Thursday, March 24, 2011

"I Can't Manage My Blog" - Three Sides To Every Story

One of the more intriguing Blogger problems, seen daily in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, involves control or ownership of our blogs.
I can't manage my blog!
or
My blog isn't on my dashboard! Can Blogger give me my blog back?
Besides the constant possibility that this is yet another locked or deleted blog, caused by spam classification (righteous or spurious), there are several possible scenarios here.

The most commonly seen scenario, besides the already mentioned spam classification, involves past inadvertent creation of a second Blogger account (worse, a third, or fourth ...), by the blog owner - with the blog owner currently having access to the wrong account. The person reporting the problem needs to recover access to the other Blogger account - preferably after clearing cache, cookies, and active sessions, and restarting the browser.

A second scenario, seen occasionally (but not publicised, for several reasons) may involve a blog, stolen by an unknown second party, and now under control of the other. This may involve malicious or innocent motive - and may require considerable effort by Blogger Support to verify, if control is to be righteously restored to the original owner.

A third, and more devious scenario, can involve an attempt to steal a blog, by posting in the forum and claiming that the blog in question was previously stolen. In some cases, this can involve an attempt to take over a desired "dormant" URL, which the hijacker considers essential to his ability to publish a blog. Here the would be hijacker may not be aware that these claims cannot be simply taken at face value - and that any claim must be verified with great seriousness, to prevent the righteous owner of the blog from having to post later and state the second scenario.

Blogger lets us publish our blogs in anonymity - so they do not tie our blogs to our real life identities. With that ability (ours) comes the responsibility, which is also ours, that we must retain control of our blogs, on our own. That concern - and these three scenarios - is always in mind when we read a forum report
My blog is not on my dashboard!

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