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Showing posts from 2009

People Follow Blogs, Not Templates Or URLs

Occasionally, we have people expressing confusion about loss of Followers. I updated my template, and I lost my Followers! If you only update your template and nothing else, your blog should still have its Followers. You may lose various gadgets from the template, when you make changes - but even if the Followers gadget is lost, the existing Followers continue. Just look at the Followers community, from your dashboard, and you'll see the Followers.

Identifying Your Visitors

Just about anybody who owns a blog has, one time or another, wanted to find out more about a specific visitor to a blog. Generally, we might need to find out about a person who leaves a specific comment, so we can block or take other action to prevent unwanted comments. With a properly chosen visitor log , this isn't difficult.

Justice Is For The Poor And The Weak - And Small

In the modern legal system, justice is (supposedly) available to all citizens - regardless of colour, crede, or financial status - equally. In the Blogger legal system, justice (as in porn / spam classification, or URL availability ) is available to all bloggers - equally. If your blog is unjustly accused of hosting hacking, porn, and / or spam content, or if your blog is unfairly placed behind a content warning , you (the blog owner) are responsible for getting the wrong righted. Due diligence requires that the blog owner has to report any problem with any Blogger blog. Regardless of how many anxious readers your blog may serve, you the owner have to request a review, when the blog is unjustly classified, deleted or locked. And, you have to do so promptly. Blogger must serve owners of small and unpopular blogs equally, with owners of large and popular ones. The blog readers are not part of the review process. The only question is Does the blog host hacking, objectionable, p

Following - Like Sales - Depends Upon Referral Traffic

Do you know any professional sales people? I'm not talking about sales clerks, who wait in stores for people with merchandise already picked out, or who just hang around Do you have a question about the merchandise? I'm talking about people who actually sell a product. Real sales people will sell you something so you'll come back and buy more later - from them. And the really successful sales people sell you a product, and will make you want to tell your friends about it later. Do you need a new xxxxxxx? See this guy - he knows what he's talking about. Blogging and Following is similar to sales. It's easy to get your blog read. What you want is people who read your blog, and let other people know that they read your blog. That's Following. People Follow your blog, and their Following profile shows their Followers - people who Follow their blog - that they Follow your blog. Just as Sales depends upon referrals (people who tell their friends about you), Fo

Ambiguity Over The Social Networking Concept Of Blog

As I write in Your Blog Is Like You - Unique , the name of this blog is "bloggerstatusforreal", and its URL is now " " (it's also known as " "). There are many articles in this blog, and the articles are called "posts". If you have a social networking account, like FaceBook (Friendster, Multiply, ...), you may write a blog, to discuss a specific concern or interest which you may have. Both you and your friends may reply to your blog. If you have another concern or interest, you may create another blog for your account. A FaceBook (Friendster, Multiply, ...) blog , with many replies, is the equivalent to a Blogger (WordPress, TypePad, ...) post , with many comments. One FaceBook (Friendster, Multiply, ...) account can contain many blogs , just as one Blogger (WordPress, TypePad, ...) blog can contain many posts . All FaceBook (Friendster, Multiply, ...) blogs, and other accessories

It's The Buzz

To help me spotlight my most important issues, I have started my new blog - Nitecruzr Buzz . I just setup a FeedBurner URL , and installed an email subscription gadget, a few minutes ago - so you can get the updates as you like. And look in the top linklist on the right, for the link to The Buzz .

