Missing (but not lost completely) comments

Late last night–as I was googling various keywords on my blog, testing the links that came up, and changing the slugs on the ones that didn’t forward properly–I discovered yet another issue: missing comments. Some posts that I knew to have comments on them now have none.

I checked the posts at cosleia.blogspot.com, and the comments weren’t there either…meaning they were not saved in Blogger’s database. I can only guess that something happened when Blogger first changed the way it handled comments on post pages. I’m pretty sure this happened before the October 2008 shift to embeddable comment forms, but I’m not sure exactly when. I wish I could nail down a date, because then I would have an idea of how much work is ahead of me.

You see, the comments aren’t lost. They existed on the static html pages on my server, which I saved. So what I can do is go through and manually copy and paste each group of comments into a new comment at the end of each post. It’s not a perfect solution, but there’s no way I have the time or patience to individually post each comment, and I’d like to retain the original timestamp information, even if it’s not listed correctly in the database.

When Blogger first enabled comments, I had to copy over existing comments from LiveJournal, Xanga, and Blogkomm, so this is nothing new…but I get the feeling the task is going to be monumental this time.

I suppose what I will end up doing is starting at the very beginning of my blog and checking every single post to fix the following errors:

  • Missing comments
  • Slugs that include the words a, an, and the (infuriatingly, sometimes these words are included in Blogger post URLs, so I will have to find a way to continue using Google to check the links)

While I’m at it, I will tag and categorize old posts that never got this treatment in Blogger.

Then I will move forward to posts starting in November of 2009. I’ll save and upload all Blogspot-hosted images to my server, then change all the affected img links.

This is what I get for having a blog with nearly 4,000 posts, I guess.

Update: So far I have found posts as recent as 2007 with no comments on them! Ugh.