On being banned from sites

December 7, 2012 13 Comments
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There’s nothing worse for readers than being either kept in a queue or having to go through New Google’s super clever [they think] photo captcha and a reader often stays in RSS to avoid all that c**p or else just gives it away.   All of us are busy or not and if not, we become busy when faced with things like that.

With a few people adminning at OoL, occasionally we get our wires crossed and there are two readers/commenters I know now who were caught in that and don’t try to comment here any more, thinking they’re banned and they’re not.   Sometimes it’s multiple links which do it, sometimes their moniker, sometimes key words in the text bank, sometimes New Google system itself.

I’d like to apologize on behalf of the system to Banned whom I found this morning in pending at my place, which is interesting because, speaking of banning, I think I’m currently banned from Counting Cats – I know he doesn’t like my sniping at rationalists but it might be that it’s not specifically him doing it – and I’m simply going to spam for some reason, i.e. the system is doing it.

Possible, though I suspect I actually am banned for the things I write.   Trouble is, in his case, my two emails also didn’t get through and were returned.  Now I have not the slightest issue with that – his gaff ‘n all and I’m a very annoying person – but I wonder how much, in general, fellow bloggers realize that their system shuts people out who are innocent?

And then that innocent person gets p***ed off and that’s a reader lost.  Max Farquar‘s system had me banned some time ago – the comments system would not recognize me – so I wrote to Microdave and he checked with Max and I was going to spam – the system was doing it.  He made an adjustment and there’s been no trouble since.

Let me repeat that if I am banned from a site – no probs at all, I know why.   Perhaps though I’m not, perhaps you’re not, unless you’re a known offender.  Perhaps the system is the offender and the blogger knows nothing whatever of all this.

13 Responses to On being banned from sites

  1. December 7, 2012 at 9:28 am

    I am proud to have been banned from many political and non political Forums.

  2. December 7, 2012 at 9:42 am

    I no longer comment when there is a Google CAPTCHA as trying to get past them is more effort than it is worth since they brought the new ones out. I can’t make out what they are most of the time. I tried to leave a comment three times in succession over at Boiling Frog’s a few weeks back. Gave up eventually and haven’t bothered since.

    That’s why I don’t use CAPTCHAs on my site and we don’t here. That said, leave more than one link in the comment and it will go to automatic moderation and maybe the SPAM queue.

  3. December 7, 2012 at 11:03 am

    “I’m a very annoying person”

    That’s Ok with me, makes it interesting, just don’t come and live next door :-)

  4. December 7, 2012 at 11:12 am

    I’m with Longrider here – the reader experience must be pleasant [material and discussion aside]. I’d add that I use LR’s anti-spam system and it works a treat. Usually. Think there is a certain amount of site maintenance involved in blogs, particularly when you get beyond say 20 regulars – it’s never really set and forget unless it’s kept dead simple, with few bells and whistles.

    • James Strong
      December 7, 2012 at 11:54 am

      Interesting that you mention a number of regulars.

      Unless it would damage the blog could you say how many regulars you get.
      I visit 3 or 4 times a day if I’ve got internet access; I wonder if others do.

      I suspect that there would be a big overlap between me and your other regulars as to the other sites we view.I look at Leg Iron most days, also Samizdata and The Last Ditch. And I suspect most of your readers also go there.

      Does anyone know how big the readership is for libertarian-minded blogs?

      • December 7, 2012 at 2:25 pm

        Just had a look at this site and then mine. Mine has a steady output of posts and the stats are stable – it might get more on one post than another and I go through periods of unpopularity but generally it’s around the same mark, about 20% less than OoL on WP count but WP is notoriously unreliable, understating traffic.

        OoL is heavily dependent on someone having a post up. For example, if LR, Julia and QM all have one up and then I come in and provoke someone, we could have about 300 to 400 views per post and then they’ll come back later. If there’s a dearth of posts, which there is just now, it’s far less. So overall per day it swings wildly.

        Timmy Worstall used to have about 2000 uniques a day and who knows how many hits? LR is coy and I think Leg Iron gets a couple of thou or used to. That’s in this country. I believe Vox Day over in the States gets about 10 thou a day.

        It’s possibly fair to say that the libertarian blogosphere, with lurkers through to commenters and contributors might be what – 10 thou a day? Trouble is, it’s difficult to separate the centre-right libertarian from the libertarian-libertarian and if you allow people like Raedwald or myself as libertarians, then the numbers are much larger if you take every blogger or reader in the land who thinks that way.

        I’d say someone like Richard Carey would be a pure libertarian and I’d like to know what he thinks of the numbers. Sean Gabb has come out with some strangely non-libertarian things of late and not even conservative so what’s a libertarian? I’d like to know how Ian [PJ] and David [Witney] fare each day.

        Samizdata has large traffic – what do those guys get?

  5. December 7, 2012 at 12:07 pm

    Been banned from CiF God knows how many times. Can’t be bothered any more. Once it was just dumbass Lefty stuff- now it is profoundly nasty and hate filled Lefty stuff. What an unpleasant newspaper the Guardian is these days – makes me sad, as I was brought up on the Manchester Guardian, and that WAS a fine paper, in the true Northern old-fashioned Liberal sense, when Liberals were good people, not twunts. Weird how words change innit?

    JS – Well, Guido’s readership is huge, and he’s a nailed-on Libertarian.

    • December 7, 2012 at 2:28 pm

      True but he’s unique and it’s not just for libertarianism that they go there – it’s for the latest scuttlebutt.

  6. Chuckles
    December 7, 2012 at 3:36 pm

    Site stats can be very misleading, particularly on a site like OOL where the site is provided through proxy servers at Cloudflare. – a visitor receives the content from the nearest Cloudflare server rather than directly from the OOL server itself.

    The site stats are therefore skewed by the following

    The Cloudflare frontend screens out known spam bots and anonymous proxies and the like.
    The website stats report the Cloudflare servers updating their caches, and any comments or new content posted.

    If we look at the stats for yesterday, which was a ‘quietish’ day –

    7300 pageviews, from 2947 unique visitors, 114 search engine crawlers and 164 threats. Search engines were half the traffic, with 2835 visitor pageviews
    (Pageviews are hits on the site where actual content was served to the visitor, hits are 3-4 times higher)

  7. December 7, 2012 at 5:51 pm

    James, just found two of your comments in my Askimet spam box. Have now released them into the wild. Sorry about that. Not entirely sure how that happened.

  8. Furor Teutonicus
    December 7, 2012 at 6:54 pm

    Dunno. I reckon, but maybe not, I am banned from Quiet mans site.

    It just will NOT open. Maybe worth a check from his end.

    Or if I AM banned, just please SAY so!

  9. Greg Tingey
    December 7, 2012 at 7:27 pm

    So, you think that rationalism is not the way to go?
    What is your proposed alternative.
    Augury? Haruspices?
    Sacrificing virgins (assuming you can find any)?

    Do tell!
    Or do you prefer evidence-free zones?

  10. Single Acts of Tyranny
    December 8, 2012 at 5:16 am

    I post on counting cats and I am not aware of any bans.

    Could you try posting on one of my posts? I should be able to see if indeed you are.

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