For almost a decade, blogging has been one of my pastimes. In the past I wrote recreationally about television and technology. Today, I write a weekly blog post on trends and techniques with digital marketing and search engine optimisation. This page collates some of my favourite writing (some longer, some shorter) from over the years.
- Britain's Forgotten Talent
27 May 2013 – For every Susan Boyle and Ashleigh and Pudsey, Britain's Got Talent highlights a slew of entertainers forgotten before the end credits. Revisit the impressive impressionists and masterful musicians who failed to become household names.
- Counting Down to a New Dictionary
12 Oct 2013 – After 32 years, Channel 4 game show Countdown bid farewell to using a printed dictionary to verify contestants' words. While traditionalists may have been fearful of change, I reflected on the neologisms permitted by the transition to a digital dictionary.
- Eggs-cellent Television
8 Jun 2013 – During the Britain's Got Talent 2013 final, Simon Cowell was pelted with eggs by a violinist booked to perform with one of the acts. I love live television being stretched to its limits, and took the opportunity to chuckle at other clips of TV sets being invaded.
- Going L!VE – and Going, Going, Gone!
31 May 2013 – In 2013, the tape archive and IP from defunct cable channel L!VE TV was auctioned on eBay, selling for just over £14,000. As a fan of their low budget and often lowbrow programming, I mused about the TV gold (and iron pyrite) going up for sale.
- Grand Slam: The Welcome Return of The Slammer
8 Nov 2013 – Greg Scott, former host of cult phone-in Quizmania, made a cameo in CBBC's The Slammer when it returned after three years off the air. I was chuffed for Greg – and for children everywhere. This talent-cum-sketch show was the best kids' show of the noughties.
- How to Beat Your Friends at Countdown
22 Jun 2013 – When I was 14, I took on the tick-tock tension of television's Countdown clock. If you're a fan of the programme and looking to improve your scores, here are a few intermediate level tips to help you fare better at the letters, numbers and conundrum.
- How To Pack The Ultimate TV Runner's Rucksack
5 Feb 2013 – After more than four years of working as a runner on location-based TV productions, my backpack was chock-full of OB essentials. This rundown offered a comprehensive checklist of must-have items for anyone starting out in television.
- My Tribute to Television Centre
18 Mar 2013 – Whether as a TV enthusiast, game show contestant or broadcast industry underling, Television Centre was an aspirational constant in my life. Shortly before its closure at the end of March 2013, I shared a few thought on the question mark-shaped building.
- Reconnecting: Why Only Connect Is The Best Quiz Show Ever
12 May 2013 – What is the connection between a poker player, a Cardiff television studio, Egyptian hieroglyphics, and wrds wth n vwls? Only Connect, the insanely difficult but ridiculously rewarding quiz show. Learn why I love it, and play along with a puzzle in the style of the programme.
- Robot Wars Reactivated on Challenge
21 Mar 2014 – When Challenge bought the rights to air series 2 of Robot Wars for the first time since 1998, I was delighted. Not only had they picked up my favourite childhood show, but my favourite series of my favourite childhood show. Here's why!
- 21 Christmas Jokes for SEOs
22 Dec 2014 – Sometimes, the easiest blogs to write end up being the most popular. For Christmas 2014, I assembled a list of cheesy puns loosely themed around SEO, PPC and social media. They went down a treat, picking up retweets and upvotes left, right and centre.
- 6 Kinds of Duplicate Content (and How to Fix Them)
23 Feb 2015 – A website with many versions of the same content is effectively in competition with itself. The site will suffer from lower rankings than if closely-related content was all in one place. This post explains how to find and fix duplicate content issues on your site.
- About the Latest Google Panda Update
29 Sep 2014 – Far from being cuddly, Google Panda is a part of the search engine's ranking algorithm that penalises certain websites. Victims risk loss of traffic and sales, so it's a big deal. I compiled a Google Panda recap after an update to the algorithm.
- Adios, AltaVista
8 Jul 2013 – Inevitable as its demise may have been, I was saddened by the closure of pioneering search engine AltaVista in 2013. I've never been one to turn down an opportunity for nostalgia, and composed an e-eulogy for the one-time Google rival.
- Exclusive: Google Pigeon Has Been Captured
1 Apr 2014 – Practical jokes are one of my favourite forms of humour, and so it follows that I love April Fools' Day. To celebrate its arrival in 2014, I wrote about Google's many animals. In reality, these are just code names for features of their search engine.
- How to Use Robots.txt for a Better Google Crawl
2 Mar 2015 – I've long been a lover of robots, but for once I'm not talking about Sir Killalot. On the web, a robot is a program which crawls your website in search of information. This post explains how to control them, with benefits for security and search rankings.
- I ♥ PowerPoint
14 Feb 2013 – Written as a tongue-in-cheek article for Valentine's Day, this blog post explores my entirely genuine affection for Microsoft PowerPoint. It's probably the most hated software in the world, but – as I try to explain – in the right hands it is really rather good.
- Never Knowingly Undershared
10 Nov 2013 – Also known as “How I Went Viral By Accident”! When John Lewis unveiled their 2013 Christmas advert I tweeted my reaction, but accidentally messaged a man called John Lewis and not the retailer. Over 200 retweets later, he was a social media celebrity!
- Why Is Every Website Blue?
28 May 2013 – This is an exploration of the role of colour in contemporary web design. Or, a vitriolic rant about why so many popular websites (including Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn) use blue as their brand colour. Either way, the irony isn't lost on me.
- Your Strongest Competitor Isn't Always Right Behind You
24 Nov 2013 – A call to arms for owners of e-commerce websites. This blog post addresses how quickly search rankings can change, and how you can predict and pre-empt your competitors' movements in order to keep them at bay.
- Never a Cross Word
11 Jan 2014 – Cryptic crossword puzzles have long been one of my favourite distractions. Better as solver than setter, I had sometimes wondered how my name might be hidden in a crossword grid. A social media challenge offered me the chance to find out.
- Philpot: What's in a Name?
5 Oct 2013 – Despite frequently being introduced as “Phil”, I'm pretty attached to my surname. But what is the origin of the family name Philpot? Am I descended from potmen, gardeners or snooker players? The answer might just surprise you!