Random is Order

"Creativity is the ability to introduce order into the randomness of nature." ~ Eric Hoffer

Something’s Not Right Here

on July 3, 2013

I had intended to post my June Birchbox review today. That is, until I tried to log in to my blog, and found that it had been suspended by WordPress for a violation of their advertising policy and terms of service.  Upon making this discovery, I immediately emailed WordPress to find out why my blog had been suspended because I know that I haven’t done anything that violates any of the policies.

Before I chose to set up my blog on WordPress.com, I thoroughly read their Terms of Service and Advertising Policy to see what I can and can’t do on one of their sites. Basically, I had intended to post reviews of my subscription boxes on my blog, and wanted to be sure I was allowed to do that. According to the WordPress Terms of Service, I am fine to post my own, personal, authentic reviews, and include links back to the sites where I purchased the items. The only requirement is that I not be attempting to post information about pyramid schemes or get rich quick without ever getting out of bed scams, and since that was never my intention, I figured I was safe.

Not so, said WordPress.com staff today. Apparently, it’s unacceptable for me to post my own personal review of an item I paid for myself, and link to the site where I bought it. Yet, as I pointed out to the nice person who responded to my very upset email, 100s of other WordPress.com sites do the exact same thing, and they never get called on it. When I brought that to the staffer’s attention, my blog magically got turned back on again.

Of course, this little experience has made me realize I am going to need to look into self-hosting sooner than later which has led to me doing some research on self-host sites tonight. I’m also going to collect some recommendations from friends who self-host as well to see what they think. If you self-host, which site do you use, and why? Did you design your own site, use a pre-made template, or have someone design it for you? If the last option, please share info on who designed your site as I’m looking for a different theme if I move to self-hosting.

Basically, I’m now looking for a way out as it was a horrible feeling to discover that my still-new blog had been deemed a rule-breaker, and had been shut down. Even though it is up now, I’ve now started wondering just how long it’s going to be before it disappears again for some other minor infraction that is only enforced on my site, and no one else’s.

Please share your info/stories/recommendations for self-hosting below in the comments section while you can. Blog at you later!

Cheers, Shauna

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2 responses to “Something’s Not Right Here

  1. Erica G. says:

    I don’t understand why this would be against policy? Reading peoples reviews on their blogs is one of the main reasons that I read them!

    Reviews Until You Drop

    • Shauna says:

      I know, right! The guy never got back to me after I emailed him the quote from the Terms of Service, but my blog was magically reinstated.

      The policy clearly states that you can’t be trying to make money from your blog, but it’s obvious that’s not my intention if you read my posts since the vast majority of them are me rambling. Yes, I review products I use, and tell people where to find them. I’m not going to get rich doing that.

      Still, to be safe, I’ve added a Disclosure page, and changed all of my link wording to referral instead of what it said before. I just don’t get why they picked on my blog when people are openly selling on theirs, and nothing is said to them.

      Thanks for dropping by!

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