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Reader changed?

  1. The comment box still does not work properly on Android devices accessing the Reader through the default Browser or through Firefox. In fact, in the default Browser, I cannot get the pop up to go away when I click on the "X". It freezes. Blog titles are still written over the blog avatars instead of beside.

    I repeat, this new "mobile-friendly" WP reader does not work on Android devices. Thankfully, I still have the WP app which has all the functionality and minimalism of the new Reader.

  2. If nobody (well most bloggers) don't like it, why not just change the darn thing back to the way it was and make everybody (well most everybody) happy?!

    Put me in the 'I seriously dislike the new Reader' category.

  3. Today I noticed the stats were reflecting views of what I think were the popup in the reader. I don't know if it was simply a view of the popup or a referral to the original blog post.

    As for android performance, the carousel does not work on android phones if the orientation is changed. It does work on a full size iPad. I have experienced this problem on three different Android phones and three different versions of Android, the newest being 4.1.

    Honestly, I think it makes little sense to view photography on a mobile phone, especially considering how much effort I put into each photo, but it takes all kinds.

    I still think the default view should be the original blog with a special link marked "reader quick view". My opinion on this is it is being driven by a desire to reduce server loads. It is faster than going to the original post, but it makes us bloggers feeling like we were wasting our time customizing our blogs.

    There is this uneasy feeling in the pit of my stomach that some kind of monetization beyond the existing optional services is behind this. I just paid $30 to go ad free. Next thing I know, there will be ads in the reader. If we don't think anyone is looking at the blog itself, why customize or spend money on premium themes or CSS? If that revenue goes, where will it be made up?

    Say it isn't so.

  4. I need to make a clarification about my stats. Today is the first day since the change that the ratios of internal hits, external hits and likes resembled normal. For a couple of days everything was total nonsense. I have experienced a lot of activity this month, but it is primarily views from external sources because I have photos from two popular events, the Lone Star Rally and Texas Renaissance festival.

    Although there have been some improvements over the last few days, I remain convinced more big changes are on the way, and this really isn't completely about mobile. The fact remains the popup is fast and loading original posts is not. That provides a major disincentive to view the original which means less scrolling around and looking at other posts at the same time.

    I also wonder if external web stat collectors treat a hit on the popup as a hit on the blog. Someone here opined the hits from using the carousel are not counted by outside stat compilers. I have no idea how any of this really works.

  5. wineandhistory
    Member

    It has been several days now and clearly everybody is still posting negative comments about the new reader. Hopefully the folks at WordPress are actually reading this. I, for one am getting carpal tunnel from having to click on a post, then click again to actually open it, and then click back to the reader and then click again to close the popup box. It is double the number of clicks, and it serves no purpose whatsoever.

    The new reader format makes it really hard to see which blog the post is coming from, and images only appear sometimes, and I second the other comments about wanting to know if there are more words before I click the post (click too many times...)

    These changes are clearly not working. Please change it back. We are all begging you...

  6. Just two weeks ago I bought a package for $99 so I could customize my blog. What a waste of hard earned money.

    And why have the Happiness Engineers been so silent in this mess?

  7. I also wonder if external web stat collectors treat a hit on the popup as a hit on the blog. Someone here opined the hits from using the carousel are not counted by outside stat compilers. I have no idea how any of this really works.

    @ronscubadiver, the external stats collection is quite simple. You create an account on somewhere like statcounter and they give you a unique url that you embed in your site. In this case mine is on a widget on my blog so that it is 'served' every time somebody loads my FULL blog page. The URL points to an image or something similar at the external stats company. They can then count the number of hits on that image and provide you with the relevent stats. WordPress use the exact same process but they use Quantcast .

    In the case of my statcounter stats, they only count up if a user loads the original page of my blog which shows the widgets as I don't think I can add the statcount URL anywhere else, well certainly not so conveniently.

    I did notice that the new reader popup does indeed have a Quantcast URL in it so it would imply that WordPress will be getting stats recorded for all hits on this new popup as well as from the original post. The same is true of the attachment pages I think. Hence the reason that WordPress will shows stats that include hits on attachment pages when viewed within the carousel whereas my statcounter won't as the widgets weren't served up for each picture load.

    HOWEVER my understanding is that advertisers pay out based on the number of times an advert is 'served' to the user. I have not seen adverts on the carousel, I've only seen them on the original blog page so I can't see how you would be getting any ad revenue from hits recorded on all the images in a gallery or the popup (which also currently doesn't appear to have an advert in it) as your users would only get served an advert on the initial load of the original full blog post. Maybe a wordpress engineer could confirm this???

    I was contemplating upgrading my wordpress account and then applying for the ads packahe in order to cover the costs but speaking to a few people they said the ads would not earn anything significant until I had at least 10K genuine page loads a month. Currently I have less than that even though WP shows significantly more so I'm not sure. I can't really find anywhere that explains what WP pay out in ad revenue based on a volume of hits so I can't tell what revenue I may potentially earn.

