bell came out with a new TE ranking system.  It is clearly in Beta or earlier stages, works only on LFTME script, and is limited in scope.  But no voting!  Good for you, John Bell.  I hope you make it work and make a million off it!

Not that I think my bellyache and John Bell’s ranking system are remotely related.  Just trying to say “It’s about time”.

So.  I have a question.  If you declare that you are running a Ponzi payout in the description of your site, does that make it legal??  I have found at least 3 Bitcoin ‘doublers’ or ‘investment’ sites that do just that.  Really?

I suspect that if you or I invest in one of these and lose our money that we haven’t got a legal leg to stand on.  Why would anyone even try something that pays the juice off of the next investment?

Troy Tulowitzki is certainly a good shortstop, and he’s spent all his time in the bigs so far with a less than stellar Colorado Rockies team.  A really good example of making the most of his talents no matter what stage he’s on.  I can do the same, with no excuses.

I’m just sayin’


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Nerdbux: What Happened?


The very name is suddenly a lightning rod. What the hell happened? I don’t know any details, I am not privy to them. I am in not involved with either party. I know what everybody else knows.

I do have a respected source in the PTC industry. This report will lean heavily on his experience and insight. I will not name him, but I tell you that I trust him and ask you to trust me on that. I also know that he took a much larger hit when Nerdbux folded than I did.

What Happened?

Here’s what I know absolutely: Late Sunday night Tim Tech agreed to the sale of Nerdbux to Jeffery Johnson. The result of a short series of negotiations, I presume that both parties got what they wanted out of the deal. TT got the price they wanted and JJ got a top 1000 website with some known issues.

The issues

It was fairly widely known that TimTech had a couple of problems with Nerdbux. They had a ‘run on the bank’ that was principally caused by rumor and innuendo, driven by a massive cheat ring in Nerdbux. It is also widely known that TimTech made money at Nerdbux, even with those problems.

The Players

TimTech is a well known corporation with a reputation for honesty, transparency and paying their bills. All of their bills, on time, every time.

Jeffery Johnson. Much more shadowy, JJ owns multiple PTC sites. According to my source, this is not the first one that has folded without funding on his watch. My source says that the number of sites is in excess of 100. Some had impossible requirements to be paid, some didn’t last long enough to pay the high minimum to many if any. Some are legit.

So What DID happen?

Sometime during the dark hours Sunday money transferred from Jeffery Johnson to Tim Tech. The site was sold, and JJ owns it. Sometime fairly shortly after that JJ started changing the site to his. Included some cosmetic changes as well as transfer of the financial innards. It came completely unraveled when Pay Pal refused to play with Jeffery Johnson.


Paypal obviously has a history with Jeffery Johnson, and that history is not good. PayPal completely refused to have any dealings with the new owner of Nerdbux.

If PayPal had any issue with TimTech, any of the players in TimTech, or TTs Nerdbux they would suspend operations with them. PayPal is a trusted source of money transfer worldwide. They protect that reputation fiercely and just will not expose themselves to any shady or suspect dealings.

What Now?

Looks to me like any assets (money or referrals) that anyone had in Nerdbux is gone. My personal loss is very small, but some losses were significant. Very significant.

I personally will never, ever deal with any site owned by Jeffery Johnson.

The Blame Game

There is a ‘spin machine’ that is taking the opportunity to vilify TimTech. I suspect where you stand on that is where you stood with TimTech prior to the Nerdbux fiasco.

Is TimTech without blame? No. They made a couple of significant errors in their operation of Nerdbux.
1. They reacted slowly and poorly to what I suspect to be a massive cheat ring that cost them tens of thousands if not hundreds of thousands of dollars.
2. They tried to make Nerdbux friendly and open with their forum. It turned out to be a handy dandy place for rumor and vilification, and I strongly suspect that if you turned a translator loose in the foreign language chats you would find that the cheaters used their site as a headquarters for their cheat ring.

Afteraction Report

TimTech sold Nerdbux in a straightforward business deal to a known player in the PTC world. I have no idea how carefully they vetted Jeffery Johnson, anything that happened after the sale is strictly on Jeffery Johnson. I am certain that they DID NOT anticipate the consequences. Is simply not their style and there is no possible scenario that would make any of this be part of their doing. None.

And in the End

I started last week as a friend and known supporter of TimTech. Nothing, not one thing, in this fiasco has made me change one iota on that.

