An Important Update

Dear Followers Of This Blog ...

If you did not use a Blogger / Google account when you Followed this blog, years ago, you are probably not Following now . During the past...

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Windows XP / IE V8 Is "Good Enough" - But For How Long?

This month, we've seen more than a few reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about various Blogger dashboard problems.

Both the Overview and Post Editor dashboard sections seem vulnerable to problems - typically described as bX code terminations. Many of the people reporting problems admit that they are using Internet Explorer V8.

For some blog owners, the choice of staying with IE V8 is not an option.
Get everyone to use Chrome, and don't support those using IE V8. Win XP works fine. Everyone can't get new computers or operating systems, every time some new software comes out!
Unfortunately, Windows XP was sunsetted, by Microsoft, some time ago - and IE V8 is the last version of that browser that will run, on Windows XP.

Windows XP and IE V8 may be "good enough" for now - but time is running out, on both.

Monday, July 29, 2013

Static Page Created, Has Home Page URL

We get occasional reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about a broken Pages gadget.
I created a new page - but when you click on the link, you get bounced back to the Home page!

When you look at the blog with the problem, it's easy enough to verify the report - just look at the URL behind the link, for the most recent page created. Indeed, it points straight to the Home page (base URL for the blog).

When this happens, there is a very simple workaround. Just create another page, identical to the problem entry.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Repeated DMCA Violations Are Punished Gradually

Some blog owners don't understand the serious nature of DMCA Violations in Blogger blogs - and how offenses are handled, by Google.

We've seen several reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, from blog owners who appear to be unclear about the consequences of repeated DMCA Violations.
I got email from Blogger, about my Blogger account.
We'd like to inform you that we've received another complaint regarding a blog that you administer. Upon review of your account, we've noted that you've repeatedly violated the Terms of Service: http://www.blogger.com/go/terms. Given that we've provided you with several warnings of these violations and advised you of our policy towards repeat infringers, we've been forced to disable your Blogger service.
How do I get my blog restored?

This example appears to represent the final step, in a 3 step policy.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Anonymous Blog Ownership, And Hacked Account Detection

This week, we're seeing a number of reports from blog owners with Blogger accounts recently hacked.
I was asked to change my password, because of suspicious activity. Having done that, my blogs are now deleted!

With hacked Blogger / Google accounts, causing deleted blogs, there's not a lot of advice that we can provide.
As you just discovered, the account is recovered almost immediately. Blog recovery, unfortunately, takes longer - sometimes, 1 to 2 days. You'll have to wait, patiently, until your blogs are verified by Google Security staff.

We're also seeing the normal amount of reports of blogs deleted by Blogger, when detected for malware, porn, or spam. In some cases, blog review ends with the conclusion that the blog was not, in fact, deleted for a TOS violation. In these cases, the blog won't be restored by Blogger Support.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Confusion Over Custom Domain Expiration Dates, Caused By Google Apps Email

We're seeing some panic today, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, from a few blog owners who have received email, which implies that their custom domain registrations are approaching expiration - and can't be renewed.
I registered my domain several months ago, through Google. I have the receipt for the payment in my email, my Google Wallet account, and my credit card statement.

Why am I getting this email now, some months after registering my domain - but well before my registration should be expiring?
Our records indicate that the payment for registering your domain mydomain.com was unsuccessful.

Payment failures happen for a variety of reasons (such as insufficient funds or an expired card). You can update your payment information to resolve the issue.

Please log in to your account and update your payment information. If you take no action, your domain will not be renewed on .

This confusion is especially unfortunate, given the recent discontinuation of the very popular Google Domain Registration option, which drives the Blogger "Buy a domain" wizard. It is reminiscent of a similar episode, almost a year ago.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Community Building, With Two Purposes

Earlier this week, we saw numerous reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about problems with Google Friend Connect, on some Blogger blogs.

Once we realised the variety of the symptoms being experienced by blog owners and guests, it was not too difficult to report the problem, providing sufficient details, to Blogger Support. In less than 2 hours after the problem was reported, Blogger Engineers identified and resolved the problem.

Unfortunately, every problem with Blogger - and with Google Friend Connect - is not always going to have a similarly happy ending.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Dynamic Templates, And Network Problems

We're getting a few problem reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, from blog owners who chose a dynamic view for their blog.
My layout has one colour - yet when I view my blog, it's another colour. The accessory bar is missing gadgets - and there are various tweaks missing. I tried updating, using the Template designer, unsuccessfully. When I finished updating, the preview looked good - but when I saved and viewed my blog, it was still incomplete.

This blog owner, like many owners, may not understand the unique design of the dynamic templates - nor how the design affects what is seen by the readers.

Tuesday, July 09, 2013

Post Editor Problems With Blog Owners Using Internet Explorer V8

We've been seeing a steady stream of problems being reported in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, from blog owners unable to use post editor.

The symptoms are varied, in detail.
  • Some can't get the cursor active, in the window.
  • Others can't use the Preview option.
  • Still others can't Publish.
The primary symptom, seen by many, involves yet another mysterious bX code.

In many cases, this problem has been forecast, for some time - and the blog owners should blame only themselves. Many of these blog owners are using - or trying to use - Internet Explorer V8, to maintain their blogs.

Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Hacking Detection Is (Generally) Not The Fault Of The Blogger Account Owner

We've been helping Blogger blog owners deal with spurious fuzzy content classification, for many years.

We started out, long ago, with blogs deleted because of spam classification. Later, Blogger added malware classification - and most recently, porn classification ("adult content", with objectionable advertisements). These three classification categories involve fuzzy blog content analysis.

A fourth category, which similarly results in blog(s) being deleted, I describe as "hacking detection". This category complements the other three, because the primary symptom of all four are remarkably similar.
Help me! Blogger has deleted my blog!!
This is a frequent complaint, seen in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken.

One problem with using the term "hacking" is that some account owners take this diagnosis personally.
Why do you mention hacking? I am not a hacker!
And in almost all cases, the owners are correct.