In Which I Complain About LiveJournal

In Which I Complain About LiveJournal

I’ve been lamenting a lot lately that I feel disconnected from the SF blogging world due to lack of time spent reading blogs. This is, sadly, the natural result of having a job that keeps me very busy. But then I thought: hey! I should use all this mobile technology I keep going on about to help me with this endeavor. I have a 45 minute commute, I have an Android phone, this should not be hard.

I spoke too soon.

Getting the journals I read via RSS are easy enough to put in my phone. I just add them to Google Reader and I have an app that automatically syncs with it. But many of my friends are on LJ, and I want to read their entries, too. And since many of them put things in locked posts, I want to read those locked posts.

Turns out, this is not easy.

I thought there would be a LiveJournal app. Nope. Well, there are many for posting to LJ, but none that I can find for reading LJ flists. Next I tried to figure out how to get my flist into Google Reader with the locked posts included. Nope. There are many hacks, workarounds, and crazy things, but many of them were blocked, thwarted, or shut down by LJ.

WTF people.

All I want is to read my friend’s LJ posts on the go so I’m not tied to a computer. What does LJ have against this? Do they want money for it? Honestly, I’d pay a couple bucks a month for the convenience. Do they want blood? My vampire boyfriend can live on a little less a month.

I’m kind of appalled that there is not a solution for this. How many years have we had the iPhone? How many years have we had Android? This is not just some damn fad, LiveJournal. I knew your fail was far and wide, but did not think it extended to this level. Ugh.

Goog thing I don’t give you money, anymore.

Comments

  1. Jim Freund says

    AgreeMsg.

    I, too, have searched in vain for anything usable on Android. Given how many developers there are here on LJ, I’m surprised they’re not out yet; if working on one at all.

    There is an Android app, but it hasn’t generated any good reviews. [ http://www.androlib.com/android.application.com-web-livejournal-qtEx.aspx ]

    Another reason people at LJ should be moving quickly is to take advantage of the likely diaspora to come from FB. More and more articles every day cite how many folk are ready to attempt to delete themselves from there, and more (myself included) are merely staying away. LJ >could< capitalize on this…

    In the meantime, I use m.livejournal.com, fwiw.

  2. says

    Huh. I bought an iPod Touch the day Apple announced it a couple of years ago. And though I’ve never upgraded its software, I have no problem with logging into LJ using the Safari browser and accessing my Flists, Recent Comments and new posts that way. The iTouch’s ability to enlarge text and do text entry works very well for me. If I had an iPhone, it’d probably be the same experience. I’ve done long LJ postings and tons of reading of my Flist on both the iTouch and my previous HP iPAQ 4905 Windows Mobile 5 device.

    Now, having said that, I am surprised there is not an LJ app, one you can log in with. After all, these are the same people who support telephone entry.

    Maybe it’s just me, who chooses to use Safari on the iTouch exactly like I’d use Safari or Firefox on my main computers. Maybe LJ’ers are more likely to use such browsing tools. Can one access LJ the way you want on a Blackberry? If so, maybe LJ thinks they have it covered.

    Still, I am with you and the previous commenter — the world is moving towards easy use of apps and not having a proper LJ app just begs people to try to come up with their own, which raises both quality and security issues.

    Dr. Phil

  3. says

    I’m not always accessing things on my phone when I have a 3G connection, though. I’d like to be able to read while I’m on the subway — no 3G there, though I wish there was. This is why I love the app I use for reading RSS feeds. It downloads new stuff for me automatically, saves it, and when I’m underground I can read everything.

  4. says

    One nice thing about Safari on the iPhone, however, is that when you don’t have an internet connection it won’t try to re-load a web page, but you can bring up a page previously loaded. I often go to Safari and load up my LJ friends list just before getting on a plane, for instance. Then after I have to switch to airplane mode and turn the phone off for a while, I turn it back on, bring up Safari, and read what it already has loaded.

  5. says

    What you describe would be an awesome user story for the Dreamwidth iPhone OS/Android apps that Google Summer of Code interns are building.

  6. RebeccaS says

    I totally feel this! I love my Droid Eris, but feel the lack of decent LJ app keenly. And even with the zoom feature, I just don’t find using the phone browser to be an optimal experience. It’s the one aspect of my online personal life that is still strictly tied to a computer, and that seems silly.

  7. Pope Zaphod says

    I just got my first smartphone – a Droid 2, which I absolutely adore. The one thing that’s missing? An LJ client. Having to resize and pinch and squint at my browser doesn’t cut it. I wish I had programming kung fu, because I could make a killing with an Android client that lets you read your Friends page.

  8. says

    … and here we are, almost exactly one year later, and the problem doesn’t seem to have gotten any better. I have finally jumped aboard the smartphone bandwagon, and the only “easy” way I’ve found to access my LJ friendslist is to bookmark the m.livejournal.com on one of my homepages. Even the bookmark icon looks shitty! I don’t want to stop reading my fList on LJ, but it’s so much easier to read Facebook …

    In other news, why the hell is LiveJournal’s search function so horrible? I was looking for a community called corsetmakers. If search for corsetmakers livejournal on Google, it pops right up … (corsetmakers.livejournal.com). But if you use LJs search function and type in corsetmakers … it’s like it doesn’t exist!

    Sorry to vent on a year-old post. I’m feeling frisky this morning.