Changes to WP Reader~

I had to search to find this. Are you aware of the changes to the WP Reader? They are compressing and chopping posts in the Reader to accomplish what they call “streamlining” so the viewer can scan more posts more quickly while seeing less of your content in their reader. What WP is doing is giving your post much less than half the room it used to have in the reader, sometimes only two lines of text if you don’t have photos.

They are also now inserting blogs they promote in your Reader. So they are taking up the room they are saving by compressing your posts in the Reader with blogs you are not following and they are promoting.

This seems manipulative and non-transparent on WordPress’s part and not in the best interest of bloggers.

406 thoughts on “Changes to WP Reader~

  1. I find it annoying too, when WP are changing without it seems to help us to anything else than being frustrated.
    I find it hard enough at all to find the blogs, as I’m already following in the Reader and now it becomes even more difficult. Hmmmmm……..

    1. You often cannot make any sense of the content. You get a couple sentences. It just gives each of our posts so much less space, it is hard to imagine how it could ever be in our best interests….

  2. I just saw the new skimming format, I know the bloggers that are of interest to me, and I visit the blog site, so that I can read it all.. I do agree, making changes without any consultation is rather “poor communication” I do pay for this service myself, so yes. I resent it being done without consultation. thanks Cindy for speaking up..

    1. Yes, me too. I also go to the blog, but it is a dis-service to all of us to publish blog leads in the reader cut in half and indecipherable and I had to search to figure out why this happened. There is no transparency and no opportunity for input.

  3. Thanks for the feed-back, Cindy. I have been looking into the link you gave, nearly all comments over there are positive, I only read one showing frustration, saying “reducing posts to 1.75 lines”! I wonder what the 2017 Reader’s version will bring, but in any case we will have to take things as they are, let’s hope for the better. It’s s Christmas time, let’s s be positive as I don’t think we can change WP decision…

      1. if we all hang together
        maybe we won’t hang separately!
        anyway, looks like landscape images show better in the reader
        than portraits. perhaps a photoshop resize 🙂

        1. The posts that really get dis-served are ones with no photos at all! They get two sentences! I agree, we are a community, we need to join together. WordPress works for us!

  4. That does seem sort of shady. I will pay more attention to how I set my email notifications. I don’t have instant notifications for all the blogs I follow because my inbox gets inundated, but maybe that’s what we need to do so we don’t miss valuable content. 🙂

  5. I don’t mind the idea of change so much, but it seems like they’ve just tried to look like Facebook. I really hate it when they jam carefully formatted text together, it looks very amateurish and potentially changes the meaning.

    Some of the format ideas have potential, but as it is I’d call it a step backwards. This place isn’t Facebook, and shouldn’t be treated like it is.

    1. I love change. I move constantly,
      The biggest wp reader change disservice is to writers, they get two lines, not even a full sentence. This offends me. I know what talent sentences take to construct.
      In the new wp reader, I cannot see what writers are even starting to say, and the blogs with photos in this new format overwhelm them, which I don’t like one bit.
      Blogging writers are brilliant and importantly different, and as I scan the wp reader i want to have a sense of what they are saying, so I can figure what to read, and now I cannot do that.
      And that is sad to me.

  6. I don’t normally use the WordPress Reader myself, Cindy, as it makes me dizzy scrolling through. Some of the bloggers who I follow don’t seem to appear as an email notifications when they post, despite me setting them up that way. So I DO look at the wordpress reader every few months and noticed last week some odd inclusions were there. I also noticed that blogs I discontinued following show in my WordPress Reader still – another reason not to use it. I don’t have the energy or time to work around WP’s idiosyncrasies or scroll through old blogs.

    I did discover once, that if you’re a photographer (or include photos in your new posts), its best to place them first, before any writing.

    I use WordPress because, apart from having some free templates, it is supposed to be better for sharing photography online.

    I do wish WordPress would test their software updates more thoroughly before uploading though. Seems to me that often their new software updates are more convoluted than is necessary. I am pretty much technology-challenged in retirement these days.

    In retirement, I expect my online time to be easy to read and efficient to process. My working life revolved around the computer. I want my retirement to focus on Photography and walking outdoors.

    1. I am just going to quote you, because you said it so much better and could not have spoken more accurately how I feel.
      “In retirement, I expect my online time to be easy to read and efficient to process. My working life revolved around the computer. I want my retirement to focus on Photography and walking outdoors.”
      You must know how much I understand and appreciate you.

      1. cette presentation coupe l’image qui sert de reference à l’article en question
        Je pense qu’ils ont voulu donner plus de largeur (une bonne chose, mais qui coupe come je le dis l’image en deux)
        c’est moche, vraiment et surtout tres gênant

  7. PS. WP no longer show which WordPress template each of us uses. I like to change mine occasionally and can’t find out what the template name is when I see someone has an interesting one. Annoying to say the least.

  8. I agree, I don’t like these sudden changes and I think it really compromises the content and aesthetics of our blogs. It seems that nothing good stays good for long. I am glad you pointed out the changes – some I wasn’t aware of. The advocate in me has been activated and I think the only way to stop this (or hope for change) is to direct my concerns directly at WordPress via whatever method is available. I’ll let you know what sort of response they have. Ugh! Well, it’s beginning to feel like a lot like Christmas, blah, blah, blah. Hugs, Harlon

    1. My response to your comment has been deleted twice. I applaud the advocate in you. Being an advocate for what is good is the best thing a person can do. Thank you Harlon. I of course agree entirely with everything you are saying and appreciate it too. Tell WP we would like to return their Christmas gift! Ho Ho Ho~

  9. I notice that they put other blog posts that “considered” relevant to my blog posts. But I guess it is based on tags – but it won’t guaranteed there will be similar or relevant to mine. I find that annoying too – especially I already paid for free advertising in my blog but now there is a new thing that they can put anything on WP reader instead!

      1. I get a suspicion that with this new format then in the future the bloggers can pay to get their posts promoted in the WP readers, just like in Instagram. I am afraid it will go that way.