Google Now Requiring A Password Recovery Email Address

Recently, we see a few reports from nervous bloggers. From time to time, the following message appears in a box at the top of my main Gmail (My Blogger login, my Google login, etc) page: Hey, this is important: we don't have a password recovery email address or phone number for your account. If you lose your access, we may not be able to help you. Is this a scam (Is this phishing?) (Is this spam?)... In computer security, it's never a bad idea to be skeptical. It's one way of limiting the effects of CKI Faults. But when you are doing something intentional, using (what should be) a trusted product, like Google, and you get advice like this, heed the advice - please . You don't need to do something dodgy, like answer an email, and provide your account name / password / drivers license number. But take this as a warning. Check the email address associated with your Blogger account , and make sure it is one that you can use easily, when needed. Now. If your account doe

Blogger Doesn't Care About Frequency Or Quantity Of Blog Updates

The process of "bidding" determines who is best suited to take on a given task, in some multi party games and relationships. In the game of Contract Bridge , the players of the game get a chance to assess their personal holdings of the cards dealt to them, and the probable holdings of their prospective partner and opponents - and predict the number of rounds ("tricks") that they expect to win, in the game to come. In the "game" of construction bidding , contractor firms get the chance to predict how much funds they will require, to perform a given project, given the chance by the firm bidding the project. In both cases, different parties bid for the right to perform a task. Some would be blog owners think that procedure should apply to blog ownership. I want this URL - It's the perfect URL for my needs - for my blog. The URL is in use, but it hasn't been updated, recently. Why can't Blogger give me that URL?

Please Google, Restore My Deleted Account And Blog!

A frequently seen sign of confusion in Blogger Help Forum: How Do I? is the question How soon after deletion can I reuse a blog? And the answer is two part. Immediately, if you can just undelete it using the same account . Never, if you are trying to transfer the blog. Occasionally the response to that involves a complication. But I deleted the account, to make sure that the blog gets freed up. And now, the blogger gets no choice. You have to reactivate the account, because the URL is locked to that account. Now, the blogger has a four fold task ahead of him. If you just recreated the Google account, by creating a new account with the same email address, you have to delete the account just created . Re activate the original Google account, using Google Accounts: Contacting Support - I can't access my account . Select "No" for "Did this work?", and fill out the form that you see there. Alternately, re activate the earlier deleted Google account, using Google

Please Blogger, Restore My Deleted Post!

As many bloggers are periodically enjoying the ability to restore their deleted blogs, other bloggers are discovering the limitations of that ability. I typed for hours. I made one mistake, the whole post vanished, and just as I realised my mistake, AutoSave executed, and saved the empty post. All of that work gone, in an instant! or I deleted the wrong post! How do I get back the post that I deleted? These folks are discovering the difference between deleting a blog (which can be recovered), and deleting / erasing a post (which cannot be recovered). When you delete a blog, it's moved into a "Deletion in 90 days" status, and during the 90 days, you get the chance to change your mind, and restore the blog to operational status . If you want to prevent AutoSave from saving an empty post at the wrong time, disable AutoSave . Deleted posts are a different issue. From the " Edit Posts " menu, select one or more surplus posts, and hit "Delete Selected&qu

How To Not Get The BlogSpot URL Of Your Choice

The controversy continues, in that many bloggers cannot think of a URL for their blog, other than ones that are already taken. Some are so desperate that they think of imaginative but Pyrrhic solutions. Solution here would be a way to report this as a kind of abuse (Yes I know it's not really abuse in any form) or otherwise get in contact with the owner. And I don't mean hunting down the contact information from the web as it practically newer works. I mean there should be an option "I would like to contact the owner of this blog" or something similar. Here we see two alternatives, neither with any future.

Following And Private Blogs

A frequently seen sign of confusion, in Blogger Help Forum , is the connection between Following and Private blogs (blogs designated "Only people I choose"). If I make my blog private, will people still be able to follow my blog? Like many Blogger Help Forum questions, this one suffers from a significant amount of ambiguity. There are several details, relevant to the above question. Classically, people were said to "follow" a blog when they would periodically view it online, and / or view its contents using a newsfeed reader . People designated as Readers will be able to view a blog in the browser, though new posts won't be visible in a newsfeed reader. Blogger recently developed the Following program, to involve Use of the newsfeed, automatically added to a Dashboard Followers Reading List, and Google Reader. For blogs displaying the Followers accessory gadget, the ability to, temporarily, have ones icon displayed in the Followers gadget. For blogs displaying

Gobble, Gobble

Today, in the USA, we celebrate the national holiday of " Thanksgiving ". Many people call it "Turkey Day" because the traditional cooking for the holiday meal is centered around roast turkey. The words "gobble, gobble" have two meanings. Turkeys are attributed as making that sound, such as the cat makes "meow", and the dog "bow wow". Celebrants of the holiday eat a lot of food, also popularly expressed as "gobbling". So, we have a "double entendre", that is, still, relevant.

