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Showing posts from January, 2014

Appealing A Copyright / DMCA Violation

Occasionally, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, we see victims of Copyright / DMCA Violation action, asking how to get their blogs or posts restored.

In the past, many blog owners, who did not check their email carefully, or who had even setup Blogger accounts not based on actual email addresses, were frequently surprised by DMCA takedowns.

Google+ Comments, And Missing Dashboard Options

As Google+ Comments become more widely accepted in Blogger blogs, we see some confusion in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken about comment moderation options, and missing dashboard features.

Besides the frequently seen confusion about ownership and visibility, of comments published under Google+ Comments, some blog owners become concerned when they cannot find the expected dashboard settings and utilities.

Google+ Comments use community based moderation - and don't need dashboard, or email, based moderation by the blog administrators. The Blogger dashboard is a bit simpler, with Google+ Comments in use.

Country Code Alias Redirection, And GeoLocation

Occasionally, we see signs of confusion, from people who understand Country Code Alias Redirection, in general.I live in Hungary - but I am reading blogs with the ".sk" suffix! This blog reader knows about alias redirection - but does not understand why he is seeing redirection for Slovakia (".sk"), instead of Hungary (".hu").

Not all Blogger blog owners or readers understand that Country Code Alias Redirection depends upon the ability to determine the geographical location of each blog reader.

Almost Nobody Controls Their Own Computer

This month, we're seeing reports in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about problems uploading pictures (images, photos) to our blogs.

The monolithic advice, provided by BloggerUse Draft Blogger!suggests that Blogger Engineering knows about the problem, and has a quick fix in their beta testing environment, Blogger In Draft. Some blog owners have found this to be effective - as a short term solution.

Not everybody, however, finds all Blogger released fixes to be consistently effective. Many times, this is because very few people control their own computers.

Use Draft Blogger To Diagnose Or Solve Problems, Selectively

Right now, we have several different problems, being reported in quantity, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken.Image / video upload.Stats, and the "Don't track your own pageviews" option.Some specific bX codes, and miscellaneous network issues.
Recently, the problems with image and video uploads were reported to Blogger Support - and eventually, we got a monolithic responseUse draft.blogger.com.In other cases, we've been toldStop using Draft Blogger!The contents of Draft Blogger, and its differences from Production Blogger varies, at the convenience of Blogger Engineering.

Posts Automatically Resaved As Draft May Involve DMCA Complaints

Occasionally we see the report, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is BrokenMy posts keep getting saved as Draft, after I publish!If this is not caused by owner action, it's someimes the result of a DMCA Complaint, placed against the blog, citing specific posts as containing scraped content.

Blogs which consist largely of content extracted from various blogs and websites are vulnerable to DMCA Violations complaints. This is an alternate result of "scraped / syndicated" content, in abuse related deletions.Content scraped (stolen), or syndicated (copied, with permission), from other blogs / websites. Content scraped or syndicated to other blogs / websites.

No Visitor Log Or Meter Is 100% Accurate

Confusion about Stats, and referer spam inaccuracy, is expressed, weekly.You never have a real idea as to how many real visitors view your blog, since these referrer spammers are in fact identified by their name, and their number of visits on the Stats "referring URL" list.Referer spam inaccuracy is possibly the best known - but certainly not the only - Stats problem, discussed daily in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken.

Stats is a controversial Blogger feature, because of various perceived inaccuracies - but even so, is more useful than competing products, because of its unique design.

Not every blog owner realises that all visitor logs / meters provide displays and statistics, which contain known inaccuracies. The fact is, no visitor log / meter can ever be 100% accurate.

Problems Verifying Domain Ownership, With Bad Domain DNS Addresses

We're seeing a few problem reports, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, from blog owners who started with bogus DNS addresses - and who can't retrieve the required verification address from the custom domain Publishing wizard.What is my second "CNAME"? orThe domain isn't working, and the Publishing wizard isn't helping! These blog owners have domains with bogus DNS addresses, don't understand their mistakes - and are not being given the required advice from the Publishing wizard, how to fix their problems.

Make A Contact Page In Your Blog

When it comes to encouraging visits to your blog, by people who need help, a properly presented "Contact" form is a very useful feature.

Some time ago, I used a comment form, and a specially written post, "Contact Me" (titled "Leave Comments Here"), to provide private contact. For this blog, with comment moderation before publishing, I simply read the unpublished comments published against my post "Contact Me", without publishing them.

Time moved on, however - and various changes made by Blogger made my unpublished comments based contact form less useful.

Google+ Comments And Private Blogs

Recently, in Blogger Help Forum: How Do I?, we've seen signs that Blogger considers Google+ Comments and privately published blogs mutually exclusive options.How do I enable Google+ Comments?and, alternatelyI am trying to change our blog to private - but no options come up under "Permissions" - "Blog Readers". There is no "Edit" link.These blog owners are discovering that, though one of the earlier publicised features of Google+ was the ability to distribute a substitute private blog posts feed, a private blog comments feed won't be offered.

Visibility Of Google+ Comments Is Similar To Real Life

One of the more intriguing issues about Google+ Comments, as seen in in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, comes from people who can't see all of the comments, posted against their blog.If the link below the post says "4 Comments", why can't I see all 4 comments?
These people don't understand that the caption ("4 Comments", in this example) refers to the total number of comments which refer to the blog.Comments published to "Public".Comments not published to "Public", by people in their Circles.Comments not published to "Public", by people not in their Circles.

The "Recently Updated Blogs" Display Is No More

In 2006, we discovered an interesting feature of Blogger, which let us monitor blog publishing activity, in real time.

Sometime last year, "Recently Updated Blogs" stopped working.

Last month, we reported the outage, to Blogger. Recently, Blogger Support described "Recently Updated Blogs" as an "experimental" feature, which won't be restored, for reasons of privacy / security.

R.I.P., R.U.B.

The Custom Search Gadgets Are Broken

We've seen a number of reports, in the recent past, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about inability to search Blogger blogs.

It appears that the problem is with the Google "Custom Search". Both the Google gadget (available from the CSE website), and the Blogger native gadget (available from "Add a Gadget"), appear to be broken. The current workaround is to install a direct blog search, as an "HTML / JavaScript" gadget.

The direct blog search offers few options, such as the ability to offer contextual web searches, offered by the CSE search. Right now, though, it appears to be the only option available.

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