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Steve Layton

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Christian Carey

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Lanier Sammons
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Jerry Bowles
(212) 582-3791

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Welcome to Sequenza21 3.0

Okay, we’re back and ready to ramble.  What we have here now is a web site that looks great but you don’t want to look in the closets.  The original Sequenza21 was just a collection of static html pages, S21 2.0 was the addition of dynamic pages using Blogger software to create separate blogs for the main page, the Composers Forum, the Calendar, and the CD Reviews.

S21 3.0 is the same four blogs recreated in WordPress.  I’ll be sending out today new user names and passwords to those of you who currently have access to the old pages.  The new WP posting interface is similar and you’ll quickly figure it out.

I’ll be sprucing up the place over the next few days, moving some of the old furniture over from the old place.  Everything that was here is still here; you may just have to use the search function to find it.

Back with more later.


Comment from Jeff
Time: September 14, 2006, 2:04 pm

Looking good! Comments are fixed…

Comment from Alex Ross
Time: September 14, 2006, 5:27 pm

Thank God. So much better!

Comment from Daniel G.
Time: September 14, 2006, 5:40 pm

Great looking site! Where’s Meredith?

Comment from Tom Izzo
Time: September 14, 2006, 7:21 pm

The site looks like a million bucks! Yet still I miss the old
site for no other reason than it’s a change in my morning coffee wake up ritual. I also have 8 identical suits in my closet..

As usual, great work to all.

Comment from David Salvage
Time: September 14, 2006, 9:43 pm


Comment from David Salvage
Time: September 14, 2006, 9:46 pm

The hell — a moderation queue???

Why the $*#%$! do we need a %*&^% ‘in moderation %*&^#@ queue?? I mean for %&^%* ‘s sake!

Comment from david toub
Time: September 15, 2006, 9:13 am

Jerry, I’d ditch the comment moderation. I’m not aware of that many inappropriate comments cropping up on the forum, and the time it takes to review comments will certainly inhibit the many great flame wars we’ve had over the past few years 8-)

I think one of the reasons why S21 has seen growth is because of the comment threads being unmoderated. I say go with the flow and turn off the moderation for now. Just my $0.02

Comment from Jeff
Time: September 15, 2006, 9:33 am

David, I\’m not sure that\’s an option. Running a real blog, with real traffic, I know, shortly we will be invaded by blog spambots from hell. They will cover Sequenza21 with the most horrible comments, hundreds at a time. We could try, that is, if you volunteer to go in and delete them all. By hand.

My suggest is a small army of moderators, fully capable of clicking Approve 24/7. I see a bunch of names over there on the left.

It\’s a new world, running a real blog and not using HaloScan\’s Javascript commenting system for safety. Frankly, one thing it might do is improve the thoughtfulness of the discourse.

Comment from Jerry Bowles
Time: September 15, 2006, 10:13 am

I activated the Akismet spam filter and turned the moderation function off. Let’s see how it goes.

Comment from Jeff
Time: September 15, 2006, 10:16 am

Woohoo! Flying without a net. Get your Viagroxx right here! ;)

Comment from david toub
Time: September 15, 2006, 11:49 am

I agree with Jerry. While certainly spam is a concern (I deleted one drug spam that got past the wiki software earlier today), I suspect the volume of crap will be small compared with that of genuine and important comments.

I think a better way to prevent spam, while perhaps not entirely foolproof, would be to use a random string generator and require the poster to provide the current string in order to post a comment. I don’t know if that is an option with the current system, but it would at least prevent bots from getting through.

I just don’t know that one can count on an army of volunteers for this. We have enough of a time getting people to post to the wiki, and wikis are entirely dependent on the community for policing. We might have a few people who are willing to moderate right now, but as time goes on, I don’t know how consistent that process would be.

And Haloscan is not at all difficult for anyone to spam to. Anyone can post to Haloscan, yet I haven’t seen more than one spam on my own blog, nor have I seen much of any spam with the previous comments system on S21.

Jeff, your point is well taken, but I think it’s worth an experiment to see how well this all works without moderation. Besides, the CD Reviews page seems not to require it, and I’m not seeing any spam as yet (although it’s still early, I suppose).