I’m just sayin’


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Stolen Content: What Can You Do? Part 2

“I am not a lawyer.  I have never played one on TV or anywhere else for that matter.  No part of this post should be taken as legal advice, it is meant to be educational in nature only.  That is all.”

So you have discovered stolen content.  What do you do?  What CAN you do?

First:  Document your Find

Screenshot is your friend.  Take screenshots of your page (showing the date of publication if possible) and the offending page (again with date).  Make copies of your original work if possible, again with date if possible.  If you wrote several drafts and can show them, do so.  Copy everything and store it in a safe place where you can find it again.

Second:  Find out Who Did It

So, if I stole your content, if would be easy to find out who I am and how to contact me.  It is not always as easy as that.  You will want the know who the author is, who the site owner is, and who the host of the site is.  All are important.  Very important.

Try the contact page on the website.  It might be that easy.

Whois.  At least in theory, every registered domain is listed in the ‘Whois’ database.  It will tell you things like who registered the domain, when it was registered and who hosts the website.

I mostly use Chrome Browser and have a 1 click extension for whois button right on my navigation bar.  If you can find the source code in your browser, you can use search to see if there is an email address listed in the source code.

One more ‘find ‘em’ tool that I have never used.  Go to ‘Who is Hosting This’, enter the URL and find who the host is (and more).

Be sure to make a note of and copy all this information so that you can find it again.

Now you know what stolen content is (Part 1) and how to find the thief (Part 2) I’ll be back here on Tuesday to wrap this up with what you can actually do.  Don’t despair, there is quite a lot you can do.

This article has been significantly influenced by 2 excellent blog posts written by Olivia Rose on Kissmetrics and Lori Soard at Web Hosting Secret Revealed.  I most definitely recommend them to you…

Works Cited

“5 Easy to Use Tools to Effectively Find and Remove Stolen Content.” 5 Easy to Use Tools to Effectively Find and Remove Stolen Content. Web. 14 Mar. 2014. <>.

“What To Do When Someone Steals Your Unique Site Content.” Web Hosting Secret Revealed. Web. 14 Mar. 2014. <>

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America the Beautiful

First and Foremost: This is in direct response to Robert Arnold’s post American Pride. Originally posted on March 19. I tried twice to respond and it was just too much. You probably need to read Robert’s American Pride post first.

I grew up a product of a life of privilege in, no question, the greatest country that has ever existed in all of history. The United States of America.

Post WWII America was the schizzle. GM and Ford dominated the world car market. Not because they built such fine automobiles (they didn’t) but because EVERYBODY ON EARTH WANTED A LITTLE BIT OF WHAT AMERICA HAD.

We had money and energy and most of all, potential. Education that was second to none (for most if not all). We could and did do everything. Everything.

No goal, no project, no challenge was too great. America can do.

We conceived of, designed, and built the first Atomic bomb in way less than 4 years in complete secrecy. America can do.

I saw and worked on the construction of the interstate highway system, which allows us to zip anyplace at anytime. Amazing.

We sent men to the moon and brought them back. In the course of a single decade from the challenge of a brand new President. With a computer system that did not exist at the start of the project. The very most sophisticated of the computers at the end of the project do not equal the average smartphone today. America can do!

What’s changed?
Several things. We took the flower off a complete generation (mine) by fighting a war that we had no business in. 58,500 young men never got to fulfil the American dream because they never came home. Another 500,000 came home as damaged goods and we are still battling that problem.

Security. Some how, somewhere, security for each and every citizen became a priority and then an obsession. We have traded freedom and self determination for security. My first car (1964 Barracuda) didn’t have seat belts in it, they weren’t required. There was no such thing as ‘child proof caps’. We didn’t grope 80 year old women in an airport looking for explosives.

Somewhere, we turned a corner, lost some of our conviction. What can I do? has somehow morphed into What’s in it for me?

I said at the start that I come from a privileged life. I do. I had the privilege to do what ever I wished and to reap the rewards or pay the consequences of my actions. I didn’t grow up with . money, I grew up with the ability and desire to work. I bought my first motorcycle almost exactly 50 years ago with a loan against a job that I needed the bike for. I paid cash for my 1964 Barracuda in 1966 with money I earned at that job. I was 16. Nobody can go to work at age 12 now…

And Now?

We are 10 years into not one but 2 wars that we had absolutely no chance of winning on the first day. Really? What did we learn in Vietnam?