Make A Static Page For Your Blog

A static page is one of the simplest accessories that you can add to your blog. It's simply a post that has been archived, and will never display in main page view. It's astonishingly simple to make a static page. Publish enough non static posts, to populate your main page. If you're simply making a web site , set main page size to 1 post, and publish one post. Publish additional posts, and back date additional posts before the oldest non static post. The additional posts, back dated, become static pages. Wasn't that simple? (Update 2010/01): As a belated Christmas present, Blogger now provides us, as a new post editor option, with the ability to create true static pages for our blogs . >> Top

The New "Next Blog" Link - What Next?

Up until last week, I would advise folks looking for traffic to their blogs that they should publish, publish, publish . Besides friends and family, your initial readers will come through the "Next Blog" link, randomly. You get more "Next Blog" traffic from posting more, less from posting less. And, you'll need this initial traffic. Last week, with the new "Next Blog" link, all of that changed. Now, people hitting "Next Blog" get another blog, but with 2 major differences from the possibility last week. The "next blog" linked to will be chosen for similar content / subject, and same language, as the blog being displayed currently. The "next blog" linked to will not be chosen relevant to updating activity. You're just as likely to get a blog published to 5 years ago, as 5 minutes ago. This gives us two concerns, which we did not have earlier. Finding other blogs of random subject and recent updates won't be as

Choose Your Text Colour And Background, Carefully

If I publish a blog in which I concentrate on content and information, I want to make the content and information easy (yet inviting) to read. This blog, The Real Blogger Status , is marginally easy to read - and looked boring - before I upgraded to a Designer template , which has a more complex background. Then, I added my floating background , to make the text easier to read. Recently, I redesigned this blog, and published using a new Blogger supplied Responsive template .

Make A Team Blog And Keep The Members Separate

Occasionally, we see a confused query How do I allow access to my blog, and keep my GMail account private to me? or How do I have my friends using my blog, and each person use their own name in publishing posts? These are people who do not understand the concept of team blogs. Team blogs use a separate Blogger / Google account for each member, they do not require everybody to share one Blogger / Google account. You add each team member as an Author, in Settings - Permissions. When you do this, note two cogent details. Each blog is limited to 100 Members (Authors + Administrators + Owners), in total . You can invite members, using the email address that you know. People can accept membership using what email adddress (Google account) they wish . People may be able to accept multiple member entries, which may affect the 99 author limit. If either of those two details are a problem to you, perhaps you should look at Content Management Systems . A CMS may give you more control ov

Coyotes, Hyenas, And Turkeys

The 1978 cinema classic " Animal House ", which starred the late, great John Belushi as John Blutarsky, was a comedy about American 1960s college life. It was described by one reviewer as the best college comedy ever made. Nothing has ever come close to comedic perfection, and never will again. It focused on one fictional fraternity, Delta House, the rejects of the campus fraternity system at the college. The members of Delta house included screaming nuisances ( coyotes ), troglodytes and trolls ( hyenas ), and hapless morons ( turkeys ). Many inhabitants of Delta House, many years later, can be found as bloggers, posting in Blogger Help Forum . Coyotes are individuals who, unhappy with the way they are treated by Blogger, convince the general public (their reader population) to conduct a Distributed Denial Of Service attack against the forum. The owners of their namesake blog, The Daily Coyote , conducted a DDOS in April 2008, when it was locked as a suspected spam blog

Waiting For The Tap On The Shoulder, Part 2

In my musings last month about spam blogs, and people victimised by spam blogs , I analogised the legendary college secret societies , and the impersonal and rude treatment of the unfortunates who did not get initiated. eventually, those who don't get elected will open their eyes, remove the blindfold, and find herself / himself in a pitiful group of rejects, all waiting (hopelessly) for that tap. The tap that never comes.

