User account issues **PLEASE READ**

tearing hair out
Portrait of a spam victim. 😉

Hi, everyone. Sorry for the recent issues regarding leaving comments on the site. Be assured, we want your comments, if you care to leave them. The issues some of you have been experiencing (and others will experience, if they haven’t yet) have to do with two things. I’ll explain after the jump:

Thanks for reading this, first of all! The two issues which have affected some people’s ability to post comments are these:

  1. I switched our entire server from one physical computer to another. Don’t ask. Long, boring story that no one but me cares about (not even Beth, LOL, she “just wants it to work”). But it is possible – though unlikely – that if you had previously registered at this site, that your login/password information was lost in the move. The good news is that if you think this is the case, then it’s easy enough to simply re-register, using the exact same information you used previously. After all, assuming you’re right and the new server doesn’t have your user account info, then nothing’s stopping you from just using it again, right? ;o)
  2. We had been getting some comment spam. If you’ve never had to tend (and keep running) a webserver that’s open to public comment, count yourself lucky. Spammers don’t just try to harvest email addresses to send you embarrassing ads for “male enhancement,” lower mortgage rates, or Canadian pharmaceuticals, they also haunt the comments/user sections of every last blog/bulletin board/community site they can find, and post their little messages there, masquerading as users. I’d been keeping up with them and not allowing them onto the actual site itself, but it’s a pain to keep up with. The reason I had to deal with it is that in the past, anyone could comment here, simply by providing an email address. That’s something the “bots” that spammers use can deal with. So I switched the rules for commenting to now require that a person actually register on the site itself (it’s this link under Quick Administration Links on the main page of the blog). That’s something the bots can’t do automatically – because I approve new registrations, and it’s pretty clear who’s a machine and who’s not…plus, I know most of you anyway.

So can I ask everyone a big favor (if you want to comment, that is – and I assure you again, we DO want to get your comments)? Please take just a minute and register here. All you need is whatever username you want to go by, plus the email address you were already using to post comments previously. That’s it. Just like signing up for a Yahoo! or Google account. Then, when you visit here, you can just log in, and leave comments without having to enter your info each time you comment. Also – for those of you who know what this even is – we now have the ability to accept OpenID logins. So, if you already have an OpenID, just use that on the register page, and it’s even easier. Thanks so much for taking the trouble.

P.S. – One last thing, just so there’s no questions or confusion, we don’t “get” anything for you registering here (except freedom from spam, hopefully). And, as much as I loathe the gyrations I have to go through to keep this blog free of spam, I would hope it would go without saying that we have no intention of using anyone’s personal information for anything at all, least of all spam. Thanks again.