I had a big scare here on Slapinions yesterday. With my home computer still down I visited the local library after work to check my email. That worked fine, but I was unable to view my site on the first computer I tried. So I tried another. No site. Another. Still no Slapinions. I could sign into my dashboard page but venturing any further resulted in a Blogger error message.
The first Blogger resource I queried suggested my site had been automatically shut down as a 'spam site'. I guess it's not all that uncommon for Blogger to close a site because of a false negative whenever their algorithm mistakes a phrase or link in the site as spam content. Naturally I'd noticed that my last post had resulted in two spam comments, at least one of which linked to porn. Great.
But, the resource was quick to say, Blogger is quick to restore the site in cases of mistaken identity, while of course always searching for a way to improve their algorithm and bring sunshine into the life of all God's creatures.
Phooey. So much for Google being the safe haven of the exiled J-Landers.
A little later a rash of complaints quoting the same error code came up on Blogger help groups, which cheered me up quite a bit. One guy getting screwed is easy to ignore. Not so much when three dozen people are moaning about it all over the web.
Today, the site was back up where it belongs.
So as of today, with some regret, I've added the annoying anti-spam, word verification step to the comment page. I know Ken, in particular, hates that step but I'm gonna have to play it safe and run with it anyway. It's not like I'm inundated with comments, spam or otherwise, but I'm not going to take the chance and have one moron out there knock out five years of my work.
And you better believe I'm searching for a way to back up the site - again - this time off Google, which ain't easy to do, as the big G is to the web what the Mantle era Yankees were to baseball.
Who knows, maybe the first Blogger resource was dead wrong and it was just a general error - but why dare to take the chance?