The New "Next Blog" Link - What Now?

Long ago, I observed that getting readers for your blog started with publishing posts. Thanks to the "Next Blog" link in the navbar, as you published posts, you'd get readers who randomly surfed to your blog . As you got more readers from random access, some readers would become return readers, which would encourage you to publish more. Which would bring you more readers. And so on. That was a great strategy on Bloggers part, for a Blogosphere with Relatively few blogs. No spammers. Unfortunately, the spammers of the Internet figured that was the perfect way to get readers to their splogs , too. And BlogSpot splog farms were born. This week, we have The New "Next Blog" link . For any blog with any given subject matter, a reader hitting "Next Blog" gets another blog in the same language, and with the same subject matter. As noted by several readers of this blog, there's one thing missing now. "Next Blog" now makes no attempt to look

It's Here - The New "Next Blog" Link

Just a couple days ago, I observed that the "Next Blog" link in the navbar was being redesigned . So, it's here. Click on "Next Blog" from above. Now, you'll get other blogs in English, and for this blog, other techie blogs. No more hacking, porn, or spam blogs, from clicking "Next Blog" - unless the blog that you're currently viewing contains hacking, porn, or spam. Which means no more hacking, porn, or spam from this blog, from clicking "Next Blog" - period. The end of hacking, porn, and spam in the NextBlogosphere. Bravo, Blogger. Maybe you'll see a third difference. Now, any randomly accessed other blog may, or may not be, recently updated. This won't please everybody, unfortunately. Before it would often bring me to sites I had no interest in or were not in english, but at least it brought me to recently updated sites. Now when I do it I often get stuck finding a ton of sites all on a single topic, and many of the

Diagnosing Problems With Blog Feeds

Recently, we're seeing an assortment of complaints about blog feeds, either not working at all, or updating slowly. Whether presented in a browser display, in a Following Reading List / Google Reader, or in a bloglist gadget, the accuracy of the feed as displayed can be affected by a few issues. Custom feed redirection. Custom Domain redirection. Classic vs New feed URL, and Blogger vs BlogSpot / domain served feed. Feeds served by third party servers (FTP publishing). Feeds from private blogs (which don't exist). Cached feed content. Custom Feed Redirection A custom, redirected feed, redirected through FeedBurner or a similar service , will be affected by problems with the service. When you check out a problem with a redirected feed, it may be helpful to compare the redirected feed content with the non redirected feed content. Custom Domain Redirection A feed coming from a blog that's published to a custom domain will be affected by the custom domain DNS i

Blogging Anonymously Has A Price

Blogger supports anonymity - both in our ability to maintain and to own a blog anonymously, and our ability to comment on blogs anonymously. But this anonymity comes with a price. I need to contact the owner of "", but there is no contact information and the blog is private. or How do I find out who left an anonymous comment on my blog? or I can't access my blog - I forgot the password and the email address doesn't exist any more. or I deleted my account, and they won't give it back to me! All of these are queries by bloggers who do not understand the price of anonymity.

Multi-Lingual Blogging Requires Language Selections

Occasionally, we see requests from folks who want to publish a blog in non English languages, and don't trust the Google Translator, or translated blogs using a Translator Gadget . Every different world language has its own peculiarities - character set, font, grammatical constructions, even direction of type will differ from language to language. To support these peculiarities, Blogger has a language selection, for each language which they support. This roughly parallels the ongoing development of the Google Translator.

