Moving blogs

by Suw on April 4, 2004

I dislike moving blogs – it?s like moving house. OK, so you don?t have to pack everything you own in boxes and then spend the next six months unable to find a thing, and you don?t have to take meter readings and then get all your final bills on the same day, but somehow moving blogs is just as disquieting.
I have been considering moving from Blog-City for a while – their software updates resulted in a lot of downtime, and whilst initially I was a staunch defender of theirs I rapidly ran out of patience. Partly this is because they didn?t seem to learn anything from the experience.
One of my key gripes with a lot of companies, internet or otherwise, is that they seem to view their customers as whining idiots who don?t know what they?re talking about. Tech companies, from ISPs to software houses, suffer from this particularly badly. I have had run-ins with a couple of biggish companies lately and they don?t seem to have grasped even the very basics of how to deal with annoyed customers. Concepts like apologising unreservedly, not blaming your customer and trying to actually solve the problem instead of weaselling your way out of it seem alien to these people.
I started blogging on 16 June 02, using Blogger. I blogged very sporadically at first – the bug didn?t bite until I found a style of writing that I felt comfortable with. Around November of that year I really got into it, but Blogger was getting more new users than it could handle and the service was frequently down. There were never any communications from the Blogger team and getting support was all but impossible. My patience finally gave out when I missed a quote mark out of an HTML tag and totally broke a post. I couldn?t get in to edit it, and that just riled me no end.
In May 03 I moved over to Blog-City. Their service was better than Blogger, they were more communicative, more stable, more user-friendly. At least, they were until earlier this year when they started upgrading and it all began to go horribly wrong. The blog was frequently down, (as you?ll remember if you were reading this blog there then), and communications on the Blog-City mailing list, which had been so good, deteriorated into slanging matches between irate customers and tired developers. Eventually the mailing list stopped being interactive and became an announcement-only list – with virtually no announcements.
To me, that was such a disappointment. Up until then, the team at Blog-City had been so helpful, so friendly. I really wanted them to succeed, but when they had troubles they shut down the lines of communication instead of opening them up. Sorry, but that?s a big mistake. If you piss off your customers, apologise unreservedly and then tell them what you?re doing to make things right. Don?t ignore them and then hope that they?ll notice by themselves when you?ve fixed something.
Once the mailing list was effectively shut down, I lost all feelings of loyalty to Blog-City. I don?t visit their main web page all that often, so I wasn?t kept up to date with what was going on, and I discovered that I really didn?t care.
Meantime, the new admin pages seem clumsy and irritating. The blog is more stable now, but not 100% reliable (although of course I recognise that this is the net we?re talking about – nothing is 100% reliable). Worse than all this, though, is the fact that people had started to email me to complain about the blog not being around when they want to read it.
Straw, meet the camel?s back.
So I?ve been mirroring the blog here, testing the water so to speak, and trying to figure out whether or not to move. Blogware is good, but not perfect. However its imperfections are different to Blog-City?s, and it?s difficult to make a direct comparison and decide which one is better. I still need to sort out all my bookmarks, blogrolls and categories, which is surprisingly quite a lot of work when you?re doing it all in one hit.
At the end of the day, though, it looks as if the choice may well be taken out of my hands. I?ve only been on Blogware a couple of weeks, but already this version is getting more traffic than the Blog-City version. That?s at least partially due to Dave Winer?s link to my Kinja post yesterday, but in general, the Blogware blog just seems to have more visibility somehow.
I?ll give it another week to see how things go. Then it?s decision time, although I think you can probably all guess which way I?m leaning. Feel free to let me know what you think I should do.

Anonymous April 4, 2004 at 8:27 pm

Well, if Blog-Shitty is getting on your tits then just dump it. This place looks nice and clean enough.

Anonymous April 8, 2004 at 2:47 am

I remember when I was a beta tester for typepad, the community was small. When the recently updated sites list was started we all looked at every site. Everyone knew everyone. When the sevice went public your spot on the 15 newly updated sites zipped out of sight in minutes instead of staying on it for hours. A lot of people are curious about blogware and want to see some examples. When your are one of only thirty sites you will get lots of eyeballs. When I first saw all the updated sites at bl.ogs per hour I was blown away. No way I could look at all of them. I am looking forward to this honeymoon phase for blogwar and was tickled to get the first link from Blog 101

Comments on this entry are closed.

Previous post:

Next post: