Wednesday, November 23, 2005, 4:21 PM
Blogger has apparently lost my account information. I can't log in. It's not just a password problem; the system doesn't recognize my user account name or email address. I've filed a help request, but on the evening before Thanksgiving I'm not optimistic of receiving help any time soon.
Tuesday, November 29, 2005, 11:07 PM
What the hell do I have to do to get a response from these people? It's still broken; trying to log in to Blogger results in "User account not found", there's no record of my email address in the system, and I've only received unhelpful automated responses to my support requests. I've added this and the previous post manually, by editing the site's index page. I'm extremely frustrated.
Friday, December 2, 2005, 2:02 PM
I received an email reply from Blogger support.
Hello, We have disabled your account and removed your blogs due to the fact that you have been misusing our service. Based on our records, there are a number of blogs that are not compliant with our terms of service. This behavior is not looked upon favorably. For more information on our Terms of Service, please see: http://www.blogger.com/terms.g
Sincerely, Blogger Support
Needless to say, I have no idea what the hell they are talking about. I replied immediately asking for clarification; let's see if it takes another ten days to get a response. If and when I get my account back, I'm strongly considering moving to TypePad or one of the other services. This is just stupid.
Friday, December 5, 2005, 2:20 PM
Got another response from Blogger. Get this:
Hello, Blogger reserves the right to remove those blogs which are setup either automatically or manually for the purpose of manipulating search engine results or generating revenue or traffic through deceptive means. In accordance to the termination provision of the TOS (http://www.blogger.com/terms.g), we have therefore terminated your account. Sincerely, Blogger Support
I have never been warned or given any indication that my use of Blogger's service violates their TOS. It seems they simply decided to drop me without any appeal or discussion. I also received a comment to an older post--since I can't enable comments to these manually-entered posts--as follows:
[S]ame things happenned to me. Disgraceful. Still waiting for my "this is looked upon unafavorably" email. Interestingly, my Blogs still running generating revenue via Adssense for Google. However, I am unable to access it. I look upon this as VERY unfavourable!! Maybe we should start a "User Account Not Found" Blog - for fellow "locked Out" Colleagues... on another Blogging Tool??
The Web site linked to the person who commented is dritil.blogspot.com, apparently a news aggregator for IT professionals. It shows the same symptoms as my Blogger sites currently: the main page displays, but archives and sub-pages are gone. The AdSense links on my pages are also still active; in fact, I've seen an uptick in ad clicks in the last couple of weeks, perhaps from people coming to see what has happened. Let me make two things absolutely clear:
- Blogger has unilateraly taken action to "terminate" my account, without giving me any chance to fix whatever problem is bothering them.
- I do not intend to simply lie down and take it.
Friday, December 09, 2005, 11:53 AM
I will be mailing the following letter this afternoon. I've redacted personally identifying information but everything else is as it will be sent. If anything will get their attention, this will.
--- quote ---
1600 Amphitheatre Parkway
Mountain View, CA 94043
SENT BY CERTIFIED/RETURN RECIEPT MAIL
RE: Blogger.com account [omitted]
On Wednesday, November 23, 2005, upon attempting to log in to my account named [omitted] (hereafter, the Account) on the Blogger.com system, I received an error message stating that the Account was not found. After ten days of e-mailed requests for assistance from Blogger.com's online support system, I received a response on Friday, December 2, 2005 indicating that certain unspecified blogs linked to my account were in violation of Blogger.com's Terms of Service (hereafter, the TOS). A further response received on Monday, December 5, 2005 stated that the Account would be terminated.
The purpose of this letter is not to argue the point of whether or not any blogs linked to the Account actually violate the TOS; I stipulate to the TOS language such that the Account may be terminated with or without cause at any time. For the record, however, I have reviewed the TOS and do not believe there was any such violation.
Rather, I hereby claim copyright ownership and all related rights for all information published by me through the Blogger.com system (hereafter, the Content) and demand its immediate surrender, in accordance with paragraph 6a of the TOS:
6a. CONTENT OWNERSHIP Unless stated otherwise for specific services, Member will retain copyright ownership and all related rights for information he or she publishes through Blogger or otherwise enters into Blogger-related services.
I additionally demand that surrender of the Content be accomplished by a temporary reinstatement of the Account, of sufficient time to allow me to download and/or export the Content from Blogger.com's systems.
Failure to surrender the Content or make arrangements to do so by Friday, December 16, 2005 will result in further action, not excluding pursuit of legal remedies.
Reference: Blogger.com's Terms of Service: http://www.blogger.com/terms.g
--- end quote ---
I will certainly follow up here when I get a response.
Friday, December 09, 2005, 3:26 PM
Message received from Blogger no more than two minutes before I was going to leave for the post office to mail that letter:
--- quote ---
Fri, 09 Dec 2005 12:38:56 -0800
From: "Blogger Support"
Subject: Re: Blogger.com account missing
Upon further review of your blogs and account, we'd like to inform you that we've decided to restore access to your Blogger account. To regain your password, please visit:
Please note, however, that we have removed the blog that was flagged as spam from your account, as spamming is not permitted under Blogger Terms of Service (http://www.blogger.com/terms.g). Additionally, please be aware that Blogger reserves the right to remove those blogs (and the associated account(s)) which are setup either automatically or manually for the purpose of manipulating search engine results or generating revenue or traffic through deceptive means. Such behavior is not looked upon favorably.
Original Message Follows:
Subject: Blogger.com account missing
Date: Wed, 07 Dec 2005 18:23:41 -0000
I have been trying to get through to someone with authority to reinstate my account, which was removed with no explanation other than a vague reference to Blogger's TOS. I have reviewed the nine blogs linked to my account and have not found anything that appears to violate the TOS. I have not received any additional response from Support explaining what the problem actually was.
I would very much appreciate a personal reply as soon as possible. My account has now been disabled for two weeks.
The account name is "[omitted]". Thank you.
--- quote ---
Indeed, my account is now active again. I've re-published the six posts I did manually during the suspension period.
Now just in case anyone was wondering: No, this does not solve the problem. The problem is that Blogger.com's TOS gives them the authority to terminate an account at any time for any reason, and they feel no compunction about using that clause, without so much as a warning. I will be installing Moveable Type this weekend and migrating my content. I'll control my own Web sites from now on, thank you very much.