Coming Soon - The New "Next Blog" Link

I've been writing about the navbar, and the "Next Blog" link, for some time - about its random nature , about its dangers , and recently about its design changes . Soon, we are promised a major functionality change in "Next Blog". Blogger Buzz: Coming up Next... suggests that soon, the link will let us surf to blogs with both language and subject affinity to our blogs. This is a great idea, and one that's been long overdue. This has been coming, since well before January 2008 . But like all great ideas, one should consider the details. It will be interesting to see what a blog with a totally unique language / subject pair will link to. Also, how granular will the subject association be? For that matter, how will blog subject be determined? What of blogs with multiple subjects - or of course some blogs with no subject, simply ramblings? And will this allow folks to intentionally (or un intentionally) surf to porn or spam, if they are currently viewing

Custom Domains And The Chair To Keyboard Interface

A Google Custom Domain is an elegant solution for alternately addressing a blog with a BlogSpot or a non BlogSpot URL , and having the current search engine value of the BlogSpot URL transferred to the non BlogSpot URL. There is no other DNS based solution for doing all of that, and doing that so elegantly. It's so simple to setup, too. You start with a righteous DNS configuration . You publish the blog to the primary address . You redirect the secondary address to the primary address . You are done with the setup. For all of it's simplicity, it has a major flaw in the way it's implemented. This flaw, in Computer Security, I describe as a Chair To Keyboard Interface Fault . A CKI Fault is a frequent factor in computer security problems, and similarly, in custom domain problems . Yet the bloggers, who generate the faults, are not the sole cause of the faults. Custom Domains depend upon DNS, and DNS is not a user friendly infrastructure. DNS, or Domain Name Sy

I Can't See My Blog - What Should I Do?

This is a very difficult question to answer, because of its almost infinite complexity. There are several different causes. There are more symptoms than the number of causes. There are still more ways that bloggers might report the symptoms that they see. The reports, and the symptoms, will vary in both accuracy, detail, and relevance. Different problems can be fixed only by people with different roles, relevant to the blog. Some problems can be fixed only by the blogger (blog owner). Others can be fixed by the owners of the client computers or their network service providers. Still others can only be fixed by Blogger Support or third party server owners. The epidemiology of the problems will produce different observations. A few problems are occasionally observed by Blogger / Google staff. Some problems will be observed by the blogger. Others may be observed by the bloggers friends / blog readers. A very few problems will be observed by everybody. The term "blogger" can its

Who Are Your Anonymous Followers?

Occasionally, we see queries from bloggers who are unsure what anonymous Followers are. How do I know when someone Follows my blog anonymously? and How do I block anonymous Followers? When someone Follows a blog publicly, he / she gets two things: A subscription to the blog newsfeed, in the Following Reading List, and / or in Google Reader. An entry in the Following community for the blog. When someone Follows a blog anonymously, she / he gets one thing: A subscription to the blog newsfeed, in the Following Reading List, and / or in Google Reader. If you Block someone from Following your blog, you remove their entry from your Following community. Newsfeed subscriptions, though, are universally open - if a feed is available to anybody, it's available to everybody. Your anonymous Followers, as well as your Blocked Followers, can read your newsfeed - just as any reader who wishes to subscribe, without using Following. If the blog feed is routed through FeedBurner , anybody subscribi

Is Blogger Free?

Occasionally, in Blogger Help Forum , we get the querulous inquiry Is Blogger free, or must I pay for the service? or What upcharges will I have to deal with, after publishing my blog? To answer the question, I'll say Yes, and no. Within limits, and excepting for minor details, you can publish a Blogger blog, and maintain it for a very long time, without needing a major credit card. There are two possible charge items, that I can think of. If you want to publish your blog to BlogSpot, the service is free. Publishing the blog to a non BlogSpot URL will require paying for either Custom Domain publishing , or service from a remote server published using FTP . Both will likely cost you some money, though you will not pay the money to Google. If you publish a blog with photos, and you host the photos using the native post editor upload, you'll be using the Picasa service. Picasa is free, to a limit , then there is an upcharge for additional Picasa storage capacity. For a free se

