Will it survive?

Ah, I bet you think I'm talking about something in my garden -- will it survive the heat, or drought, or whatever. Alas, I wish I were talking about a plant.

No, I'm talking about this blog. The thing you're reading right now.


I don't even mean "will I keep posting".

What I really mean is "will you be able to see anything at all when you visit this blog in the future".

Sounds severe, doesn't it? That's because it sort of is.

Back in 2010 when I started It's Not Work It's Gardening, I needed a place to host what I knew would be a large number of photos -- as you know, the photos are what make a gardening blog worthwhile. If I remember correctly, I had two choices when I started: either host my images on Blogger itself (whatever Google image storage was called back then), or choose a third-party image hosting company.

For whatever reason, I went with the second option, and I chose Photobucket as my image host. This worked fine for a while, but then Photobucket started making changes: as an example any images loaded above some certain resolution would be resized and the original images would no longer be available. Hmmm. Not ideal, but it still worked for what I was doing with it (except for panoramic images) for a while.

Then a couple of months ago Photobucket changed their Terms of Service, and disallowed linking to their images from third-party sites (eBay listings for instance, or blogs) unless you upgraded to their highest-tier service level...

...which costs $400 a year.

Maybe that's fine for a commercial site that is bringing in money, but INWIG is not in that category. It's a hobby, a passion. I love doing it -- not enough to pay $400 a year though!

On lucky thing: I was already paying for a "pro" account of some type so my image links will continue to work until my renewal date in November. Lots of people had their links break almost immediately.

So what can I do?

The only real solution is to move all of my images to a "better" place (probably Google). Sounds easy in theory: just move the images and edit the posts, updating them with the new image links.

If I had a few dozen posts I could do this by hand. But I don't.

I have 2141 posts as of today...

...with somewhere around 22 thousand images.

There is no way I can do any of this manually. (If I could do 20 posts a day that's only 100 days of work or so, right?)

Luckily I have some programming skills. They may be rustier than this...

...but I already know I can at least iterate through each post and extract the image links -- I've tested that part. It's still to be determined if I can download those images and upload them again somewhere else automatically, but I have high hopes.

The other option is to let this blog die, and that's just not worth considering.

One of the reasons that I haven't been posting much lately is that things like this have been taking up my free time. I may be putting up a test post or two soon, something that my code can work on without accidentally ruining anything "important". Fun stuff!


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danger garden  – (August 8, 2017 at 11:53 PM)  

Ugh. Just reading these words makes my head hurt, I can't imagine actually living them. You have my deepest sympathies and my most sincere hopes that you find a way to migrate the images without driving yourself mad in the process. I fear something similar lies ahead for all of us not in complete control of our blogs and photos...

Lisa  – (August 9, 2017 at 5:41 AM)  

Oh, boy. That sounds daunting!

Salty Pumpkin Studio  – (August 9, 2017 at 8:33 AM)  

How awful! I hope you find a solution that works for your long term blogging.

Jim Gallagher –   – (August 9, 2017 at 8:49 AM)  

Hope you can work it out. Your post are more of an inspiration than you know.

outlawgardener  – (August 9, 2017 at 9:22 AM)  

Awful! So sorry to hear about this nightmare and hope you find a workable solution. Having zero programming skills, I'd be sunk but am glad you're going to work to keep INWIG going strong!

Gerhard Bock (Succulents and More)  – (August 13, 2017 at 12:24 PM)  

This is terrible! INWIG cannot die. It's one of the blogs I've been following the longest!

Please let us know what you end up doing. I'm really interested in the individual steps.

Hoover Boo  – (August 14, 2017 at 5:53 PM)  

I ran into this problem as well, a thousand or more blog posts ruined by photobucket. My blog is non-commercial so $400 a year is ridiculous.

I admire your search for a software solution--seems like it should be possible...

Rock rose  – (August 16, 2017 at 4:29 PM)  

Sorry you are having a problem. I'm afraid I am rather naive when it comes to this stuff so one day they may tell me I have used up too much space with photos. I won't know what to do. I guess that is when the blog will die. Meanwhile I'll blog on.

Lisa  – (August 16, 2017 at 6:21 PM)  

Well, the missing photos is NOT hopeful sign!

Chickadee Gardens  – (August 17, 2017 at 9:54 PM)  

Oh my gosh, what a pain in the ***. I haven't heard of it, will have to keep my eyes open. So far so good on Blogger...for now. I hope you find a solution, I love your blog, Alan!

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