Rare Blood


I’ve been insulted by WP’s electronic brain, which has blocked me from following any more blogs, because it suspects me of following blogs purely in order to get them to follow me. Apparently I am following too many blogs, and it looks suspicious. At the time of learning this, I was had eighty-eight on my list. I suspect that this is not a particularly high number. I have been blogging for a little over three years. If I was simply looking to increase my following, by now I would have followed (and, no doubt, subsequently unfollowed) thousands of blogs – which I haven’t.

If the technology that highlights the problem was more advanced, it would see that I never follow a blog without first having – or at least starting – a conversation with the blogger. It would record the fact that, if I follow someone, I also want to get to know them better.

It was recommended that I cease following a few blogs, in order to be able to follow others. Seeing no other option, I took the advice given, and ceased following ten blogs which I would have preferred to keep, in the hope that I would be able to follow new ones – although it occurred to me that this is an action I’d regularly take if I was guilty as accused; drop those I’m following and find new ones to follow in order to be noticed. WP’s advice plays into the hands of bloggers who only follow others in order to receive follows.

Well, anyway, it hasn’t worked yet. I still can’t follow new blogs.

I’m grateful to the support staff member who advised me. She opened up a dialogue, and  helped me to sort out another issue which I had – one which was preventing me from receiving notifications of new posts from blogs I was already following. She is not responsible for what the WP technology is telling her. I’m also pleased that WP is dealing with the issue of bloggers touting for follows in this way. I notice I no longer seem to be getting those kind of follows. I don’t like being followed by folks who have no interest in me or my poetry, and I wouldn’t insult another blogger by playing that game.

I can’t really understand why I am under suspicion, but maybe it’s all down to patterns. We each make our own pattern in this world. This pattern is shaped by our genes, our experiences and our choices in life. While every pattern is unique, most of them fit into an understood category – even those that stand out as being unusual. These unusual ones could be compared to the blood group, AB negative – the rarest of the bog-standard blood groups. However, there are many far more unusual blood groups, the rarest of which is believed to be be RH-Null. It has been suggested that Rh-Null has a close connection with extra-terrestrial beings, although I make no comment on that.

 Maybe my pattern is as rare as Rh-Null. I don’t think the WP bots are programmed to deal with my abstract design.

 Just because I look like an extra-terrestrial, it doesn’t mean I am one.

.Beam me up, Scotty.


©Jane Paterson Basil



65 thoughts on “Rare Blood

  1. I am glad that you mentioned this. There are blogs that I follow that do not show up in the reader. I have “unfollowed” blogs even though I never did it myself. I do not get new posts from blogs that I follow. It is very frustrating. Thank you for saying something.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I don’t know why these things happen. Try this link: https://wordpress.com/me/notifications
      It should take you to your notifications settings page. If it says “Browser Notifications Disabled, click to enable them.

      Failing that, you can go to the support forum and explain the problem. Someone should get back to you and advise you about how to sort it out.

      If you can’t find your way to the support forum, let me know and I’ll send you a link. I don’t want to send it now, since the WP often sends messages that contain two links to the spam folder.

      I hope this helps.


        1. i had talked to my brother from a different mother… An to my surprise he had looked your post… i gathered that he did understand, correctly, nonetheless has sent you a message…

          i place him toadally responsible for my blogging…

          He started my blogging in an attempt to see me give it all up, after a few weeks… Well some years an many blogs later here i still stand!

          Liked by 1 person

          1. So he’s that guy – I knew there was someone behind your blogging. I read some of his posts last night, and I’m impressed. I reckon he should approach a Vancouver newspaper and see if they’ll give him a regular column – unless your papers are run by right-wing fascists…

            Liked by 1 person

            1. We don’t get along, most times… Mr. Woodvine has a brilliant mind,,

              i’ve ask him to look at things, nonetheless is in belief that i live in a fantasy..

