Posted by: rogermitchell | March 28, 2012

Ongoing problems with reading, commenting and generally accessing the blog

Hi folks. I’m about to post a new blog over the next few days. However, someone else is finding difficulties with accessing the blog, basically getting lots of advertising pop-ups. Please let me know if this is happening for you too. From my end everything is working normally. However if this a wide problem I’ll have to upgrade to WordPress pro in order to get support to sort it out, which I’m not particularly anxious to do unless it’s necessary, but I will if the problem is widespread. So can you also let me know by commenting here if you DON’T encounter any problems, as well as if you do!





  1. Hi Rog, I have never had a problem with access to your blog, nor pop-ups either. It is possible that the difficulties are being caused by a wider problem with their web-browser, maybe some hijacked settings? May I suggest they consider downloading the excellent (and free for individual users) Glary Utilities from here ( and use the Internet Explorer Assistant in the System Tools menu. Happy to help further if you want to put them in direct touch with me. Mike

    • This is not a web-browser problem either! It happens, often intermittently, with IE, Firefox and Opera on various Windows based platforms and also on Apple mac’s that are running Safari … because it is a WordPress issue that is probably minor. For your info a thread has started to develop on this issue at:

  2. Hi Roger, I can see your blog fine but I have had problems posting on other wordpress sites. I had to log into a wordpress account and change some settings. Very irritating when I was used to commenting on a few blogs using the wordpress format.

  3. I have had no problems at all! Mike Winter is great!

  4. no problems for me!

  5. No issues.

  6. No, no ads – which is nice. And somehow I got back in, so I’m content for the moment. c.

  7. Well, I haven’t seen any ads, but I just tried to post here and got shunted off into the log-on page. . . again. At least I remembered my new password. c.

  8. No issues – but I’m on a mac!?!

  9. No problems, thanks.

  10. Looks good here in France! (no pop ups so far!)

  11. No worries here in France (and no popups either, but then I use a very effective pop-up blocker – but he reports nothing to block on this page.)

  12. I’m on a Mac too but I still had issues with other wordpress blogs 🙂

  13. No issues for me here, Roger.

  14. I did get a pop-up once, nothing inappropriate, and just ignored it. You would get fewer problems of this sort with a self-hosted version of WP, but then you’d gain the hastle of transferring the database and theme and maintaining WP versions, plus the initial issues with change of ip address and hosting and helping people to update their links and bookmarks. (It would be better after any transfer to maintain this account and use it to point to the new host).

  15. Did you change security settings for comments? Comments now require me to login through, which I did not have to do before. This would be a deterrant to comments and would mean that all respondents would have to be registered there.

    I was posting a comment to say no problems until the login requirement interrupted. It might be wise to check with the public WP if they have changed their default requirements. Obviously a self hosted version of WP would give you full control of such things, at the expense of transferring the database to the new host, maintaining WP versions and generally taking people with you. Of course you could always maintain this ip address and put up a sticky post that serves to link to the new host.

  16. OK, this is not a browser issue. It is a WP issue. It will affect people who have either a account or a gravatar account. now finds the cookies from these and forces a login requirement no matter what the security settings on your site. This is hugely unfriendly and potentially dangerous. For example, I can now, because I am logged in, add new posts without reference to you, and this might not be what you want at all.

    The wp team are not responding sympathetically to complaints about this. As you can see here: The discussion gets quite heated, and some wp staff tried, sort of, to help. But the main response from wp was to close the thread to further comments.

    A self-hosted WP installation might be the only way to stop this in the short term. A better solution would require WP to admit they got this wrong and to decide to put it right. But open source communities are not renowned for acting quickly, or at all sometimes.

    • Thank you for taking the trouble to investigate this Chris. Sadly WordPress don’t seem to be responding sympathetically, having closed the comment string on their site and suspended customer service for the time being for those like me who have the free version of WordPress. All this does not make me inclined to pay for the full version. As many folk don’t report a problem I will keep going with WordPress for the time being, but unless they sort it out soon I will look elsewhere for a blog site. Any further ideas on the subject will be very welcome!

      • I think there is a bit of a misunderstanding, Roger. WordPress is free no matter what version you use. A self hosted installation will cost for the ip address and for hosting ( as with any website) but the wordpress installation, usually a matter of pressing a button and filling in a single dialogue (at least from most respectable hosts) does not carry a charge. I can recommend a good host and ways of going about this if you like. Just pop me an email.

      • Thanks for the advice Chris, I only learn as I go. But what does this statement on the top of the dashboard mean then? “And Tip: Be the master of your own domain – make this blog for just $17 per year.” And what are the paid upgrades to which customer support is restricted? As in the following statement: “We believe everyone deserves fantastic support for their blog. Our backlog of requests has consistently grown as our team of 10 receives nearly 8,000 messages a week. To get caught up and give our customers the support they expect with paid upgrades, we made the difficult decision to limit the contact form to customers with upgrades.” I can’t ask WordPress because whatever they are I don’t have them.

      • Some of this is explained in my recent email but for clarity. It is offering to change the domain name from to just a personal top level domain. It only does this when it detects that the name of your site is available as a top level domain (which I explained in the email) my advice, don’t let them do it. You can get that domain for yourself for about eight pounds a year, and host it where you like without giving them control of it.

        The other offer is for their paid support service. I didn’t know that they had stopped support for the basic free subdomains but I do understand why. . From memory, the paid support starts at about 90$ a year. This is unlikey to be something you need because you are are not constantly developing your site. You have it set up as you want it and just use it.

        These are just a couple of the many ways that covers the enormous cost of providing free blogs to millions of users. In general it makes money by unlocking restrictions that are built into the free blogs. If you hosted the site yourself none of these restrictions would apply. As I explained in the email, is owned by Automattic and is just a huge hosting service. WordPress itself (the whole system) is owned by everyone, as open-source software. The site for the system is at

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