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Wednesday, February 20

BBC blogs: why bother?


The BBC has been running a blog network for a while now with presenters and producers encouraging feedback. It's a very obvious thing to do - most media organisations now do this sort of thing. The problem is that it simply doesn't work.

The technology which underpins much of the BBC's site is ancient, as commented on here and as the Beeb itself admits here (the problem is nearing two years old!). With the blogs, this means that a very high number of attempted comments fail and the network has crashes and slow periods far too often. The BBC bloggers themselves moan about this. And if they just used the same sort of technology that others use they wouldn't have these problems.

None of the blogs makes note of the problems, you just suffer them when trying to comment. They have no help which explains that sometimes comments fail because of their system. Only the most persistent or fortunate seem to get through.

They ain't usable and they're unfit for the purpose they were devised for — feedback. So, why bother?

6 comments:

  1. Hi Paul

    Sorry. We are disappointed at the length of time it has taken to fix this. If its any comfort, a replacement to upgrade our blogs platform is well underway and you can see that a new blogs comment system is already working well on a couple of our blogs (http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/pm/)
    I think you're right about the notifications of errors. We can probably do more there in the 4 weeks or so before the first phase of the upgrade.
    thanks again for persevering.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the feedback. I explain a bit more about what I mean in the Postscript.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Please have a Flash bypass (you do not have it now) as there are many businesses, mine included, that will not allow Flash. Without the bypass we will not be able to see your videos.

    Flash tracks, by IP address, every use of it and puts the information together into a report for its subscribers. Please show some respect for the intelligence and privacy of your readers.

    I am glad to see you finally got rid of the 3cm wide blank band near the top.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Ed

    I've responded in another post here http://paulcanning.blogspot.com/2008/04/bbc-news-redesign-can-someone-powerful.html
    but just to note that this is Blogger and changes aren't always easy, although I will investigate this. I would say that a business blocking Flash is stupid. Video is a business tool and to over-block (to stop YouTube time-wasting) is short-sighted.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I still cannot post a blog on the BBC website and it really is beginning to annoy me. I am in business development for a digital agency and if this were to happen with any of our clients we would be in serious trouble.
    It seems ridiculous that the problems are still on-going

    ReplyDelete
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