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Jun 22, 2010

Blogger Bitching #4

Well, here's a winner of a post idea. It will either a) not appeal to you in the slightest or b) offend you in one way or another. Who knows, though, maybe there are some other options as well, like c) you'll agree and change your dastardly ways or d) you'll call me on my b.s.

Anyway, the crux of this hinges on one simple fact: I visit a lot of blogs on a daily basis. Regardless of my
LAMB shepherding, there are a number of sites that I enjoy reading frequently. I won't call out any specific names, but if some of these bitches apply to you, don't be too offended - just appease me and fix whatever the problem is.

Bitch #1 - Wordpress Wants to Really, Really Make Sure
If you're familiar with the previous Bitches I've made, you know that the lack of a comment subscription checkbox (to receive subsequent comments by email) is a serious issue for me, so much so that I've already bitched about it twice.

I will not subject you to a third time, as most every blog I read currently has this option. Yay! I win.

However. Much as the blogging world ♥s Wordpress, I take issue with the way their subscription process works. Here's how it shakes out:

I go to a WP blog and leave a comment. While doing so, I click the handy checkbox that indicates that I'd like to be notified of follow-up comments via email. Super. Sometime later, I go to my email, and lo and behold, there's one from the site I just left a comment at. But it's not a follow-up comment. No, it's an email with a link, telling me that I need to confirm my comment subscription by click on the link.

Now, once I click the link, I don't have to do anything. It takes me to the Master Wordpress Comment Subscription Management Page, which shows me every thread I'm subscribed to at every WP-hosted site. I can close the window at will. Not too much trouble, right?

Wrong. Granted, it's about a five second process. But why the hell should I be cluttered with a meaningless email and be forced to click to open a meaningless window just to subscribe to a post's comments? I ALREADY CHECKED THE BOX INDICATING I WANTED FUTURE COMMENTS SENT BY EMAIL. Let's suppose, for instance, that I checked that box by accident - what's the worst that could happen? If you guessed "you'd get an email when the next comment was posted," you're 100% right. And if I didn't like it, I could simply click the "unsubscribe" link from email.

Stop hitting me over the head with stupid, Wordpress. My confirmation that I wanted emails for future comments came when I checked the box in the first place.

Bitch #2 - DIV
If you're not a Blogspot blogger, you might as well stop reading this one right now. And if you never use the "Edit HTML" tab when composing your messages, you're safe to skip it, too. In fact, I don't even know how to explain this one properly.

Put it this way: When I start writing a new post, I usually do so in "Compose" mode. It's a much more visually appealing interface than HTML, and it gives me an idea of how the post will look when completed, as is the intended goal. But often, I think something needs fixing or whatever, and I go to the "Edit HTML" tab to do so. It's there where I discover that the evil <div> tag has taken over. And yet it's usage is inconsistent; it appears as though every time I hit "Return" it shows up, but not always. I hate the <div> tag and will delete it any time I see it. That's all, really.

Bitch #3 - Ungrateful fools
Ask me about this one sometime later...let's just say it has to do with a certain awards show over at a certain movie blog association.

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Got a bitch of your own, for me or some other (non-specific) site? Put your complaining pants on and let me hear it.


11 people have chosen wisely: on "Blogger Bitching #4"

JLG said...

Duuude. I hear you about composing on blogspot. I always have a problem with hard returns. I try to fix them in html but it never seems to work. I spend more time formatting than writing.

As for Betch #3 - I'm quite intrigued. And just so you and any other lambs out there know I would be very grateful if that were to occur to me.

Univarn said...

I mess with HTML a lot being a programmer, and I swear sometimes I'll just type the name of the post in Bold and will have 5 or more div tags, for no reason! They just appear out of nowhere like a ninja, it's unbelievable.

My main grip with Blogger is when I hit click the B for bold, type something, decide I don't want it in bold highlight, hit B again, delete. Now I try to type again, not only is it in bold, but if you go to the HTML it's bold encapsulated in bold! Now I have to delete both of them. Frustrates me every time.

Fletch said...

JLG - I would be very grateful if that were to occur to me.

You and most everyone else.

Yea, I might spend just as much time formatting as writing, too. It's gotten to the point where I'm pretty much more comfortable just writing in HTML mode. It should also be noted that I'm still not yet using Blogger's new Compose interface. I can't remember the exact reason, but I tried it once and didn't like something about it. I think it was the way it handled images or something. I fear change (though in this case I probably shouldn't).

Univarn - You're a programmer? Damn, I wish I'd known that - I could really take advantage of your skills sometime. Or at least, I might like to. ;)

I've gotten pretty good at learning what to do/not to do with bold/italics/similar formatting issues. They certainly are prickly, though.

I've found a new ill, though - much as I'm loving using Chrome, it handles certain things differently than Firefox/IE when composing blog posts. And none are an improvement. And they're all under the same product umbrella! Chrome should be the best at Blgospot! No dice...

Rick "The Hat" Bman said...

so... would this certain movie blog association you speak of be quite large?

I have upgraded to the newer version Compose interface on Blogger and I still get some problems with it just randomly adding tags whenever it wants. I try to just not let it bother me.

Fitz said...

First reason is why I went with Blogger and not wordpress. Well that and wordpress doesn't allow me to create html layouts.

Peter Eramo said...

Yeah, if I could start my blog over again, i would perhaps choose Blogger. WP is very restricting in terms of layout, graphics and things you can/can't add to your site. I hear that if you change to .org and not WP.com, it gets better. The comments also, as you suggest need to be better as well.

Fletch said...

Rick - in fact it would be large! How did you guess?

Good to know I'm not missing out on wonky HTML by not using the new Compose interface. I'm sure they'll force everyone over to it eventually.

Fitz - The "you can't futz with your blog's HTML without paying" thing is the reason I've never made the jump to WP. After being on Blogger for a few years, when I saw that, I thought it was a joke. How ludicrous. I don't know what I'd do if I couldn't monkey with everything to make it just how I want it. Customization FTW!

Overall, their comments are probably better (so long as the blog owner has that checkbox to subscribe in the first place). I'm wildly jealous of the "reply to individual comments" feature that they have and we on Blogger don't. If nothing else, it makes them seem more popular because one can make 5 targeted comments there where I would make one here. I know that's petty and vain, but you know what? So am I (at least when it comes to blogging).

Peter - I haven't heard that about a .org in particular, but more in terms of self-hosting in general. I'd suggest checking this post from over at Anomalous Material if you haven't seen it already. Good breakdown of WP vs. Blogger vs. self-hosted.

THN said...

Most people forget this, but WordPress suck.

Castor said...

@ Univarn: I had the same issues with Blogger and sometimes also with Wordpress. When you don't format things a certain way, the HTML can get completely messed up in the background even though it seems to look fine. I also never use the spell checker on Wordpress as it seems to completely mess up the HTML as well.

@ Fletch: Threaded comments rock! Maybe you should look into implementing Disqus or any of its competitor on Blog Cabins. I know it's imperfect but maybe better than the blogger comment system.

Paul Arrand Rodgers said...

It's not that I was ungrateful, it's just that I was, you know, pretty inactive there for awhile.

Reel Whore said...

Great job with the LAMMYs. I am very grateful for all you do...and not just because I won this year. :-)