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Posts from December 2007

Who's in the News?

Great coverage of our customers Sweet RiotFree Money Finance and Healthblawg in a New York Times article on how blogging has become a useful and effective marketing tool.

Sweet Riot's chief executive was interviewed and said "she started blogging a few months before starting her company in 2005 to give people a behind-the-scenes look at the business."

John Nardini's blog Free Money Finance said "he chose personal finance because it is a popular search category on the Web and because he knew he would not tire of posting about it."

Great content and results keep getting our customers media attention! We can't wait to see what comes up next! If your blog (or the blog of someone you know) has been featured in the news, let us know!

Happy Holidays from the TypePad Team


Our best wishes for a peaceful and happy holiday season from the TypePad team and everyone at Six Apart. Thank you for a wonderful 2007, and we look forward to a very exciting 2008 with you.

From all of us in the United States...


....and our Japan team.....


.... and our team in Europe!


Spam update: We messed up, but we’re back on track

We’re sorry. We messed up, the anti spam system got way too aggressive, and we were trying to dial it back in small increments instead of what we eventually did, which was flipping all the way back to a setting that we know works for most people.

The truth is, making a system that learns from spam over time is tricky. we've been seeing a lot of success overall, but that doesn't make up for the fact that the overzealous spam filter has been interrupting your conversations over the last day or two. Put simply: We're sorry, and we think we've got it fixed now.

Just as importantly, we're putting in place some processes to make sure that if the anti-spam system tries to get too aggressive again, we can dial it back more quickly. Please do let us know how we're doing, and get in touch using the help ticket system if you need any assistance.

Sincerely –
The TypePad Team

Spam service update

Thank you for all of your comments letting us know that the spam service is continuing to be overaggressive. Correcting this is our top priority. We appreciate your patience as we work to have a solid fix for this made as soon as possible.

Join us at the Customer Service is the New Marketing Summit

The team behind Get Satisfaction, the new site for "people-powered customer service for absolutely everything" are hosting an interesting one day summit in San Francisco titled Customer Service is the New Marketing on Monday, February 4, 2008.  A few of us from the TypePad team will be there participating in the conversation, and we'd love to see you there!

If you're interested, Get Satisfaction was kind enough to extend TypePad bloggers a 15% discount off the  (already inexpensive) registration fee. When you register, just use the discount code SIXA.

Spam service update

Thank you for all of your comments letting us know that the spam service is being overaggressive in categorizing your blogs' comments as spam! This is great feedback. We’ve heard you and have made a change to the service that will help direct legitimate comments straight to your comments folder.

Still having trouble with real comments being treated as spam? Please let us know by filing a help ticket that includes the comment text. Each time you publish a legitimate message that’s found its way to the spam folder you help to teach TypePad what it should and shouldn’t treat as spam, but seeing the comments first hand helps us to learn right away what types of comments are being flagged falsely.

A windmill maker in Africa

TypePad blogger William Kamkwamba's inspirational story was William_3_4 featured on the front page of the Wall Street Journal yesterday. After seeing a photo of a windmill in an old textbook, Kamkwamba (who was 14 at the time) built one out of blue-gum trees and bicycle parts for his family's home in Malawi.  In the intervening years (William is now 20), he has built three more windmills in his town and has plans to power more of his country in the future. And he's returned to school, which had been on hold due to prohibitive tuition expenses.

Have a look at the article and his blog. The article contains a video of his life in Malawi, in which William wears a TypePad t-shirt sent to him after his blog was selected for our Featured TypePad series.

Malawi_windmill_2_2 His blog gives a wonderful glimpse into his life at home and at school, with photos of his family, fellow students, and teachers.

We send a shout out to the good folks at TED  who introduced William to TypePad after featuring him in their TED Global conference in Arusha, Tanzania last June. You can see William's explanation of how and why he built his first windmill in this interview with Chris Anderson of TED. 


