About six months ago, Google’s head of search spam, Matt Cutts, made a comment in a Google forum thread that links within press releases won’t “benefit your rankings.” Since then, Search Engine Land showed one case where Google not only discovers the links within typical press releases but uses the anchor text for ranking purposes. Maybe it was one fluke, or maybe that particular case was not fair? In fact, Matt has said this numerous times that press release links don’t count. The other day, Daniel Tan released another press release, this time on a smaller release site and added the anchor text “leasreepressmm” pointing to the blog of Matt Cutts. His goal was to get Matt’s blog to rank for leasreepressmm ,and guess what, it worked. A search in Google for [leasreepressmm] returns Matt’s blog as number seven for me right now, only a few days after the press release was posted. URL: http://searchengineland.com/matt-cutts-more-proof-google-does-count-links-from-press-releases-158350 Twitter: http://twitter.com/rustybrick Author: Barry Schwartz from Search Engine Land. Originally distributed by MyPR.co.za. Images: Of course, Matt could have meant it wouldn’t “benefit your rankings” for more competitive search terms? For more on links, see our Link Building & Ranking In Search Engines chapter. UPDATE: The Ultimate Link Building Guide for 2016 and Beyond. . . .
Nicholas Mirzoeff, Professor of Media Culture and Communication at New York University, speaks on “Freedom and the Global South: The Legacy of Black Reconstruction” as part of GIPCA’s Great Texts on Thursday 23 May 2013. In 1935 WEB Du Bois published his monumental work Black Reconstruction. More than just a history of Reconstruction after the abolition of slavery (1865-77), his book was a blueprint for freedom. For Du Bois, the global South was the hope for a different future. Drawing from his own prize-winning book, The Right to Look, Professor Nicholas Mirzoeff’s presentation will track the legacy of Black Reconstruction in our understanding of democracy, education, debt and land justice. He connects Du Bois’s project to the global social movements since 2011 and their call for a new reconstruction for our own time. Nicholas Mirzoeff is Professor of Media Culture and Communication at New York University, and one of the founders of the academic discipline of visual culture in books like An Introduction to Visual Culture (1999/2009) and The Visual Culture Reader (1998/2002/2012). He is also Deputy Director of the International Association for Visual Culture and organized its first conference in 2012. His most recent book The Right to Look: A Counterhistory of Visuality (2011) won the Anne Friedberg Award for Innovative Scholarship from the Society of Cinema and Media Studies. He is currently working on expanding the project into a trilogy. The second part will deal with countervisuality in the global social movements of 2011, in which Mirzoeff was an active participant with Occupy Wall Street and Strike Debt. The concluding volume looks beyond the limits of visuality and visualizing to the possibilities of resonance, jubilee and mutual aid. Professor Nicholas Mirzoeff’s visit to the University of Cape Town is supported by the Deputy Vice-Chancellor’s office. Great Texts lectures take place on Thursdays for the month of May. This lecture will take place . . .
Nedbank’s insurance company has confirmed that it will once again provide free life cover to participants in this year’s Nedbank sani2c mountain bike race, which starts in Underberg in KwaZulu-Natal on May 14. The company, which came on board as official life insurance sponsor to the event in 2012, will make 360Life policies available to every one of the 4 500 riders across the three-day Race (May 16 to 18), Adventure (May 15 to 18) and Trail (May 14 to 16) components. According to Nedbank’s insurance executive Lance Blumeris, the policy included R500 000 worth of accidental death and physical impairment cover and would be valid for the month of May. Blumeris said riders could activate the policy on the official race website and would also have the option to upgrade to R1 million worth of cover at a nominal once-off premium before May 13. After the event, participants who wished to convert their cover to a standalone long-term policy could do so before the end of June without any underwriting, he said. “Mountain biking is a very physically demanding and unpredictable sport. In partnering with the world’s largest paired stage race, we hope to give riders peace-of-mind so they can concentrate on enjoying the route,” said Blumeris. Last year, two Trail riders were tragically killed in a motor vehicle accident as they were returning home to Johannesburg. Blumeris said Nedgroup Life had been able to assist their families by paying out the policies on these riders. “We may not be able to take away the pain felt by a client’s loved ones but we can help in practical ways by providing cover for everything from death and disability to critical illness and income protection.” He said the 360Life policy was designed to be flexible and to adapt to a client’s changing needs and circumstances. According to race organiser Glen Haw, the policy was just another way in which the race and its sponsors provided a holistic experience for riders. “Anything . . .
