I’ve been using a blog editor called Blogo for a while now. It’s fairly simplistic, but works quite well. However, I’ve experienced a few problems in the recent months that I believe are related to updates of server software and probably a few bugs. I reported the problems both through direct contact via email as well as crash reports generated by the system.
And I’ve waited. And waited.
Where I used to receive responses within 24-48 hours from the company that makes Blogo, I have yet to receive a response to any of my reports or emails from that past few months. Their website hasn’t been updated since September, 2010. By all accounts, it appears that this company and its software have become abandonware.
So where does the DRM part come in ? Well, I did some more digging earlier today and came across a report about the licensing scheme that Blogo uses. Blogo phones home every time you start it up and verifies that the license you have is valid. If it cannot contact the licensing server, apparently it disables itself. This is obviously a huge problem if the Blogo servers go offline as they apparently did two weeks ago.
Another problem that will eventually crop up is that Blogo licensing is limited to a number of installations before it’s disabled. Previously I was able to contact the company and get this taken care of, but again, if the servers go offline, it won’t be possible to reinstall.
I understand what the developers of Blogo are trying to do with their licensing scheme. Piracy can be a pretty big issue if you develop a popular piece of software. Some developers try to solve this with what can be viewed as fairly draconian licensing systems. Unfortunately, they can turn on the users and prevent perfectly legitimate users from accessing the software they legally purchased. And, of course, all the pirates that downloaded a cracked version of the software that doesn’t check in anymore are still up and running and probably aren’t aware of any problems.
I’m not sure if there’s a better solution out there, but it really sucks when the software you rely on doesn’t work because of a licensing issue you have no control over. I very much like Blogo and I’d love to see the bugs I’ve encountered fixed. I want to see Blogo updated and continue to be a viable blogging platform. But, until the developers start talking again, I suppose I’ll have to look elsewhere for a solution. So the search is on again for a decent blog editor. For now I’m using MarsEdit. I’m not a huge fan, but who knows, maybe it will grow on me.