              Even though, is impart touched proof of said fantasy in the form of my moving gold…


                1. Gold inwhich i made for a thought! A blood contract… Arriving at the airport the next day, inwhich i had to steal back, a couple of times..

                  i paid those whom i promised there billion, then sent the rest back to family for safe keeping…

                  The canadian government would let me cash any for myself…

                  Liked by 1 person

    1. I was using blood groups as a metaphor – comparing myself with a weird blood group, and suggesting that WP can’t cope with someone who doesn’t fit into any of the normal categories, but you’re right – it probably didn’t make a lot of sense, since
      I was feeling pissed off – or pissed, as you’d say in Canada.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. I had a different problem with WP, almost two years ago. It was horrible and took months to resolve. I almost quit blogging, but stuck with it, even though I couldn’t comment on anyone’s post. Don’t wish WP problems on anyone! Good luck, Jane. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Olga. That happened to me too, and I also felt like giving up. All my comments were being sent straight to spam folders. I wrote about it, and it turned out several other bloggers had the same problem. About two years ago… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

  3. WordPress.com moderators repeatedly deny that WordPress.com has any cap to how many blogs we can legitimately follow. And although it is said that there are algorithmic checks on so-called “spam following”, I understand that the tripwire for this is in the neighbourhood of hundreds of follows/likes-per-day. You say that you have followed less than 90 blogs in total, so I cannot see you being flagged by this particular speed trap.

    If anything, WordPress wants you to follow more blogs, as it means more potential eyes on your posts (and on the ads WordPress parent-company Automattic may run on your WordPress.com blog).

    I have always had a problem with some of my follows resulting in no email notifications, which is annoying because the only reason why I hit the “follow” button is to get the convenience of automatic email links to new posts.

    It has beeen my experience that occasionally — and for no good reason that I can discern — some “follows” result in “email follows” and others in “WordPress Reader follows” The latter come with no email notification of a new post from a so-followed blog. Instead, the new posts silently appear in the WordPress Reader. Because I do not use the WordPress Reader I do no see these posts. (it was an accident that I even discovered this.)

    I have not investigated why this is or how to fix it, particularly because it hasn’t happened to me for quite a while — but that may be because I follow so few blogs.

    WordPress says that I follow 12 blogs, in fact. But I’m currently getting email notifications from only three. Fresh posts from the three mentioned and one more are turning up in my Reader. It would seem that nine of the blogs I follow are inactive. (I knew that was true of two of them.)

    I cannot say that WordPress.com isn’t somehow screwing up on your follows in some way and if so, I cannot say whether it is being done by intent or by accident — though I would suggest the latter.

    Whatever is going on though, I know it would be frustrating. And you have my sympathy.

    I once had my WordPress.com blog automatically shut down for a little over 24 hours because I inadvertently ran afoul of a new and aggressive security algorithm. Moderators were apologetic and quick to make things right when I got through to them and when they saw the mistake. But the onus was on me to convince them and it was a big pain in the ass.

    As much as I respect Automattic and WordPress.com, I have never been overly impressed with the quality of help to users in the WordPress.com forums.

    Good luck.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Chris Jensen told me you knew a lot about the workings of WordPress. Thank you for reading my post and messaging me.

      To be fair, I’ve probably followed in the region of 200 blogs since I joined WP, just over three years ago, but that’s not a particularly large number. Some of them have been deleted by the authors, some became inactive, and there were others that I realised I wasn’t going to keep up with.

      The reply to my query was answered by a member of WP staff, who used an authoritative tone in her message. Rather than suggesting that I might be following too many blogs, she told me I was. It’s a ridiculous situation, and I have no idea how she came to that conclusion.

      What bothers me the most is that WP doesn’t inform us when they think we’re being naughty children – they just wait for us to find out that they’ve blocked something. It took me weeks – maybe even months – to notice something was wrong. I kept clicking the follow button on a particular blog, and since it switched to ‘following’ each time, I thought it had worked. I assumed the blogger wasn’t posting, but every time she responded to one of my posts, I’d go to her site and find I wasn’t following her after all. I thought I was losing the plot.

