What do you want in a blog?

We will celebrate the fifth birthday of this awesome MLBlogs community when the next season gets under way, and the plan is to do so with continued improvements to the overall blogging technology you are using. Once again, we ask for your input to help make that happen as the world keeps changing fast. This is just a wishlist at this point, but leave comments below so that we have all input for consideration going forward.

Requested features so far include:

Let us know whether it’s the blogging software you use or the way the actual blog looks to your audience. As always, your involvement is key to making this the best and biggest baseball blogging community around. Blog about it as well if you wish, but be sure that we see anything in comments below, as that is what we here at MLB Advanced Media will be checking. Also visit http://MLB.com/connect and choose your favorite team’s logo to see all of the social networking opportunities around the national pastime.

Thanks to all our fans for great blogging as always!

Mark/MLB

45 Comments

Digg integration as well.

Hey, Mark, I just recently stopped receiving email alerts when people leave me comments. Do you know how to fix that? Did I unknowingly change some setting?
-Todd
http://cookandsonbats.mlblogs.com

I would echo the others who’ve listed SPEED as #1 on their wish list. People who try to comment on my blog often tell me it’s like using dial-up to get logged in and onto my site.

Other technical issues include having my responses to comments often appear above the comments themselves, putting them out of order. And I get error messages when I try to submit responses to comments, saying I should try again later (even when I haven’t tried in hours).

Good luck with this! Any and all improvements are appreciated.

http://janeheller.mlblogs.com

How about less spam in comments like the one by wpuser01001@gmail.com above?

Ok I think we should be at least be able to customize the top of our blog, kinda like what you guys do with your site blogs.

Iphone/Ipod and mobile blogging would be amazing

Integration with Twitter would be nice

Speed, OH YEA

Nick

Monument Park Talk

//Also…STATS. This is baseball here, aren’t we supposed to like stats? How many posts do we have, how many comments do we have,//

That already exists. When you go to create entries or manage comments, there is a sidebar on the right side of your screen and in that first top box is a blurb that tells you how many posts you’ve made and how many comments have been posted on your site.

Screen print here –> http://yfrog.com/0gmlblogsscreenshotj

Beth
http://yankeeschick.mlblogs.com

Also…STATS. This is baseball here, aren’t we supposed to like stats? How many posts do we have, how many comments do we have, which blog got the most recent comment, which comment has the most comments/posts, which blog is the newest, which is the oldest, who has the most visits, who has the most recent visits, etc.

I like the groups idea too. It’d be nice to see a list of blogs dedicated to the team you love, or player you love, or whatever else can think of to make a group about. Being able to browse blogs in ways other than via tags or google searches would be groovy.

I would want more options for backgrounds; mobile blogging; and photo/video upload.
http://bronx-awesome.mlblogs.com/

OK, now for MY two cents on the deal…lol:
1) I already integrate Twitter with my ESPN.com fan page, which means what I Tweet shows up there. But I’ve found that if someone on my fan page leaves a comment, it shows up on Twitter. (Threw me for a loop first time it happened.) Just saying what happens in MY case…
2) On video: I have a YouTube channel, so I know how to get my point across. Here’s what I’d like–let us do our OWN videos, and respond to others’ as well. (As long as it’s made clear NO dirty words, etc., I’m cool with that.) I mean, it would be nice to have everyone SEE me and not just read my words…lol
3) As long as we’re on the topic of social networking (i.e. Twitter/Facebook/MySpace), since we already blog…why can’t we just go ahead and create groups?? That way we Nats fans can band together in one group–and yes, Shelley, I’m thinking of you AND me (and any other Nats fan we find here…LMAO)–and so can the other teams’ fans have their grous as well. Just a thought…
Outside of these, I can’t think of anything else right now. Give me time, though…lol
Gary
Nasty Nats Live Here (and Everywhere)
http://go-nasty-nats.mlblogs.com
http://twitter.com/gonastynats
http://www.youtube.com/DCSportsNut

Thank you, xcicx. I appreciate that. 🙂

Beth
http://yankeeschick.mlblogs.com

an easier way to upload pictures and spell check. maybe more featured blogs from certain teams that do not get enough attention cough cough THE PIRATES. just kidding. i love the site and I’m so happy with what is has to offer

http://pittpeas.mlblogs.com

The ability to sort links and link groups.

Automatic line breaks in comments.

Bigger text boxes for post entries.

More template options for each team or the ability to alter the look of your blog without having to hijack stylesheets.