Comment from david toub
Time: September 15, 2006, 11:51 am

BTW, does the comments feature support HTML tags? I’m not seeing a live link come up with the word ‘blog” in the fourth paragraph of my last comment.

Comment from Jeff
Time: September 15, 2006, 12:06 pm

David, you\’re just not listening. In one day at I deleted over 800 spam comments. 800! Search on google for WordPress Spam and see what you find. We turned off comments at I\’ve turned off comments on every blog I run. It\’s a nightmare.

I\’m not sure what kinds of tools there are in WP to delete bulk comments, but once you\’ve seen a database or a page clogged with hundreds, literally hundreds of ads for porn, drugs, etc. it\’s not a pleasant experience.

But since you\’ve volunteered to help delete all this spam we\’ll shortly be seeing, I feel much better. ;-)

Comment from Steve Layton
Time: September 15, 2006, 12:30 pm

Jeff’s right, as I know too from helping him out at NetNewMusic. If you’re off the radar they may not find you right away, but a higher-visibility site that gets a lot of traffic is a likely target. And once one of the bots finds a site to its liking it can be absolutely relentless in its spamming. But Jerry can always turn the moderation back on if and when they find this place, so either way’s alright with me.

Comment from Jerry Bowles
Time: September 15, 2006, 12:51 pm

Akismet deletes anything that has more than a set number (you select the number) of links in it. I set it at 2 but I could make it 1 or 0.

Comment from david toub
Time: September 15, 2006, 1:59 pm

Jeff, I heard you (or more precisely, read your comment). But there is nothing wrong with going without protection right now and seeing what happens. Did you read what I wrote about requiring users to provide a randomized string that is displayed before posting anything? This is pretty standard stuff right now on many blogs.

I don’t think the answer is to restrict users. The answer is to provide means to enable users to freely post without also leaving the site wide open for spammers. We both found this out when it came to the wiki—we were getting a ton of drug spam every day that you and I would have to clean up, and now it’s a rare event. We didn’t make it more onerous for people to register and post information on the wiki. Rather, we tweaked the code to block particular types of posts.

Perhaps user registration would be a good thing here as well, although I have mixed thoughts on it.

My point is that an important reason why this site has done so well is that people can comment freely and rapidly. The rapidity is critical; it gives people a reason to keep coming back, and more frequently as well.

FWIW, I’ve yet to get a single piece of spam on my blog. One or two obnoxious comments, maybe. But no spam.

So see what happens. There’s not much of anything to be lost if Jerry keeps comments unmoderated for right now. Let’s keep it in perspective—no one dies if we get spammed. Worse case scenario—we get hit and the comments go back to being moderated.

Of course, Jeff, don’t go ahead and post anonymous drug spam to prove me wrong…;-)

Comment from Jeff
Time: September 15, 2006, 2:28 pm

David, I’m not debating you. I’m informing you that spam is a problem. You didn’t believe me. Nobody wants a moderated S21. THAT WOULD BE INSANE! But it is one solution.

The fact that your blogs don’t get hit by spam is itself telling… ;-)

Comment from Jeff
Time: September 15, 2006, 2:58 pm

If you guys could take a look at what I’m doing to a development blog, I’d appreciate it. During my lunch hour (rainy here so no CP walk) I wrote a spider which walks Larry Dillon’s blog and parses it and then posts to the development blog.

It’s still blogging away. The eventual owner of this ported blog will have to change the dates if they care and re-add the images. Does this seem useful? At least the text is there. Although, the formatting seems to be lost. Mainly because I’m parsing and re-posting pure text, not HTML.

Comment from david toub
Time: September 15, 2006, 4:01 pm

The fact that your blogs don’t get hit by spam is itself telling…

It’s just a function of HaloScan’s security, I suppose. I got close to a thousand unique users yesterday, so it’s not like it’s a dead site.

Comment from david toub
Time: September 16, 2006, 11:03 am

OK, I added in a blogroll on the home page along with the link for the S21 concert (and also placed it on the Forum). Had to clean up some code along the way that was wreaking havoc on the page layout—much better now!