Sunday, August 2, 2009

Where, oh where, has my little blog gone?

Where, oh where, has my little blog gone,
Where, oh where, can it be?
With its posts so short and its archives long,
Where, oh where, can it be?

Um, one of my "other" blogs - the Chula Vista Genealogy Cafe (http://CVGenCafe.blogspot.com), the official blog of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society, has disappeared from the blogosphere and the Internet.

I'm not sure when it happened - my last post was Thursday, as I recall.

When I tried to read it today, I got the message from Blogger:

"Blog has been removed. Sorry, the blog at cvgencafe.blogspot.com has been removed. This address is not available for new blogs. Did you expect to see your blog here? See: 'I can't find my blog on the Web, where is it?'"

I clicked on the link above and got:

"I can't find my blog on the Web, where is it?

"If you can't find your blog online and you're certain you (or one or your team members if you have a team blog) didn't delete your blog, then the first thing to do is make sure you've typed in the correct URL. If your blog is published with a custom domain or if you have an FTP blog, make sure you've correctly entered your settings in order for your blog to appear online.

"The final thing to do is review Blogger's policies to see if you may have violated our Terms of Service. If you've typed in the correct URL, haven't deleted your blog yourself, and your FTP or custom domain settings are correct, then please contact us for further assistance."

Okay - I checked with the other registrant, and he didn't delete it. I didn't delete it. Maybe someone else deleted it? Got my password and hit the big orange DELETE button?

I tried to read the mind numbing Blogger policies and Terms of Service and didn't see anything that violated them, but of course how could I tell since the $%^%$&*^$# blog isn't visible anymore?

I tried to login and see what happened and it said that the blog had been removed for review by Blogger for offensive content. Well now, I don't think there was anything more offensive on the blog than a stray "darn" or "shucks." Maybe these young snipperwhackers on this Internet thingie don't understand that type of lingo...or have visions of something else in their pointy little heads.

I was able to log in to my Google account for the society, so the username and password still work. But I couldn't get to the blog. I sent a request for a review of the decision this afternoon and haven't heard anything back yet, but it's Sunday. Those knuckleheaded TIF-throwing nerdaholics at Google are probably throwing a Frisbee somewhere and not fixing my blog back in shape.

I do have a text copy of all of my posts on the CVGC archived so I haven't lost any real content yet.

I know this has happened to others in the genea-blogosphere over the years. Any good advice?

14 comments:

Madaleine J. Laird said...

It disappeared?! How bizarre. I just recommended that my fellow SLO County Genealogical Society board members check out the Chula Vista Genealogy Cafe as an example of how a society can make good use of a blog. We've just started the "bulletin, blog, or both" debate, and things are already getting heated. Hope the Chula Vista Genealogy Cafe reappears soon!

Paula from SCGS said...

Mine didn't disappear but last year, two days after Jamboree, the Jamboree blog was locked because some bot, in its bot-led wisdom, decided it was a spam blog. It took weeks to get it fixed. Be persistent.

Bill West said...

Paranoid person that I am, I began
backing up my blog to a mirror site at Wordpress about a year or so ago.
I do the backup every two weeks. I don't know if that's practical for a Group blog.

Keep after the Google folks, like Paula says.

Gini said...

All I can say is that is really messed up. It's what scares me about counting on any online documentation or family history journaling. It can be taken as fast as we made it. I would be persistant too, they will have many to reckon with if they don't give it back. We are behind you no matter what.

Anonymous said...

Randy, how do you back up your posts? I wanted to know since I have a blog too. Don't want it to disappear too :p

John said...

From Blogger settings you can 'export' your blog on a regular basis to a file on your computer. And then, if the blog is ever deleted, it will be easy to 'import' the blog entries into another blog. At Blogger, or elsewhere.

September said...

How frustrating! Maybe it's all those common genealogy terms, like "birth" and "death" and "died" that caused some overly sensitive search program to flag it as "offensive." Whatever the (really stupid) reason, perhaps it's time to consider another blog-site-provider. I imagine you generate a good amount of traffic for Blogger, which is what they ultimately make their money from. In addition, I am starting a blog and was leaning towards Blogger, until this. Now Wordpress looks more favorable. Best of luck, and keep twittering about it!

Becky said...

Wow, that's scary. Seems to me that blogger should at least notify the owner that their blog is going to be deleted BEFORE they do it. They appear to be going with the assumption of "guilty until proven innocent" but with no recourse.

If nothing else, it serves as a reminder to backup your blog. I keep digital copies of all posts as well as weekly downloads of the full blog. I was using Wordpress as a backup site but discovered that with each import (even though I cleared the settings) I was getting duplicate posts and duplicate comments.

Sure hope you are able to get the CV Cafe back.

Apple said...

Cheryl never did get hers back and had to rebuild it it from her files. I hope you can get yours back.

Besides using the export blog feature on the settings tab to back up my blog, I also have a subscribe by email feature through feedburner and use that to have my posts sent to my email. All the comments are sent to the same account so they are saved too.

Quiltin' LibraryLady said...

Uh,uh,uh. Some mighty strong language there. LOL This one could disappear for "review" too. Who knows, maybe they have a quota or something, like the highway patrol, that they have to review/pick up so many to get their paychecks.

geneabloggers said...

Randy

I hope the blog comes back soon - I now have to go and see if all my Blogger blogs are accessible.

Funny (but not really) that this comes on the heels of our recent Data Backup Day. Someone in the comments asked how to backup their blog. Here is a post about backing up Blogger-based blogs from Bootcamp for GeneaBloggers: http://fbbootcamp.blogspot.com/2008/12/backup-your-blogger-based-blog.html

Brian D. said...

Forget Google Monopoly Co.. ..errr Blogger. Go to Wordpress.org download their software and start a self-hosted site. Put advertising on your site which actually goes into your pocket (and thus the world of genealogy) instead of Google World Domination, Inc. I use Wordpress.com and don't have advertising but then again I'm not a top-ten genea-blog .

TamuraJones said...

I agree with Count Brian. You should not depend on the whim of some blog hosting company for access to your own blog.
You should have your own data on your backup, and be able to restore your site to another host if necessary.

I have not found a blogging tool that can make a site like mine yet, so I suffer the troubles of doing things manually, but I do not recommend that approach.
I do recommend using a blogging tool. Changing to another blogging tool is not very hard. Various blogging tools do import each other's files, and the Google Blog Converters project will convert between Blogger, Live Journal, Type Pad, Moveable Type and WordPress.

Terry Thornton said...

Randy, It is scary business when a blog evaporates without notice. Hope you get answers soon. It is also scary when your make more than 1200 blog articles disapper one at a time as I've done from my 12 blogs over the past few days. And it is scarier still when others make your words disappear in a fit of censorship. Come to think on it, this is all scary business. LOL!

Sorry you've had such a problem.

Terry Thornton
Fulton, Mississippi