Guest Post: A review of the PayPal Storefront Widget

In our post announcing the launch of the PayPal Storefront Widget, we linked to an in-depth review of the tool by John Unger on his TypePad Hacks blog. John's a long-time TypePad blogger who's written extensively about eCommerce in TypePad, and uses his TypePad blog as a storefront for his TypePad consulting work, handmade firebowls and other artwork. We asked John to share his thoughts about how the widget can be used as part of a blog-based eCommerce solution.

The Paypal Storefront Widget is an amazing tool for bloggers who want to sell goods or services without diving deep into coding a custom solution. You can add a storefront with a single click by visiting TypePad's Widget Gallery. Or, you can embed as many stores as you like, anywhere you want by cutting and pasting a snip of code provided by PayPal at the end of the set-up process. If you're looking for an easy way to monetize your blog or to sell goods and services online, this is one of the best options I've seen yet. The widget works equally well for blogs using basic or advanced templates.

Don't let the ease of use and simple set-up process fool you… although the Paypal Storefront Widget was designed as a tool for "casual sellers," the widget contains almost all the features you would expect from a full eCommerce tool. Because you can have as many different storefronts as you want, there's no limit to how you can use this widget to grow your business. You could use it to offer special deals from within any post. Or to create a "catablog" with your full range of products. You could use it to feature product spotlights. The possibilities are limited only by imagination.

The PayPal Storefront Widget is free, and fees for transactions are the same as those for the standard PayPal shopping cart buttons. This makes it an ideal solution for testing new products and ideas. You only pay if you've made sales and the costs are much lower than most eCommerce products currently available.

Who is the Paypal Storefront Widget for?

  • People who want to focus on blogging about their area of expertise and drive business, rather than spending all their time configuring and coding their blog.
  • People who want to test new ideas in the market or grow their existing businesses.
  • People who need an inexpensive eCommerce solution that delivers real features.
  • People who need a simple eCommerce solution with a low learning curve.
  • People who want a fast eCommerce solution they can set up in minutes.

Even for people who are comfortable with writing code, this widget offers a great solution for quickly adding one-of-a-kind items or special offers that might not justify the amount of work needed to hand-code product pages.

Continue reading "Guest Post: A review of the PayPal Storefront Widget" »

Maintenance Friday, December 14, at 10 pm PST

Friday, December 14, from 10 pm to 11 pm PST (that's 05:00 to 06:00 UTC on December 15) we'll be performing routine maintenance on TypePad.

During this time, access to the TypePad application, TypePad blogs and the TypeKey authentication service may be impacted.

As always, we'll be keeping up to date with the latest information, so bookmark that site if you're interested in following along. Thanks for your patience as we continue to invest in making TypePad bigger, faster and stronger!

Who's in the News?

Coverage of TypePad blogs over the past week demonstrates how great content can get the media to sit up and pay attention.

Take the reading challenge

Newsweek published its Top Picks for the week and literary blog Ex Libris was mentioned for it’s “Russian Reading Challenge 2008”  which is a “A 12 month reading challenge of all things Russian - novels, short stories, biographies, history, poetry - by Russian authors or by authors about Russia.” The challenge begins January 1, 2008 and ends December 31st, 2008.

Track campaign ad spending in New Hampshire mentioned Granite Prof in a story on how technology affects (or doesn’t affect) political campaigns. The story states that “even in the Internet age, there's no substitute for the standard TV spot or the old-fashioned airwaves.” Written by University of New Hampshire American politics professor Dante Scala, Granite Prof, tracks campaign ad spending on TV station WMUR in New Hampshire.

Join OAD's world’s best restaurants survey

TypePad blog Opinionated About Dining was included alongside Michelin and Zagat in a USA Today story about the increased competition in restaurant review guides. Blogger Steve Plotnicki recently invited his readers to participate in a survey of the world's top restaurants, and the quality of the ratings has been very high indeed.