Friday, January 29

An apology

A couple of weeks or more now I noticed that the number of followers to my blog was decreasing - not just by one or two as often happens but the numbers were going down in large chunks. The first batch to go missing coincided with me publishing non-gardening related topics and so I assumed that this had upset some followers and that they had decided to register their disapproval by unfollowing. (Is that a word now like unfriending?)

Then a coupld of readers commented that this was happening on other blogs and was in fact due to Blogger removing non-Google account holding visitors from the followers lists. Over 20 followers have already been removed from my lists and it is likely that more will follow.
To follow using the Google Friends Connect option you now must have a Google account which they say will, "improve the experience for both you and your readers."
I am not sure how they have reached this conclusion but many angry bloggers have set the blogger forum alight. It seems more to do with pushing people into creating Google accounts rather than for any benefit to users. I know Blogger is free so we can't really complain too much but it does annoy and frustrate me when they keep sneaking in changes. To be honest I would maybe change my blog to one that I have more control over but this would complicate matters for readers.

On the side bar of my blog I have set up alternative ways of following.
These have mainly been added on request as people often have a preferred way of following blogs. Bloglovin seems very popular.

I follow some of my favourite blogs by adding an RSS feed on my blog sidebar which may work with other blogging applications if you have your own blog.

I would like to apologise on behalf of Blogger if you are someone who has been unceremoniously removed from my readers list and wanted to assure you that it isn't my doing. I hope that you will find an alternative method of following that suits you and will continue to visit.

If anyone has a favourite way of following maybe you can describe it in the comments and let me now if I need to add something to my blog to allow you to do this.

Update:
I have just added a simple Facebook follower icon which doesn't use Networked Blogs. It's on the sidebar and looks like this.



34 comments:

  1. I'm never a fan of changes and this is yet another example of it.
    I noticed a decrease in followers, but assumed folks had just "changed their minds" on following. This adds an interesting twist. Glad you wrote this.

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    1. It is a shame as the follower numbers give some encouragement when they go up don't they, Sue?

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  2. I keep my own favourites list and use that when I visit blogs. I think this demonstrates that you can't really rely on just one method to follow blogs, those people without Google accounts have been taken off blog's followers lists so I hope they kept their own favourites list too otherwise how will they know which blogs they were following. I think it's very naughty of Blogger to do this.

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    1. Me too, Jo and we are not the only ones.

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  3. I put a similar post to yours on my Blog when I found out about it. Friend Connect has been so simple and worked well. I joined Bloglovin yesterday. I need to find out how to add the Bloglovin link to my blog. I hate change especially when it isn't necessary. I will find out how to follow you with Bloglovin before Friend Connect disappears. Take care now. Marion x

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    1. You just need to click on my Bloglovin link to follow, Marion. There should be somewhere on your Bloglovin account to access the code for a html sidebar widget. I think one problem is that a blogger needs to be registered with them for you to be able to follow this way.

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    2. I did not noticed decrease of my followers. As for your blog, I follow it on Bloglovin' and G+. I also see your posts on my FB timeline.
      Sussexmouse, it is easy to add the Bloglovin' widget to your page. Just mouse over your Bloglovin' profile picture and click 'widgets', choose one and you'll get the html code to put it on your site.

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  4. The other ways of following are a great idea Sue...may implement this on my blog as I do have both twitter and networked blogs already. I know I started having major problems posting a while back all because I didn't want to bend to blogger and put in google chrome. In the end though I had no choice as without it I lost the ability to post photos...just another way of trying to control and monitor us I suppose!!

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    1. I've added a direct FB link now as I know Networked Blogs may be on borrowed time, Tanya

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  5. It's all just another bid for world dominance by Google! I wish they would stop tinkering around.

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    1. So do I, Mark it is so frustrating when you find that suddenly something isn't working as you are used to. If it isn't broken why tinker? The techies disease!

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  6. Good luck with it. With all the alternatives you provide, the numbers should soon back up.

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    1. The problem is that I may never know, Alain as some of the ways of following are anonymous

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    2. If I spot a new follower in the gadget I always try to pop across and visit their blog if they have one and you can't do that if the follower is anonymous unless they comment which often they don't want to do,

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  7. I normally use RSS Owl, which is a stand-alone desktop program. One of the reasons I didn't want to solely rely on an internet based RSS reader was for precisely this reason - they can come up and yank the rug out form under you at any point and there's little you can do.

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    1. Thanks, margaret - I hadn't come across this so I have popped a direct link here RSS Owl in case anyone is interested.

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  8. I just noticed the same thing on my blog. Thank you for clarifying Sue.

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    1. Glad to shed light in the issue, Lee

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  9. It's a blinking pain Sue I'd be quite happy to reach 200 followers but since they started messing around it's been up and down like a yo-yo, I have my own favourite list of blogs I always look out for! xx

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    1. It was useful just to get some idea of how many regular readers visited didn't it, Jo and when numbers drop like a stone it males you wonder.

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  10. This must be most annoying Sue. For folk with a Blogger blog it's possible to follow blogs via the reading list on the dashboard. I also use Bloglovin' but find it rather clunky at times.

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    1. It is annoying, Anna they keep being annoying.

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  11. What a pain!!! Why do they have to fiddle with things? Fortunately I haven't been affected as I follow by email notifications. Here's to you finding the missing followers.xxx

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    1. Techies are only happy when fiddling with things, Dina.

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  12. I follow you using The Old Reader. It's a simple reader that became popular when Google reader was retired. I like it because it's not fancy and has a free membership for up to 100 feeds. I know they have a paid option if you want more feeds, but 100 is enough for me! It has the occasional sponsored post, but otherwise seems to be add free.

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    1. Thanks for that, Anne I will look it up and post a link to the website.

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  13. Thank you for this Sue, I was really worried when I saw my number of followers disappearing.
    I. Thought I had really overstepped the mark on my recent post on hybridisation!
    Although very relieved I am very angry with Google.

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    1. Always glad to be of service, Roger. Now you can rest easy that your fans are not deserting you :-)

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  14. It became apparent to me too a wee while back when I received emails from a couple of followers that they could not comment on my blog. It's a real pain in the proverbial isn't it Sue?

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  15. Thanks for your enlightening post, Sue. To make matters worse I got a new PC (with Windows 10) and I'm all at sea as a result. There is a conflict between Gmail and Google IDs that is constant source of annoyance. Similar developments in my work environment just confirm to me that I am not keeping pace with technology. After all spreadsheets and Windows played no part when I started out. I have facebook and Twitter IDs but just am not interested in maintaining them. I don't think I have a Google + Id although I keep getting prompted about it. Blogger I can manage, but if they mess around with that it's curtains for online me. It's very frustrating, so thanks for the analysis/alert.

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    1. When I started teaching in my class we had a BBC computer that had to have programs loaded via a tape cassette - each time you wanted to use them. It took about 15 minutes to load, sometimes longer depending on the program, and made such a noise that the computer had to have a cover over it to dampen the racket, Then if a child hit the wrong key the while process had to be started again.
      When Martyn was at university he used to have to program the computer using punch cards and leave it processing over the weekend sometimes only to find the thing had crashed at some point. How things have changed in a relatively short time.

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