The Twitter Blanket Drive (TBD) is a uniquely South African, community-driven response to the needs of the poor during the winter months of the year. Initiated in 2010 by Founder, Melanie Minnaar, the Twitter Blanket Drive started with a single tweet: What if each person on Twitter donated a blanket? Since then, the Twitter Blanket Drive movement has grown exponentially. In 2012, 13 000 blankets were collected by the Twitter Blanket Drive and donated to organisations who assist the needy, homeless and indigent. Events take on the form of a “Tweetup”, whereby Twitter users tweet about donating their blankets and all enjoy a meal or drink at the collection point. For 2013, events will be held across the country on 25 May (and on 26 May in some regions). Johannesburg - Protea Hotel Fire and Ice, Melrose Arch Durban - Wakaberry, Durban North - Shop 3, 41 MacKeurtan Avenue, Durban North Cape Town - Protea Hotel Fire and Ice, Tamboerskloof How can you help? 1. Attend a Twitter Blanket Drive event in your town. 2. Make a cash donation to the Twitter Blanket Drive, at the event. Donated funds will be used to purchase more blankets. 3. Like Twitter Blanket Drive on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TBDZA 4. Follow Twitter Blanket Drive on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tbdza or https://www.twitter.com/TBDAfrica and use the hashtag #TBD2013 5. Help with the transport of the blankets from events to beneficiary organisations. 6. Corporate sponsorship packages are available. The Twitter Blanket Drive attracts a lot of national attention on social media channels during the run-up to the event, and your organization will be highlighted on the TBD social media channels and website. Contact - Cape Town: Merentia van der Vent - via Twitter @merentia | Durban: Fred Felton via Twitter @fredfelton | Johannesburg: Jodene Shaer via Twitter @Jodenecoza URL: http://www.tbdafrica.co.za Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/tbdza Facebook: . . .
This week the Property Poser panel deals with a case of sibling rivalry between two brothers who co-own a property, in which the one lives. The reader, who resides elsewhere, appears to be having communication issues with his brother. He has discovered that his sibling has made arrangements regarding outstanding instalments and payments at the bank and municipality without his knowledge. The reader does not, however, mention whether the arrangements entered into have any direct financial consequences for him. The siblings are, from a legal perspective, partners in respect of the ownership of the house, says Stiaan Jonker of Smith Tabata Attorneys in Port Elizabeth. “The rights and obligations of the partners would, in the absence of alternative arrangements, be equal.” Jonker says one could assume that the sibling probably pays a rental to the reader for the use of his half-share of the property. “As far as the other obligations are concerned, payments should be made by the partnership.” It would appear that the partnership has fallen behind in some aspects, hence the arrangements, says Jonker. “Partners are jointly and severally liable for the debts of the partnership and one partner arranging to make payments isn’t problematic in itself. Assuming, of course, that he didn’t represent the other without consent.” Jonker says the partner making payments on behalf of the partnership has a right of recourse against the non-paying partner to claim the portion he should have paid. “Our reader seems to feel quite strongly that his rights have been ignored by the bank and municipality. He feels that this should assist him in being released from the partnership.” According to Susan Chapman from Rawson Properties PE Platinum, the reader has not explained the internal arrangements between the partners or whether there is even a partnership agreement in place. “Of course, if there is such an agreement, this is the first place for our reader . . .