Add The Followers Gadget To The Blog

It's been a bit over 2 months since Following was added as a Blogger feature, and daily we see anxious bloggers asking How do I get Followers to my blog? as if that is a holy grail of blogging. My first answer is always Write interesting and relevant content for the blog, so people will read the blog, and will want to Follow the blog. But there is yet another detail, that not all bloggers seem to get. Add a Followers gadget to the blog. Having a Followers gadget, with pictures of other Followers, will attract more Followers than just the "Follow" link in the navbar . The "Follow" link, besides not having pretty pictures, works differently than the Followers gadget. You're going to get a different class of blog readers using the Followers gadget, than the Follow link. The Followers gadget lets people Follow the blog without signing in to Blogger using a different Blogger account using a non Google account The navbar Follow link requires the reader

Blogging Anonymously

We know that Blogger allows us to blog anonymously, by promising to never reveal our identity as a blog owner . This policy leads to mysterious scenarios, like when someone forgets the account that they used to create a blog , that they do own. And, it leads sometimes to tragic scenarios, like bloggers who don't have access to the back door email account, and can't prove blog ownership . Even though Blogger allows us to pursue our anonymity, though, that doesn't guarantee absolute anonymity without effort.

Maybe It's Time To Start Over

I've been advising folks about spam problems, and splog detection (both righteous and spurious ), for several years. Sometimes, the advice is about cleaning up the blog, and submitting it for review . Other times, it's about blogs unjustly accused of being spam . Occasionally, it's about a spam blog, that just can't be reviewed again , or maybe a old blog, that you just can't regain control .

Less Traffic To Our Blogs

One of the more active (and frequently controversial) subjects discussed in this blog is getting more traffic to our blogs, also known as getting the blog indexed by the search engines . Not everybody wants their blogs indexed, though. How do I make sure my blog is NOT found by search engines? That question is asked, regularly. And, in truth, there is only one truly effective answer. Don't publish your blog on the Internet. This is similar to the question (and answer) How do I keep my blog private ? Short of absolute effectiveness, the most obvious solution is the two Settings - Basic options . And there are other tweaks which you may find, in Google Webmaster Tools . And, in the spirit of locking the barn after the horses have been stolen, there is the subject of Removing Your Blog From The Search Engines Caches . Search engine caches, like browser caches, won't clear overnight, if ever . You'll need to note that the entries in "robots.txt", that result from

The New Navbar And The "Follow" Link

The new navbar, with its Follow and Share links, has been out for just over a week. People are starting to use the Follow button, instead of the Followers gadget - which is not necessarily present on every blog. But there are differences between the "Follow" button on the navbar, and the "Followers" gadget that's (sometimes) added to the blogs. These differences are causing some confusion. The Followers gadget lets you login to Following, under any account, Blogger or not - and separate from the account used to login to the navbar . If you so desire, you can Follow any blog without logging in - You'll add a temporary "shadow" icon to the blog (if you choose to Follow publicly), and you'll add the blog feed to your Reading List and / or Google Reader subscription list. With the Follow link on the navbar, if you're not logged in (using the "Sign In" link), you'll not see a "Follow" link. Once you do login (w

The New Post Editor And Read More

One problem which we seem to see, pretty consistently, in Blogger Help Forum , is where the posts and a sidebar end up in one long column, with one above the other. Reports like My posts have vanished! and My sidebar (my archives, my Followers, my profile gadget, ...) have dropped to the bottom of the page! are seen a lot in the forum. Generally, it's caused by trying to put too much in one place . Recently, though, a few bloggers report the dropped sidebar symptom, after they try the new post editor, and the Blogger "Read More" option (called by Blogger, "Jump Break").