  10. Clowie

    I didn’t know. When I first started blogging, the reader was useless to me as I had a slow internet connection. Then when I got a faster connection I still preferred to visit the blogs after looking down my email list. But none of what I’ve said changes the fact that you should have control of what you see in the reader. WordPress never seem particularly interested in the views of bloggers when they make an unpopular change though, which is strange as they’d be nowhere without the content written by bloggers.

    1. I think they assume we are captive audience. I definitely pick up that they think we are not all that smart. They need human relations training which covers the theory of multiple intelligences. They could then understand that working at technical support is great, but not the apogee of human intelligence. Emotional intelligence is important too.

    1. That is a good point. If it does force the click to open the blog then maybe it has at least one thing going for it. But how does one rationalize taking up my reader’s space with the blogs I choose to follow with blogs WP is shoving down my throat?

  11. Spot on Cindy! And the dozens of comments already made amply demonstrate the strong feelings of the WP community. Saw the WP notice and immediately felt rebellious. WP users are well-informed (make a random pot-luck search if you doubt me) and perfectly capable of deciding what blogs they want to follow. So something to WP’s advantage is on the loose. Something you probably can’t opt out of. Something markety.
    Maybe they could just offer the ‘facility’ of being fed their algorithmic choices as an opt in. I didn’t see that choice in their email. RH

    1. “So something to WP’s advantage is on the loose. Something you probably can’t opt out of. Something markety.” BINGO! And something they will not be transparent about.

  12. I had read WP’s post about this while I was at lunch and using my phone. But I hadn’t noticed any changes yet. I’m curious as to ‘who’ and ‘how’ these change decisions are made by. Is it anyone who actually uses WP?

    1. Who are they? How do they make these decisions? Why isn’t there customer input? Why isn’t there transparency? Who decides which blogs they now force into our readers that we aren’t following and how and why do they choose them? Enquiring bloggers want to know!

  13. I don’t understand why WP – when they have something that works – they insist on changing it!! Pictures are distorted now, the preview is smaller, Recommendations stuck in aren’t in my interests at all! I’ve complained before about their constant manipulation, but nothing happens of course.

    1. Yes. Yes. Yes. There are significant problems in the land of wordpress. Maybe it starts with them referring to their workers as automaticians. Let’s call them human and start over wp.

  14. WP are very reliant upon their image of being a thriving business but, it seems, more and more blogs are being abandoned. Instead of addressing the actual problems they seem intent on the same high handed approach that contributed to the disillusionment.

    This time, if this is just the beginning, it may be necessary to complain to the investors about mismanagement. Perhaps Matt Maularug 🙂 has gone all Gerald Ratner. 🙂

    1. It is a bad business model. WP seems to operate under the assumption that we are a captive and not very smart audience. So they take away space from blogs I chose to follow in my reader, and cram blogs they promote and I don’t follow, in the freed up space? Shame on you wordpress. Forget Ratner, this sounds Putinesque~

  15. Thanks for the info Cindy. I usually read blogs from emails. I hadn’t explored reader, (still learning as I go along) It’s sad that wordpress is not interested in the views of it’s bloggers. Great that you are standing up for us!

    1. It takes awhile to get a sense of how things operate. It’s probably a very good idea for you to stay on the email notification plan. This way you have control of what you see.

        1. Exactly and giving you two lines in the reader is grossly unfair. Plus I want posts in my reader that I FOLLOW, not posts that wp wants me to follow. WP calls the reader, “your wordpress reader for the blogs you follow.” I want my reader back!

  16. Thanks, Cindy – that’s an awful change. It certainly isn’t helpful to those of us with limited time to spend checking the blogs we follow. It makes it more likely we might miss something that we actually want to see. 🙁

    1. That is exactly the case. We want to follow and see the blogs we choose. Is this so hard for WP to understand? They can follow the blogs they want but please don’t force your choices on us WP.

  17. The new format is HORRIBLE! It’s part of the snippet, fragmentation, reduction of data to digestible, and unfulfilling, size. It’s the ‘why can’t we all just be the same?’ logic (even though we are NOT) so let’s reduce everything to the most generic, plain-vanilla, lowest common denominator. Let’s make EVERY post EQUALLY unappealing. Let’s show photo snippets of headless people, birds, or animals. Let’s show a patch of blue sky from a landscape. EQUALLY… UN… APPEALING! Good job WordPress! NOT!!!

    1. Amen! They seem to have so little respect for bloggers and they practice this unilateral favoritism. They are like BIG BROTHER and we are being manipulated and I don’t like it one bit and it seems many other bloggers feel the same.

  18. Why are people comparing this to Facebook? This ISN’T Facebook. This is blogging and that’s a different thing. I’m not on Facebook for a reason. This is a terrible change to WP and it’s definitely a manipulation that hurts us all. They tried to give us different blogs by adding them to our posts and now this. Nasty thing to do.

    1. Thank you for the point about FB. I am not a big fan of FB because I think it is trite and too often weightless, but that is more of a user contributed content issue than a platform issue. That said, blogging is very different than FB and hopefully will remain so. We aren’t seeing 1000’s of blog posts of one person’s face on different days. God save us from this……laughing. WP’s problems are core platform host issues. It isn’t blogger content that is the problem, it is WP that is the problem.

  19. Where the heck have I been. I haven’t noticed this but I don’t think I ever clicked on the reader button. I usually just get an email and read from there and click where it says 500 more words etc..
    It figures I wouldn’t notice this. I hope you all are getting all of my posts. :o)

  20. I’m not sure yet how I feel about it. I’m not on my regular computer now. I want to see how I feel when I get my laptop back. I’m not opposed to the suggestions, but there isn’t a lot of clarity on which ones are promoted and not my “regulars.” That does bother me.

      1. On a tangent, I love/hate that word “automaticians.” 🙂 Yes, it’s just more hands in the pie of my life. Not sure if that’s a mixed metaphor . . . .

