Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Things I Was Reminded Of, Or Learned, When Setting Up A New Blog At Blogger/Blogspot

Setting up the High-Five Fridays blog at Blogger/Blogspot (remember to participate on Friday, will ya?), I thought I should share a few thoughts...

* Feed Settings We had a previous discussion on the problem with splogs and scrapers and I was going to try a trick at this blog, but honestly, I'm of the opinion that just using the appropriate setting removes much of this problem.

In Blogger 'settings', under 'site feed' I use the 'Short' setting. 'Short' only syndicates the first paragraph, or approximately 255 characters, whichever is shorter; and therefore only gives away part of your content. While in theory any 'good' scrapper may follow the feed and cut & paste your whole article, it will remove a pretty hefty percentage of such use as most scrapers are too lazy to that. (If they weren't lazy, they wouldn't be scrapers.)

* Blogger now asks you if your blog has adult content. This is new and I admire blogger for doing it rather than forbidding such content. So be the ethical, responsible, adult bloggers I know you are, and go into your Blogger blog settings and admit the truth.

* While setting up the new blog, I naturally wanted to 'claim' the blog at Technorati. There I discovered a new way to 'claim' ~ via OpenId. It has some bumps ~ for example, you'll want to proceed from Technorati to your blog via a new browser tab or window as it won't return you to Technorati. (And you want to be logged into your blog first, for the best results.) But the option is nice and prompted me to look for more regarding OpenId and Blogger.

While some are not heralding that Blogger now works with OpenId, it really is only in the capacity of making it easier for non-Blogger folks to post comments on Blogger blogs. That, and the magical marriage with Technorati for claims. I say 'magical' because despite being able to awkwardly perform my claim, I was unable to find in any other way shape or form mention of OpenId from the Blogger dashboard & it's settings. And believe me, I looked.

Ionut Alex Chitu offers tips for how to use a Blogger blog as an OpenID identity and says/shows that you need to check "Enable OpenID for blogs" in your Blogger profile:



It's a good thing Chitu (parenthetically) adds:
(the feature is still experimental, so it's not added in the public release yet)
Otherwise I would have gone mad trying to find such a thing. It doesn't exist, no matter how crisp, clean and pretty the instructions were.

If you use any of the following services listed here (and you'll see that Blogger is not), you already have your own OpenID. Otherwise, along with that list of services you'll find a list of places/ways to get an OpenId.

Related:

In discussing StumbleUpon and other social bookmarking widgets I opted to use a third party service rather than monkey with more code ~ not just because the images & links were piddling-about, but because I couldn't get the proper code to work properly with this blog (being hosted off Blogger means there is a code difference).

My price for laziness is that I'm routing users/readers to an additional site/stop and possibly loosing them along the way. Is it a large price to pay? I'm not certain; most users of Stumbleupon etc. use the toolbars and widgets offered by their favorite social bookmarking site anyway. But as it can result in annoying or losing a reader, I don't recommend being lazy ~ unless, like I, you just can't make it work on your own. So I do recommend piddling-about.

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3 Comments:

Blogger Sara Winters said...

Thanks for mentioning that adult content thing. It must be a recent addition. I don't know why they don't mention these changes in more obvious places! They can't fault users for not knowing the rules if they don't bother notifying us of changes.

January 30, 2008 12:45 PM  
Blogger Sara Winters said...

While I'm on the subject, the "warning" users get from bloggers who utilize the adult content notification is a little off-putting. Are they trying to drive people away from our blogs? This is what users see when they attempt to view your blog - the first time - after the settings are changed:

"Some readers of this blog have contacted Google because they believe this blog's content is objectionable. In general, Google does not review nor do we endorse the content of this or any blog. For more information about our content policies, please visit the Blogger Terms of Service."

It mentions nothing about the blog owner choosing to include a warning about adult content. Makes it seem as if we've been deemed shameful by readers or something.

January 30, 2008 12:49 PM  
Blogger Marketing Whore said...

I agree it's not an ideal statement, but I think most readers of adult materials are going to see thru the connotations and understand the disclaimer. Esp. as more and more blogs they regularly visit have them.

Ideally, it would be nice if you could set in your blogger profile a permanent 'ok' to such content & by pass warnings. I think LJ and other sites, including StumbleUpon, Flickr etc., have such things.

The bottom line is that by complying you're being responsible and I have to believe that you get 'points' somewhere for that.

January 30, 2008 7:28 PM  

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