Update: Gates of Vienna shut down by Google Blogger, moved to gatesofvienna.net

by 1389 on January 17, 2013

in blog censorship, Gates of Vienna (colleagues), Google Blogger

Gates of Vienna blog not found

From facebook.com/Gates.of.Vienna:

Public message:

Please note: Google has pulled the Gates of Vienna blog. It happened suddenly, around 6-7 hours ago. The Baron is on the case.

I don’t have any further information apart from that, but am sure GoV will be back better than ever before we know it.

Email update from Baron Bodissey:

I apologize for replying to all of you with this mass email, but I have no other way of responding in a timely manner.

Blogger “removed” our blog suddenly last night. One second it was there; the next it was gone. If we had violated their terms of service, we should have received an email, according to their own established procedure. But we received no email.

I retain my “dashboard” account, as does Dymphna. And, as you can see, I still have the gmail account.

There is no “deleted blogs” link on our dashboards, as there should be if the blog had been deleted deliberately through a normal procedure.

For those of you who wrote about your own experiences connected with giving Google your cell phone number: this can’t be an issue, because I gave Google our landline number several years ago, when they would not let me into this gmail account without my giving them a phone number.

Late last night I began the process that one always goes through with Blogger: I posted a request on the help forum. That’s really all that can be done; you can’t talk to human beings where Google is concerned.

Henrik Raeder Clausen is our technical guru. He also posted on the help forum, and has actually received a response, which is unusual with Google. Based on the replies, there seems to have been a major problem with Blogger last night. Many other blogs disappeared in the same fashion.

I anticipate that this is most likely a technical glitch on Google’s part, based on the number and types of blogs that had the same thing happen to them last night. But we should know for certain within another day or two.

It’s also possible (but far less likely, in my estimation) that we were taken down for political reasons. If it was a deliberate take-down, we will migrate to another platform with our own domain name. We back up the entire blog frequently, and the last backup was on Monday. So only a few posts will be missing when we restore.

This is all that we know at present. I’ll send out more emails if I find out anything else. Dymphna will also send out Twitter messages.

Thank you all for your concern and support.

Second email update from Baron Bodissey:

I apologize for replying to all of you again with this mass email, but I have no other way of responding in a timely manner.

Our blog has now been returned to us!

Blogger “removed” our blog suddenly last night. One second it was there; the next it was gone. If we had violated their terms of service, we should have received an email, according to their own established procedure. But we received no email.

Now it has reappeared just as mysterously as it disappeared. No message, no explanation.

I think this was a technical glitch at Google, given how many other blogs were affected, including lots of non-political ones.

We will continue with our “disaster preparedness” policy, with an eye towards a migration to a secure platform that we have complete control over.

Update January 20, 2013: Google Blogger shuts down GoV again

From: Gates of Vienna
Sent: Saturday, January 19, 2013 9:34 PM
Subject: Another one

Sorry to hit everybody en masse, but Blogger has taken us down again.
This one is different:

———
Hello,

Google has received a Terms of Service complaint regarding malicious
code on your blog. After conducting our review, and in accordance with
Google’s Terms of Service, we have removed the content at issue.

Terms of Service: http://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/terms/
Content Policy: http://www.blogger.com/content.g

The Google Team
———

That’s all I know at the moment. We are backed up, so we are OK for a
new start somewhere else.

Baron Bodissey

Thank you all for your concern and support.

Update January 21, 2013: GoV has MOVED

From: Gates of Vienna
Sent: Monday, January 21, 2013 3:32 PM
Subject: Gates of Vienna has moved

Gates of Vienna has moved. Our new location is:

http://gatesofvienna.net

Previous content is in the process of migrating to the new site. Most is already in place.

I owe a big debt of gratitude to Henrik Ræder Clausen, Vlad Tepes, and KGS for their help setting up the new site and tutoring me in the nuances of WordPress.

We will shortly have the archives and the comments, but the new template hasn’t really been established — just the bare minimum to get us up and running. The rest of the process will take a while.

The old site at blogspot will not redirect to the new site, because Google has locked the blog. We have filed a request for a review of our status, but there’s no telling whether that will work — Google has not communicated with us except for the initial notice, which was:

Hello,

Google has received a Terms of Service complaint regarding malicious code on your blog. After conducting our review, and in accordance with Google’s Terms of Service, we have removed the content at issue.

Terms of Service: http://www.google.com/intl/en/policies/terms/
Content Policy: http://www.blogger.com/content.g

The Google Team

In the meantime, if everyone could change their links to us on their sites, as well as their bookmarks, that will help the search engines find the new URL and give us back some of our ranking.

If I have any other important news about all this, I’ll send out another mass email. Otherwise, check in at the new URL for information on the situation.

Thank you all for your interest and support.

Baron Bodissey

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