  21. So, it’s not just me and my reader and I don’t have to throw my computer out of the window. That’s the good news. The bad news is I don’t like the new reader at all. Very confusing not, reader friendly at all.

    1. I rely on the reader to scan and get a sense of what I am seeing. I can then click on blogs to read and see more. Some blog posts were complete in the prior reader, a photo and a quotation for example. Now the reader is just a gimmish with WP promoted blogs being shoved down our throats. I always avoided WP “recommended” blogs because it seemed unfair to me. Now I can’t avoid it. They have taken away content from the blogs I follow to put in blogs I don’t follow and they promote. Shame on you WP.

        1. Anything that un-levels a fair playing field has always bothered me. Favoritism, hidden agendas, I dislike all of this. I like fair and transparent, nothing to hide, everyone equal and given an equal chance.

  22. Thanks for this news. I clearly don’t understand the mindset at WP – It seems like, every now and then they gather and think “how can we mess with our loyal customers a little more?”

    1. Well it is good to know I am not the only one who has noticed this. They have significant customer relations deficits. They need human interaction training starting with an intro session entitled, “What is respect and why should I care?”
      Laughing…..I’m not teaching it. I’m retired. 😉

  23. First there was cranberry sauce made from cranberries and sugar.
    Then they added orange juice.
    Then they add lemon zest.
    Then they added cinnamon.
    Then they added ginger.
    Then… after many years… they went back to…
    Simple cranberries and sugar. That was always the best!

        1. Thank you Graham. I left comments on both forums and noticed one forum closed rather quickly. I also am directly giving feedback to WP. They pushed the envelope too far this time and a lot of people are feeling the burn~

          1. Both of my comments were removed! I reposted this:
            You are removing and censoring my comments in two forums! The WP reader is supposed to be for blogs we follow to make reading the blogs we follow easier. It is not supposed to be for WP to push blogs we don’t follow down our throats. You are taking space in the reader away from blogs I follow and using this space for blogs you promote. Blogs with no photos get two lines. Blogs with photos get their photos and layout mangled. And now you are removing my comments? Readers, please go to and see the overwhelming negative reaction from bloggers to these changes.
            Let’s see how long they let it stay. This is cowardly and appalling behavior.

          2. Your comment is now present dated Dec 16 at 1:04 am. I have screen shots to show that it wasn’t there at 11:00 am and I know it wasn’t there a few minutes ago.

            I have a gmail address for you. May I use it.

                1. Thank you Graham. I received your email and greatly appreciate your help. Please see this comment I just received and my reply:

                  pelly*made says:
                  December 16, 2016 at 10:13 pm Edit
                  Hello Cindy,
                  I read your message in the forum and we are on the same page. My comments in their announcement post were also censored!!! And although I have the forum page open all day since yesterday, it’s 10 minutes ago that I saw your comment… it wasn’t there before! This is more serious than I thought, why do they do it?
                  It’s such a big relief to see so many fellow bloggers commenting here and agree that these changes are horrible; till now I felt like a minority, especially when I read all those comments in their announcement post giving them thumbs up! But I also feel that if there’s a chance to bring the old Reader back, then all of us who are strongly opposed must leave a comment not only here (or to any other post who deals with that issue – me included) but to their sticky post. They won’t pay attention to us otherwise
                  Thank you for bringing this up here and good luck to all of us…🙂


                  cindy knoke says:
                  December 16, 2016 at 10:39 pm Edit
                  Yes good luck to all of us. Censoring dissenting opinions is serious business. Thank you for weighing in on this. May I suggest you copy your comment and leave it on Graham’s blog at:
                  He is extremely knowledgeable about these issues and would want to hear your feedback and co-ordinate with you. Thank you very much for sharing your expertise and for your support!

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  25. I noticed this yesterday, and find it annoying! I dislike the WP Reader quite a bit, and now it’s gotten that much worse.

    Usually when I log in to WP, I just go to my Admin site and close the Reader window – I go directly to the blogs I follow via the folder I created and have them bookmarked in. I’d rather read a whole post, not just skim or scan through them.

    I’m glad that I’m not the only one who doesn’t like this ‘new’ feature!

    1. You were smart to avoid the reader in the first place, you avoid all their shenanigins including their promoted ‘blogs of the day’ which they are now forcing into view in the reader.

      1. Wow – that is really annoying! Makes me think of the feature that “recommends” things based on past purchases. I ignore those, also – I buy what I want, when I want to! Definitely don’t need things shoved at me in that fashion…what a pain!
        “Shenanigans” is the perfect term for that, I’d say…

        1. The sad thing is I purposely avoid the blogs they promote because I disapprove of WP’s promotions which is unfair to the blogs and bloggers they push. However if I encounter these blogs like I do others, naturally in the course of blogging, I will follow them if I like them. I will not follow in response to a WP promotion ever. It’s an unstraight transaction.

  26. Hi Cindy – It is the way WP works, release the article about changes late in the evening when we are doing other things (and largely offline). I’ve never been a fan of Reader and do not use it. As a whole, it undermines the process of taking time to craft the layout and appearance. If they feel the clean, minimalist layout of Reader is so advantageous, they should not have a gazillion (yes, that is a number) themes for us to choose from and customize.

    1. You are correct on all counts and smart to have never gotten involved with the reader. You are so right about the “minimalist” bs. What they are doing is editorial, altering content and controlling accessibility. And don’t forget they charge for upgraded “themes” that are not at all minimalistic. So minimalism is only practiced at our expense, less of us, more of wordpress.

  27. Cindy, I found this post on Hermit Crab’s blog. I don’t have a word for marginalisation or censorship by random algorithm but this is certainly what it looks like. I note that WP has been promoting other blogs within posts in Reader for some time now. I am sure it is randomly generated, as some of the posts are as old as three years and not many of the blogs are currently active.

    1. Interesting. Why would they do this? It creates distrust and disharmony. I was thinking it may actually create a backlash against blogs they promote which is unfair to the bloggers and their blogs.