We have sacrificed a huge percentage of our rights and freedoms on the altar of Security. We have taught our children to look to authority instead of looking inside themselves. We do not even have the will to force Congress to make a budget, let alone a project for the ages.

Do I think it’s hopeless?

Not even a little bit. We are, after all is said and done, the United States of America. We determine the path and actions we take. We are ruled by the majority with respect toward the minority. Greatness still lives within us.

Are we the best country on earth? Maybe. It takes some time to look back and see how we have done… There are still a huge fraction of the population of earth that would risk their lives to come to the US. As surely as moths to a light. Must mean something.

I’m just sayin’



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Stolen Content: What Now?

“I am not a lawyer.  I have never played one on TV or anywhere else for that matter.  No part of this post should be taken as legal advice, it is meant to be educational in nature only.  That is all.”

It happens to us all, sooner or later.  Somebody decides that your content would look way good on their website, or someone takes a couple of paragraphs and puts it into a newsletter.  Stolen content happens all the time.  Unfortunately.

People have a lot of different terms for this.  Plagiarism, Site Scraping, Copy and Paste. There are lots of names for theft.  Because that is precisely what it is.  Stealing.  One of the things your momma told you not to do, ever.

How Do You Know?

I found out when a friend congratulated me on getting a blog post syndicated.  Found a post he knew I had written on another website.  Turns out it was stolen, rather than syndicated,

Turns out there is a dandy website that will let you know.  Fast, easy, free.  Copyscape is most commonly used by teachers to catch plagiarism on papers, but they also have a web check service.  It’s a great service that will give you a percentage of words that are the same.  Copyscape also has premium services that will send you emails when you get copied, and give you much more information about the copy itself.  Worth looking into at the very least.

What’s the Law?

I’m going to write this for my American readers, with this note:  Most European Union, Canadian and Australian laws are more precise and less forgiving than US law.

American Copyright Law is fairly ambiguous.  It allows for ‘fair use’ of otherwise protected material.  All original material that you publish is copyrighted.  You write it, you own it.  You get to decide who uses it and what they will pay you.

Fair Use

Fair Use is generally considered to be a small quote from the copyrighted material that is clearly attributed to the original author or the owner of the rights.  Copy and paste of an article or even a significant portion of an article without permission is prohibited and punishable by a fairly hefty fine.

Say you are reviewing a book in your blog.  You could probably consider Fair Use to be 3 or 4 one or two sentence quotes, so long as you discuss and comment on the quotes directly.  The last page of the newest Steven King novel would not constitute Fair Use.

One thing to remember about the Fair Use doctrine:  It is often known as “The Fair Use Defense”.  As in defending yourself in a court of law.  When in doubt, less is WAY better than more.

Be sure to come back Thursday when I will discuss what you can do when you find you are indeed the victim of stolen content.

This article has been significantly influenced by 2 excellent blog posts written by Olivia Rose on Kissmetrics and Lori Soard at Web Hosting Secrets Revealed.  I most definitely recommend them to you…

Works Cited

“5 Easy to Use Tools to Effectively Find and Remove Stolen Content.” 5 Easy to Use Tools to Effectively Find and Remove Stolen Content. Web. 14 Mar. 2014. <>.

“What To Do When Someone Steals Your Unique Site Content.” Web Hosting Secret Revealed. Web. 14 Mar. 2014. <>


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Saturday Shortstop: Maury Wills

Maury Wills with bases
image courtesy MLB

Maury Wills was an original hero for me.  He was the shortstop for the Spokane Indians (the Dodgers AAA affiliate) before he went up to lead the big club to the World Series Championship.  Wills lived in Spokane for years, both his boys went through HS in Spokane.  I got to know them and play some ball (mostly against) with them.

TERL (TERacingLeague) went over 20,000 members sometime Tuesday AM.  A real tribute to a great TE, Robert Arnold got the deal done in less than 15 months.  A whole bunch of owners need to pay attention to those numbers.  Tell me again that TEs and TE Land is failing.  All you have to do is work your ass off and promote like crazy.  Having a superior design doesn’t hurt, either.

The brand new and improved Affiliate Funnel TE rankings are out.  Big changes in how the sites are ranked.  Congratulations to Tony Tezak for being #1.  But…No TimTech site, no Legacy Site, no Eric Goettman site in the top 10.  Means to me that the rankings are pure Bullshit.  Pure.  Bullshit.

