On-line Opinion Magazine…OK, it's a blog
Random header image... Refresh for more!

Why I Pay For Hosting

When I switched to my own site there were a lot of problems with Blogger, but another problem was someone didn’t like something I wrote and “flagged” my site as spam. I had to go through a hassle to get it back up. So when I was looking for a host, in addition to cheap [you have to make more money than I do to say inexpensive] I wanted a host who didn’t tuck tail when there were complaints. I assumed that who ever complained to Blogger would be back.

Well, Blogger is still at it, only this time Google disables own blog as spam. Yep, they labeled one of their own blogs as spam because it fit their “profile.” Aren’t software filters wonderful?

From Fallenmonk we get Just Trust Us! Right!, the story of AT&T “accidentally” not playing a song critical of the Shrubbery on a webcast they sponsored. This sort of thing happens too often to be anything but intentional. Corporate media bends over every time anyone on the Right has the slightest disagreement with anything they do, but ignores complaints about documented errors from the Left. Obviously the political bias of the media corporations is involved. Since the board rooms of the media corporations is on the Right, the Rights complaints can have serious consequences for those lower down in the food chain.

As Fallenmonk notes, this is why Net Neutrality is important.


1 Steve Bates { 08.11.07 at 9:56 am }

Great minds, etc. … I posted on the Pearl Jam – AT&T incident as well this morning. As it turns out, the Pearl Jam webcast was not the first time AT&T has done this… by their own admission.

Large network providers cannot be trusted to use fairly the power to discriminate regarding content without meaningful regulation… any more than the Executive branch of government can be trusted to use the power to spy without meaningful oversight. Large, powerful entities will serve their own interests, or at least serve their perception of those interests, to the detriment of the public, unless there are checks and balances. In this respect, corporations are no more to be trusted than governments.

2 Steve Bates { 08.11.07 at 10:03 am }

Regarding your… my… web host, jdw seems pretty committed in his mission statement (not to mention his company name) to civil libertarian principles. As things have turned out, my ISP is now AT&T. I doubt I’m sufficiently big-time to attract their notice, but I have to wonder if lefty bloggers will find their ability to post infringed, not by the blogging service (as with your experience with Blogger) but by the network provider.

3 Bryan { 08.11.07 at 12:47 pm }

I assume there will be attempts to censor and/or harass people that the corporate interests don’t like. I don’t understand why people, like NTodd, don’t understand it. Do they think that because it is bad for business, business won’t do it? Corporations has the judicial stall down to a science. They know they can tie you up in court forever.

4 whig { 08.11.07 at 6:01 pm }

NTodd has made it harder to build a consensus on this issue now. Perhaps there needs to be an open examination of his claims, though I don’t know enough about the current state of telephony to do it (and certainly a lot less current knowledge than he has).

5 Badtux { 08.11.07 at 8:20 pm }

I keep thinking about moving to WordPress but frankly, I’ve had it with self-hosting. Two words: Comment spammers. Two words: Security breach. Two words: Software update. Three words: Server migration hassles (especially for software that uses MySQL for the back end data store). Add all those words together, and they spell M*E*S*S. Which is why my pre-2004 blogs are no longer available anywhere on the Internets. Granted, the blogging software available for self-hosting in that era was somewhat rudimentary, but my more recent blogs based on Drupal aren’t available anywhere on the Internets either. It just got to be too much hassle maintaining them.

Does this mean the possibility of censorship? Maybe, sorta, kinda. But frankly, the Hegemony has no desire or need to censor those of us who are preaching to fellow believers, because our shouting words heard only by our fellows into the wind has no practical effect.

When I talk to my Chinese counterparts, we do not talk politics because, frankly, our own society is just as controlled as their society is. If we did talk politics, it would only be for me to condemn their government’s heavy-handedness as being counter-productive. The best form of control is the kind of control where the person being controlled has to look to know that he’s being controlled. The best form of control is where the person being controlled believes he is free. We are licensed, herded, numbered, and worked like slaves by our masters, we live in a nation where more of our citizenry is enslaved behind bars than in any other nation on the planet (with the exception perhaps of China), but we are given various meaningless choices so we believe we are “free”. One of those meaningless choices is to have blogs like these. It is no threat to the Hegemony, but it allows us to cling to our precious delusion of freedom, so it is of more value to allow us to rant than to shut us down.

I have no doubt — zero doubt — that if any one of us were perceived to be any threat to the Hegemony, we would be splatted like a bug. The evening news the next day would have breathless prose about a “terrorist” who was arrested for “planning deadly attacks against XYZ” (pick your XYZ, it doesn’t really matter whether XYZ is the Brooklyn Bridge, an airport, or anything else). But the apathy and ignorance of the majority means that we pose as much a threat to the Hegemony as a mosquito buzzing at a window screen. As long as the majority believe they are free, there is no threat to the Hegemony. And as long as preserving our voices here in the wilderness helps foster that illusion of freedom, we will be allowed to buzz as much as we wish, free to buzz meaninglessly in ways that will never change a thing.

– Badtux the Orwellian Penguin

6 Bryan { 08.11.07 at 10:21 pm }

There is nothing wrong with NTodd’s technical discussion. Technically there shouldn’t be a problem. Technically things should just go swimmingly. But that isn’t how things have happened in the past, and there is no reason to assume that corporations will act in a business-like manner. If they can gain a long term advantage by screwing people over, Whig, they will do it. It wasn’t that long ago that cable companies charged $5/month for a $1 signal splitter.

I had to wait two months for a change in the law before I could legally install a wireless router on my DSL line that I didn’t lease from The Phone Company.

7 Bryan { 08.11.07 at 10:36 pm }

I have worked out a decent procedure that has nearly eliminated the spam, but it requires two plug-ins and the built-in moderation on first comment.

I stall on making updates until I have down time, but have traps in place that hold off most of the known highjack attempts.

Fortunately, other people have already paid for my dip into PhP and MySQL, and I let the host deal with the settings. If I was hosting myself, there would be a lot of administrative work that would cut into my billable hours.

I get visits from .gov and .mil but I don’t sweat them. Coming after me would be an incredibly stupid move for local reasons, and there are enough public records about my skills and abilities that it would have to be an amazing plot to make it through a preliminary hearing.

I agree that most of us are not big enough fish to really be censored, ‘Tux, but I’m truly pissed off that I even have to think about it.

8 whig { 08.11.07 at 11:06 pm }

Like BadTux, I am concerned about losing my words or else having an ongoing need to maintain their accessibility. Keeping my blog on wordpress.com would endure as long as they do, of course no one knows how long that would be but they seem to be doing okay.

What I may do with cannablog.org (which is hosted for me now) is transfer everything and then periodically update the cannablog.wordpress.com. The export format is XML and should be compatible between the versions, apart from plug-in customization differences.

9 Bryan { 08.11.07 at 11:53 pm }

I’ve considered switching to WordPress for my back-up site. I keep back-ups of everything off-line and burn a CD periodically. I would never lose more than a week in any case, and can recreate most of it from the original text files.

The switch to Blogger 2.0 crashed on my old site and I can’t get access anymore. I don’t like the new privacy policy that Google uses, so they can forget my writing.