It’s guuuuuuud to be back.
Long story short. Google deleted my blog. Labelled it as spam. I’m like WHAT?
When I first got the notification in my inbox, I thought it was a joke. ‘Til I re-read it, then went to my blog …and my blog wasn’t there. 🙁
My blood pressure danced the salsa.
After doing some research, I learnt that it happens to quite a few blogs that aren’t spam at all. From what I’ve learnt, Google has an automated system in place to detect spam blogs. Unfortunately, things can go wrong sometimes and innocent blogs can get caught up in the spam wave.
It’s been five loooong days and I’ve missed my blog.
I braced myself for the chance that Google might decide “Yep, it’s spam alright” and not restore it. Part of me dreaded not getting my blog back, but another part was resigned to that fact and was ready to start afresh elsewhere if need be. In fact, I’m really not comfortable with the idea that my blog can get deleted just like that, whether by mistake or otherwise. It’s a vulnerable position to remain in, especially with three years worth of content.
So, I’m gonna seriously think about self hosting. I already own the domain: getpaidtofart.com, and I already pay for hosting. I could move it to WordPress. Self hosting means I’ll have more control. One of the reasons I’ve been reluctant to move my blog to WordPress is ‘cos of all the stories I’ve heard about people having their blogs hacked into. There’s also the learning curve; all the things I have to install in order to transfer the blog, set it up, secure it, update it. Blogger, in that sense, is so much more straightforward. I’m also wondering if all the comments on my blog can transfer over, and all the post images. It feels like major work.
– moving my blog to WordPress (self hosted), to its own domain, and the chance that it might one day get hacked into
– the chance of my blog being pulled down again on Blogger for whatever reason and the vulnerability & inconvenience that that presents — and the possibility that if it’s pulled again, it might not get restored.
I’m gonna outline the steps I took from the time I was notified my blog had been deleted ’til the time it was restored as it might help someone:
– at first, all my blogs were deleted, not just this one. I also lost access to my dashboard. I had to verify my Google account by filling in some personal details when I tried to log in. A verification code was then sent to my mobile phone which I used to verify my Google account. Once I did that, I had access to my dashboard. All my blogs were then automatically restored almost immediately, apart from my Get Paid to Fart blog.
– I didn’t know how to get the remaining blog restored, so I did a search on Google and came across the following blog post which I found extremely useful.
– I followed the steps outlined in the post (request restoration, make an appeal, create a thread in Blogger’s ‘Something is Broken’ forum)
– I also browsed the Blogger ‘Something is Broken’ forum and came across an official process outlined by one of Blogger’s top contributors (nitecruzr). I found it incredibly helpful as there was a crucial step I’d missed (which I then went and updated in my thread). You’ll see the process outlined by nitecruzr in: this thread.
– My blog was deleted over the weekend; I had to wait two working days to see if it would be restored. I gave it ‘til early Thursday. When it still wasn’t showing, I updated my thread on the Blogger forum stating I was still waiting for an outcome. It was then escalated by one of the top contributors and my blog was restored later on that day.
I’m real grateful to the contributors that helped the restoration process along (Katney & DarkUFO). I don’t think they’re Google employees. They just try and help people out, which I think is really good of them.
– follow the steps exactly as outlined by nitecruzr
– once you create the one thread, do not post another. Just bookmark and update it when you need to.
– I know how shocking and frustrating it can be when a blog’s deleted, but do try and be civil when posting a thread on the Blogger forum. I felt I was being accused of something I hadn’t done, then I was angry that it happened at all (even if it was a mistake). I felt helpless. Years of work potentially down the drain. My way of coping was through the use of humour in my thread, focusing on providing the information that was required of me, and then just getting on with other day-to-day things in my life.
I’ve missed my blog. If anything, the lockdown made me realise how important it is to me.
Big Mama, over and out…