There are a couple of owners in TE Land that are launching a new product at least once per month.  You ever wonder why?  It’s called a cash grab, and it is more or less a Ponzi scheme.  Use the current program to pay the bills from the last several.  A business model that is doomed to fail…

I’m a big fan of those websites that plainly display their membership and how many have logged in today and such.  Gives me a real idea of how active and workable the site really is…  But I have to tell you that if you only have 4 joining today and your total membership is less than 2000 you would probably be better served to leave that information off your front page…

I wrote about Rating TEs on Thursday.  I didn’t say a thing about ‘engaged ownership’, purely an oversight on my part.  I look at my 20 favorite TEs (that I listed) and every single one has very engaged ownership.  EVERY ONE.  Startling coincidence, wouldn’t you say? Thanks to Russell and Nick for that observation…

Maury Wills wasn’t a great hitter.  He wasn’t a great shortstop.  He was the very best base stealer of his time, and with his best asset led the Dodgers into a pretty impressive record through the 60’s.  A great example of ‘find what you do best and exploit it to the maximum’. A pretty darn good business model for me, too.

I’m just sayin’


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Rating a Traffic Exchange

Traffic Exchange GraphI started out in TE Land convinced that I could figure out a system that would rate the various and sundry TEs in a fashion that everybody could understand and use. I did a lot of math and figuring, timed hundreds with a stopwatch, and finally gave up.

Let’s be real here. I do NOT like the current ranking systems, because all involve voting, and the owners that have the best ‘vote for me’ promotion going dominate the ratings. Which wouldn’t be all bad if it weren’t for the obvious manipulation that goes on at those places. Stinks, actually.

I don’t look at those rankings, and I don’t vote. For anybody. It’s just how I am.

Not that I don’t have favorites, I certainly do. 80% of my surfing is done on 10 sites, obviously favorites of mine.

Rating a New TE

If I have reason to go to a new to me TE, I actually have a system. I’m not much for the ‘Launch Day’ crowd, even though I often join first day. Typically, I will join, surf 100 pages or so, then bookmark it for further review. I want to know how their ‘regular operation’ is, not the launch day frenzy…

First thing I do when I go back is carefully read the Terms of Service (TOS) and rules of the site. You’d be surprised how many I eliminate right then and there because of restrictive rules and policies. I pay particular attention to the commission payment and structure sections.

Then I check the surf ratio, credit per view and surf timer for free and upgraded members. A 10 second timer is too long for me, 6 is plenty. I mostly surf solo, I am really there to check the ads and see the sights. Even 6 seconds is an eternity when an ad comes up that I know I’ll never click on…

Then I check those three parts. I write down my credits (remember that auto assign credits often do not show in the account window) and surf a measured number of pages off the stopwatch. For a 6 second timer I expect to get 8 view per minute or more, otherwise I consider the timer skewed. I also expect to get all the credits promised. This isn’t always the case.

Bonus Pieces

I like chat. I like to surf sites with a chat, but it’s not a deal breaker. I’m not an active chat user, but really appreciate the feature. It’s like having some noise in an empty house.

I appreciate unique, too. I’m not talking about different colors, here, I am talking about unique features. Means to me that the owner takes pride in and cares about his site and surfers.

I like some games. I have a few that I always play, and some that I always ignore.

I like BADGES.

Naming Names

I said earlier that I do 80% of my surfing is at 10 sites. They are 4 from TimTech, 3 from Legacy, 2 of Eric Goettman’s and TERL. They are so well known that I won’t even name them…

There is another list of sites that I am really fond of, that I would surf much more were there more hours in my day. I will name these, because I really do encourage you to at least check them out.

In No Particular Order

Show Biz Hits: I may be a sap, but I just love the place. Lisa and Chris rock!
Surf Skeleton: If William would let me open the vault, I might move this up:)
List Build Surf: John Novak. No more needs to be said.
Cup of Traffic: Great site, great owner. Russell Stockley
Surf Duel: I really like the concept and execution. Totally unique.
Tezak Traffic Power: Fun and clunky from Tony Tezak.
Surfing Socially. Super slick place to surf from Matt Baker.
Social Surf 4 U: Barry Langdon has a great site, Barry is great, too.
Traffic Swirl: John Bell has one of the premium sites on the Net.
Crusin’ Exchange: Rob Paris has a fun place.

And in the End

That’s how I rate TEs, and my list.

I’m just sayin’


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