When things go wrong your heart sinks. You think about the hassle and the effort to fix the problem. But, sometimes, as part of this process, you decide to rethink the way that you do things.
This happened to me recently when I discovered that my blog and websites had been hacked. I’ve no idea when this happened as it was a subtle hack which involved some kind of injection attack on a WordPress database. This only affected access from Google searches so I think it was intended to add links to increase page ranking. I’m confident that no malware was delivered to genuine users and nobody complained to me about links to French dating sites.
I set my blog up in 2012 when I was off work after a serious illness. This shook me a bit and I was concerned that my days in the hills were over. But, I was determined to overcome this and I thought that writing about my outings might help. Maybe it did, maybe it didn’t but, thankfully, I’ve enjoyed many days in the hills since then and hope to continue to do so for some time yet.
I started off as a regular blogger and dutifully documented city and country walks. I also wrote a bit about my political opinions and photography. I’ve taken photography more seriously in the last few years and my posts now are mostly a showcase for photographs rather than walk descriptions. But, as is so often the case, my blogging has become less frequent. I find the chronological blog format restrictive as it is difficult to group related items. It is quick and easy to write blog posts but not so easy to create ‘chapters’ – groups of posts on a common topic.
So, when I discovered the hack, I wondered if I should just give up. Delete the whole damn thing and stick to Twitter as my sole social media habit. However, I decided not to do this but to continue with a web presence that was more organised. When I planned walks such as the West Highland Way and the TGO Challenge, I found other people’s writings to be very helpful. I am egotistical enough to believe that some people might actually think the same of some of my writing.
So, I’m now starting afresh. My blog (Daunerin’ Aboot) has gone as has my photography site. Instead, I have a new site which mostly focuses on my main interests – walking and photography. There are no walk diaries. Instead, I have curated my posts that might be useful to others into pages. My photography pages include some general opinions about photography and present some of the images that I’ve taken over the past few years. There’s still a blog, but I don’t expect to be a frequent blogger. Under the hood, I have completely reorganised the site and added lots of security to make it more resilient to hacking and to get away from WordPress’s dreadful image management system.
Creating this new site from the hacked remnants of Daunerin Aboot will take some time, so apologies for its unfinished nature. In version 1, I’ve focused on fixing all linked web sites, restoring recent (2018) blog posts and adding material on the TGO Challenge.