Beth, you can already put javascript into your link list modules. Just paste the code into the description of your link and your extra thing pops up there.
http://imbringingdiamondback.mlblogs.com

I would love to see itouch/iphone app for MLBlogs. Spell check as well please🙂 Thanks for your hard work, Mark! Kudos to you.
http://hyunyoung.mlblogs.com

I think that a better system for saving drafts would help a lot of people, or maybe I’m just the only person who accidentally navigates away from page that contained 3/4 of my blog, which proceeds to disappear into cyberspace.
Yeah, that could just be me. I would just like a massive warning like: DONT DO THIS or something like that.
Integration with twitter would be great, and mobile blogging as well.
Elizabeth
http://redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

I think that a better system for saving drafts would help a lot of people, or maybe I’m just the only person who accidentally navigates away from page that contained 3/4 of my blog, which proceeds to disappear into cyberspace.
Yeah, that could just be me. I would just like a massive warning like: DONT DO THIS or something like that.
Integration with twitter would be great, and mobile blogging as well.
Elizabeth
http://redsoxgirl46.mlblogs.com

I would say more integration with video. I attempted to upload some video at The LumberBlog this season, and it was a little difficult.

Pictures, audio and documents are already extremely easy to upload. Video is the next step.

-DL
http://lumberkings.mlblogs.com

Any way you can keep the Cubs from EVER winning another World Series? That’s all I ever wanted… so far so good… keep that good streak goin’. Go Cards!
–Jeff
http://redstatebluestate.mlblogs.com/

BTW, an internal spellchecker is not necessary if you use Firefox. Firefox has a spellchecker built in and it will underline any word you misspell in red, and if you highlight it and then right-click on it, you can choose the correct spelling and it will automatically fix it for you. It’s a time-saver because I tend to type very quickly, so little piddling misspellings happen from time to time. I wouldn’t have a problem with one built into the platform, but seeing as my browser already has one, it would be redundant, at least on my end.

Those who are asking for a spellchecker are more than likely using IE, because I’m pretty certain that Safari [Macs] has the same functionality as Firefox when it comes to that.

So I guess my suggestion to those that want a spellchecker is download and start using Firefox. That way if Mark can’t integrate a spellchecker into the platform, you will still have one anyway.

Beth
http://yankeeschick.mlblogs.com

First of all….Sue, you’re very welcome.

For those that have been saying they’d like a traffic counter that will tell them where the clicks are coming from, sign up at SiteMeter. Myself and a couple of my regulars, just to name a few, have accounts there. What it does is not only tell you how many visitors you’ve had [although I have a separate counter specifically for that], but you can also see what links referred them to your site, how long they’re there, where specifically they are visiting from…..all that goodness.

You would put the javascript counter in the “Description” section when editing your profile.

Speaking of that, Mark….is there anyway to create a box or something in the sidebar where we can put stuff like that? I think the top of the blog looks cluttered when you have all that up there. I’d like a little area where I can put my SiteMeter counter, my visitor counter and a couple other things. On the old MLBlogs platform, you COULD do that. If not, I can certainly live with it being at the top of the blog underneath the title.

I also echo the sentiments of those who say the “MLBlogs Top 100” should be broken down a bit. Something distinguishing Top 20 from Top 50 from Top 100 would be very nice.

Beth
http://yankeeschick.mlblogs.com

Thank you for asking.
I’d love to have more background designs to choose from, or the opportunity to upload some. Spellchecking is most desired. Additionally, I’d like to be able to make updates and check my blog with a mobile application (I use iPhone). As mentioned before, Twitter integration would be great as well. Again, thank you for asking.
–Saundra
http://enjoyingtheballgame.mlblogs.com

First, thank you Beth (Yankees Chick) for letting me know there IS a way to save entries without publishing them. Which reminds me of another wish – some kind of “how to” or FAQ for common tasks. As far as I can tell, there isn’t one (that I can find), and so far I’ve pretty much used trial and error to figure out how to do something. A more intuitive user interface would be great!
Sue
Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts

Oh man, MLBlogs is already great. I love it here.
If I could change anything, my biggest thing would definitely be picture uploading. I’d like to be able to upload multiple pictures at once, have more freedom to format them in the blog, make captions and attributions easier, maybe have a picture of the day feature? I think enhanced multimedia is a booming area for journalism right now, and it would be great to be able to get and control more audio/video features on the blogs. Uploading pictures is really tedious right now.
I’d also like easier and more expanded control of font and style. I sometimes have to go into the html to change certain aspects of the type style, and I’m not so good at html so that’s kind of annoying.
Thank you guys for doing a great job on all the improvements you’ve made since MLBlogs started way back with Tommy Lasorda.
-A
http://catchingredsox.mlblogs.com

Mark,
Got to admit honestly, your IT group has done a great job in the last year giving us more bells and whistles on the site.
Guess I might be in the minority here, but you guys have not done anything dramatically wrong yet, so whatever the group feels is perfect for me.
It is my only blog site, and the one I trust and know have the bloggers’ backs in every sense of the word.