    I assume this popup will have ads in it for external users as otherwise peoples ad revenue will drop like a stone unless they set SUMMARY only in the feeds setting to force people to visit the full blog page?

    So many questions, so few answers from Wordrpress! :-)

  8. I am wondering. Although these changes annoy us a lot, how are most people accessing blogs? Obviously for WP users it has been easier to use the reader here, but it is by no means the only option. I am trying out Bloglovin' because of this fiasco and I may well stick with it. Other RSS feeds are popular too, and some people subscribe via email, or follow links the blogger might post to FB or Twitter. These other methods of blog reading do not bypass our pretty blogs and possible premium themes, so it doesn't mean those things are not worth bothering with.

    Some of us have reported a drop in stats, I guess those blogs at least are mostly being read via the WP reader. But might it be that WP no longer want to run a blog reader? That could be why they are making it so horrible, driving people away so they no longer have to maintain it. I know it seems like an odd thing to do, but then so is wrecking the functionality of a thing beyond toleration!

    I have no idea how or even if it is possible to tell how one's readers are accessing one's blog, short of posting a survey asking them. When I followed my husband's blog on Bloglovin', which I already follow via WP, it did not register as another follower on his stats, but maybe it recognised my WP ID? I know nothing about such things.

    Any thoughts?

  9. @knotrune

    I tried out a few other readers and to be honets none were as good as the WP reader (prior to the recent changes that is!)

    I found adding peoples blogs to the feed was time consuming (from a phone) and the post that was presented was often either badly formatted so was unreadable or formatted like the new WP reader popup so that the theme was not shown and the layout was not how the original blogger intended. I even tried Phonly (Feedly phone app for windows phone) last week but I hated it.

    While most of my posts are readable in this new style popup as my posts are written to look OK in my narrow column theme (mistylook) but my wifes are not as she uses a wide format theme. She takes ages laying out her posts in a way similar to a newspaper or magazine and writes the text to suit the pictures that she inserts to the left or right of that text. When the new reader popup grabs the post it places the pictures all in a vertical line and the post text then loses alot of its original meaning and context.

    While I can read blogs on my phone which has a relatively large and high resolution screen compared to most, I still prefer to read blogs via the PC which is hooked up to a 42" screen. Also most of the bloggers I follow write long posts that are formatted in a way to suit their blog theme and are best read in that blog not in the readers popup. While I probably accept that in terms of volume of both postings and readers the most common will be short one liner blog posts accompanied with a picture or video but for me these are not real bloggers, they exists purely to get impressive stats. They don't take any time, care or attention in what they post or read and most of it is either junk or simply re-blogged from elsewhere. I ignore the vast majority of posts from such bloggers. The bloggers I prefer to follow are those that write in detail, with care and attention to what they write and on a subject that is dear to their heart. They blog because they want to share their thoughts, opinions and experience with like minded folk - in my view this is a real blogger but sadly this type of blogger makes up only a tiny percentage of WP bloggers.

    It seems WP is hell bent on catering for the volume market of poor quality one liner blog posts aimed at a disengaged audience with very short attention spans rather than catering for those of us who actually carefully read and digest what people blog about and enjoy taking our time over it too. They might as well rename themselves Twitter and have done with it! ;-)

  10. @knotrune Yes, there are many ways to read a blog. The Reader used to be an easy and convenient way for us to actually visit each other's blogs. The loss of that functionality, essentially turning it into just another RSS reader is what we are most complaining about. Now that we can "backdoor" our way to the original blogs it's a little better, but that functionality is hidden, not immediately apparent.

  11. mud4fun wrote:

    It seems WP is hell bent on catering for the volume market of poor quality one liner blog posts aimed at a disengaged audience with very short attention spans rather than catering for those of us who actually carefully read and digest what people blog about and enjoy taking our time over it too. They might as well rename themselves Twitter and have done with it! ;-)

    You've hit upon EXACTLY why i'm disgusted with the new reader! Like your wife, I take hours trying to make each post perfect (for myself and whoever might take the time to read it) I resent the pop up window! It does a huge injustice to all my work!

  12. Another issue!!!!!

    The freshly pressed page now behaves like the reader with a stupid popup but in this case it is now even worse than the reader as there is no word count link, no time since posted etc so no way to get into the post without going via the popup.

    I also see absolutely no reason to have a comment box on the popup when you can't read the full post until going into view original. Why would I want to comment before I've read the whole post??? I think that says a whole lot about the developers at WP if they think it is acceptable to comment, like and reblog without bothering to read the whole post.

  13. rakmilphotography
    Member

    More than half the blogs I have looked at have restricted Reader to a portion of their blog, in the pop-up this means no photo.

    To be clear most of the issues raised here are invisible to most users, who might be concerned if they knew about them.

  14. Another issue!!!!!

    The freshly pressed page now behaves like the reader with a stupid popup but in this case it is now even worse than the reader as there is no word count link, no time since posted etc so no way to get into the post without going via the popup.

