lovely piece of necromancy

options resurrects the global tags thread. Whereupon everyone piles in again and I finally twig that post category links are not broken through accident or carelessness, but by design. It’s such a lovely piece of necromancy, I would kind of like to pick the whole thread up and carry it over here.

Also on the forums today, nice long thoughtful thread about using wp.com for commercial sites. That anyone would wish to do this (limited number of themes + no plugins + no ads + no sponsored links v. do whatever the hell you want) is a triumph of branding over common sense. Don’t these people want professional-looking sites? A nasty site effect of wp.com marketing itself as the newbie solution is that it’s made everyone assume that installing and running wordpress by yourself is rocket science. It’s not. It’s only once you start tinkering with it that things get complicated.

Yes, I am finally being allowed to add new themes to wordpress.net. Yay! Unfortunately, I didn’t want to upload any new themes, I wanted to update my old one. Since there is no way of claiming it as my own and getting edit privileges on it, I’m going to have to upload the new version separately, which is messy, but meh. I’m past caring. The templatemonster theme is still there, but they’re apparently not bothered (no reply to my email) so I don’t see why I should be. Maybe I should reverse-engineer a couple of their other demos and throw them up there.

15 Comments »

  1. engtech said

    thanks for the pointer to that thread.

  2. timethief said

    global tags
    Both engtech and sunburntkamel have made soild contributions to the global tags thread. Hopefully they will get somewhere with them but then again …

    commercial blogs
    Here’s an example from a post in what I would label a blatantly commercial blog which I have reported to sysadmin.

    This weeks SIREN SPECIALS!
    December 4th, 2006 at 8:46 pm (Specials, promo, Email Us, discount, new
    stock) Here we go again! Monday… Monday…Monday, SIREN SPECIAL Monday??? that’s right, awesome SIREN SPECIALS are here again for another week!! Here’s how it works : every week between NOW right up until Christmas, we bring you 2 “SIREN SPECIALS”. Specials are available from 9am every Monday thru to the following Saturday 1pm. Only 3 more weeks until Christmas, that’s right only 21 more shopping days! So as our siren specials countdown, we thought we would pick things up a notch. Siren Special 1: 20%, yes you heard it right, a WICKED 20% off ALL rubber stamps in stock. This includes every bit of rubber instore including mounted and unmounted stamps! CRAZY but true so don’t delay!! … http://scrapbookdesigns.wordpress.com/

    IMO not having a clear policy is clearly doing no one any favours. Until we have clarity on this issue we will have folks creating commercial blogs like the one above and then being flabberghasted when their blogs are reported and suspended.

  3. engtech said

    re: scrapbookdesigns

    imo, it’s no different than:
    – blogs that are created for classes at schools
    – blogs that are created for software projects to inform users of updates

    I think the dividing line between acceptable and unacceptable is when you’re trying to run a commercial site where you are selling something:
    – trying to make money off of advertisements
    – trying to sell products over the internet
    – trying to sell affiliate links
    – being paid for links (PayPerPost)

    The “interesting” part of the TOS:

    the Content is not spam, and does not contain unethical or unwanted commercial content designed to drive traffic to third party sites or boost the search engine rankings of third party sites, or to further unlawful acts (such as phishing) or mislead recipients as to the source of the material (such as spoofing);

    scrapbookdesigns has *very* few outgoing links, and the links they do have don’t seem to be selling anything. So while this might be a blog for a real life store. They’re selling stuff, but they’re only selling it to people who actually walk into their store in Albany, Australia.

    Considering this part of the FAQ:

    Adsense and other Ads

    Multiple affiliate links are also not permitted. One discreet text link per blog is okay. Any more than that, send a feedback for clarification. Clicktrackers and any promotion of the “I made a million on the internet and so can you” type of advertising are expressly forbidden.

    We are allowed to have one discreet text affiliate link per blog and they aren’t even doing that… so nuking them would be making wp.com more strict than we really want it to be.

  4. timethief said

    Are you aware that Matt closed the “global tagging thread”? http://wordpress.com/forums/topic.php?id=935&replies=51#post-4700

  5. engtech said

    Yeah, I saw that.🙂

  6. Yeah, I was totally expecting that. I was surprised he didn’t close it after his gnomic little ‘if you don’t want global tag links, don’t use global tags’ response, actually.

