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Showing posts from September, 2014

Please, Do Not Publicise Your Email Address

We've seen a few reports, recently, about stolen blogs, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken.Why is my blog not on my dashboard - and why is somebody else publishing, and using my name?There are so many reports from people who are not using Google "One Account" login properly, that the significance of this problem report was initially overlooked.

More than a few such reports started with the blog owner email address being openly disclosed - generally on the blog, or in comments. Too many blog owners want to be contacted - and they innocently provide their email addresses as a contact point.

We've known, for years, about disclosed email addresses, and brute force password guessing. That is not the only way your email address can be used, to gain access to your Blogger account, however.

Complaint Volume Affects Speed Of Abuse Resolution

We see various complaints, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about perceived poor response, in removing offensive blogs.I've reported this blog, repeatedly, for impersonating me - and it's still online!orThat other blog was removed from service after only a couple of days! Why is this blog still online??These bloggers do not understand that complaint volume, against different blogs, can affect how promptly Blogger Policy / Google Legal can take action, and remove problem blogs.

Custom Domains Do Not Always Need Ownership Verification

We're seeing a new source of confusion, in Blogger Help Forum: How Do I?, with blog owners trying to publish to a custom domain URL.How do I get my second "CNAME"?The Publishing wizard does not, always, provide instructions for ownership verification - and some owners don't understand that ownership verification is only necessary when it's demanded.

When ownership verification was first introduced, whenever a blog owner would use the Publishing wizard, to publish or re publish to any non BlogSpot URL, every use of the wizard would involve creating a new ownership verification "CNAME".

The ownership verification "certificate" is unique to both the URL being published, and the time the publishing takes place. If the owner waited too long between publishing attempts, a new "CNAME" would be again demanded. If multiple hosts were published in a domain, multiple "CNAME"s were required.

In some cases, each domain address bein…

Why Are Some Custom Domain Published Blogs Inconsistently Online?

I've been using affinity analysis, and differential analysis, as tools for diagnosing intermittent problems with custom domain published blogs, for several years.

Some people may be using a browser which is more forgiving of DNS problems than others - and people who use the right browser, when accessing a domain with righteous DNS addresses, should expect to generally get more consistent service. But that's only a small part of the story.

Confusion From Email Spam Detection, And Non GMail Email

We're seeing a few reports in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken about problems with email, sent by Blogger, when the destination is a non GMail email system.

Some email systems verify the sending email address, against IP address. With these systems, email which originates from a Blogger account that's based on a non GMail email address, and comes from a Blogger / Google IP address, is going to present a problem, to the account owners.

Your Right To Be Forgotten Does Not Supersede My Right To Retain Ownership Of My Blog

Thanks to a recent decision by the European Courts, many people are claiming the right to delete their blogs, and to have the search engines stop indexing their blogs.

Some people believe that this newly defined right entitles them to recover control of their blogs, published long ago, with access (account name and password) long forgotten. A few such people even have blogs owned by "legacy" Blogger accounts, never converted to Blogger / Google accounts.

Nobody has the right to unilaterally take control of a blog that may belong to somebody else. If you cannot prove yourself to be the owner of a given blog, Blogger Support should not provide to you control of that blog. Whether you want to delete a blog, or to change the content, you have to prove ownership of the blog.

Please, NEVER Share Your Blogger Account!

We see signs of naivete, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken. too often.I gave my boyfriend (girlfriend, former spouse, Internet acquaintance, whatever) my account password - and now, I can't access my account.This is a problem which Blogger cannot resolve, in any way.

Please, never ever share your Blogger account. Blogger accounts, like Blogger blogs, are free.

If someone who you know would like to read your private blog - or contribute to your team blog - add that person as a blog member, and let her / him use his / her own Blogger account (new, or existing).

Blogger Browser Support, And Layered Security

The official Blogger browser compatibility reference, Compatible browser and operating systems states Blogger requirements, very succinctly.To use Blogger, your browser must allow cookies and have JavaScript turned on.This is a very brief hint of Blogger browser support policy.

Use of Blogger includes various activities.Moderate Blogger hosted comments.Post comments, as a blog reader.Edit, preview, and publish posts.View Stats.Use the Template Designer.Each of these activities, and more, require cookies and scripts - and each are vulnerable to improperly setup filters.

As Blogger implies, both cookies and scripts are vulnerable to being disabled (turned off) - although the term "turned on" suggests that there is one single setting, possibly affecting each individual cookie or script. Considering the effects of layered security, we know this won't always be true.

Third Party Email Collection / Login Gadgets Being Detected As Malware / Phishing

Recently, we've had several reports from naive blog owners, with blogs locked for malware or phishing, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken.

Some owners have found accessories, such as email address collection or even a convenient login gadget, offered by helpful third parties. Installing the new gadgets, they have later received the well known (automated detection) notice, from Blogger Support.

Comments And Layered Security

One of the most common complaints, seen regularly in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, involves publication and visibility of comments.Why can't I publish comments, on some blogs?orWhy can't I see my comments, after I publish them?or evenWhy do my blog posts show no comments?These are questions asked by blog readers and owners, alike. The answers all start with security filters and settings.

FaceBook Is Aggregating BlogSpot CC Aliases

We're seeing a few questions recently, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken, about FaceBook, and their treatment of Blogger URLs that are subject to country code aliasing.When I share a post on FaceBook, the URL used for my blog ends with "blogspot.in" instead of "blogspot.com".Some people in Europe observe a variation.When I share a post on FaceBook, the URL used for my blog ends with "blogspot.nl" instead of "blogspot.com".
We've been observing, for many months, that FaceBook and other Internet services should start using the canonical tag, and aggregate BlogSpot URLs, that are subject to country code aliasing. With this done properly, all BlogSpot URLs would be listed as "blogspot.com" - and all Likes, and similar references to a given Blogger blog, would be later counted under the proper "blogspot.com" URL - regardless where a given blog reader gets Internet access.

Apparently, FaceBook is now aggregating …

Blogger Magic - "Configure Page List"

The "Configure Page List" wizard is an extremely useful - yet obscure - feature in the dashboard Layout page.

Not every blog owner sees the "Pages" gadget, in the "Layout" page and knows to click on "Edit", to access "Configure Page List". Nor do all owners know how many assorted functions, previously part of the "Pages" dashboard wizard, are now found, exclusively, under "Configure Page List".

"Configure Page List" is an essential component in the pages management suite, in the Blogger dashboard.