Changing permalinksComments

Ever since I moved to WordPress I have had my permalink structure set as /%year%/%monthnum%/%day%/%postname%/ which served well enough. With the increase in microblogging and posts without titles, however, this structure looks a bit messy as the post permalinks also include date and time, such as: 13-12-2017-1127.

Not nice.

So I wanted to change the structure to just /%postname%/ which looks much nicer. The only problem is that changing it means links will no longer work unless redirection is in place.

I was looking for the best way to do this and came across the “Permalinks Migration Plugin for WordPress” by Dean Lee.

This is a great little plugin! All you do is copy your current permalink structure into the plugin settings page and click to update. Then you are free to change your permalink settings to any other option and all links will be redirected.

No messy link lists or .htaccess editing required and my post URLs are much cleaner.

Changing permalinks

Whilst double-checking settings I was greeted by the notification “Your API key is no longer valid” for Akismet. I didn’t know they expired, maybe something changed with the last JetPack update.

This would explain why I’ve suddenly been getting more spam comments which Akismet really should be blocking. I know they try to “encourage” people to pay on the Basic (read “old free”) tier now - when going to get a new API key the cost slider was set at $27 by default.

Status

I’m not entirely sure why but I completely separated the newer blog content from the archive to even the search level.

If searching when on a newer page you only get results since the post-archive date. Search from within the archive, however, and you’ll get results from anywhere.

Creating the archive itself makes obvious sense but I’m not so sure about extending this separation to search. I think I’m going to remove that restriction.

Status

Levels

Aristotle may have been describing connected drainage systems when he said "water seeks its own level" but it is a perfect metaphor for the social web.

Given time and freedom from interference everything finds its level, especially our communication methods.

Things settle.

You will see an extended version of the above quote adding "and water rises collectively" attributed to Julia Cameron, the American author. Like the traditional aphorism "a rising tide lifts all boats."

But here the metaphor ends; not all boats are seaworthy, just as some forms of communication seem destined to cause more problems than they solve.

Now, more than ever, we need our communication tools to bring us together but some are doing exactly the opposite.

In a recent conversation I suddenly realised why.

Ownership

One thing I've come to appreciate over the past months is that a lot of this comes down to having ownership of our words which most don't have when they throw them away on places like Twitter. I'm not talking about physical ownership but moral and philosophical.

Even when our names are attached, what is said on social networks is not always part of "our message" - despite all the talk about branding. By this I mean our personal message not a business one; it's almost like it doesn't count and the level drops.

But words connect us.

We can only define our lives and experiences in accordance with the vocabulary we own, yet all too often that vocabulary is not sufficient to completely grasp the meaning of who or where we are and what we are doing.

That's why we need the words of others and their phrasing to grant us those eureka moments; only by having what we almost know described to us in a different way do we truly understand.

It's powerful!

The right level

Email lists and newsletters have had a massive resurgence in recent years, it's almost a romantic nostalgia for the way things used to be.

Perhaps, instead of throwing away their words, it's just people finding the right level, controlling and truly owning their personal message.

We'll never recapture the web's heyday, the genie is well and truly out of the bottle, but I feel positive as long as there are people willing to try "better."

Levels