    I also see absolutely no reason to have a comment box on the popup when you can't read the full post until going into view original. Why would I want to comment before I've read the whole post??? I think that says a whole lot about the developers at WP if they think it is acceptable to comment, like and reblog without bothering to read the whole post.

  15. Oops, moderators please remove my comment at 7:08 as it is a duplicate of my one at 6:52

    Sorry I had too many browser tabs open after viewing the freshly pressed and by the time I'd closed them all I forgot I'd already posted the comment!

  16. I am so tired of clicking this way and that. It really takes away from what used to be a very enjoyable and relaxing read.

  17. Is WP trying to increase clicks on the site with the new reader? Before I could open my reader, see a post I wanted to read, and 1 click later be reading it.

    Now, it's 4 clicks. Click the desired post, swear at the pop up, click "see original," click back to the reader tab, and click again to close the pop up. Yuck.

  18. Since the switch, I have to turn off extensions to get the reader to load. Otherwise it just sits there loading forever. It's a nuisance to keep turning off extensions multiple times a day...I'm almost ready to abandon the reader altogether.

  19. I think there has been enough testing and its not working this way, the click to the header should redirect to the blog.

    And please increase the font size of the blog name at the top left of the reader. This is not a huge change, I think this much can be done :)

  20. rakmilphotography
    Member

    Does the pop-up count as a view, visit (especially if its the whole post) or nothing at all?

  21. I have decided that life is too short to set myself up for repeated disappointments and frustrations. My needs and wants re: the WordPress.com Reader were very simple and yet have not been met and are not likely to be met. All, I wanted and needed was a list of permalinked post titles (direct links) to the most recent post published on the blogs I follow.

    It's clear to me that what I want and need will not be delivered by the WordPress.com Reader and if I continue to use it I will continue to be pissed off every day - day in and day out - by the frustratingly unintuitive design. Therefore, I made the happiness choice this morning and put a smile back on my face. I unfollowed all blogs I used to follow in the WordPress.com Reader.

  22. rakmilphotography
    Member

    I am curious, Timethief, prior to your decision, how were your stats post change?

  23. @rakmilphotography
    I'm not much into stats watching and I haven't been well so I'm simply doing the bare minimum while I recover. As I haven't been publishing as frequently as I previously did, I don't believe I can attribute any stats decline accurately to the Reader changes alone.

  24. rakmilphotography
    Member

    Sorry to hear about your health, get well soon.

  25. Is there a way to find an RSS feed for Topics available in the Reader? I'm experimenting with an RSS reader (and WordPress provides a handy export option for all of the blogs I follow). If I can pull those topics into a reader, I'll use both side by side for a while and see which one I like better.

    One advantage that the Reader does still have over an external reader is the Topics--many of the blogs I follow I originally found by following topics and finding new people writing about things that interested me. I know that others have found my blog the same way.

  26. @timethief
    I went in and reset everything to get emails from everyone I follow. I'm with you on this reader thing----waaaayyyyyy too annoying and not saving me any time clicking all around. Until they make the reader "good" again, I'll be happier with an overflowing email box than with an underperforming reader!

  27. I follow 162 blogs using the reader.
    A few of these I follow by email as well, but I find that I never view them there. It is (was) much more aesthetically appealing to use the reader. Following by email requires two clicks (one to open the email and another to open the post in the blog). It was one click right to each blog in the reader and a lovely scroll through blogland.
    Maybe I should set up a new email just for my WordPress blogs.

    Are we to assume that those in charge have no concern for our writing or reading pleasure? There has been no notification, explanation or communication.
    In the meantime, we lose faith in those that run this site. I loved WordPress and it saddens me that they don't seem to care.

  28. ecumenicallife I use the topics as well.

    I've exported my list to bloglovin which has a similar look. It also has topics, but not limited to wp blogs, probably there will be mostly blogspot coming up in searches, but I haven't tried.

  29. @ecumenicallife

    I'm the same as you, most of the blogs I follow have been found via topic searches. They are quite diverse blogs because I've often stumbled across a blog in a topic search that was for example a Land Rover related post but the blog itself was generally about a completely different subject matter or interest. Previously, clicking the Land Rover post took me into the blog and after reading that post I'd then read the about page, other recent posts etc and in many cases I decided to follow as the blogs were well written and were enjoyable to read even though on a different interest to mine, an example being a blog about fly fishing! :-)

  30. @colourcottage, I've signed up with bloglovin now. However it seems bloglovin only searches blogs that are registered with it so I'll be going through the registration process later (you have to add some HTML to a new post andg et bloglovin to find it). Hopefully that will then mean my blog will be found by the bloglovin topic search :-)

    Bloglovin has a mobile friendly site version too and it works fine on my windows phone and is far less buggy than the wordpress reader however it still formats the post the same as the new wordpress popup when viewed in this mobile friendly view so not much gain for me over using the WP reader. The bloglovin app is only available for iPhones and Android phones so no good to me on a windows phone.

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