Just wish all of you at MLB a bountiful holiday and express the magic this off season……”Baseball IS Beautiful!”

Rays Renegade

http://raysrenegade.mlblogs.com

My Wish List:
– Photo Albums and slideshows!
– Ability to create my own backround design
– Ability to put photos and widgets in the right side panel (some people can do this apparently, others cannot)
– Drop down menu for older archives
– Individual blog search engine…ex: so people can type in “Chase Utley” and see everything on MY blog under that tag name…this would help ME out a lot too when looking for my older blogs on a certain topic to refer back to.
– Faster upload speed, faster page loading speed, etc…
– Ability to use animated graphic (if we can do this now, I have NO clue how…therefore, a “How-To” manual would be nice).
– Video upload
– Can you please, please fix the issue with Comcast that prevents me from getting my comments via email? I spoke to Comcast and they claim you guys have to submit some request to have these emails from your platform unblocked. Right now, most people with Comcast email are blocked from getting anything from MLBlogs because it is marked as banned (in their terms “Blocked Provider”). It does not even go to the spam folder…it is totally blocked. See here: http://www.comcastsupport.com/Forms/NET/blockedprovider.asp
THANK YOU!!

Jenn
http://philliesphollowers.mlblogs.com/

Hi Mark, first off I’d like to thank you and MLBlogs for giving the MLBlogs community the chance for imput into improving the world’s best blogging community. That just shows you why this place is number one and why I continue to hang out here🙂
So my ideas would be……More control of the picture layout. When you’re creating a web page you can click on the picture, resize and adjust the pictures location within the page, I think that would be cool. I’d also like to be able to customize my blog’s background and header.
On another note, please do not take this as a slam..only as a suggestion.
I know that MLBlogs has given away Twitter prizes. I’d like to see more contests and promotions during the on and off season. I’d love to have a chance to win a trip to meet Mark andthe gang and maybe get a tour. Team hats, maybe a jersey signed once in a while(I want an MLBlogs T-Shirt).Throw us a bone…I bet the response would be overwhelmingly positive. Bloggers save me the “If you love baseball and blogging wouldn’t ask for prizes”. Believe me I know this, I’ve been here two years and have yet to make a cent or win anything. That’s not my motivation. I just like contests and competition, it’s fun, and it can bring the community closer through interaction.
Finally, I’d like to see something more than a Top 100 banner. I believe the number of page hits of the number one blog compared to the number ten blog is quite large over an entire season. I’d like to see a Top 10, a Top 25 and Top 50 banner. Keep up the great work, thanks for the chance to toss ideas at you…D
http://baseballsnatcher.mlblogs.com/

I’ve got to agree, spell check would be amazing. Also if we could cut/paste from Excel or tables it would be helpful. (and have them stay in format)

Also, if we’re shooting for the stars, how about a search engine allowing me to see who’s bloggin on a given subject (Halladay trade, for exapmple)

Thanks for taking the time to actually ask what we want.

Twitter – okay , the character restrictions at Twitter would probably make this a constant object of error, thus an inevitable ongoing complaint…

Facebook is already possible, as is Windows Live, don’t know about MySpace…

I already have my blog as an automatic entry onto my wall at Facebook and the What’s New at Windows Live, I like the small snippet of blog that appears with the url this drives people to the MLBLogs site to read the full version…

I use the dashboard as is or post html at the dashboard, host most of my own images as its easier. FTP for html pages would be nice but probably unrealistic, more design control over the look of the blog, background etc. inbuilt traffic monitoring.

A magnet that makes people visit my blog….:-)

~peter
Outside the Phillies Looking In
http://devilabrit.mlblogs.com

I’d like the ability to upload multiple pictures at the same time.
-Todd
http://cookandsonbats.mlblogs.com

In tracking visitors to my site I want to know where clicks are coming from and the traffic.outbrain.com links mask the origin.

To put it another way, right now recommended links are one way. When a reader clicks through to our blog post we have no way of telling what page that click originated from.

The point of recommended links was to build community around similar content but that’s hard when it’s one way.

Sue, you actually CAN save a draft without it publishing if you’re not done writing it. When you’re at the Create Entry page, you should see a drop-down menu on the right of the text box that says “Published”. If you click on the arrow, you’ll get an option for “Unpublished (Draft)”. By selecting this option, typing up your entry and submitting it, it will save it as a draft and not publish it on your main page. When you then go to Edit Entries [Manage –> Entries] you’ll be able to make any changes you want and then change the status to Published, which will then put it on your main page.

