Tuesday, April 22, 2008

The Extraordinary Pencil was held Hostage by Blogger!!

...Until Google Blogger changes their ways...
We are all "on Thin Ice"

My blog here on Google Blogger was shut down as SPAM on Friday April 18, 2008 and just released today, Tuesday the 22nd. I know it's hard to understand why...I don't know why! I received no notice from Blogger that there was an issue and nothing telling me I had been shut down or any reason for it.

There was an "extra code" below the "publish post" button on Saturday as I was trying to write. From what I was able to learn from others...Blogger is saying their automatic system flags a blog "suspected as spam" and shuts it down immediately. The blog them remains locked until someone on their staff gets around to reviewing it and realizes that it is NOT a SPAM BLOG!

I read somewhere that there are apparently crooks out there who create blogs using an aggregate robot to steal content from legitimate sites (like mine) and they post a bunch of ads on it attracting people using keywords to lure them in. These are the SPAM BLOGS...and Blogger needs to find a better way to deal with the problem...without punishing the innocent!!

It's just wrong for Blogger to flag and shut down a "suspected blog"...before they even look at it. This is STEALING. In my case as I am sure it is with quick look would have let them know that I was not spam!! (Blogger needs to Flag, Look, and then Shut Down the guilty...not penalize the innocent by shutting down ALL the "suspected" offenders!!)

BUT NO!!...instead they flagged and immediately shut me down for 5 days! During this time you could read The Extraordinary Pencil and make a comment, but I could not post your comment or respond or write and post anything. Had they not finally taken time to look at blog could have sat there inactive and died a slow death.

For some this unwarranted shutdown has gone on for weeks...and others have been shutdown again after being released once! It's a SCARY situation...I still can't believe they have the right to do this. I will forever feel my blog is vulnerable to another shut down...they have destroyed all my trust.

I sent a "newsletter blast" from my Website on Sunday and some personal appeals to others by email on Monday....and want to say a huge THANK YOU to all who logged into Blogger's Help Forum and posted a plea on my behalf. It was the power of many...I don't think they wanted to see that post grow any bigger. I know this is why my blog has been released. Others (some I've looked at) are innocent and still shut down.

I apologize if this sounds like a rough post...But I'm still angry and it's going to take some time to get past this experience. Blogger shut me down without any explanation as to why, and reinstated me without a word...(no gees we're sorry, no here's what the issues were, no nothing)! Because I don't know what triggered the shut down, I sit here today feeling extremely vulnerable to a repeat episode.

If you want to read who these bloggers are begging for help...Click the link and view either Publishing Trouble or Login Issues. There is page after page full of frustrated innocent bloggers.

You know only the innocent would complain...the guilty just go somewhere else and set up another Spam Blog!

This is a could happen to you...Blogger needs to know we disapprove of the unjust methods they are using to weed out Spam Blogs. The only way to contact Blogger is through their forums....If you have an opinion, I'd say let them know.

Blogger is running a program that "flags" suspect blogs and shuts them down without a review. Every blog is presumed guilty until proven innocent...This process will continue as their method of weeding out the Spam Blogs!

If enough people complain about their unjust methods...Perhaps they will change their ways before your blog gets caught up in this mess.

Enough #!%)...On a Positive Note, I was so blessed by all of you who went to battle for me...I do believe that had it not been for you, I would still be shut down.

In closing...I would have to say that we never know how truly vulnerable we are, nor how much others care.

Thank You for being there,

Website ...Marsha Robinett Fine Art
My Squidoo ...Drawing Techniques

PS...make a "Point"...leave a comment.


ACEO's By Rose said...

Marsha, you are so right to be angry and glad your friends came to your rescue. I would be so mad too! I will be watching closely as I am a blogger as well. I am just happy all is well now. I know it will take a while to get over, but we're on your side!

Hugs, Rose

Anonymous said...

I am so happy that they released you. I can understand your being so angry. I agree they should find another alternative to the spam blogs. Welcome back.

PamYla said...

Wow Marsha,
Im not normally online on the weekends and I did not know until I got your email! I am glad that you are back up and running. I know how you felt, msn has done the same to me before. Wow this is crazy, but with a great outcome!

Anima said...

Wow, Marsha, I'm in shock! I had no idea that blogger was doing such a thing and it makes me really nervous since they're my blogging platform too.

Well I'm glad you're back and I certainly hope it doesn't happen again. Please keep us informed if you learn why they flagged you in the first place.

Jeanette said...

Marsha, I'm really glad Blogger released your blog, but puzzled as to why it took so long. I agree that a human face needs to analyse these things, not a robot.

Perhaps its time for me to rethink having a parallel blog on another platform - just in case...

Marsha Robinett said...

Rose and Pamyla,
Thank you for your help and concerns.
I didn't realize Blogger was doing this either. After I was shut down...I started reading the forums (clear back through June), I learned that it's been going on for some time.

So...blogger has already in my opinion established the fact that they do not intend to change what they're doing and could care less about how it effects us.

I would love to know what triggered the shut down of my blog...but honestly, I don't expect to ever know.

I agree...I will be looking into an alternative blogging platform. The problem is time and transferring information...I am very concerned.

Christy DeKoning said...

What a disgrace. I'm so fed up with Blogger too. I blogged about you and Terry Banderas today, and couldn't even upload your photos until tonight.

Cindy said...

I'm so glad you are back up Marsha!

Very upsetting, I'm sure...and to not even know why.... :-(

Rhonda Bartoe Tucker said...

Welcome back! I'm very glad that Blogger realized their mistake - let's hope they fix this problem soon. Hopefully, you have helped to change a faulty policy!

Katherine Tyrrell said...

Marsha - I'm publicising this on my blog on Sunday.

I've been one of the blogs that has had content stolen by spam blogs and that's not a very happy experience either

For me the issue is how come Google can earn $5.8 BILLION dollars in just this last quarter and yet not be able to finance a decent service for communicating with blogs which get caught in the spam filter.

Check the vocabulary you used just prior to the shut down. I've got another site which is effectively shut down (about my boy cat) because the root of his breed name is a well known medication which tends to be the subject of much spam. Note how careful I have been to avoid using certain words!

Robyn said...

I've just had the same experience with a new blog. I got to make the first post and almost immediately was locked out. I'd never heard of this before so thought it was something I'd done. I understand your anger absolutely.

It's great you are up and running again and at least your misfortune has alerted me to your blog, so I'll linger and enjoy your beautiful work.

Marian Fortunati said...

Hi Marsha,
I don't THINK I got your email because on Sunday I got over 200 "returned" emails from spam filters. Mind you I NEVER SENT OUT these emails so how someone else used my email address I'm not sure. I still don't think my problem is solved... I've checked for viruses on MY computer ... clean... I really don't know if the problem originated from one of my blogs or websites or WHAT!! Hopefully it will be cleared up.
However I'm glad you are back on line.
I learned about you because I clicked on a link from Linda Blondheim's blog which took me to a blog called Making A Mark and you were one of the topics on that blog.
Be well. Stay well. Keep up the wonderful art and words.

Casey Klahn said...

They just got me, too. Locked out for three mornings. What a disgrace.

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