Writing with Spiders

Towards the end of my last post, using Classic Block in the new block editor, I ended up getting three blank screens and three error messages in the last couple of paragraphs.

I say “last couple of paragraphs” but according to the Block Editor, which seems to have  a fetish about paragraphs, the whole post was only one paragraph. It must be something about the way the block editor works that makes it all count as one paragraph, because there were definitely plenty of paragraphs in there.

At that point I contacted WP about cancelling my account. I had had enough. No matter what I think about the added button pressing or other things I could cope with that but the added random glitches and the sense that I was fighting with the machine were more than I could take.

It seemed that I was still able to cancel and get a full refund on next year.

I have the blog content downloaded.

I was going to leave an email address in one last post and make a note of various domain names and I was one key stroke away from cancelling when the helper on the chatline actually started trying to help.

The result is that I have now downloaded the plug-in version of Classic Editor. It’s not actually the last editor, but the one before that. I suspect it’s a way of really rubbing it in that those of us who want to stay retro have to suffer the indignity of being relegated to WP’s version of a spider infested dungeon.

Still, I’d rather talk to spiders than web developers…

It’s refreshing to be using a no-frills version once again, and very relaxing to sit here with something that does exactly what I want, and leaves it where I put it on the page. No random movements, no surprise tool bars or dialogue boxes, no  missing buttons and no sudden disappearances of a couple of hundred words.

This version counts my words and displays them at the bottom of the screen, and it saves automatically (which is something the other version seemed to have stopped doing some months back).

The only remaining problem I have is with WP’s management of the change.

I am not sure the change was necessary for a lot of people, who just come here to blog.

I’m not sure, from the strange faults I was getting, that it suits all set-ups (I’m still using XP and a variety of ancient bits and pieces. My computer equipment is getting on too.

I don’t like it that the new system requires more button pressing than the old one.

I don’t like having a change forced on me, particularly when I’m paying for a service.

I don’t like being told that WP are improving things for me, if only I wasn’t too stupid to appreciate it, which is the attitude that came across several times when I read a discussion thread.

Nor do I like the fact that they locked the discussion thread just before they forced me to change. I wasn’t even aware there was a programme of forced conversion until after it happened.

And I certainly don’t like that I’ve ranted my way through the last few days when I should have been writing about more interesting things.

The photographs are a bit slower than the last editor, which was bad enough, but I suppose I can get used to that. It’s only for 12 months, because I’m going to look for a new platform and start a new blog well in advance of the next renewal date.


15 thoughts on “Writing with Spiders

  1. Val

    PS. To prevent triggering a new paragraph in the editor (any of them, including text block or classic block), when you press the Enter key for a new paragraph, hold down the shift key at the same time. Two presses will give you a new paragraph without a block or any other problem getting in the way. One press, with shift, gives a new line without making a paragraph, particularly in classic editor: it’s the way to format poetry without extra space.

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      I often thought I’d like to get rid of those extra spaces, though I simply didn’t think there was a way. Thank you for that.

      As for the Enter and Shift trick, we are back to the pressing of two buttons where one used to do the job.

      1. Val

        The Enter and Shift thing is an old, old thing, and doesn’t just apply to WordPress, it can also be done on sites like Facebook (to avoid the post being published before a new paragraph is made.) It’s not actually a ‘trick’, it’s a particular way of using keyboard shortcuts. Most programs have these shortcuts, even offline ones. And once you get the hang of them, they become second nature. I touch-type so don’t find it a strain.

      2. Val

        Haha! My husband types with two fingers and is way faster than me and with far fewer errors, so there’s something to be said for your method. 🙂

  2. Val

    Thanks for your comment in my blog (Clare Pooley sent you, if you remember. I’ve replied there.) If you’re using the classic block plugin, that’s fine, but if it’s the Calypso (in between version of the editor) you might want to try my suggestion of getting back the old one.

    I think, having read your post here, that the problem is mostly that you are using xp on your computer. It’s no longer updated and a lot of software is just not compatible with it. Could you get a second-hand laptop with a newer operating system, to do your posts in WordPress? The thing is, other sites will present you with similar problems if you’re using out dated equipment. What web browser do you use?

    I’m assuming, as you can use plugins, that you are paying for the business upgrade so that wordpress take care of most of the operation of your site. If so, and if the classic editor plugin does a nosedive in the future, there are other plugins like it: it’s worth bugging them about it.

    1. quercuscommunity Post author

      It didn’t really work because the plug in Classic Editor is the one before the last one and the photo handling is even slower. It’s almost like being punished for preferring the previous version.


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