      1. So true about unfairness, Cindy. My follow list gets edited without my permission on a daily basis. Many of the blogs I want to read only appear under respective tags and not in my Reader. So, I find it strange that I’m being offered new blogs to follow when I’m perfectly happy with the ones I already selected.

        1. Yes! I just checked and so many blogs I follow get unfollowed by WP without my knowledge or consent and they want me to follow their promoted blogs? I think they may limit how many blogs they will let us follow similar to how they are limiting space in the reader. This is disturbing behavior. People need to know that blogs get unfollowed without the followers consent~

  28. Reblogged this on pensitivity101 and commented:
    Thanks Cindy. Have checked your link and left a comment. Seems mine is the only negative as everyone elese is gushing praise. My reader is taking ages to laod, and I hate only having half an image on some of my favourite sites. Wish they’d leave well alone. It wasn’t broke.

    1. Exactly! Please read the comments on this post. You will see that bloggers are decidedly unhappy with wordpress and their changes. I question the positive comments and wonder about quid pro quos, favoritism and toadyism.

  29. I just received a reply from a ‘Happiness Engineer’ to my Support query about the new changes. I will try to post that here:
    “HI there,

    ‘Let’s show photo snippets of headless people, birds, or
    animals. Let’s show a patch of blue sky from a landscape. EQUALLY… UN…
    APPEALING! Good job WordPress! NOT!!!’

    I’m sorry to hear the reader update is not working for you.

    It sounds like your biggest frustration is with how photos are handled–cropped in ways that don’t make a lot of sense.

    Do you have any other specific, and actionable critiques I can pass on to our developers?”

    It’s not just the photo cropping. Here are more specific and actionable critiques:

    1. NOTIFY the community when a major format change is forthcoming.

    2. Leave the post formatting alone, especially in the Followed list. People spend a lot of time crafting and formatting their posts using WordPress tools, then you reduce them to a very plain-vanilla, boring, bullet-list format. Even my most-followed and most-read bloggers look unappealing.

    3. Remove the Recommended Posts from the Followed list. The old drop-down for Reader had a Recommendations option. I have no interest in seeing recommendations when I’m looking at my Followed list.

    I’m all for innovative and constructive change. I don’t see the new changes as being either of those. I used to work in quality control and user tech support for a software company. I think you are losing or forgetting the users perspective.

    Thank you.

    1. Oh this is excellent John. Thank God they didn’t ask you to take screen shots to verify your points. Although they probably still will! They seem to always respond to criticism by asking the criticizer to do work, to supply them with more data, which is just a stop and stall technique. It didn’t work with you thank goodness. You gave them an excellent and measured analysis. I think the negative feedback at this point is overwhelming. I cannot remember a for profit company having this much customer dis-satisfaction, unless of course we go back to the days of the FORD PINTO!

  30. Thanks for this info I am so accustomed to clicking the visit site button that I wasn’t aware of this. I did notice that the page seemed a little different but did not pay it much attention.

    1. It is particularly bad for blogs that don’t have photos. They get two lines in the reader which is so easy to overlook with all the data crammed in now and with the new wordpress promoted blogs added in to the mix.

  31. Maybe we should all go on strike and not post at all for a month. That might show as decreased ‘views’ and suggest that they’re losing their members. 🙂

  32. I get the compressing and in a way if someone wants to read the post they can. What I don’t like is the idea of promoted blogs chosen by them. I want to read the blogs I like and not the ones they choose…

    1. This is particularly irksome to me as well. It smacks of toadyism, quid pro quos, and favoritism. I resent having the blogs I follow compressed so they can shove blogs I don’t follow down my throat in my reader without my consent.

  33. However, the Reader was previously crowded with just several authors’ “articles”, where, as now, one may scroll down and locate titles from more than just the prolific who post things all day long. It previously irritated me that a few jam the Reader each day. That’s difficult for others to get recognition. But, yet again, radical changes usually mean demise is on its way. Hope not! Thanks for creating this challenging conversation, Cindy! Maybe it will help!

    1. “It previously irritated me that a few jam the Reader each day.” This is a problem. The only solution I have found for it is to unfollow a blog that I like which seems severe but I can’t have my reader jammed with tons of posts from one person daily. I try to visit these blogs on my own but don’t always have time. The reader is a time saver, which is it’s value, but not if it seems to be a propaganda tool for WP’s hidden editorial agendas. I don’t know if bringing this up will help, but I couldn’t just swallow it silently anymore.

  34. I haven’t used the reader much for the blogs I really want to read because of many features I don’t like. Now it’s even worse, particularly for photographers. And adding “promoted” posts is completely shady. I can’t help but thinking it also encourages scrolling through and liking without actually seeing the post.

    1. Chopping photos off mid photo, and reducing textual blogs in the reader to two lines is bad enough, but the forced promotion is just wrong. The reader is supposed to contain the blogs you CHOOSE to follow, not the blogs WP wants you to follow. Plus WP seems to unfollow us from blogs without our consent. Yikes~

  35. Thank you Cindy for highlighting this change and bringing awareness to the not so subtle politics at play. I gave them a piece of mind. Let’s see if anyone is listening!

  36. It’s symptomatic of our times. Fewer people like to read (reading words and processing ideas is less strenuous than viewing images). People are absorbed by their gadgets (read: smartphones) and spend many of their waking hours scanning pictures and short bursts of silliness on their toys. A few seconds here, then it’s off to something else. No sustained concentration. I don’t have many people reading my blog, but those I do have hardly ever come from links on my Facebook page.

    We’re dumbing down rapidly, and WordPress is joining the fray.

    1. Yes, the digital world is changing the way people process information. Information is gathered much more rapidly, no card catalogues, no trips to the book store or library. I understand and respect your thoughts, but I love the improved digital access to information and am happy to never slave over another microfiche or card catalogue. I love to read and I love getting books instantly in my Kindle. That said I don’t love FB but that is mostly due to often trite content. WP platform problems seem different and problematic in a more serious way than merely attempting to improve speed or access to blogs. They are exercising covert editorial control, altering content, influencing what we see and how we see it, and I do not approve of this.

