Even more updatey: I am self hosting my blog now at https://siderite.dev. You are all welcome!
Update: I've reimported the blog to https://thesiderite.blogspot.com. As soon as I find the time and a proper blog platform I will move to self hosting.
I was just returning from a vacation and I got an email about a blog post that was reverted to Draft because of a DMCA notice. For those unaware of what that is, it is legaleze for a seize and desist based on copyright claims.
The problem was that my post only had a link to Imdb, another to a public manga reading site and an image I've taken from google. Naturally, I assumed they were upset about the link to the probably copyright infringing online manga site, so I changed it to a wikipedia page for the manga.
Again I get a DMCA request for the same post. I think, maybe it's the image. I search for another image and replace it, then publish again. I do this for this and another post that gets the same treatment. Amazingly, I get the DMCA notice again!
At this point I report the DMCA requests as wrong and stop publishing the posts. I get two more DMCAs, one on a post that only contains an IMDb link and an embedded Youtube video, which again I report to Google.
I search for the DMCA requests themselves and see that they are all from www.viz.com, Viz Media is a publisher of manga in Japan, so I go to their site and I write a polite message to please stop, because there is absolutely no content left on my posts and their bots are probably going wild.
Today my Blogger account has been blocked and I got emails for ALL of my blogs that say "http://siderite.blogspot.com/ has been deleted.
Hello, We'd like to inform you that we've received multiple complaints about an administrator on the blog (http://siderite.blogspot.com/) for repeated violations of our Terms of Service. Consequently, we have removed the blog. Thank you for your understanding. -The Blogger Team"
Well, I don't understand, Blogger Team. I've had my blog on your platform for 12 years and it mostly contains programming and book posts. I have a bunch of really offensive posts that someone could have asked for the blog to be removed, but not four or five posts (out of hundreds) that announce Naruto and Fullmetal Alchemist have ended.
I've went to their support page and asked them for help, unfortunately, looking for other people who had a similar fate I see half hearted support tickets that pretend to help until the guy goes away and people saying you can't get your blog back.
Now, let's recap: a very small minority of blog posts that contain only links to other legitimate sites and an embedded image from Google search made Viz send DMCA notices. Blogger has disabled them, warning me to not publish them again until I've removed the infringing content. I got DMCA notices even when there was no content left. Then my blog account has been disabled and my blogs deleted.
It seems only yesterday Google was touting its "do no evil" slogan. Now they are Alphabet.
What is most frustrating here is not only the broken system that allows content to be removed immediately based on DMCAs with procedures for appeal that last for weeks, not the complete lack of consideration for one of their oldest clients. Not even the stupid "Now you're dead, thank you!" emails. Not even the fact that they use "removed" and "deleted" for a 12 year piece of work instead of "blocked" or "disabled". No, what frustrates me most is that when I tell my friends, I get answers like "Well, why did you trust them in the first place? You should host your own blog somewhere you control".
If left without recourse, I will of course do that, but I would prefer to solve this amiably, because it is really a stupid stupid non-issue that anyone with half a brain would see as a mistake.
And yes, I would blog about this, but apparently, I don't have a blog anymore. I would sue people, but I don't have the money, I am not a lawyer, and what chances would I have suing Google and Viz bloody Media? My only option right now, a humiliating one, is beg the powers at be to not squash me like you would an insect.