March 17, 2005

The Blight at Blogger: "One Does Not Simply Post Into Mordor"

BLOGGER BITES THE DUST: Then again Blogger has been biting said dust since the dawn ages. Still, the endless server death spirals of the last few days are notable. Notable to me because they are taking Donald Sensing and the Belmont Club off the air along with tens of thousands of other blogs.

What accounts for this? The utter lawlessness that has infected Blogger combined with, according to Blogger's Blogger Buzz, a "shortage of electricity."

I'm sorry, but the last time I looked at Google, the owner of Blogger, the company's market cap was in the billions, and its rep for hiring only the brightest undimmed. So what accounts for Blogger? True, Blogger is free, but that's just part of Google's 'Engulf and Devour While Not Being Evil' business plan.

You get what you pay for, you say? True enough as far as it goes, but it seems to me that a "free service" that sucks in millions of people and is poised to suck in millions more, needs to take better care of its space lest it become seen as a kind of content Ponzi scheme.

It's not Blogger's fault, you say? Perhaps not, but there is more than a little responsibility incurred by a system that presents you with the graphic below on Home:


Notice anything that seems, well, out of place in that list? Notice anything that might, just might, not be a person with something to say but a spambot? I you answered "Yes," congratulations you can read and think -- two capabilities that seem to have passed the staff of Blogger by.

Lest you think that only obvious spam sites have found a warm and welcoming space at Blogger, you might want to click on over to the frequently updated and automated Net News for a fine example of a state-of-the-art spamblog.

What to do? Well, who knows for sure, but is it too much to ask that Google get Blogger right or get Blogger gone? Perhaps, but with great wealth comes comes great responsibility for those who have taken upon themselves to provide a public service that they might, at some point, profit thereby.

I keep hearing there are only brilliant people at Google and I believe it. I've seen it's "employment tests" that only a nerd could love and only a supernerd pass. Good, but smart people are famous for being dumb about people. It is hardly fair to the millions who have poured genuine free content into the free system (One Hand meet the Other Hand), to allow them to have their sites hijacked by Spam Blogs while blithely ordering up new servers and more electricity. This is like setting out free crystal meth at a junkies buffet and expecting them to leave the building. But since blogging is not rocket science the rocket scientists at Google aren't paying attention.

As I mentioned the other day, and as Google (via Google News and now Blogger) seems too dumb and in love with its own aroma to learn, computers can only take you so far. Sooner or later, you're going to have to hire some grown-ups if only to have them make you clean up your room.

UPDATE: Donald Sensing nails Blogger at One Hand Clapping Backup

"Blogger has become the Mordor of the blogosphere."

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Posted by Vanderleun at March 17, 2005 2:05 PM | TrackBack

"It is impossible to speak in such a way that you cannot be misunderstood." -- Karl Popper N.B.: Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately. Comments that exceed the obscenity or stupidity limits will be either edited or expunged.

Blogger ain't free for me. I pay $35 a year. What kind of service I get for it? Krep.

Why do I stay? A regular hosting service costs much more, and I have about a dozen web sites set up for all my different offerings. A transfer would be a huge hassle, so my own inertia and lack of html skills has something to do with it.

But how I hate the Google godlings.

Posted by: mark butterworth at March 17, 2005 7:53 PM

I bit the bullet and went to MT some time ago. I used blogger as a posting engine to my own site, but it did not have the power I wanted. So I went to MT. I added the MT-Blacklist plug-in when I started getting comment and trackback spammed to death.

MT requires a good deal of computer literacy to install and configure, and adapting the stylesheets and templates for your own "look and feel" requires some heavy lifting, no doubt about it.

That being said, I knew I couldn't remain on Blogger and don't regret moving off of it. It had to be done.

Posted by: The Colossus at March 18, 2005 6:31 AM

I'm rapidly approaching the point of moving. I have been on blogger a year and don't relish losing the archives (which I do transfer to my own PC monthly), but I am routinely losing posts and in some cases can't post at all for long periods of time.

I wonder of Google realizes that Blogger creates a part of their image. Get enough bloggers pissed and it might impact the stock value. That might wake somebody up.

Posted by: Bill at March 18, 2005 9:48 AM

The old MT daemon is stalking me again. Blogger got me in, but my loyalty will only take me so far.

Posted by: mdmhvonpa at March 18, 2005 10:04 AM
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