      1. Sure, I’m not anti-digital. The internet opened up a world of information for me and many others, and I wouldn’t have been able to write a book without it. What I don’t like is the obsession with leisure technology. It’s similar to television. TV can be both entertaining AND educational, but I know very few people who watch PBS. Marshall McLuhan warned of a “vast wasteland.” Social media has opened doors for people to express themselves and gain information like never before, but this luxury is too often abused. I agree with you about WordPress intruding on our essays and ideas. But I also see their changes as symptomatic of a culture that is hell-bent on de-emphasizing sustained concentration and critical thinking.

        1. Ah, yes, I hear you, understand and agree, and I basically only watch pbs on my kindle. I am a pbs fiend, bring on Austen and Dickens and Hardy, oh yeah! Marshall was a genius and accurately predicted much of what is happening in our mass mediated culture. You are absolutely correct. This is why I so love blogging and bloggers. Until now, I thought we were free of the mass media control of information, unedited and fully free to express ourselves without any content control or undue preferential influence.

  37. I noticed it, Cindy, when I started feeling claustrophobic using my reader. I guess WP is like every other big corporation: money before people. They’re caught in the wave of insanity sweeping the planet. This will eventually turn around. I just hope we all have the patience to see it through 💖

    1. Yes to the ‘claustrophobic’ feeling of the new reader! Exactly! All these posts jammed together, and then every few posts these squished in wp promoted blogs so it is difficult to see who you’re actually following and who they want you to follow. It is a terrible dis-service to carefully constructed blog posts.

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  39. i’m so glad you posted this..Normally I go to the site anyway, because when one views the reader the country of origin flag does not show up in site’s stats and I love to see where people are from, so I assume others do as well. With that said, I follow sites that post individual photos in many postings in one day — it is now tedious and stressful and time-consuming to go to the site to find all of those posts ESPECIALLY when I am a few days behind checking my reader. I sat down to go to my Zen blogging place — I guess I will have to seek peace in another way. 😀

  40. Yes, I noticed the change yesterday. I didn’t quite understand why WP would want to clip the messages so much. It seems a disservice to the bloggers who spend so much time crafting the posts. Sigh. We’ll see what happens..

  41. Hello Cindy,
    I read your message in the forum and we are on the same page. My comments in their announcement post were also censored!!! And although I have the forum page open all day since yesterday, it’s 10 minutes ago that I saw your comment… it wasn’t there before! This is more serious than I thought, why do they do it?
    It’s such a big relief to see so many fellow bloggers commenting here and agree that these changes are horrible; till now I felt like a minority, especially when I read all those comments in their announcement post giving them thumbs up! But I also feel that if there’s a chance to bring the old Reader back, then all of us who are strongly opposed must leave a comment not only here (or to any other post who deals with that issue – me included) but to their sticky post. They won’t pay attention to us otherwise
    Thank you for bringing this up here and good luck to all of us… 🙂

      1. I thank you back Cindy! I just finished a long reply to the sticky post and feel exhausted; they have a way of not answering your questions, neglect what they don’t like and make you feel like an idiot…
        I see that you forwarded my comment to Graham, so there’s no need for me to do it.
        I hope that some of your commenters will also comment to the sticky post though…
        The aftermath of that hideous change are apparent to my blog already: My new post has a big decrease of views and likes and I’m convinced the “improved” Reader is to blame!
        By the way, you have a beautiful blog!

        1. I did some reading and found out that WP apparently owns the content of our blogs. We, it seems have no intellectual property rights to our blogs and according to their terms of service, “Automattic may terminate your access to all or any part of our Services at any time, with or without cause, with or without notice, effective immediately. ”
          This could explain their dismissive attitude and their censorship. We are gnats they can swat away at will and that is scary. It is exhausting going up against Goliath. Take care of yourself first and foremost. Time for some TLC and relaxation. I gonna watch a cheesy James Bond Movie tonight, That should fix me! I was at your blog and your photography and art is brilliant and it is a real pleasure to meet you! Take good care~

          1. That’s a nightmare!!! It’s the reason why I may be the only person in the world who doesn’t have facebook… So theoretically they could ban me after all the negative comments I wrote? I read that you’re backing up your blog. How? I’d like to be prepared for such a contingency, but I don’t really know how.
            Anyway, you’re right, it’s time to relax, tomorrow it’s the opening of our group exhibition and I must be in a totally different mood 🙂
            Thank you so much Cindy for your words and feedback, it means a lot to me! And it’s my pleasure too <3

            P.s.: I would like to ask for your email, I have something very interesting to show you, it's relevant to what we are dealing here…

            1. If you feel comfortable leaving your email address here, I will reply and you will get my address. I would understand if your don’t want your email put here for all to see, so it is up to your discretion. To back up your blog and all of the comments, go to wp admin and rest your cursor on tools. You will see an export option. Click on that and your can download your whole blog and comments on your computer.
              Your group exhibition sounds wonderful! Enjoy & cheers to you!

    1. I found out reading wp’s terms of use, that wp, according to wp, owns our blog content (of course this could be challenged). We seem, according to wp, to have no intellectual property rights to our own blog content and wp can:
      “Automattic may terminate your access to all or any part of our Services at any time, with or without cause, with or without notice, effective immediately.”
      They are magicians. They can make us disappear. I am impressed. It is so Valdemort of them.
      Possibly this is why they are comfortable censoring constructive comments and selectively promoting blogs.
      Here is a list of suggested best blogging platforms:

  42. I haven’t been in Reader for a long time. I have created a word document where I store all the links of the blogs I follow and am interested in. It is quite straightforward, and I add links to it as the time goes.

  43. Email notifications eliminate the need for the reader altogether…
    Reader takes too long take so load if you don’t have a super fast connection and the visuals take up a lot of data on a capped allowance.