Determined to retain their hard-earned trophy, last year's national champions from Khayelitsha are ready to take on all-comers as children from across South Africa prepare for the outdoor fun, competition and gees of the 2013 KIA Street Soccer League in May. This year's national champions will not only lift the coveted trophy, but will also stand a chance of winning a trip of a lifetime to the 2014 World Cup in Brazil. On Friday 10, May, Sporting Chance, in association with title sponsor KIA Motors, associate sponsor Mille and media partners Supersport Let's Play, Good Hope FM and Ukhozi FM, will roll out the annual national neighbourhood street soccer programme that will reach approximately 6000 boys and girls under the age of 13, empowering and exposing them to a brighter future through the valuable lessons of sport. The Cape Town sides will also interact with their favourite Ajax PSL players during the four month tournament, as they participate and assist with the programme. A positive spin-off from the 2010 World Cup Ticket Fund legacy, the KIA Street Soccer programme is the largest of its kind, giving aspiring youngsters from Gauteng, Western Cape, KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern Cape and Free State provinces a large dose of positive and healthy energy, which lingers long past the tournament's final match. With last year's inclusion of Welkom in the Free State, the programme is now closer to making street soccer available to all South African youth, whether urban or rural-based. Conceptualised and co-ordinated by youth sports development agency Sporting Chance, the KIA Street Soccer programme, supported by FIFA and SAFA, teaches life skills through the game of soccer to children who need it most and where they need it most. The communities within the 40 participating regions are hampered by poverty and crime, and lack adequate and safe facilities and stimulating after-school and weekend activities. “Sport can be such a powerful catalyst for upliftment,” said . . .
African Utility Week to gather 5000 power and water professionals in Cape Town in May “Symbion Power and many other companies from the United States are ready to invest in Africa,” says Symbion Power CEO Paul Hinks. “These firms are ethical,” Paul adds, “they have integrity and they need partners in both the public and private sectors. The US government wants to support both the US and the African private sector as this is the route to development on the continent. President Obama’s strategy for Sub Saharan Africa was set out in June 2012 and I am sure that everyone will soon see that he is committed to it.” Symbion Power, a platinum sponsor at the upcoming African Utility Week, taking place from 14-15 May in Cape Town, recently acquired the South African power network contractor EJP, which Paul Hinks says was a vote of confidence in Africa: “we wanted a foothold in South Africa and we wanted to strengthen the management of our organization on the Africa continent. EJ Power has good, experienced management who live in Africa. We can’t manage day to day business with a whole day of time difference and between 9,000 and 13,000 kms of distance, depending which of our current operations you measure it against.” Other interests in Africa The company already has a good track record in Tanzania says Paul Hinks: “Tanzania is the first country in Africa that we have worked in. Until then we were heavily focused on Iraq and Afghanistan so it has been a pleasure to return to Africa. We now own three power plants in Tanzania generating 217 Megawatts and we have recently signed an agreement with the utility there, TANESCO, to jointly develop a 400MW power plant and a 650km transmission line in the south at Mtwara. This plant will have the potential to provide natural gas fired power to neighboring countries such as Mozambique and Malawi and eventually it can feed the Southern African Power Pool.” Symbion is also about to enter the Nigerian market since Transcorp . . .
The Standard Bank Jazz Festival, Grahamstown 2013 incorporates a variety of disciplines into their programme. The Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Festivaltakes place alongside a diverse programme that features Mainstream, Blues / Funk / World Music, Afro-Jazz, Modern Jazz and Youth. Mainstream performances are headlined by special guest from the Juilliard School of Music in New York, renowned trombonist and shells specialist Steve Turre. He adds zest to the Awesome Big Band, and his solo show is supported by a strong line-up compromising Marcus Wyatt (Trumpet), Bokani Dyer (piano), Hein van de Geyn (bass) and Kevin Gibson (drums). One of the sell-out trademarks of the Jazz Festival in Grahamstown is the Awesome Big Band – a unique selection of top international jazz musicians in a standard Big Band format. This year’s band is conducted by Canadian trumpeter Bruce Cassidy, renowned for his quirky, powerful arrangements. Other Mainstream performances include those by Dutch performers Paulien van Schaik (voice) andHein Van de Geyn (double bass) – masters of their instruments in a context so subtle the audience is spellbound; AJ Brown - a young singer and saxophonist from Britain; a Vocal Celebration byJustin Binek (Head of Vocal Jazz Studies at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia) and Paulien van Schaik and a Frank Sinatra Tribute. African influence dominates the Blues / Funk / World Music category, with South African icon Vusi Mahlasela, commonly referred to as "The Voice" of South Africa in tribute to his passionately soaring performances. The Soweto String Quartet - fondly known as Nelson Mandela’s favourite group – makes its first appearance on the Grahamstown Jazz stages, as do established blues artistsRobin Auldand Albert Frost and young sensations MiCasa. Saxophonist Rus Nerwich’s project is simple, fun and musically rich, incorporating elements of the different styles he enjoys in a contemporary musical context with the intent and style of . . .
Budding performing artists are reminded that the deadline for the ACT | DALRO | Nedbank Performing Arts Scholarships for 2013 is fast approaching. These scholarships are awarded to enable ambitious youngsters keen to pursue a performing arts course at any accredited South African tertiary institution. Through an annual country-wide competition; participants are assessed on their acting, dancing and singing potential; with the process culminating in a final showcase before an independent panel of judges. “It is an immense privilege to be able give the greatest gift of all; education to young people. With DALRO and Nedbank’s generous support, the Arts & Culture Trust has been able to award six scholarships through an investment of more than R900 000 to date. We are extremely grateful to have partners who share our commitment to the development of artistic talent,” says Chief Executive Officer of The Arts & Culture Trust, Pieter Jacobs. Sponsored by Nedbank Arts Affinity and the Dramatic, Artistic and Literary Rights Organisation (DALRO), the ACT Scholarships Programme is aimed at learners in their final year of secondary education who wish to pursue undergraduate studies in the performing arts. Also eligible for participation are individuals who are between the ages of 18 and 25 but not considered to be professional or registered for an undergraduate course during 2013. In order to secure commitment from participants, a registration fee of R120 per entry is charged and proceeds are utilised for the implementation of the Scholarship Programme. For the auditions, participants are required to prepare a prescribed monologue, song and dance. In addition to the prescribed performances, contestants will also get an opportunity to perform their chosen monologue, song and dance. During the preliminary round, a panel of judges, comprising two ACT staff members and one DALRO representative will select six finalists after conducting auditions in six cities, as . . .
It's a fresh new look, with a contemporary layout, expanded art and lifestyle content and Augmented Reality (AR) enhancements for Mercedes-Benz Magazine, recently reshaped by its long-time publisher, New Media Publishing, under the guidance of Mercedes-Benz parent company Daimler AG. The first revamped issue is a more relevant and up-to-date reflection of today's Mercedes-Benz, which is a lifestyle choice, says Mercedes-Benz Magazine editor Dylan Culhane of New Media Publishing, and reflects the brand's appeal to a new generation of consumers. From the very first glance, Mercedes-Benz Magazine is completely 'new school', sporting a fire engine red cover with bold visual callouts that are windows to the diverse content within. Inside the 105-page '01-2013' issue are strong graphics, beautiful photography and style-oriented content, which ranges from culinary art to architecture to motoring. When it comes to motoring, Culhane says there's a whole new and more dramatic spin. Traditional motoring stories have given way to lifestyle-oriented pieces like a feature on the new A-Class, which showcases Johannesburg property developer Adam Levy, gaming guru and MTV-Base producer Pippa Tshabalala and other forward-thinking young South Africans who symbolise the new generation of Mercedes-Benz. "It's wonderful to work with a client who shares the same values, and is willing to push boundaries with new ideas that will ultimately reward the consumer with a superior product," says Culhane. "This new mix works brilliantly for Mercedes-Benz, a brand which has longstanding associations with fashion, design, music and technology. Shifting gears The new-look publication, which is distributed directly to Mercedes-Benz owners and dealers, is also debuting AR, a technology that channels an extra virtual dimension to readers with smart devices. Several stories contain image triggers that the reader can use to bring images – and as a result, stories - to life, by accessing . . .