FTP Publishing - October 2009

This month, we have several reports from bloggers who, for one reason or another, have changed the FTP username and / or password on the domain host server, and then updated the username / password in their Blogger FTP settings . Much to their dismay, when attempting to publish their blog, they find the old username / password being sent to the remote server . I have verified it's saving my new username in the publishing settings and yes, I'm seeing the error based on the posting status. I get the following ... FTP login failed (server:, username: myoldusername, reason: 530 User myoldusername cannot log in. ) Are you seeing this behaviour, when trying to publish your blog? What is the blog URL? What is the FTP server setting? When did you make the setting change? Did you verify the problem, by examining the host server activity logs? >> Top

A Private Blog May Not Be Completely Private

We've known for a while that private blogs have limitations, such as latency. If you originally publish your blog as public, and later make it private, cached copies of the blog will be all over the Internet, for anybody to read, after it's supposedly private . This week, we see another, possibly more serious limitation . Why was my coworker able to read my very private, personal, password protected blog yesterday? I had it set to "Blog Author Only" and yet she found it and was able to read the whole thing. It has never, ever been public. I started it last September and set the permissions to "blog author only" at the start for all posts. I have never invited anyone else to read it...and have never, ever logged into it at work.

What's In The Boxes?

Every day, we see one or two queries from confused bloggers, about these boxes. I type the URL in my browser, and get No blog found. or Why doesn't it show more than what's in my blog? or I know the URL. I can see it on my dashboard even. But the search says that it's not there. All of these observations are evidence of people who don't know what all the boxes in the browser are intended to provide.

Accepting Membership In Another Blog May Change Post Editor Settings

Recently, we've seen an occasional question about mysteriously changed post editor selections. Where did my options toolbar go? or Why do I now see the new post editor? Right now, as part of the deployment of the new post editor , there are 3 selections, in Settings - Basic - Global Settings - Select post editor . Updated editor Old editor Hide compose mode If you make this change under one blog, you'll find it true for all of your blogs. I've also noted, under some circumstances, that when you accept membership in someone else's blog, and the other person was using a different post editor selection, the other person's selection will now be yours, globally. The next time that you accept membership in a blog, check your post editor setting. If the owner of the blog was using a different setting, your setting may have changed. >> Top

Blogs Showing The WMX Verification File, Instead Of Main Page

This week, we have various Blogger blogs reported as displaying a mysterious WMX Verification File, when main page view would be expected. This is the WMX verification file. If you are having problems with the WMX verification for your blog please visit This symptom was first observed Thursday, October 22, and Blogger Support is aware of the problem. Supposedly, the problem was fixed, though some blog owners are still reporting it. We note that the Google Webmaster Central Blog: Verifying a Blogger blog in Webmaster Tools now instructs us to use the meta tag verification procedure . The "Webmaster Tools" auto-verification link from the Blogger dashboard is no longer working and will soon be removed. Is your blog showing this, in place of main page view? If you can provide some diagnostic details, you might help Blogger to help you and others. Precision here is good - and date, time, and timezone will be appreciated. What

Keep Malicious Content Out Of Your Blog

Every day or so, we see reported from concerned bloggers, about unknown content in their blogs. Where did those ads come from? I didn't add them! or How do I keep this other blogger from posting porn links in my blog? As we add content to our blogs, and make them fun, interesting, and shiny, to attract readers, we risk adding undesirable content. This is a constant problem.

Waiting For The Tap On The Shoulder

I'll be honest here. I was a nerd in college (and I am one even now ). So this story is one that I've only seen in movies - neither I, nor my friends, got even this far. College Secret Societies Some of them have no name even. There are no published entrance rules - membership is by invitation only, and rules are communicated by word of mouth. And the initiation process starts like this: The prospective members are blindfolded, and led to a dark room. The prospective members are put into a circle, in silence. The prospective members wait, for what will happen, they are told nothing. Periodically, one prospect will feel a slight tap on the shoulder. In silence, he / she will be taken by the hand, and led into another room where they will join the elite. And eventually, those who don't get elected will open their eyes, remove the blindfold, and find herself / himself in a pitiful group of rejects, all waiting (hopelessly) for that tap. The tap that never comes.

