It was more than a shock when I read on one of the WordPress blogs, that pricing has changed. No discussions, no warning, just an announcement that the company was moving from a 5 plan structure to a simpler 2 plan. There was to be a ‘Free’ plan and a ‘Pro’ plan. All other plans would go. So no Business Plan, no Premium Plan, no Personal Plan and no eCommerce Plan. The cost would be (here in the UK) £7.00 per month for the ‘Pro’ plan. This would almost double the price I was currently paying.
I did a quick email to support, explaining that ‘… I neither needed nor desired …’ to upgrade to any other plan, so what did it mean for me? The reply was quick to arrive:
“… you do not have to switch to the new WordPress.com Pro plan if you don’t want to. All existing users will be able to keep their current legacy plans and no further action is required on your end for this.”
My feeling is that it is safe for now, but wonder how long before one of the ‘happiness engineers’ decide that the ‘legacy’ plans have to go?
I don’t know what has happened to our postal service over the past few months. I know coronavirus has a lot to answer for, but twelve months down the line, you can’t keep blaming it for the current issues. We seem to have seen an increase in issues over the past two months.
Back in November, a parcel was delivered to the wrong address and annoyingly the people at that address moved house just a day or so after the parcel had been delivered. Since then two more, smaller parcels have gone astray. Last week three bank statements, all with the same address were delivered to three different addresses. One came to us and the other two went to neighbours at either side of us. The week before, K***’s new bank debit card was delivered to someone in the next street. We even had a letter from the DWP hand delivered by someone in the next village. It is not good.
On Friday, the post did not get delivered until just before 2pm. Now I’m old enough to remember when we used to get a second post, which was usually around mid-day, but that’s not really acceptable, considering how little is actually being delivered by the Royal Mail.
I received a reply back from WordPress support regarding my ‘suggestions’ for the desktop app. I get the impression that it was a standard reply. Basically thanking me ‘for reaching out‘ and for my ‘feed-back‘. I am told that they ‘...can’t say whether or when they’d be implemented, but consider them noted…’ which is better than nothing. I do hope they consider them, as the app could be a great asset.
Youngest son did come home for the weekend on Friday, which was great news. Because right up until his car and support worker pulled up outside the house, I had a very odd feeling that it may not come off. But he was in a happy mood when he got here and S**, his key support worker and friend, said that he was so happy that he could come home and see us. He will go back on Monday sometime and hopefully he will be home again in two weeks. His regular ‘home visit‘ pattern is to come to us every other Friday for three nights, but outbreaks of the virus at his care-home put paid to that again. So as long as there are no outbreaks on his unit and we stay clear, it could be back to normal(ish).
We have been hoping that our youngest can come home for a weekend visit today. He has been in ‘lock-down’ at his care home since he went back on 28th December due to him and others testing positive for the virus. The ‘lock-down’ on his unit was lifted on the 22nd and preparations have been in progress since the 10th.
So this morning, K*** and me had our Lateral Flow Test. Not a particular pleasant event, but the result came back negative. This (I believe) means that neither of us have the virus and that our son can come home for the weekend. So two great positives there.
Then, K*** got a text message from the doctors say that she can now book her test. Another great one. However, that was soon short lived as twenty minutes later she got another text from the doctors apologising for getting it wrong. Apparently the doctors had been given incorrect information. But here’s the interesting thing, she was half way booking online at the centre I had mine and decided that she would wait for the doctors to call. When the second message came through, she went back online and booked her appointment without a hitch. All a bit mysterious.
I am giving the desktop version of WordPress another go. I had given up with the app because of issues I was not happy with. One of the issues is with the way when the app opens, it opens with the last post you have written with the app. In my opinion, it should open at a blank page with the option in the file menu to open a previous post. It gets a bit annoying if you create a couple of posts via the browser or Blogpad on the iPad, and then use the Desktop app and it opens an old post. In this (ver 6.10.0) and previous versions opening a new post is done via the Window menu which is a strange way of working. I have mentioned this in the forums and the answer I received was that the app was still a ‘work in progress’. There doesn’t appear to be much difference that I can see from the last few versions but I will persevere and see where it goes.
I’m still on my quest to find the best blog editor for me. Open Live Writer was my personal favourite but it seems to have been forgotten. The last release was back in 2017 and even the copyright statement has not been updated since 2020. I have been tempted by reviews (some of them a year or two old) that BlogDesk is a very good editor and is actually used by at least one of the “Happiness Engineers”.
However (and these days, there is always a “However”) I am having real problems setting the thing up. I can get part way, then the set-up ask for my “Blog ID” with a button to automatically find the ID. This doesn’t work. So I can manually enter the ID. But where is the Blog ID on my WordPress blog? I have been through all of the settings I can find and there doesn’t appear to be anything that relates to a Blog ID.
I have searched the Internet and have had a few ideas thrown at me but all seem to fail. I have logged a topic on the WP support forum, but have had nothing from there. So I’m stuck.
