or, ‘What I learned about Captcha and Google in my first 24 Hours Trying to Divest Myself of Google (for political reasons.’)
First though, THANK YOU to everyone here reading. I appreciate you following me. Change is never fun for any of us; we really are creatures of habit. 🙂
Okay, back to what I have learned.
First though, a little back story, in relation to what Nance mentioned about wordpress. First, there are two wordpress’es. WordPress.com, and WordPress.org.
WordPress.com is the easy one. And the cheap one. That also makes it the easier one to get up and running. It also makes it the less-advanced as far as options are concerned (compared to Blogger.)
WordPress.org is the difficult one. And usually more expensive one (it forces you to have your own domain and FULLY run it) (it isn’t the cost of the domain that is tough, for me in the past it was that I had to hire someone to at least get the site up and running, it was just too waist-high deep in html knowledge I didn’t possess to get it running.)
This time, I thought about it, and in retirement, didn’t want the hassle. I’m just a little old lady in retirement, and blogging is simply a hobby for me. Nothing more. Simplicity rules in my world these days.
But I digress. Re Captcha and Google from yesterday. As, while on my political/moral high horse over Google, I was trying to completely divest myself of the monolith that is Google. This is MUCH harder than ‘simply walking away’ from Facebook. Google has tentacles everywhere in the media world. I knew it and was willing to change emails, change browsers, change blogging platforms. I didn’t realize how deviously hard Google was going to make my commenting at my friend’s Blogger blogs, though.
I had logged out of my Google account. I started trying to comment at your blogs. As about 98% of the blogs I follow are Google/Blogger blogs, I learned that there were two options to me, as a ‘signed out from Google’ human. Some Blogger blogs allow anonymous and user/url commenters, some simply do not. (in which case, you comment with a Google account or you don’t comment at all.) But it goes further than that. For the Blogger blogs that ARE set up to allow anonymous or user/url commenters, the Captcha was set up. In every single case. And the photos you had to check to pass the test were so bad, in every single case I had to go through 8-15 rounds of photos before I passed Captcha. You can imagine, trying to comment at 15-30 or so blogs in one setting, how difficult and frustrating that became. I had to walk away. But when I came back later in the night, I thought to try a different approach. I logged back into my Google account, and went back to reply at those blogs, STILL using the user/url option, and Captcha no longer appeared. Great for commenting, but I was like ..?????
So I looked it up. Google bought Captcha in 2009. And they apparently have set it up on Blogger that if you are still at least signed into a Google account, you don’t have to go through the Captcha maze other than clicking the little box. But sign out from Google and try the exact same thing and they put you through ‘pick the photos hell’ that requires MANY MANY rounds of it to pass. In other words, they use Captcha difficulties to ‘force’ you to continue to stay logged into their Google Account of yours. There is simply no other explanation!
It’s all really extremely intelligent, and devious. Talk about cleverly wrapping their tentacles around us mere mortals!
Anyhow, so my options for commenting at Blogger blogs is limited to this:
- don’t stay logged into Google, and try to put up with Captcha hell. (at 8-15 tests per comment, sorry, not going to happen.)
- log into Google and either
- post with user/url at blogs that allow that option
- for Blogger blogs that do not allow the anonymous and user/url options, either
- post with my Google account or
- stop commenting at their blog
Those are my choices. I would never ask anyone to accept anonymous comments, and therefore ‘force’ them to go to moderating comments… for me. I just have to decide if I’m going to continue using my Google account to comment at those blogs, or not. It’s the moral pickle I’m in, but it’s my gherkin, not yours. I just wanted to let you know what I’m finding.
In the meantime, I have discovered that wordpress.com has a great ‘reader’ section like Blogger used to, that once I load the blog urls that I follow, keeps them together and lets me easily keep track of who’s recently posted to go read. Unfortunately their blogroll option doesn’t have that ability, but I’ve bookmarked the Reader page personally. Just an fyi for anyone considering the leap for whatever reasons. It’s pretty cool.
Is Google still the easiest to set up and maneuver, with the best flexibility? Yes, it is. No denying it. But for me, it’s just a no-go. To each our own. 🙂