    Calling local tags ‘categories’ and global tags ‘tags’ is a really nice solution which takes care of the lack of labelling. What wordpress.com really needs to do is implement tags properly, as opposed to just saying ‘right, we’re going to call categories ‘tags’ now because it sounds more trendy’. Tags are not categories. I don’t tag my posts here, I categorise them. If I were tagging, they’d have sensible names😉

    We’re allowed to have one discreet text affiliate link? How are they defining that? Is Scoble’s Amazon link ‘discreet’? Would a Dreamhost button be disallowed because it’s an image rather than text? What if someone’s got an affiliate link in the sidebar and then smuggles another into a post? Vague, vague, vague. I’d rather Mark’s time were spent on support than having to make judgements on individual cases. Easier, surely, just to say ‘not allowed unless you’re Special’?

  7. mark said

    Heh – I spend more time, a lot more time, debating these things than actually having to deal with them.

    And yes things are and will remain ‘vague’ but I don’t think I’ve been getting this so wrong in the last 8 months have I? It may not be as clear as some would like but I don’t think it can be written in a way that cannot be gamed – so I’d rather it stayed as it is. Like I said, it’s a small amount of time.

  8. timethief said

    This morning I sent an email to Lloyd in support requesting that my complaint against scrapbookdesigns be withdrawn. Since then my request has been honoured and acted upon by Mark and the blogger has been informed that her blog will not be suspended, she can continue as before. This is what I said:

    I’m corresponding with you to withdraw my complaint and to request that you notify the blogger in question that you will be taking no action to suspend the account. This is why.

    Although the blog in question is without doubt commercial in nature and exists only for the purpose of advertising commercial products offered for sale by the blogger, engtech has presented me with criteria that have merit. Moreover, I’ve slept very poorly on this troubling issue for a couple of nights now and I woke up this morning convinced that his approach is an more inclusive one to take.

    This is not a black and white world Lloyd and developing equitable policies not an easy task. There are many gray areas. But what we all know in our heart of hearts is that it’s how we treat each other while we’re here in this world that counts. Community is built on a base of good will and tolerance. I bear *no* good will towards spammers, pay for click bloggers, seo gamers and “i made a fortune on the inter-net scam artists’ but I do bear lots of good will towards small business people.

    engtech has said:
    “I think the dividing line between acceptable and unacceptable is when you’re trying to run a commercial site where you are selling something:
    – trying to make money off of advertisements
    – trying to sell products over the internet
    – trying to sell affiliate links
    – being paid for links (PayPerPost)”

    You can see engtech’s criteria here https://wank.wordpress.com/2006/12/05/lovely-piece-of-necromancy/#comments

    Seven months ago I was over the moon when I left Blogger and came to WordPress. I do love wordpress and blogging too but I have allowed my outlook to become tarnished. I now intend to seek and find again the joy I felt when I first began blogging here and to carry that joy with me into the new year.

    Thanks, in advance, for getting back to me and letting me know what your decision on this is.

    Namaste

  9. engtech said

    And yes things are and will remain ‘vague’ but I don’t think I’ve been getting this so wrong in the last 8 months have I? It may not be as clear as some would like but I don’t think it can be written in a way that cannot be gamed – so I’d rather it stayed as it is. Like I said, it’s a small amount of time.

    On point. There is no way to write something that can’t be gamed, it’s better to try and capture the spirit and then interpret it on a case-by-case basis. It is hard to write a generic statement that captures things that are obvious on a case by case basis. We’re lucky in the sense that there are only a couple of people who have to apply their judgment on this issue so there is some consistency — if you look at something like Wikipedia the deletion policy is a mess because there are so many people who can subjectively interpret it, so they have to be as explicit as possible and it causes messes like this: http://engtech.wordpress.com/2006/12/05/on-wikipedia-blogging-and-the-anti-blog-bias/

  10. […] wank (that girl again😉 mentions my suicidal resurrection of the Category vs. Global Tags thread in wp.com forums: Whereupon everyone piles in again and I finally twig that post category links are not broken through accident or carelessness, but by design. It’s such a lovely piece of necromancy, I would kind of like to pick the whole thread up and carry it over here. […]

  11. options said

    wow, I am banned from forums!

    you might also have a time before the whole blog is banned to check a forum ban as a CRM method

  12. mark said

    options – in case you miss this on your own blog:

    “Why do you say you are banned?

    Please send me screenshots to illustrate this fact.”

  13. Alan said

    At Vox, the tags below the post link directly to that members library, but if you hover for half a second or so it comes up with options to explore the rest of Vox with those tags. I always thought that was a better system than the confusing setup WP.com has at the moment, though it would be just mildly counterintuitive to their goal of everyone seeing the global pages.

  14. engtech said

    I still think the simplest solution is to have tags and categories… and show both in the meta-entry.

    On my blog I have around 17 categories but 500 tags — but that’s the way I’ve hacked it together instead of something natively supported.

  15. options said

    I still think the simplest solution is to have tags and categories… and show both in the meta-entry

    so do I… since that very day in March when this thingy was launched and established ‘seriously and for good’.

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