WordPress has taken down a handful alt-right blogs, according to several complaints from affected blog owners and readers who claim the sites were removed from WordPress.com, despite not being in violation of the company’s Terms of Service. Some site owners also said they were not notified of…

Source: New WordPress policy allows it to shut down blogs of Sandy Hook deniers | TechCrunch

I like that this policy is written narrowly so as not to open the door to corporations using copyright claims to shut down any criticism.  This fixes a specific wrong.

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I just installed the new Aperture WordPress plugin.  I’m not real clear on what it does but it gives me access to Aperture and Microsub and, maybe, Monocle so it’s going in the direction towards an Internet home, which is good.

I’ve been kinda waiting for this, but also stalling a little to see how thing go.  This brings me closer and makes the process easier which is great.

See also: Indieweb.org

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Is WordPress.com quietly building a blog based social network with Reader?

I have no inside information, but the answer is, They are half way or more there.

Aside

If I were a good (slick) blogger I would fill this post up with neat screenshots of Reader pages that illustrate each of my key points.  You could then squint at these unreadable pics to your hearts content.  Instead, just go to WordPress.com and register.  You can see Reader for yourself.

/Aside

WP Reader is an aggregater of all the blogs hosted on WordPress.com PLUS remotely hosted installs of WordPress that use Jetpack.  Everytime you login to WordPress.com the first thing you see is the Reader.  The Reader is also on all the WP mobile apps.  You can search for posts and blogs by keywords and subscribe to (follow) any blog in the index.  The Reader can also serve up the newest posts on the system whether you have subscribed or not.

  1. The Reader is fast and attractive, well laid out and easy to use. It’s like a timeline.
  2. It is everywhere and has a huge user base.
  3. It can send you notifications if you want.
  4. You can “Like” a post from Reader.
  5. I think you can even comment on a post from Reader if the owner of the blog has comments turned on.
  6. Reader is a very powerful discovery tool.
  7. Reader is a powerful traffic tool. Not just one time traffic but repeat traffic. It is so easy to subscribe to a blog you will find yourself with followers soon after making a few posts.
  8. You can see who follows you in Reader.  They have a profile page.

Is all of this starting to sound like the foundations of a social network?  Admittedly it is a closed one, a silo open only to WP users.

What if’s…

But what happens if they give you the ability to add RSS feeds from any blog hosted anywhere?

What would happen if they adopt Indieweb webmentions from the Reader and all WP blogs? So you could comment on another blog from your blog but all in Reader.  And get replies. These types of Indieweb feed reader (see webmention link above) are already available, so it would be just a matter of WP coding these capabilities into Reader.  Don’t ask me how, I’m not a coder.

With just a few more features a de facto social network would emerge.  I don’t know if it would succeed.  I don’t know if it would be a good fun community or be filled with trolls.

If I were WP, I would be at least thinking about it in my off time.

Micro.blog is also a blog based social network and seeing how well it’s features work tells me you can have a successful community built around blogs.

All this is just speculation.  A social network may be the furthest thing on WP’s mind.  All I am pointing out is that the foundations are there at least by accident.

The inspiration for this post came from Greg McVerry.  He very astutely asked the same question in Indieweb chat room a week or so ago.  But, other pressing matters were being discussed so no more was said.  But Greg’s observation got me thinking so I thought I would start a discussion.

Could it be done? Do you think they are doing it?

 

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Announcements are starting to appear in my WordPress dashboard.  That means the hammer is about to fall soonish.  Maybe no next update but before the end of the year.  This is WP pounding the beach, prepping for the invasion.  Crap.

I’ve been reading the spiel from WP and they talk a lot about the editor.  My problem has never been the editor in WP, it’s been finding where the switches are in the admin panel.  The other problem with WP is when something does not work tracking down who the culprit is: a plugin, the template, operator error, the latest update,  some obscure setting?

Despite that, WP has always been cool because there were so many ways to add on to it, so many ways to customize it with plugins.  The answers I’ve seen about plugins still working have been dodgy.  And what about themes? Is my current theme going to break?

I have this feeling this is more about making WP better suited for commercial for profit blogging than it is about blogging.

 

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I’m trying to figure out how to have both a Micro.blog and WordPress blog on different URL’s and have them link to each other via the Menu navigation.  Is there a way to put a redirect on a MB Page that would go to a different URL?

How are other Micro.bloggers handling this?  I looked through Help and the Wiki but didn’t really find anything.

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Oh there’s just so much to say about the start of this thread, and it gives me so much hope for the open web as well as potential growth for WordPress.

Source: Reply to Ryan Boren et al on the WordPress Link Manager, Calypso, and Indie Blogging

Yes, the Link Manager should be resurrected.

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Wow, that was some rabbit hole I went down last night.

Background:  About a week or so ago I tried to join the Indie Web Ring.  But I just got error messages.  Nothing explaining why my site caused errors, just the error message.  This caused some frustration on my part since I had nearly the entire suite of Indieweb plugins installed, I was sending and receiving webmentions, was it WordPress, plugins, SemPress or something on the web ring’s end?  (Thanks here to Greg McVerry for offering to help diagnose problem.)

I decided to procrastinate.  In the meantime I found a validator and was getting mixed signals: my webmentions were good but maybe problems with identity but no solid diagnosis.

Then the IndieAuthor plugin updated several times and I suspected that maybe my identity problems might get better.  Worth a try.

Now: So last night I tried to join the Indie Web Ring again.  It worked!  I was informed I was in, given a code.  Plus I got cool emoji identifiers:  I had to squint but I was pretty sure it was a castle and a – something.  I finally figured out I could highlight emoji, rightclick, search and Duckduckgo told me what they were: a castle (yes!) and an 8 pointed asterisk (cool, not a snowflake).

Right. Now to paste said code into a widget.  WARNING: Either WordPress or SemPress theme, really, really, does not like emoji.  I locked up that widget tighter than a drum.  I couldn’t even delete the emoji laden ring code.  Bad Things were happening.  I deleted the widget.

Found alternative code using hexadecimal equivalents for WordPress.  Decided to stay away from widgets.  Found header/footer plugin. Install on WP.  Hex code, does not crash. Won’t validate on webring site because I have to customize it to identify my site.  Search for hexadecimal code for castle and 8 pointed asterisk (not snowflake). There are forty bazillion emoji. Can find Unicode but no Hex.  Find Unicode to Hex converter. No clue how to use it.  Help for the converter sends me to Github.  Sigh.  Not sure of syntax to put two emoji Hex codes together even if I had found them.

Now I have a choice: I’m in a footer NOT a goddamn widget, do I try the original emoji laden ring code, that crashed the widget, in the footer and risk locking up the entire WP install if WP does not like it or do something else?  Computer starts pinging: battery critical.  “Pull up! Pull up.”  That’s it, it A Sign.  There’s a time to attack and a time to retreat.  Beaten by WordPress it was time to retreat and rebuild.  The whole blog is not worth risking for a webring.

Affair over, torn apart by mutual incompatibility.  But I’ll always remember, last night, the neat castle and the eight pointed asterisk (not snowflake.)

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