      1. I’ve been bouncing through the new reader tonight and I liked it. Enormous photos take ages to load and put me off bothering trying to plough through it as it was before. It’s a lot easier to find what I want to see now 🙂

  44. They took away my stats counter without asking. Nice one WP. I did notice recently that people were clicking like more often while not actually coming in to have a look at the post. I wonder if its because a lot of the page is now missing on the reader. I did notice that the posts on the reader had suddenly become smaller. What’s infuriating is that we cant do anything about it 🙁

    1. You just summed up the whole frustrating situation perfectly including our powerlessness to effect change. Thanks for understanding and I, of course, share your feelings completely~

      1. Its interesting that they person on the ‘help’ desk said that removing the stats counter was the direction they were moving in ie towards mobiles and tablets. If that’s the case why are they making posts in the reader smaller?

    2. We also noticed such anomaly of people clicking the “like” button but not actually having read the article, which is a shame and looks more that they just like us to come to look at their website and try to lure people away from our site, because like everybody knows and perhaps also does, our curiousness and interest into others brings us also to look at whom liked a certain article.

      1. Hiya Belgian Bible Students > While not really linked to my article I know it can be a bit annoying when people like without actually coming to read your page. It’s especially crazy as your stats counter tells you how many people have liked and visited. For me I really notice it when I post a YouTube video and people like the page but dont click on the video and watch it. The stats counter also tells me that. On the other hand you can look at it positively and think a like is better that no like. I personally keep an RSS list at the bottom of my blog for people I know will drop by and take the time to read my work. Best of luck to you and thanks for dropping by.

        1. Thank you for bringing this up! Yes. People, including me, may click on your site and not watch your video. I scan some posts in much the same way I scan newspaper articles. I read the headline, maybe the first sentence of paragraphs, and the conclusion. Sometimes of course I read it all if it of interest to me. I watch some videos and not others depending upon my time and interest.
          I am not the least bit concerned if people just look at my photos in the reader or read my post in entirety and click on my post. I am so grateful for their likes of the part they did see. I focus on the positive whenever possible. I don’t believe it productive or worthwhile to monitor how people consume my blog, anymore than it is productive for me to criticize someone for scanning a newspaper article or parts of books and not reading all of it.
          Why should I think I know what other people should do? I am challenged enough keeping the focus on trying to do things well in my own life, believe me, laughing…..
          I am grateful for likes and for people even glancing at my blog in the reader even if they don’t click on it.
          This is a very interesting topic to me so thank you for bringing it up. I wish we could have it in an actual group discussion format with give and take. I would find it most interesting.

      2. Hello Belgian Bible students! Is that why people do this? How do you know? How would this “lure people away from your site?”
        I think it might be more productive to focus on your site, what you are doing on your blog, and the people who comment on it, rather then worry about how people consume or don’t consume your site.
        I guess it is my years as a psychotherapist that taught me to not assume I know why people do something and not to think I know how they should do something. I focus on my behavior which is the only thing I have any business controlling.
        This is a fascinating discussion isn’t it? It would be a lot more interesting to have it in person and share our thoughts and ideas. Thank you for bringing up a provocative and important topic & cheers to you all~

        1. Personal contact and a discussion with the people present in real life is always more interesting and often much more productive.

          We take your advice ad heart to ‘to focus on our site, what we are doing or trying to do on our blog, and the people who comment on it, rather then worry about how people consume or don’t consume our site.’

          Thank you very much for your comment and advice.

          1. Thank you for your openness and receptivity. I am impressed with your non-defensive response. You are doing important things with your blog and staying focused on that will keep you on your path. Cheers to you & thank you~ <3

  45. Its beginning to look and sound like things that happened not that long ago in Russia and Germany….., only now it’s happening here !!! I noticed small gradual changes but didn’t think much of them til lately, Cindy. Thanks for the update. 🙂

    1. I don’t know what the deal is with the lack of basic politeness. Apparently politeness is just something this company doesn’t value. It’s odd because I have never encountered it so systemically in a large for profit customer dependent organization. I guess this lets us know how unlikely they are to restore the prior reader. I am sorry this happened to you. I know it is quite a negative experience. <3

  46. Geez, thanks for that update Cindy. I didn’t know. I never use the reader either, sorry to hear the change is so negative. I’ve always been an advocate of WP to others thinking about becoming bloggers but with these messages, I will have to re-consider that. What a shame. I’ve been spending more time at Instagram since it’s a quicker way to keep up with other peoples projects. I hate not having time here but I was stretched in too many directions. I wanna cruise your posts tonight though because I always am blown away. Happy Holidays to you and those you love the most my dear x K

    1. Maybe it is time for me to check out instragram. I’ve resisted getting too many balls in the air, but maybe now is the time. You are such a sweetheart. Happy Holidays to you and yours my friend and it is always lovely to hear from you~ <3 <3

  47. elmediat

    I looked at this from the point of Mass Media analysis. This is the comment I submitted at the Refreshed Reader 2017 post.

    ” I understand the business motivation. All Mass Media have business interests. The other media principle is that changing the medium, alters the message. This new layout is designed to appeal to those reading/posting using a variety of hand held digital devices. The reality is that this modification in layout is a change in media. Shots are in Wide-screen-what’s-the-matter format that favours certain types of compositions, much the same way wide screen movies are cropped in for television. Cutting the composition and putting it into a wide-screen format alters the content/message of the composition. In a number of cases, if I were not familiar with the type of compositions that were regularly posted, my own included, I would not know what the post was about. In fact one may find the image so displeasing aesthetically that they would be less likely to look at the post.

    The unintended (?) consequence ( All Mass media have intended and unintended messages) of this change is that the reader now favours posts with multiple images, the gallery layout provides a more accurate display of all types of compositions. Single shots work best for images such as used as an example in this post – medium shot with central subject, heaven forbid an abstract, a extreme close-up, or a quirky still life/found art – not all images fit this layout format. Perhaps this is to increase a likelihood of a specific ( revenue generating) target audience ( All Mass Media have an intended target audience ).

    For “old-school” bloggers and many others, there will be those left at a disadvantage by this change. It would be nice if there was a means to negate some of the negative consequences of the change, but I fear the shift in how social media is consumed, together with the business need for the company to grow an audience, will mean bloggers will have to live with this. In some cases they may be able to adjust content, some may just put up with it, others may look to see if other blogging services offer a better means to accurately display samples of their posts. “

    1. This is very well thought out and reasoned and masterful to bring in wonderful Marshall, “the media is the message!” You are so spot-on here. This is one of the major reasons I love blogging. It had limited mass mediation, until now. Now we are being edited, marketed, manipulated and advertised. It was news to me to learn we don’t even own our content. WP does. I loved you mentioning, “heaven forbid an abstract, a extreme close-up, or a quirky still life/found art – not all images fit this layout format. Perhaps this is to increase a likelihood of a specific ( revenue generating) target audience ( All Mass Media have an intended target audience ).”
      This is so true. I wonder who and what revenue stream WP is chasing now~

      1. elmediat

        Thanks very much. Where does it specifically say they own the content ? Considering they made a big deal about us including copyright statements on our blogs to protect content, and there are those who use their blogs to promote various businesses, services and creative content, this seems a bit Facebooky to me.

      2. elmediat

        Also wanted to add, I will be doing a post on this Dark Pines Media Literacy blog. Presently working on a Necro-Media post about the Polamatic app and a Tony Bennett music video. 😀

        The revenue is not from us old foggy bloggers, still on computers. The revenue comes from those youngsters on phones, tablets, phoneblets and other hand held devices. 😀 We are just getting caught in the backwash of changing mass media technology and the resulting changes in social media formats/codes & conventions.

        1. These nitty-gritty details are spelled out in the Terms of Service. Go read your TOS and you can see it all verbatim. If you are self hosted at WP it may be different, I don’t know for sure. The worst thing appears to be that WP can shut down your blog at any time, for no reason, and no notice if they want to. Then, poof, your blog disappears and links to it lead to nothing. They can use, modify and do whatever they want with your content, ie., they can eviscerate it in the reader for example. Check out these:
          4 Reasons You Should Never Use – Crazy Egg

          7 Little-Known Reasons Sucks for … – Smart Blogger

          1. elmediat

            Thanks for the info. I had thought of going that route, but I am not sure if it is worth it. I started out with the Media literacy blog as an extension of my work as a teachers. Just a place to share information with colleagues and students. However, board , school administrators, and the teacher’s federation quickly became so antsy about potential legal issues ( real and imagined), that I quickly reduced my output and switched to the photo blog as place to be creative and stay sane. You know after all the warnings about Facebook and social media, right after Liz & I retired the school got their own twitter account and guidelines were issued for how to effectively use social media in a professional teaching capacity.

    2. What we do not understand is that a “Reader” should give a teaser of the content and should give us some idea what to expect when going to read the article. Now often we do have no idea about the content of the article and at some posts even the title is missing.

      We also like to bring our readers in contact with other posts of other writers, but by going through the “tags” we also noticed that like by the Zemanta selection, more writings have nothing to do with the so called ‘subject’. This way we loose a lot of time by searching and checking the possible or not usable postings. We also noticed some articles presented could also be just advertisements and as such have no use to be promoted by us and to spent time at them.

      1. Yes. These things are quite frustrating. I do not like the truncated compressed space being allotted to our blogs in the reader. There should be a full first paragraph and photo if available in the reader. The former reader format was far better.
        And yes, I agree with you, tags should directly reflect article content. The reader is supposed to make scanning easier, not more difficult.
        It seems WP’s goal is to allott blogs less space in the reader so they can use the freed space to promote blogs of their choosing. The reader then becomes an advertising and promotion tool for WP which I do not appreciate. WP is serving an editorial function, choosing which blogs to minimize and which to emphasize. This makes blogs like media, controlled by editors and managers. I like blogs to be free from this control.
        Thank you for your interesting thoughts.

  48. Pingback: WP Reader Changes – Worse to Come | Freed from Time

  49. Thank you so much for posting about this Cindy, I had no idea. It’s always good to be aware of what I am now paying for since I ran out of room for photo storage this year. I appreciate your post. Kathy

  50. Had no clue about this, specially since in the computer that I´m using I can´t see the reader. I have to go to the email inbox and then click on the posts.
    I guess they have to make more money somehow,but certainly is not in the best interest of the readers.

  51. That is so unfair. Many of us pay for this service. It’s frustrating because WordPress is a “thing”. No live people to talk with. Thank you for making us aware.

  52. I noticed the changes. Mostly what I have noticed is that WP has become a resource hog, requiring a lot more more CPU and memory. Some fellow bloggers’ posts take a long time to load, cutting down the number of blogs I can get through. It just takes too long. My own suggestion to people would be to keep it simple.

  53. Thanks for the heads up, Cindy. I am sure it is not the only change…not good.

    I actually keep is with blogs using Bloglovin because it sends me a digest of new posts each day. It takes me awhile to review them all, but at least I don’t miss them that way!

  54. There’s a general plot afoot by the powers that be, to turn the population into zombies and make them forget how to converse with one another because they’re one with their handheld gadgets. I went into Starbucks with my daughter the other day (at her suggestion — I prefer quaint tearooms) and everybody on the upper floor was on their phones or laptops ignoring each other. We were the only ones talking at all, until, like a breath of fresh air, a couple of smiling, talking gay men came up the stairs, not glued to electronics, and I was persuaded that there hadn’t been an alien invasion.
    So that’s why WP have made this change. It’s all part of the plot 😉

    1. Well what a relief! Now I finally have an explanation! WP has been taken over by zombies.
      You do have to admit that the people you converse with online are sometimes even more interesting than some of the people you might be having coffee with. Laughing……in an ideal world this would not be the case….. 😉 😉

  55. Thank you, Cindy, for blowing open that mystery. The changes have been gradual, like recently when WP took away the borders and tabs on cellphone viewing — a change I seriously dislike. Being manipulated and marketed is a horrible thing. Thanks for raising our awareness, thanks for this forum.

