I have noticed an increased number of articles with the only aim of being featured at a big site and getting traffic to them (and thus people clicking in their banners). Usually the titles match one of the following patterns:
- Top (number) (things | for doing something). Examples: top 10 tips for becoming a better programmer, top 15 things you should do before 30, top 5 programming languages... etc. These pages are usually poor in actual content, mainly being a rushed compilation of some items for the selected theme. Most of the times, the recommendations are outdated, like for example, tips for object oriented php using php4 syntax (when php5 is way better and that's what everybody willing to do OOP with php should learn).
- (Apple | Microsoft | whatever big company) + (DRM's | Sueing each other | Open source | Market shares). Examples: Apple wins 10% market share, Microsoft creates open source license... Usually these articles are simple copy & paste from slashdot or theregister and do not add any depth to the topic. Also they tend to appear in a page bloated with ads, where 10% of the page is the actual content and the rest is pure useless crap (specially when the crap is targeted at customers from an specific country).
- (PHP / Python / Ruby On Rails / CSS / etc) tutorial for beginners. Examples are obvious. These articles are just a rewriting of the first chapter of the official documentation, sometimes they go further and simply copy and paste it. No added value. Crap.
- Let's talk about (something). Examples: What is Ubuntu? The real history of Ubuntu. The GPL. What is the cathedral and the bazaar? These are usually taken from wikipedia, making use of the open license it has, but without giving any credit back. Anyone which just happens to read the article, might attribute the authorship of it to the blog owner, and not to whoever wrote it at wikipedia. Apart from being stupid, this is a shame. People who do this should be condemned to public disconnection from internet for life!