I have a somewhat ethical question related to Trackbacks. But I'll start with an explanation. Several sites allow you to add a Trackback manually if you don't have the feature built into your weblog tool. (eg. BlogFodder
.) And there's no authentication or identity management that goes along with these. They're open for anyone and everyone to add a Trackback linking to any post on any site. (It relies on the honor system + moderation + IP Logging [hopefully!] from the site administrators.)
As Trackbacks are used now, there's an extra bit of information that doesn't show up on the page: the implication that it was the author of the remote post that initiated the Trackback. Is it wrong to use one of these open forms to trackback a post that you didn't write?
For example, Mena posted about her panel at SXSW
and I'd like to see it under that panel's entry at the SXSW Notes Exchange
. And I could add it with the open form
. But should I? This example is no big deal, and I don't think Mena would mind too much. But I can think of situations where this would be a problem. I think Trackbacks could be used for all sorts of information aggregation, but the author-implication could restrict its use.