      I hope I can get it sorted out.


        1. The problem is that I’ve been blocked from following blogs – I still have those that I was already following, but I’m not allowed to follow any more. I’ve gone to Reader>Manage and checked I’ve also tried following by copying and pasting URL’s in the appropriate window on the page, but each time I get a red ‘failed’ message. I think the only thing I can do is to wait for WP to accept that I’m not a spam follower, and unblock me.

          The only posts that show up are the ones I was following before this problem came up. There are 75, since – on the advice from the WP staff member who answered my forum question – I scrapped a few (which I’d have preferred to keep). I’ve since tried to follow a blog, and as I expected, nothing happened.

          I had an issue with email notifications, but that’s been solved.


  4. Ha, that’s a fun post, though about a serious issue. It’s ridiculous that you have been banned like this. I had no idea this could even happen. The number of blogs you follow is perfectly normal to me, mine would be about the same. Good luck with sorting this annoyance out!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. First of all I have never heard of WP having follow numbers curtailed. Twitter used to do this but seems to have dropped that metric (you couldn’t follow more than followed you). If WP is limiting follows because they are afraid of bots then they could quickly determine that you are not. In any case following 88 blogs is not a lot so I call BS on WP. They should fix this.
    As for blood type, I grew up knowing I was negative as both my parents were. I had to be careful because if I had a baby that was positive from the father being positive I needed to prevent building antibodies that could potentially kill the baby or more likely a later sibling. It what is called a “blue baby”. What I did not know was that I came from aliens. Now that explains a lot.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have aliens in my family, too. It might surprise you to know that I’m not one of them.

      I’m hoping that I’ll get help through the forum, since my query was answered by a staff member. Rather than merely suggesting that I might be following too many blogs, she TOLD me I was. I’ve made it clear that she is mistaken, so I expect she’ll sort it out.

      Failing that, is BS a God of WP, and where can I find His/Her Eminence?

      Liked by 1 person

  6. Ummm … we are tracked more than most realize especial social media. WP is part of that. As a society we are surveilled, more and more.

    “Freedom’s just another word for nothing left to lose” …~ Kris Kristopherson.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Oh Jane I’ve read all the comments all the way through, and it sounds like an awful problem. And I’m of no use to you at all, my knowledge of computers and their workings is still at the advanced stage of carrier pigeons. Best of luck. Maybe we need our good Doctor Who.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Huh! Never knew there was such a thing!! At one stage I was following more than you, but decided I needed to curtail it as I was feeling guilty with not enough time to go read them all. As for alien blood, really????! I want some, not that I’m a vampire or anything, just sounds exotically wonderful….

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You need to be Rhesus negative. Apparently aliens only take you up in their spaceships if you’re related to them, so I’m out of luck 🙂
      Paul went through a phase of checking out conspiracy theories re. aliens, so I know all about it (yawn).


        1. When i was about nine, and the space programme was in full swing, our teacher asked which of us would like to travel to the moon, I was the only girl to put her hand up. I wish you’d been with me – we’d have made a good team 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

    1. It depends what bit you’re asking about. It’s true that there are lots of little known blood types. Scientists can’t find a reason for the existence of the Rh negative factor in blood, so conspiracy theorists put it down to aliens having landed here long ago and interbred. Some of them even claim that they were the cause of Noah building an ark. They think that the interbreeding created a world full of giants. God was displeased that his people had been contaminated – and I expect they were doing all sorts of bad stuff – so he got the last pure-bred humans to build an Ark, then drowned all the giants in the flood.
      Some of these conspiracy theories would be funny if vulnerable folk didn’t take them so seriously…

      Liked by 1 person

    1. WP don’t like it when bloggers follow tons of blogs that they have no interest in, just to get those blogs to follow them, but I wasn’t doing that. Maybe the WP bots noticed I wasn’t keeping up with reading blogs I follow, but it’s not down to lack of interest – more that I’m not always entirely on this planet.


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