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16 March 2010 @ 08:43 pm
Testing Testing  
I'm just testing to see if crossposting from Dreamwidth works. Not sure if I'll do anything with this account since every person (bar one) who reads my blog is based on LJ, but I do like the idea of supporting a blogging platform which is a little more, if not ethical, at least idealistic in its intentions.
 
 
 
lukadreaminglukadreaming on March 16th, 2010 09:29 pm (UTC)
I set up a DW account, but haven't done anything with it, apart from to back up my LJ to it. Everyone I know is over here *g*.
louisedennislouisedennis on March 16th, 2010 10:05 pm (UTC)
I'm pleasantly surprised how easy the cross-positing is but... yeah... I guess the crunch will come when payment is next due to LJ. Then I might decide which platform I prefer.
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louisedennislouisedennis on March 16th, 2010 10:06 pm (UTC)
The crossposting is certainly amazingly easy. I probably need to explore a bit over there to see about the rest.
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Susanlil_shepherd on March 16th, 2010 10:30 pm (UTC)
LJ also started out as ethical and idealistic...

I must admit that I don't like the Dreamwidth set-up and rarely use mine. It is also not as good for posting photographs...
louisedennislouisedennis on March 17th, 2010 09:35 am (UTC)
Yes, I can't help feeling that any company that aims to be financially successfully is going to find it has to make compromises at some point. So I fully expect to see Dreamwidth in a similar place to LiveJournal ten years down the road (that or folded).

However the whole affiliate links thing has pushed me to a point where I'm not convinced LiveJournal is taking any real care about it's customer base. I mean I entirely accept there were unintended consequences there, I don't have affiliate links so didn't lose any revenue personally, and I accept they need to find revenue streams - but it doesn't give me a warm fuzzy feeling of being in competent hands. Since LJ clearly intends to carry on redirecting links, obscuring the fact from the person clicking (so you can only find out where the link leads by actually clicking on it), and not taking real care about where these things get redirected, it seems to me to be pretty inevitable that sooner or later someone is going to get a virus by clicking on LJ links that have been posted in good faith... and that's without considering whatever dumb thing they do next.

So I'm basically getting uneasy about continuing to give money to a company which appears to be lacking in the basic professionalism required to protect its customers and their readers .
Susanlil_shepherd on March 17th, 2010 09:56 am (UTC)
Hmmm. I managed to miss the whole affiliate link deal.

It's fairly minor compared with some previous spats.
louisedennislouisedennis on March 17th, 2010 10:20 am (UTC)
I'm not sure what particularly waved a red flag at me over the affiliate links thing, except that most of the controversies seem to arise out of LJ misunderstanding one particular portion of its user base (fandom) which, less face it, are not the most reasonable nor (collectively) normal of people nor necessarily the sort of customers a company may particularly want.

The affiliate links problem seemed more about thinking through in a general way, the impact your actions have, taking care over the testing and roll out of new code, and maintaining reasonable transparency especially where people's assumptions about the safety of internet activity (e.g. clicking on links) at stake. So the underlying causes of that don't stem from not understanding or liking fandom (which is fair enough really) and more over seeing your customers as cash cows rather than customers and that, well, made me sit up and take notice a bit and wonder if my money might be better spent elsewhere.
Susanlil_shepherd on March 17th, 2010 10:23 am (UTC)
I think bunn has pretty much articulated my feelings on this subject.
fredbassettfredbassett on March 16th, 2010 10:47 pm (UTC)
I have an account over there, but there were odd glitches when I tried to back my LJ up there and two of my master lists didn't carry over. I've raised a support request to see what happens.

Unless LJ do something that really bugs me, like banning adult content or something, I don't see me moving as all my friends are on LJ so that's why I'll stick around.
louisedennislouisedennis on March 17th, 2010 09:40 am (UTC)
I was pretty bugged by the affiliate links thing, to be honest. That's what's pushed me to explore dreamwidth more. It's not that I lost any money (I don't have any affiliate links), but the general lack of professionalism on display coupled with the risks that this sort of behaviour carry of infecting users or their readers computers with viruses and the fact that th e whole activity was concealed from customers and readers alike as much as possible kind of worried me...