The New Navbar

By now, I'm sure that you've all seen the new navbar on our blogs. Besides having new links, and some links being renamed, there's a significant improvement - transparency. For those of you wondering where "Search Blog" went, the "Search Blog" window is still there - the "Search Blog" caption was simply removed, to make space. And "Flag Blog" (which was, some time ago, greatly enhanced ) is now accurately captioned "Report Abuse". And we have "Follow" (previously "Follow Blog"), matching the new "Share" link. And, for everybody who has always hated the navbar because it was ugly, and its background colour never matched the blog, you can now select a transparent option - and let the background colour / images in the blog show. You can select "Transparent Dark", with light navbar characters and graphics - or "Transparent Light", with dark navbar characters and graphics. You

Identifying And Blocking Malicious Comments

Almost daily, we see complaints from bloggers who are disturbed or offended by comments that they get, in their blogs. How do I stop nasty comments about my posts? or How do I block a person who posts nasty comments? My answers always start with You have to moderate comments, either before or after they are published .

Availability Of Any BlogSpot URL That's Not In Use

I've been arguing the plain facts about URL non availability for years - if the BlogSpot URL of your choice is in use, you can't have it . That's not an easy answer for many bloggers, and some don't accept it without a lot of arguing. The other side of the coin is that any available URL is there for the taking, by anybody. Relevance of the name in question, to any physical existence outside the Internet world , has no validity.

Ambiguity In URL Availability #2

A couple months ago, we had various bloggers report that they are initially informed that a given URL is available, but the "Create a blog" wizard later shows that the same URL is not available . This month, we seem to have more of the same, plus a new, disturbing detail . I am unable to see my blog on the web or sign in to it on Blogger Dashboard. I initially thought my blog had been given a false positive as a spam blog and blocked. A Blogger Help forum post said that often happens and I should send a "review request." I sent a review request from my Blogger Dashboard. It took me to a page that says: Blog is not locked. Your blog is not locked and does not need a review. If you are having problems accessing your blog or if you received an email saying that it was locked, please leave a message in the Help Group and we will investigate the issue. Further conversation returns additional details. On my Dashboard, next to the name of my blog "This Day in Famous

Getting Traffic To Your Blog - How Not To Do It

There are many ways of getting traffic to your blog - some are good , while others are not so good . If you truly respect your readers, you 'll write content that's interesting and relevant to the needs of your readers , and you'll use the search engines to advertise your blog . Other people might join a forum, where everybody promises to read each other's blogs. A third way would be to use the magic of RSS, and join your blog to a common feed . TRAFFIC via RSS by ananth77 with 2,473 members Tagged: blog, blog building, blogging, feed, Marketing, promote, rss, traffic Build your traffic via RSS. Simple Rules : 1. Subcribe to 2. Update your RSS feed address in the reply. 3. Your feed will be merged with all the other blogs and web sites. What a deal. All that you do is make your blog part of the Feed Traffic feed, and you get a piece of all of the traffic, from / to all of the other blogs in the feed. This used to be

You Have To Read The Local Language

As Blogger / Google continue to make their services more available to the bloggers and blog readers of the world, they are separating the language affinities of the various portions of the Blogger displays, into two categories. Components most referenced by the bloggers. Components most referenced by the blog readers. Components referenced by the bloggers can be controlled by the Blogger profile language setting , so you, as you publish your blog, see many Blogger wizards in your stated language. Readers of a Blogger blog, on the other hand, won't always have a Blogger profile, as they surf the Internet and land upon your blog. To support your readers, Blogger uses Geo Location, and determines the prevalent local language where the computer is located. Blog displays that are most referenced by the blog readers will be presented in the local language. If you write your blog for your readers, this benefits you. The more portions of your blog that are available to the blog readers o