My 19 Universe- China Straits Silver Dragon Bracelets

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On Becoming a Google-Blogger Refugee

I am feeling pretty naked out here with this new ‘minimalism’ template… the image above is what I am used to seeing this on site…. published by FTP using Live Writer through the Blogger API. I was originally with BlogSpot before the Google takeover … advised folks that this was the way to go for content management … no data base to maintain and comment spam to contend with… and since Live Writer plays so nice with Blogger… hey, life was good! Had a lots of plans for the winter!

Until I received an email on February 2nd from Google telling me that I was one of the .5% user base for Blogger that uses FTP publishing and that I had until March 29th to migrate all of my sites to their server. I really hadn’t planned on spending days and days of setting up MySQL data bases …migrating sites OR having to spend unbudgeted funds for a senior developer create new templates and themes for  an established site …. PrivateCollection  (in both English and Chinese) that has many links to other sites and is highly indexed by search engines… no that was not in the plan…

Not that they didn’t offer any options… but at the end of the day there was really no choice… like YouTube or Picasa just happens to be blocked in China and other places in the world… and a high percentage of our readership resides there… BUT and it is a big …BUT  it was the really outrageous spin Google put on it and the total  lack of consideration… that made the whole affair distasteful. In essence,  they were saying to users… you have less than 60 days … our way or the highway!!!

There is no such thing as a free service when one deals with Google… they are in the information business and whenever someone uses their service, Google gains more information… that is an exchange of value… but what was even more highlighted was the risk that someone takes when they enter into that relationship with Google (or other potential cloud-providers) … what if we did migrate to Blogger’s server and one day they said; "sorry… good-bye!"

The loss is not the content… that is backed up locally… it is the search rankings and the indexing and the URL’s … years spent in establishing a presence… it seems the ‘Non-Evil-Empire’ wants to own (control) your domain too!

I was/am one of the lucky ones… years spent in putting together Open Source Software Suites with the ZedFiles Project… knowing how to set up XAMPP and a dev bed to test and migrate to WordPress… having an ISP that keeps its data base and PHP up to date … being able to hack a simple template and set up some permalinks…

So, maybe now that the rant is over and some of that anger has been hosed out into cyberspace, I can spend a bit of time helping some of the other refugees by at least giving some tips and sharing how we are making the conversion.

That means that I won’t have the time to port my old template over to WordPress… but hey, I am getting used to this one already!!

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