Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Next Blog

This morning, I got up early with Kev, who had to go into work today. I sat down at my computer with a cup of coffee, planning to look at all the many, many photos I took yesterday of Christmas spent with my family. I decided to look at a couple of blogs, first, and then I got sidetracked...

I had a conversation yesterday, similar to a couple of conversations recently, about how Blogger has changed. More specifically, how the content of blogs has changed. A few years back, I used to sit down at my computer with my slow, dial-up Internet connection and "Next Blog" away... finding some very entertaining blogs. Some have become my favorites.

Then a change began. On using the "Next Blog" on the Blogger navigation bar, I noticed some of the blogs were not only just plain crap, but they were nasty crap. I eventually discontinued my occasional Next Blog'ing because it just was not worth the wait with my slow 'net access, and goodness knows I didn't dare do it at work on my lunch hour because of the porn that would randomly appear.

I didn't mind much, because in my opinion, the best way to find new blogs to read is by going to the linked blogs of a blog I enjoy reading. I, myself, don't feel comfortable linking to other blogs of people I don't know, even though I would highly recommend those blogs... for example, dooce. (And anyway, if you're blogging and you don't know dooce, then you're blogging from a cave somewhere.)

But since we have finally gotten high speed Internet access, I started hitting the Next Blog button on occasion. Woe is me.

The Porn

For all those of you using Blogger for your porn, I detest you. I suspect you're all smokers, litterers and tailgaters as well. I wish all of your ilk could be rounded up and put on your own island where you could not annoy the rest of us.

The Blogs Not Written in English

I enjoy looking at the blogs from around the world that are not written in English. I like to see photos posted on those blogs. I like trying to figure out what some of the words may mean. But... sometimes I wish I could have a "Next Blog in English" button on the Navigation Bar. *sigh*

And speaking of the Navigation Bar...

The Blogs Missing the Navigation Bar

You guys suck. Not only is the Blogger Navigation Bar extremely useful, but it's been pretty common knowledge that when you agreed to the Blogger Terms of Service, you agreed to leave it there. I'm pretty certain it's covered specifically in Section 9, Proprietary rights, i.e., 9.5, which reads, "You agree that you shall not remove, obscure, or alter any proprietary rights notices (including copyright and trade mark notices) which may be affixed to or contained within the Services." The Blogger Navigation Bar has the Blogger trademarked symbol, which identifies your blog as provided (free) to you by Blogger, owned by Google. Show some respect and leave the nav bar. Otherwise, you're in the same group with the porn blogs that never have the nav bar, and is that really the kind of company you want to keep?

As long as I'm mentioning legally binding agreements and those stupid porn blogs, here ya go... Blogger's Content Policy. Which only serves to make me, and people who agree with me on this, justified in feeling those type of blogs should not exist.

So Dear Blogger, what's up? Why don't you just delete all the blogs that have removed the Navigation Bar? Oh, you could send a warning first, so those non-porn blogs could have a chance to comply with the Agreement to which They Agreed and put the nav bar back. But in my opinion, if a person has removed the nav bar from their blogspot dot com blog, that person deserves to have Blogger/Google delete their blog. Simple as that. Clean up our little Blogger neighborhood, would you please? I'd do it if I could, but you, Blogger, have the only magical delete key. Use it. I beg of you. Bring back the joy.

What's a rant without a pie chart?...

This morning, I purposely decided to Next Blog to 100 blogs and keep track of the content with which I was presented. I only made it to 90 and then my computer froze up, and though this exercise didn't take very long, it seemed painful enough. I stopped at 90.

I categorized them as follows, and I've provided the percentage that fell into each category: 1) Not in English, and if they were not in English, I did no further categorization though some of those would obviously fall into one of the categories following, 31%; 2) porn, 18%; 3) advertisements or sales, including political ads, 22%; 4) truly a blog, seemed to be written by a real person about nothing much in particular or something of their interest, like sports, computer programming, publishing, teenage angst and the like, 27%; 5) protected blog, open to invited readers only, 1%; and 6) Blogger content warning, 1%.

I also, of course, kept track of the number of those 90 blogs that had no Blogger Navigation Bar, and there were 31. Truly, my past experience would lead me to believe that number should be higher... I would have guessed at least 50%, not a mere 34%.

For your viewing pleasure, the pie chart with my labeled categories and the number of blogs in each category...

p.s. If you have a blogspot dot com URL and no nav bar, I won't read your blog on principle, no matter how interesting it may appear.

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