  56. Apparently I haven’t been on since WP changed…AGAIN! It’s probably not a good thing but I’ve gotten so used to Facebook changing it doesn’t shake me up anymore like it used to and now it’s WP changing almost everytime I come on. I definitely don’t like the pushing of non liked or followed blogs being pushed at me…Facebook does this and so does Twitter…GRRRRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!!

    1. I am not very active on either FB or twitter, so I don’t these things and had no idea WP was reflecting a broader social media trend. Somehow it makes it a little easier to swallow, although it is still quite annoying~

  57. This is really irritating, Cindy. We work hard on building friends and it is hard to stay connected. I am sad they are focusing on space instead of who we want to read.
    No wonder people say they don’t always get my posts! I don’t pay for my WP so nor much to “leverage” with! hugs xo Robin

    1. I don’t get your posts. I have to google get you and then I see all I missed. This happens a lot, not just with you. I don’t know how many people I miss. I wish they wouldn’t put blogs in my reader that I don’t follow and just let me see the blogs I do follow!

  58. Pingback: WP Reader Changes – 2016/2017 | Freed from Time

  59. Hi Cindy,
    I don’t know if anyone else left a negative comment on WP’s reader post, but I had a follow up today from a Happiness Engineer called Sheri. It seems my dislike for the new format has been registered to be taken into account when they next plan changes to Reader. All the comments I read on the post were gleeful and full of praise, so if fellow bloggers who dislike the cropped pictures and promotional blogs haven’t done so already, maybe they would like to voice their negativity to the change too. You never know. We might see a result and they put it back the way it was! Just thought I’d let you know.

    1. That is encouraging news. I had placed two comments on WP forums that were removed by the moderator even though they were quite polite. I tried a third time and that comment remained. It is good you received receptive feedback. I don’t know who these people are who filled the WP announcement with positive reviews. I suspect there may be an implied quid quo pro in operation though. As you can see with blogger comments here, the response is just overwhelmingly negative. Thank you for the update and a bit of encouraging news~

    1. Thank you for thinking of me and for your thoughtfulness. I appreciate you and love your blog. I am award free but that doesn’t change the fact that you touch my heart my friend. Cheers to you and thank you too!

  60. I also noticed the changes to wordpress. I was a little bit upset that the statistics graph was removed. But only until i discovered it in the menue! 🙂
    The new format of the reader is more appealing to me. The size is reduced you see more at a glance and It still shows more photos in the reader.
    The reader also lists now other blogs you might like which is in accordance to the idea of “connecting people”.

    So don`t worry,

    best wishes Christian

  61. Well said, and for those of us with vision challenges, the new smaller size of the photos is especially unfortunate. Thanks for speaking out. Best, Babsje

  62. I don’t use the reader, so I don’t know how this change affected those who are clicking ‘like’ without actually reading 🙂 I loved the very first Reader, and after it was changed I don’t go there anymore. It is wrong that WordPress changes interface without consulting with bloggers. Also, after every change I have various problems with my account that last at least 5-7 days.

      1. Exactly! I don’t need these promotions, I have my ways of finding interesting blogs, but I do want an easy access to the blogs I follow – not like now when I have to click numerous times before I get to the Home page. It is very annoying.

  63. A mí también me vuelven loca los de WP con sus cambios. ¿Por qué no dejan las cosas como están? Si todo va bien no hay necesidad de cambiar, y si tienen que hacer cambios por alguna motivación que se me escapa, cuando menos que lo expliquen. A pesar de todo, seguiremos por aquí. Un abrazo, Cindy <3

  64. Strange and true: not good changes, dear Cindy… I hope we can manage to sort it out… And that our readers don´t miss new posts (thing which also happens with Instagram, BTW!).
    Happy New Year 2017 to you dear friend!!!⭐ 🌹.-

  65. Thank you for bringing it up – I am leaving the Reader since I do not find it useful. A pity it is, to destroy so much as they have done. If you go through the reader you will have two hands full of clicks before you get to the post and person you want to read. What is even worse is the way some people receive answers…unpolite and uneducated. If I had one single answer like that, I would stop using WP.

  66. Pingback: WordPress Changes – Losing the Old Admin and Editor | Freed from Time

  67. The changes the WP introduces from time to time drive me stark, staring bonkers, Cindy. It’s as if there’s a mentality of change for change’s sake, and I never find them any better than the original. Thanks for bringing up the subject!

  68. They make it easy to like posts in the reader, knowing you aren’t getting the sense of them at all. As a poster, I try to make my first few words count, knowing most people will only ever read those. I try not to hold it against other bloggers for not reading every word. We are all busy. However, when someone comments and has actually read the post, that means more to me than the sheer number of likes. I try to keep up with friends, but sometimes it’s hard to find them. I haven’t seen you in my reader in a long time, but I saw your gravatar. That led me to a page, and I didn’t see a link to your blog. It had a link to pinterest, which I then visited. You had cleverly written the URL of your blog there, so I typed that and voila, I reached your blog. But I follow thousands, and I can’t remember all those URLs. I used to get weekly emails from your blog, but they disappeared. Maybe they are hung up in a filter. Anyway, I’m working on a new novel, and that has to take my time. I do love connecting to other photographers and writers, though. I appreciate that it’s mostly free. Except for the domain registration. And the customization. Sigh.

    1. Yes, wp can make a bloggers life unnecessarily difficult. I am sorry you have this trouble accessing my site. I get unfollowed from people too and often don’t know of it until they tell me. You have to go back in and reset the follow. I think wp only allows us to follow a certain number of bloggers which also makes no sense. I don’t worry about who looks or likes or how my blog is consumed. I am just grateful for the kindness. Hugs to you my friend and best of luck with the novel. I am sure it will be amazing! <3

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