I mean, I accept you have to be careful where you click and what you do on the internet, but I don't expect clicking on a link on a blog of someone I know, hosted by a prominent journaling site to take me somewhere random on the whim of some obscure intermediary company without me at least knowing the fact and so having the option not to to click.

Yeah, it's the lack of professionalism coupled with the risks to customers that's rather got my goat.
bunnbunn on March 17th, 2010 09:54 am (UTC)
Problem is though, nobody has a definition of 'professionalism' in the context of making money on the Internet yet. Let alone social media hosting! It's all too new.

Either you stand still in the fear of offending your users - and they trickle away saying your platform is starting to look outdated, and doesn't support this or won't do that - or you try new stuff to create revenue to fund expansion and development - and risk finding that your userbase is offended or frightened away.

It's not very professional to go bust and have all your users lose their data, and there is *always* some smartarse user who goes 'I could host this for £99.99 with my amazing hosting company in Venezuala, it's really easy!!!' and a bunch of people who will believe him.

I think the people that do this have to risk some level of user offense, because most people using social media have no idea what the running costs are and think everything should be free, or at most, hosted for £99.99 in Venezuala and supported by elves who don't need to eat or wear clothes...

Which means that the decision 'how much offense is too much' is liable to be a really hard one. Look at Google and the whole Google buzz fiasco: it's so easy to get this stuff catastrophically wrong.

Which is not to say that Dreamwidth might not come out ahead and I agree it is certainly worth spreading ones bets as a user.
louisedennislouisedennis on March 17th, 2010 10:12 am (UTC)
Oh I accept that you need to generate revenue and users expectations are often unrealistic. I don't mind them making money from my activity (in some sense) but I do mind if that making of money risks depriving me of income or services (excluding obviously services they provide). I also accept that everyone makes a mistake occasionally but LJ seem to do it an awful lot and there does appear to have been a horrible lack of thought (or testing) involved here, not to mention that comments in the code base suggest programmers were aware of problems which were not being communicated up the chain, which suggests a structural problem with LJ that goes deeper than just a desire to increase revenue.

So I'm basically considering whether the benefits I get from LJ outweigh my doubts about the way they make business decisions and the risks I think the way they do things seem to imply for the security of the content I have stored here, and the general advisability (in terms of virus risks etc) of using the site at all, or encouraging others to do so. I suppose I also dislike the idea that LJ is in some sense selling on my content to other companies (who are providing me with no service) for those companies to make money out of though I can't quite put my finger on where the unease there lies, except for a vague data protection concern and a feeling that I like to know a bit about companies that are benefitting from my money and/or effort so I can decide whether I want them to.
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munchkinofdoommunchkinofdoom on March 17th, 2010 06:29 am (UTC)
I've added you over on DW... but like many, I haven't done anything with my DW account other than read things like linkspam and a few of the disability access comms.

I love the idea of the much bigger post sizes, which is perfect for fic, but until they have something like Scrapbook, I probably won't move wholesale. I do too many pic posts and really don't want to go to an off-site hosting service.

If it was possible to transfer my pics as well as my posts and comments I think I'd be over there like a shot. *g*
louisedennislouisedennis on March 17th, 2010 09:43 am (UTC)
I already use off-site hosting for pics so that's not an issue for me so much.

I'm still testing the water. I've lost a lot of faith in LJ's ability to operate professionally (as in web-professionalism) whether the functionality and networking I'd lose in transferring to dreamwidth outweighs that, I'm not sure. We shall see.
munchkinofdoom: Primevalmunchkinofdoom on March 17th, 2010 09:56 am (UTC)
Aha! So you've got two accounts over there too? *heads off to friend/subscribe the other one*