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August 02, 2008

You get what you pay for, again

I couldn't tell you about this, for obvious reasons, but on Thursday, I got the dreaded email from Blogger telling me Pillage Idiot was being frozen while they checked to see that it wasn't a spam blog. Pillage Idiot is a lot of things -- most of them variants on "immature" -- but it certainly isn't spam.

It turns out it wasn't just me -- far from it. A large swath of the 'sphere got caught up in it, and not just small blogs like mine. Dr. Helen, the Insta-Wife, was shut down, too.

Fortunately, everything's been cleared up, and I've been unfrozen so I can post again. Blogger has posted a couple of apologetic notes about the situation. From the latter:

We want to offer our sincerest apologies to affected bloggers and their readers. We’ve tracked down the problem to a bug in our data processing code that locked blogs even when our algorithms concluded they were not spam. We are adding additional monitoring and process checks to ensure that bugs of this magnitude are caught before they can affect your data.
Some people were suspicious Blogger (Google) was targeting conservative blogs, but that never made sense. I just chalked it up to error, or perhaps my removal of the navbar. (I checked yesterday, and while it's a little unclear, it's apparently not a violation of the TOS to hide the navbar.)

I've said it several times before, but you get what you pay for. It's really annoying, but it's hard to complain too much about the service when it's totally free.