Archive for March, 2020

March 8, 2020

Maintenance work completed – all audio recordings should be playable again

As mentioned in a post a couple of weeks ago, this blog suffered from the increased security measures introduced by Google Chrome version 80 – the changes meant that almost none of the audio recordings were playable.

After a bit of deliberation, I moved all of the files (easy) and then set about updating all of the links (easy, but really time-consuming). I believe that I’ve completed that task now, and the recordings should be playable, whatever browser you use/

While updating these links on the blog, I’ve also tried to fix any other problems, particularly embedded images which were no longer displaying. In some cases this was simply because the source website had moved, or reorganised all of its content – it’s worth remembering that when this blog started in 2011, we were still excited by the results of the EFDSS’ Take Six project, and the Full English was still some years away. And the Bodleian broadside ballads collection has also moved to a much bigger, better site, Broadside Ballads Online (of which more anon). Meanwhile, the Copper Family website has had a makeover – it’s a very attractive site now, but the detailed information about the family’s songs, and songs collected by Bob Copper, is no longer part of the site. Never mind – in an all-too-frequent demonstration of its worth – the Internet Archive Wayback Machine comes to the rescue, by preserving snapshots of the old site at Incidentally, if you find that useful, you may want to install the Wayback Machine Chrome extension.

In other cases missing images were being pulled in from a non-secure http site.┬áSometimes just changing http to https fixed this. But that only works if the site has a secure https address. And plenty of perfectly decent websites, looked after by enthusiasts (like me) rather than corporate bodies, don’t need and don’t want to pay for a security certificate. As a result I found, for example, that Chrome refuses to display the wonderful harvest home photos from (so you’ll just have to follow the link to look at those).

And yet it does display embedded images from the Bodleian’s Broadside Ballads Online site, Curiously that site doesn’t seem to have an https address. That’s odd for a University site. And it’s also odd that Chrome still displays embedded images from this non-secure site. Maybe Google just thinks “oh the Bodleian – that’s bound to be OK”, which would be a perfectly reasonable bit of programming.


Anyway, if you do find any audio files that don’t play – or indeed any broken links on the site – please leave a comment on the relevant page, so I’m alerted and can try to fix it. Thank you!