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Sneaky Google How Could You Do This To Blogger?!
comment 8 Comments December 5, 2007 – 1:04 am
Related Post: What Haloscan Wouldn’t Tell Us! Please Pass!!
Update at the end of the article. 11 December 2007
Update at the end of article. 13 December 2007

I’ve loved Google and all its products from the very beginning. I think they’re far superior in Search than any other search engines. When they introduced gmail, I was among the first to use it as a secondary email though I still keep Yahoo!Mail as my primary just because I’ve used it forever and it’s a hassle to shift things.
They developed Picasa- a photo organizing and editing tool and I use it all the time for quick editing of my photos. I have been using their toolbar even before Mozilla Firefox partnered with them as the browser’s default search engine! I use Google adsense for all my blogs and sites. I prefer Google checkout when shopping! I love Google Earth and I use YouTube all the time! All my internet surfing and computing involves Google in one way or another. I’m practically a walking ad for them as I always recommend Google products to my non-geek family and friends.

The recent events with Blogger however, makes me rethink if Google actually deserves all my adulation and support! First, Google placed the “rel=nofollow” tag in our templates as default so every comment we get goes nowhere and just dies in our posts- meaning, the links left on the comments page would not be crawled by search engines for page ranking- rendering that comment practically useless to the person commenting! Second, it penalized sites who are doing pay per post and those selling text links in terms of their page rank. I don’t do both so I’m not really affected by it. My website is also only 2 months old for me to even vie for a page rank!

AND NOW THIS: Google deviously and cunningly incorporated a new stupid rule they have for commenting on posts using the Blogger platform. They’re making commenting almost exclusive to just Blogger readers. Other platform users like Wordpress and LiveJournal would have to contend to leaving their name either as anonymous or nickname that doesn’t mean anything because there is no way of entering a URL link. Basically, non-blogger users comment wouldn’t amount to anything with this kind of setup. This is discouraging for non-Blogger users obviously and makes receiving comments even harder to come by. And when we Blogger users don’t do anything about it, then we probably end up with no more comments at all.

So Sneaky Google just went ahead on their own and started this thing if I’m not mistaken two days ago! Most bloggers haven’t noticed this yet to react! Google didn’t announce it. What were they thinking? That we users wouldn’t care and if we did, just accept it?! I don’t really see the logic in this! If someone outside of Blogger leaves me a comment, I wouldn’t even know how to contact her back or how to get to her website because she couldn’t leave her URL. Google owes bloggers for making them bigger than they already are and we don’t deserve these restrictions!

The good news is there IS ALWAYS a workaround just like the “rel=nofollow”!

1. If you don’t have a blog yet OR just starting: Get Wordpress!

They’re a far better platform than Blogger in all counts! For one Wordpress has very classy, easy on the eyes, neat layouts! I could have chosen Wordpress but I thought I was being loyal to Google. And this is how Google repays me!! Now, it’s too late for me to shift. I have gazillion links and widgets and I’ve submitted my URL to gazillion sites, it’s too tedious to redo it all again…

2. Type in your URL on the comments page.

If you’re a non Blogger user, make sure to type in your URL when you leave a comment. That way, the Blogger can still contact you or visit your site for reciprocity.

3. Rant, bitch and screw Google on this until they listen us!

They probably won’t do anything but at least we let them know that what they’re doing stinks! Blog about it! Share it! If you find this article informative or you’ve read about it here first, I appreciate your link back to this article.

4. Install **HaloScan! A Weblog commenting and trackback service.

This is the best workaround! It saved me and though I’ve found it by googling, I still hate Google for making me do all the trouble of changing my comments page and searching for it. Don’t get me wrong, installing Haloscan was a breeze!! You can customize the look of the page and you can even put an image to it! I had mine installed and working in less than 5 minutes on both this site and The Postcard Collector site. Check out my comment page now and while you’re at it, leave a comment for me. You’ll see your URL and I have the “rel=nofollow” turned off! You’ll sure to be rewarded by commenting on this site and at The Postcard Collector. :-)

Boo boo and thumbs down for you Sneaky Google! How could you?!!

**Author’s note: Please read the updated article regarding Haloscan before installing the comments page. I now recommend installing with caution. I’m endorsing: caveat emptor or buyer beware!

UPDATE: As of today, 11 December 2007– we still have not heard from Google what this change in the Comments page is all about. Of late, I have seen some comments page with a drop down menu where you can choose which platform you use and would then require a login to get your ID. I understand this is all part of the move to end spamming- I’m all for that! Never mind if it’s a bit of an inconvenience for non-blogger users. This is better than ‘anonymous’ or ‘nickname’ and not having any place to put a URL link.

What surprises me is this new drop down feature isn’t available to all bloggers yet! I don’t see it on either of my two blogs! I wonder if it’s because I’ve mangled my template over and over and so Blogger can’t auto-configure it. Maybe it only works for the regular templates. Bottomline, I don’t have the new version, I’m dissatisfied with Blogger and I’m still bitchin’!

UPDATE: As of 13 December 2007– Finally Blogger updates it’s official blog today after being silent for two weeks. Their latest blog is about the recent change on the comments page which I pointed out over a week ago. If your comments has been set to comment: anyone, then you don’t have to do anything with it. To check the settings of your comments, simply go to settings, then comments and from there you will see options on who can comment. Please see photo below.

I will still be on the lookout for more Blogger changes and will rant or rave about it here! I am still undecided if I should shift to wordpress… too much hassle! Sigh.

© 2007
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