Obviously, I’ve been missing from the blog world, but that’s nothing new. I’ve disappeared before, whether from being too busy with work and school, or just too bored to post. But this time, I’d like to thank Google. Yes, Google.
When I was new to blogging, I first tried Xanga. It was nothing more than a “cutesy” kind of place, with most blogs ranging from Jesus to bubblegum, or so it seemed. But Blogger!? Blogger allowed me to have my blog on MY website. It could be fully integrated–seamless in style and structure. I could email my posts, and more recently, post via text and multimedia messaging! What a treasure!Google and I have always had an iffy relationship. I’ve never liked their search engine or those obnoxious textual ads that have invaded countless websites…but made them filthy rich. I don’t like their email at all, though I appreciate the features it allows people who do like web-only email. I’ve loved their maps, and have delighted in many days of just exploring places with the Street View feature. And then there’s Blogger. Blogger was perfect for me from the start.
Blogger also didn’t force a community on me the way Xanga tried to. I could use Blogger and be an e-hermit on my own little website. My blog on Blogger was just ME. It made me get a Google sign on, which in turn meant I tried other services from them. Blogger was like my welcome mat to Google. And then it was yanked away.
In early March I received a bulk email from Blogger staff saying they would no longer provide FTP posting (the method used to create blogs on your own server while still using Blogger formatting and services). The email said they were kind enough to extend the deadline from the original March 26 shutoff to May 1. How nice of them. They also stated that users were notified in early January of the upcoming change. Hmm. Not THIS user. I was taken aback, to say the least.
When the “warning” email arrived, I had been using Blogger for just over five years. That doesn’t seem like long, but in the realm of Internet services, that’s practically a lifetime. As pissed as I was, I knew it’s a business, and businesses have to make such decisions. My problem is how they handled it, as well as their reasoning. They said FTP cost too much to maintain. Well, did they ever ask FTP users if they were willing to pay? Of course not. Google makes enough off obnoxious, often shady textual ads.
I also hate when anyone, individuals or businesses suddenly change the rulebook after letting people get greatly intertwined with their service. Some small businesses rely on FTP blogging! Many comments on the announcement blog were from people whose only source of income was their website. Nice going Google.
So, all that said, why am I thanking Google? By pooping on my website, if not my head, Google made me move on to something FAR better. They forced me to learn new things, even if it means abandoning Google and most of their services. (Bing! maps are WAY better! And I’ll stick with Yahoo! for everything else!)
In the end, I decided to go with Movable Type WordPress, which I installed and configured on my own. So, welcome to my new blog. And Google…thanks, and goodbye!