Don’t Quit – You Didn’t Mess Up Your Blog!

I’ve blogged seriously for long enough to have done several dirty deeds, yet somehow I’m at what I find to be a satisfying position regarding growth and participation.  So how did I come back from blog-killing mistakes?  There’s a key lie in that question:

There are almost no blog-killing mistakes.*

you right about that sugar

Here’s some hints to handle some of the boo-boo’s and uh-oh’s that come around.

I Accidentally Turned My Comments Off for Like A Week!  How Do I Survive?

I just got through this mess – and Lord knows it ain’t fun.

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If you’re lucky, you’ll have friends who’ll take the time to make the way over to your contact page (MAKE ONE IF YOU HAVEN’T) and submit something on that little form.

If you’re just starting out or your readers are on the new/untested side, you might want to schedule a check to make sure your comments are on your new posts.

Right now, you can check each article by clicking on ‘more options’ on the post maker and finding the “Allow Comments” checkbox.

WP Comments

Unless you’re really neck deep in trolls and hackers, do a double check before you post.  It’s way easier to comment if the comments are on!

Oh Snap – My Post Didn’t Make the Reader!

Sometimes this happens, and I’m not even sure why.  Most of the time it’s because you accidentally backdated your post so that it appears on the reader last year or something silly.  Sometimes blogging software is like, “Screw it, just not going to work.”

But that SUCKS.  Having your post not make the reader is about the same as missing a post entirely – and if you’ve been looking at any how to blog help articles, you know that consistency is important.

But don’t panic.

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There are some silver linings to this. First, a post not making the reader doesn’t mean your post was bad.  You can try to rescue it.

If you want to rescue it now, make a copy of the post, check all the settings, and publish it.  Take down the old post so people don’t think you’re spamming (and so comments don’t get strewn around), then leave a note explaining potential email shenanigans to your readers.  You should still get most of the benefits of the original post with only a trifle more effort.

Something else you can do?  You can easily mark that post to reblog again on a later date.  With so few people seeing the post, you should be able to publicize it again without seeming lazy.

And those people who still read your blog post anyway?  Well, it means someone loves you.

Why Are Other People Politically Idiots!?

Tip one: stay out of politics if it’s not your professed thing (oops, I suck at that).  But, you know, sometimes you just gotta get some dip and speak the truth:

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And those fools out there just don’t understand!  Still, the best thing to do is to ignore it or block them.  Here’s how you can do that: Go to Settings, then click the Discussion tab.  Scroll down to Comment Moderation.

Capture

You can also block annoying people without political aspirations like I have (I reserve the rights to moderate anyone with the words ‘sexy,’ ‘id,’ ‘.website,’ and ‘.ru’ in their names, comments, or URLs – this has blocked quite a few annoying spammers, actually).

The bigger problem is if someone is being real mean to you.  Do you ban them?  Try to ignore it?  Or do you spread dirt around about them?

Just ban them like an ordinary spammer.  There’s nothing you can do to make yourself look like the winner of an argument like that.  Who knows – that person may even be popular or influential, and you don’t want to tick off your mutual friends.

But, you know, what if you’re the person spouting stuff and getting banned?

Well… you’re gonna have to get off that high horse.

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There are a couple things you can do to save yourself if you say something obtuse:

  1. Ignore it and DON’T KEEP STOKING THE FIRE.  Wait and see if the blog author thought it was funny too, or if it’ll slide away unnoticed…
  2. Apologize privately if you can, publicly if you can’t.  This will let the person know you recognize the mistake.  As long as you’ve not been mean in the past, they’ll probably understand the limitations of written word and forgive you.
  3. If you can’t stand letting them win, write up the argument in a document you’ll save on your computer and NEVER POST.  Once you take the bait, you run the risk of becoming a target.

As far as I’m aware, the goal of most writing bloggers isn’t to win arguments – it’s to meet people, improve our craft, and create a community.

But I guess if your goal is to put the smackdown on as many people as possible, go for it?

Have You Nearly Killed Your Blog?

What’s happened on your blog that made you want to quit?  Is there anything frustrating that you wish could be done better?  Let me know in the comments – maybe I or someone will know some work arounds!

*You may be able to kill your blog if you do something illegal or so distasteful that you get permabanned.  Be reasonable, folks.

19 thoughts on “Don’t Quit – You Didn’t Mess Up Your Blog!

  1. Betul Erbasi says:

    I am new, so I have not made a lot of mistakes. But one thing I realized yesterday was that I was asking for name and email on the WP app (which I did not want to). Just hoping that did not discourage people from commenting.

  2. robertawrites235681907 says:

    I have always viewed my blog as a conversation with friends. I don’t ever post political opinions and generally share book reviews, poems and bits of writing. My poems do express my emotions but I don’t think I am fanatical about anything so that seems to be okay. I enjoy your posts, especially your dark streak.

  3. Tom Darby says:

    Hell…I’m a pro at this one.

    In 2006, five years into blogging, I was instructed to kill by blog by the newspaper I was working for. I did and the following day, I was fired.

    I’d taken on a local politician whose only strategy to win an election was to attack reporters. I was his target that particular political season.

    When he sent a letter to the editor to complain, someone forwarded me a copy and I published it on my blog. Oops. That’s what got me in trouble.

    Also, I was the focus of an ethics debate at the the local university (to which I wasn’t invited,) made several newspapers and blog posts around the world, and became the subject of Fred Brown, columnist and retired Capitol bureau chief of the Denver Post and co-chairman of the Society of Professional Journalists’ Ethics Committee, who wrote of me:

    “What you describe is clearly an unethical practice. I’m an old-fashioned journalist who believes that material released for general public consumption should be checked carefully and — in the case of a reporter, though not a columnist — careful attention to impartiality. The problem with blogs, which even mainstream media are encouraging, is that they’re expected to be interesting, and impartiality is not considered interesting. Blogs can erode media credibility, which is precisely what we do not need in an environment where so many sources are competing for attention.”

    Like I said, H.R.R., I got this — and remember I’m a professional, so don’t try this at home without ethical supervision.

  4. joanne the geek says:

    Posts that don’t make the reader really annoy me at the time, but I’m usually over it within a couple of days. One thing I did do last time it happened was mention the post in my next one and provide a link to it. In the end it did help and I felt enough people saw it.

    Yeh I try to avoid politics on my posts as WordPress is my creative space and I don’t want to get unnecessarily angry here or stand on a soap box spouting my views. I’m pretty sure my political leanings come through in my writing anyway…

    • H.R.R. Gorman says:

      Lol – I have deleted an untold number of political posts before pressing the ‘publish’ button. It’s the right idea not to do it, but it’s something I sit right next to ofyen.

      • joanne the geek says:

        I understand completely. If I lived in the States it would be harder for me not to write overtly political posts.

        I do follow some political blogs, but at least you know what you’re getting with them. I unfollowed a blogger who suddenly blogged about how much they loved Donald Trump and didn’t understand why everyone was being so negative about him…

      • H.R.R. Gorman says:

        Lol what a weirdo! My overtly, screechingly political post was about state elections and global warming… it didn’t go over too badly, but I still shouldn’t have done it.

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