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Showing posts from June, 2013

Blog Owners, Composing A Post, Seeing "Required field must not be blank"

We're seeing a few reports in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken , from blog owners attempting to compose a new post, and seeing Required field must not be blank The problem appears to result from trying to compose a post, without first entering a Post title. It appears that Blogger, trying to stabilise the post editor, is requiring non blank post titles, to save posts being composed. This includes the post being under effects of AutoSave , and the creation of Draft posts.

"Adult Content" Blogs, And New Blogger Monetisation Restrictions

This week, we're seeing some reports from a few blog owners who recently received a disturbing email message, mentioning their blogs and adult advertisements. I received an email stating I have adult content on my blog, and that a new policy will cause certain blogs to be deleted. Is my blog vulnerable to deletion, under this new policy? Like many spammers, these blog owners may be asking for a whitelisting of their blog - which is something that Blogger just won't provide .

Use Google 2-Step Verification, To Protect Yourself

Our Blogger accounts, and blogs, are under persistent attack by some rather nasty Internet users. Hackers, using other peoples computers, are constantly attempting to "guess" our Blogger passwords, and take control of our Blogger accounts and blogs. Blogger accounts are particularly vulnerable to attack , because too many blog owners Reveal their account names (email addresses) to the world. Base their passwords upon real life details. Publish blogs, where their real life details are visible to the world. Some blog owners think that by using only one computer forever, they should be able to register that one computer as theirs, and require Google to simply deny access to their Blogger / Google accounts, from any other computer. This is a very simple solution - and it's one which is doomed to failure.

Custom Domain Instability Caused By Server Mismatch

A few blog owners become confused by the necessary configuration of the domain root, when setting up their custom domains. Some blog owners, who do not have a good understanding of DNS principles, make mistakes when setting up the domain root (aka "naked" domain). From good intentions (trying to ensure that the domain performs better or differently), their naivete may actually make the domain perform worse - or not at all. With more blog owners unable to buy a domain through Blogger , and forced to setup their own DNS addresses, this will become an common mistake , and an increasingly critical issue.

Hacking / Malware / Porn / Spam Classification Effects

Occasionally, we see concern in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken , about the long term effects of Blogger hacking / malware / porn / spam classification or detection. My blog was deleted, because of spurious spam classification - and later restored to service. Did my blog lose search engine reputation, in Google? Any time a blog goes offline, its reputation is affected, to some extent. How much effect a hacking / malware / porn / spam classification or detection has, on any given blog, will vary widely. You might expect to see different penalties, for different offenses .

Google+ Comments Lack Controls For Moderation And Notification

As more people choose Google+ Comments for their blogs, we're seeing concern from confused blog owners, mentioning lack of control. There is no option for comment moderation in my blog's settings. My Comments Settings only includes the option to change Location. and I don't get notified about any comments published against my blog. There is no Setting for Comment Notification Email, either. These owners are discovering one of the design simplicities in Google+ Comments . With Google+ Comments, anybody can post - and share - a reference to any content, on the Internet, that they can view. If your blog is public, any post from your blog can be shared in Google+. If someone shares a post from your blog, and you are in a Circle where the post is shared, you may see the shared post in your Google+ stream. You have no control over content in your stream - even if the content references your blog - which you do not share.

Custom Domains Purchase - "Buy a domain" Lacks The "Check Availability" Option

We're seeing a few reports from confused blog owners, in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken , who want a non BlogSpot URL for their blog. I have tried to follow the guide, but my page does not say the same as the guide. Several blog owners, in trying to use "Add a custom domain" to buy a domain, are observing that there is no "Check Availability" sequence.

Blogs Locked After Detected Account Hacking

One Blogger mystery involves the varying periods of blog unavailability, after hacking activity is detected . My blog just disappeared from my dashboard - and no, it's not listed under "Deleted blogs"! When the owner mentions the notice about "suspicious" / "unusual" account activity, or having unlocked the account (by solving a CAPTCHA, receiving a phone message, changing the password) - and is advised to wait "24 to 48 hours" - many ask the obvious. Is "24 to 48 hours" really accurate? In reality, the legendary "24 to 48" hour time period is only a ball park figure - and both Blogger / Google, and the blog owner, contribute to the uncertainty.

Comment Spam And Referer Spam Has Various Purposes

One of the most intriguing subjects discussed in Blogger Help Forum: Something Is Broken involves the seemingly purposeless spam which torments us in our comments and our Stats logs. I see this random garbage on my blog - and the sites advertised are complete junk. Is there any actual reason for this? Interestingly, both nice blog spam (in our comments), and referer spam (in our Stats logs), have purposes - though with the continually varying content used in both, it all looks very much like random garbage. If we analyse the content, structure, and volume of the various spam attacks, we can see patterns - and an understanding of the overall purpose of the spam.

The REAL Blogger Status Is Actually The ONLY Blogger Status

On June 4, 2013, Blogger retired their Blogger Status blog . This blog has been retired. The latest information on Blogger service availability will now be displayed on the Apps Status Dashboard . Now, The REAL Blogger Status has become, by default, The ONLY Blogger Status. For your convenience, you may find a link to the Apps Status Dashboard , in the Peer Resources gadget, in the sidebar of this blog.