** An update from WordPress, I am told that my site needs to be on a Business Plan to use a third party editor. Which doesn’t seem quite right as I have used third party editors before. **
Now I’m not anti-cyclist, in fact for many years I was extremely pro-cyclist. I used always cycle to work when we lived in our previous house. Even after passing my driving test and buying a car, I often cycled to work. I have a great deal of respect for the whole ethos that surrounds cycling. But I was really annoyed by a cyclist today, who seemed to have either no knowledge of the Highway Code or thought that it didn’t apply to him. I was driving back from the supermarket today and was approaching a bend in the road when a cyclist in front of me moved from the left-hand side of the road to the centre, indicating he was turning right. All very good you may think. but no! The road he was turning into had a No Entry sign as it is one way. He seemed oblivious of the sign and the rules. Which really winds me up. It was lucky that I have driven that way many times as it is a favourite route for horse riders, so I wasn’t going at the maximum speed limit.
I have been using the WordPress.Com app for Windows 10 for a few weeks now. It’s okay when it works, but there have been a couple of issues recently. For example, it is often very slow to to open. Sometimes posts do not update straight away and on a few occasions it has been known to simply crash and require a computer restart.
Usually faults like this can be rectified by reinstalling the latest version. However, attempting to download from the Microsoft Store results with a message telling me that the app is not available. Very strange, as version 3.2.0 is available to download direct from the WordPress.com website. I’m not the biggest fan of the Microsoft Store, but I would have thought an app such as this would be available. Is the reason that there are too many issues with the app that Microsoft no longer want to be associated with it? I don’t think that could be reason as there are many other apps in the Store that are simply rubbish. No there is some other reason that I’ve not quite figured out yet.
I still have the original version and will re-install it and see if is any better for a clean install, but I have my doubts.
I’m going through a ‘should I … shouldn’t I?’ period at the moment. I’ll explain. I have had my WordPress blog for a few years now. I think I saw somewhere that it has been up and running since 2009. It’s a free plan and it looks like I’ve used around 3% of my allocated free space, which does not seem much. I have around 100 followers and have posted around 750 times. I have no posting schedule and no particular theme. So basically, I post what I want to, when I want to.
Back to the ‘quandary’ In the title of this post. One of my failings with this blog (in my opinion) is that I don’t post regularly. A friend has advised me that the reason for this is that it’s free! He claims, that if I had to pay a fee then I would either stop all together or make the most of it. Now, I enjoy doing what I do now, so stopping would not be on the table, but giving me another incentive to post might, just might be a good idea.
I have been looking at the Personal Plan upgrade as an option. The Business Plan is not something I need (I’m not a business) and the Premium Plan seems to be too advanced for the type of blog I write. So the question I’m asking, is it worth spending that £36.00 a year? My wife thinks I don’t use my blog enough to warrant the expense and tends to glaze over when I mention domain name, ad free etc. My current thoughts are that the increased storage would allow me to upload more/better photos for example, and I quite fancy having my own domain name.
I shall have to make a decision soon and I’m leaning toward upgrading but …
Whilst I was editing my last contribution, I had a go using the new WordPress editor. When I started this blog, I used Microsofts blogging tool known as Windows Live Writer (WLW). After a while, Microsoft stopped supporting WLW and I was ‘forced’ to use Word as my blog editor. It was okay and I got used to it after a few posts. ThenI was told about an open-source editor called Open Live Writer (OLW). This free software was based, as you may have guessed on the old WLW programme. I’ve been using that for a couple of years now.
I am now beginning to come round to the idea of using the WordPress editor instead. In fact, this post was created using that editor. One of the selling points, in my opinion, is that this editor uses Grammarly as its spell and grammar checker. This is something that I have logged with OLW as a future update. I do find Grammarly very useful in spotting those silly errors that happen when we get a little carried away with our typing.
A bit of an update on yesterdays ‘scary’ moment post. I noticed, this morning, a news item on my WordPress dashboard, advertising a WordPress event in Leeds. It would seem that there is a local WP group that meets up quite regularly. It is not likely that I would attend, but I thought it would be good to find out a little more, as I had no idea that this kind of thing existed in the UK.
So to get at the main details etc, I had to join up with an organisation called ‘meetup.com’. Sounded reasonable, so I went ahead and started to fill in the required email, username and password. I scrolled to the bottom of the screen, looking for the ‘next’ button when I spotted one of those Google location markers. To my surprise my location was described as “Huddersfield”. The Google alert claimed that the login attempt was from a PC in the Huddersfield area. A bit of a coincidence!
Now, here’s what I think has happened. The bathroom fitters had to turn off the electric for a while, which of course turned off the internet router. When the power was restored my PC tried to log me back into my Google account, and it failed a couple of times. When It did finally log me in, I then got the notification of the ‘Account Alert’ So it seems (don’t quote me on this) that the perceived hacking attempt, was actually me. Somehow, something was indicating the my laptop was in Huddersfield. Very bizarre indeed as it has never been to Huddersfield.
At the end of the day, I was probably safe, but it did shake me up a little and made more determined to review my password management.