Beth
http://yankeeschick.mlblogs.com

Most of what I’d like to see has already been mentioned here, but just for the record, my suggestions (in no particular order) include:
(1) more options for customizing the look of the blogs (layout, themes, background images, headers, etc.)…I’d love to be able to use my own background images
(2) a text signature option — definitely no signatures with images
(3) the ability to send private messages to fellow bloggers via our profiles here (this should be optional, of course, as not everyone may want to allow people to send them private messages)
(4) a links at the top of the page that take users to their blog and/or to their dashboard
(5) more speed.

Speed!

I also like the idea of a way to integrate other bloggers in the community. I have tried moving over here from blogger a few times and didn’t stay hooked because it simply wasn’t as convenient. I like to think of myself as part of the MLBlogs community because of how much I comment and read.
-Ellie
http://mrmetbro.blogspot.com

Twitter and Facebook integration is a fine idea—up to a point. If you integrate it too much it’ll be more like you have to have them to get the full MLBlog experience. Granted, most people have one or the other or both, but the small majority that’s there will most definitely find it disconcerting. Ditto with an iPhone app.
If we could send messages to one another instead of just comments that would be good, though that’s not really a priority.
Changing and improving the layouts would definitely be good. Even if you just add a few more options for each team (mr. met for the mets, old color schemes for the d-backs, etc.) it would increase the versatility in the pages and help us keep track of which page looks like what. Optimal would be something like the old Xanga scheme where you could choose through a bunch of options in a very user-friendly menu, with the option of coding your own background if you knew html code or whatever.
That graph of blogs posted per day that used to be the default widget on your dashboard might be nice to return. Also a link on the top of the page other than mlblogs network and mlb.com would be cool: say, one that took you to your site or something.
As well, you could link up our fan profiles that are linked to from the message boards and stuff to our profiles here.
Thanks, Mark, I appreciate it a lot that you’re taking our suggestions.
http://imbringingdiamondback.mlblogs.com

Since I tend to compose my entries within the blogging platform, rather than in Word or something similar and then pasting, I’d like the ability to manually do an interim “save” (similar to an auto-save) that woudn’t publish it yet. No control that I know of over when the current auto-saves happen, and more than once the system has hungup or crashed on me in mid-creation and I’ve lost most of, if not all, my entry. Very frustrating!
And Facebook integration would be great!
Sue
Rants, Raves, and Random Thoughts

thanks you guys keep them coming

I like Beth’s ideas is terms of the blog layout. It would be cool to be able to have more design options so it’s entirely unique to the blogger. Spell check would be really nice, as well as more auto-saving🙂
http://kaybee.mlblogs.com

One thing I would love is more options in terms of the design of the blog. Perhaps more styles to choose from or a way for us to edit existing styles. Maybe changing the backgrounds, header colors, whether the side bar is on the left/right or even more than one. I like to change things up a bit sometimes, and with the existing options we have….it’s not really possible.

Another thing I’d like is a way to have a drop down menu for the archives. For example, I’ve been blogging here since 2006. What I have envisioned is that you click on say….2008, and all the months that I posted entries would drop down and then you’d choose a month and be taken to those entries. I think it looks too cluttered when you have every single month displayed in the sidebar.

Other than that, I don’t really have any other issues with the platform/software.

Beth
http://yankeeschick.mlblogs.com

Mobile YES!!!!!

Twitter fine (I like twitter, I use twitter, but I think it would reduce the full article content that we’ve been so good doing)

Traffic counters built in would be nice

Mobile YES!!!
Might I add that it would be even better if it was built into the MLB I Phone app.

IE8 support, MLB blog really, really hates IE8 you end up using the Compatibility view to work or go firefox.

Video and Picture is good ideas as well.

Mainly I just want to blog from the ball park, and mobile would fix that.

The biggest thing I would LOVE to see for MLBlogs is spell check. Integration with Twitter AND Facebook would be great. Every time I blog, I post a link in both places, so if I could do that from MLBlogs rather than having to copy and paste the link in both places, that would be AWESOME. More background styles would be great too. Or the ability to tweak them ourselves. I love my White Sox background, but if I could change the header a little bit, that would make me love it more! Thanks for asking for our input, Mark!
Jen
http://ajroxmywhitesox.mlblogs.com

I’d love integration with other blogging platforms/hosting. I have a self-hosted wordpress blog that I’d love to somehow integrate with my mlblog.There’s just so much more you can do with a wordpress blog, but I love the community aspect of being involved with mlblogs. Maybe another section of mlbloggers that blog on their own platforms but are somehow affiliated with mlblogs?

Definitely need a mobile ability, preferably an app for iPhone. It would also be a good idea to have a signature option, like a drop down menu where you can save different HTML codes or signatures so you can easily add them to an entry.
Thanks,
— NYColeman
http://nycoleman.mlblogs.com

I would love to integration with twitter since i am on there so much. what about facebook? that would be good too! thanks!

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