2005/02/08

Off topic: How to handle Blogger's quirks when posting comments

It's now been over a week that every single day, Blogger fucks up when one tries to add a comment to a post. There seems to be a specific technical issue with Blogger regarding posting comments because while this comment posting problem occurs, simply displaying or cruising through blogs works flawlessly.

Normally, if you post a comment, 2 or 3 seconds later you get a Blogger message telling you "your comment has been saved", and under it a link to return to the page. It also states that there may be a few seconds before the comment appears, so please, don't panic if you don't see it for even up to several minutes - I've never yet come across a case where the comment didn't actually turn up a bit later in "sluggish" circumstances.

But lately, it's been reaching the next level of user frustration: you never get to even see the Blogger message. All you get, after a minute or so is a "this page cannot be displayed" browser message (or, if you're running behind a proxy server like I am, a "Proxy report - Error 10060 - connection time out" message).

This is not only frustrating but also gives you no clue as to whether your comment has made it or not. Now here are the "important" finds I've come across by sheer trial and error:

Do NOT refresh the page. Doing so will repost your comment, for in pratice, most of the time your comment actually DID make it. And if you keep coming up with the same "page cannot be displayed" message, every time you refresh the page you post yet another instance of your comment.

Instead, use your browser's BACK button, which will take you to the state of the page prior to your sending your comment. Then cruise around for a few minutes or go get yourself a coffee. In all cases so far, I've found that a few minutes later, going back to the topic where I commented, my comment WAS there.

Lastly, always use some kind of scratch pad when you compose your comments. If for some reason, your comment REALLY doesn't make it, then you have an easy way to repost it. I use Notepad, and only delete my last draft once I've confirmed it got posted ok.

13 Comments:

I've placed comments on other blogs which have appeared ONE WEEK later. It is the most uselss system. I think everyone who uses blogger should protest and try to get something done about it. 

Posted by Greg Stephens
2/08/2005 04:25:00 am  
"1 week"? Fuck me dead as they say in Oz.

Must be cuz you're so far away, my friend... :-) 

Posted by WhyNot
2/08/2005 04:30:00 am  
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
2/08/2005 04:35:00 am  
WhyNot...I've also resorted to using a scratchpad too or copying my comment before I click post. Even so, I still duplicate sometimes by accident (which I think I did here yesterday, sorry).

On a related note, I think it's too bad that the bloggers who go about posting about free iPods and the like are not the ones who have their comments eaten by blogger ;) 

Posted by Jenni
2/08/2005 04:45:00 am  
There must be some way to block them out, are they automatically generated or are they really annoying people? 

Posted by Greg Stephens
2/08/2005 05:12:00 am  
“I think it's too bad that the bloggers who go about posting about free iPods and the like are not the ones who have their comments eaten by blogger ;)”.

Too right, Jenni, LOL. Well funny this should come about - how timely! Tis actually the first spam we've had. Anyway, Dianne deleted it. 

Posted by WhyNot
2/08/2005 07:08:00 am  
I can't think of how it could be automatically generated but I'm no expert on these things. I think the best we can do at the moment is delete them. The busier your site gets the more comment spam you can count on since their main objective is higher google rankings.  

Posted by Dianne
2/08/2005 07:17:00 am  
I just ran across an very interesting article on this very problem.

Sam - let's call our interviewee Sam, it's suitably anonymous - lives in a three-bedroom semi-detached house in London, drives a vintage Jaguar and runs his own company. But "it's not not all rock and roll and big money", says Sam. What isn't? Spamming websites and blogs with text to pump up the search engine rankings of sites pushing PPC (pills, porn and casinos), that's what.

Interview with a link spammer 

Posted by Dianne
2/08/2005 10:02:00 am  
I have never once had a comment take more than a few seconds to post. What I always do after getting the verification page that the comment has posted, is back-space to the main page of the blog, refresh that page until I see the number of comments has changed, then click in and refresh again to see the comments. This is because the browser sets its temporary files continuously and is always trying to use a cached copy to save time. Clearing out your temporary files and page history now and then helps to keep it current.
Occasionally the verification page itself is slow and keeps going to "page not displayed", but I suspect this is because someone else is posting or republishing something at the same moment. I usually just back-space and post again until I get the verification, and it never takes more than a few tries at worst. 

Posted by Sarah
2/08/2005 01:03:00 pm  
Post comments doesn't even improve google page ranking as they are all redirected through another server. I think it could be some promotion thing prehaps? maybe buy this and get an ipod free? 

Posted by Greg Stephens
2/09/2005 03:54:00 am  
Dumb question here, but what's an ipod anyway? Is it any good to clear clogged up toilets? 

Posted by WhyNot
2/09/2005 04:29:00 am  
haha an ipod is kind of a portable MP3 (music format on the internet) player. It is put out by apple. 

Posted by Greg Stephens
2/09/2005 08:56:00 am  
“an ipod is kind of a portable MP3 ...”.

Oh one of those. Cégetel (my ISP) sent me one when I subscribed to them a few months ago. First thing I did was to rip the case apart, and it's now sitting on a corner of my desk hanging off a USB cable as a 128MB removable solid state drive to my PC. Plus I now have yet another pair of shitty earphones in my drawer, LOL. 

Posted by WhyNot
2/09/2005 03:54:00 pm  

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