Sunday, 11 September 2016

Out of time

If you read this blog via the desktop site rather than on a mobile, you will have noticed that in the left-hand sidebar there are a couple of blogrolls, showing the latest posts on blogs I think are worth reading (although not necessarily ones I always agree with), displayed in date order, with the newest first. Something similar can be found on many other blogs, such as Tandleman. In practice, this is one of the main ways people keep up with new postings on blogs that interest them.

However, in the past week, something seems to have gone wrong, with blogs hosted via WordPress apparently having lost their timestamp and dropped to the bottom of the listings. This includes both blogs in the Beer and Pubs category such as Boak & Bailey and Retired Martin, and ones in the general category such as Frank Davis and Head Rambles.

Initially, it appeared as though this was a WordPress problem, but further digging by “Grandad” from Head Rambles has unearthed the following:

It looks like it's my old friends in Google are up to their tricks again.

It seems the feed reading blogrolls take their information from a yoke called Google Feed API. Google are in the process of depreciating that so it looks like the Blogger widget [and the Wordpress plugin that I use] are very unlikely to work in the future. A massive shame!

So it doesn’t look like the problem is going to be fixed, and I’m left wondering what to do. Do I continue with the current blogrolls, in the full knowledge that they no longer work properly and unfairly relegate many good blogs to the bottom of the list? Or do I think about creating a more limited selection of “favourite” blogs ignoring the timestamps, which on the other hand could disappoint anyone left out?

18 comments:

  1. I was just looking into that this morning. It's very irritating.

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  2. I also noticed this a couple of days ago. I thought at the time that it might have been due to me changing the format and look of my blog, but from what you say, it certainly looks as though Google are trying to sideline Wordpress by restricting the feeds in from it.

    Not at all happy about it, but what, if anything, can be done to fix it?

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  3. I wonder if it's something to do with the source for each blog -- are they being pulled via Google's barely-maintained Feedburner service?

    If you can choose a source -- I've never seen the back-end config for that widget -- then try using each blog's own direct RSS feed, e.g. boakandbailey.com/feed and see if that helps.

    Otherwise, I guess it depends what your blogroll is for. If it's for you to track blog updates then I'd recommend Feedly, which is what we use. If it's by way of suggesting blogs your readers might find interesting then a curated list is the way to go. Or a combo of the two.

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    Replies
    1. The feed in the Blogger Dashboard is still picking up all updates correctly, so I can follow updates myself.

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    2. Feedly seems fiendishly complicated.

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    3. I don't think you need Feedly as long as the Blogger Dashboard continues to work.

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  4. Hmm. Won't it mean that it will all just stop working?

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  5. Ime not sure if my problem is the same as what is being discussed on here,
    I was going to post a pub crawl in Manchester from the early 90s but i can not get onto my Neverending pub crawl blog to do new posts,i can view it but not post on it anymore.
    I am finding this very frustrating.

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    Replies
    1. No problem with making new posts here - apologies if this seems obvious, but is it a simple matter of needing to log in? You should be able to see "New Post" at the top right of the screen on the blog home page if logged in.

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    2. Thanks for that i have now found out how to do a new post,but now ran out of time to do it so maybe next week,it would have been a decent crawl of Manchesters inner city pubs.

      Cheers Alan

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  6. Oddly, although the feeds for blogs hosted by Blogger continue to work correctly in my existing blogrolls, they don't work at all in the new test "curated" one I created (see bottom of sidebar), which makes it even less useful.

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    Replies
    1. I've now fixed this by using the .com address rather than the .co.uk one.

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  7. Speaking as a lurker from the other side of the pond (Canada) please continue with the blog roll for the time being. If it doesn't get fixed I would like to click each blog and put them in a favourites folder called "Beer" :)

    That way I can still click myself to see if they have anything new.

    (still have doing a British pub crawl on my bucket list)

    Cheers

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    Replies
    1. I'm certainly not going to get rid of the blogrolls, but I'm going to move the full listings, where the date order doesn't work, down to the bottom of the sidebar.

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  8. Good news - Google seem to have sorted the problem out this morning, so back to normal, and everyone can relax :-)

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    Replies
    1. Whoops. My reply above was premature.

      Now, off to read the side bar beer blog listings.

      Cheers!

      Delete

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