Friday, January 31, 2014

Conversion experience

I started TinkerX in 2005. I'd been blogging for a couple years about legal marketing, and when I started working at OCLC, I wanted a place to do non-work writing, so this was it. I enjoyed doing the initial setup with WordPress, and liked playing around with the various templates and settings.

Then comment spam took over.

This is a modest blog. To say it is a modest blog is possibly even a great overstatement... or understatement. What I mean is that I don't have lots of readers. Maybe only a few. I had a couple posts with 10+ comments, but mostly none. That's OK. I chiefly do this for myself. I was deeply glad that one of my posts, on the game "My Team, Your Team," was turned into, "The Superest" book... but that was the height of its fame.

Not lots of readers. But lots of lots of comment spam.

In the last year, since the last time I did a comment purge, I had more than 32,000 spam comments waiting in the queue. And, at a point int he past, before WordPress anti-spam stuff caught up with the volume, about 20,000 had managed to sneak through and get posted to the blog without my consent.

About every six months, it gets so bad and the security issues with WordPress (and, to be fair, other self-publishing tools/services) so compromised, that my web host makes it mandatory to update to a newer version of WordPress or SQL (the database behind the scenes) or PHP (the code). That's a pain in the ass for a blog that's mostly supposed to be for me to just randomly spew about movies or poetry or the weather.

So I converted it to Blogger, which is what you're seeing now. To my great sorrow, however, in order to convert the posts, I had to drop ALL the comments, because the volume was so high that they made the export file from WordPress waaaaay to big to import into Blogger.

Meaning: the fake comments from spammers (may they rot in hell) killed the few comments from real people. Comments that made me happy, because it meant that someone was reading my junk and getting something out of it. Comments that had some thought and humor. Comments from friends, family and lovely strangers.

Perhaps this is a good reminder that everything is, after all, ephemeral.

Perhaps it's just another example of how a few shitheads tend to ruin it for the rest of us.

Perhaps I'm over thinking it.

Anyway... Perhaps having this blog hosted by Google -- who does a pretty damn good job keeping spam out of my email -- will mean I blog more often and get some new comments and make some new friends.


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