Word 2010: Publish to a blog

March 7, 2011

One of the ‘save and send’ options in Word 2010 (and possibly Word 2007 as well) is to publish to a blog post.

If you already have a blog, you just have to enter its URL and your username and password, when asked. Then you decide if you want to post now or post as a draft. It all sounds very easy — and it is.

But it’s crap there are some issues with it that I found in a 5-minute test of the process.

Issue 1: More than one blog with a single blog provider

I have more than one WordPress blog registered under my username and password, as I suspect do many people. My blogs are titled differently and have different URLs. One is this blog you’re reading now, another is my personal blog, and I have a couple of basically inactive ones I use for dumping information. When I first created a WordPress account and blog, I gave it a name  (let’s call it ‘Rhonda’); subsequent blogs under that username have names like ‘CyberText’ and ‘Travel’ (also not its real name).

So, I use the Word 2010 ‘save and send’ interface to create a link to my blog in Word 2010. I enter the URL for the CyberText blog plus my username and password. And when the blog account link is created, my CyberText blog gets listed as ‘Rhonda’, NOT ‘CyberText’ as I wanted and expected.

Next I thought I’d try creating a linked blog account for my ‘Rhonda’ blog. I enter its URL (different URL to the CyberText one, but same username and password), and now I get the second blog listed… as ‘Rhonda1’!! I guess if I continued creating links to the other blog accounts, they would be listed as ‘Rhonda2’, ‘Rhonda3’ etc. What use is that??? I want to see the blog names, as reflected by the URLs.

When I tried to edit the account listing, there’s no option to change the name displayed in Word. You can only change the URL, or enter a different username/password. Why can’t I edit the displayed name of the blog so I can easily distinguish one from the other?

What I can’t understand is WHY Word lists my ‘CyberText’ blog as ‘Rhonda’ in the first place. The URL is totally different to the ‘Rhonda’ blog. It can’t be going on the username/password combination as Word 2010 allows me to create multiple blog accounts from the same credentials.

BTW, when I used Word 2010 to post a draft to the ‘Rhonda’ blog (really the CyberText one), it correctly posted in the CyberText blog. That was good.

Issue 2: Really bad HTML from a well-styled Word document

The test draft blog post I did from a Word 2010 document was really simple and it used an existing test document I had already created. Here’s part of that document as it displays in Word 2010;  it uses outline numbering for headings and all numbered headings are left aligned at 0 cm with a 2 cm tab between the outline number and the heading text; all text in the document uses default Word styles:

And here’s how that same content looks when published to my blog from Word 2010:

Pretty darned ugly, huh?

So what’s going on here? Well, I checked the HTML in the post and found a couple of things:

  • Word’s nasty additional markup created in its ‘save as HTML’  in previous versions seem to be stripped out. This is A Good Thing.
  • The STYLE tags created by earlier versions of Word in the ‘save as HTML’  option are also gone. This is also A Good Thing.
  • However, Word does NOT deal well with outline numbered headings when it publishes a Word document to a blog post. I may be maligning Word here — this could be a WordPress issue, not a Word one.

Here’s what the HTML looks like:

I don’t know where the 56 pt left margin came from — all the heading styles were left aligned with the margin in the Word document.

And the OL/LI stuff is where it’s trying to convert the outline numbers in the headings into a number sequence in HTML — and failing badly.

So, maybe this ‘publish to a blog’ was a good idea, but the execution leaves a lot to be desired. Didn’t anybody at Microsoft actually test this with REAL documents? Sure, while not many people will publish a document with outline numbering, there are plenty who will. Think of all those scientists and engineers, lawyers, government types, etc. who use outline numbering in their documents — publishing those documents to a blog will cause all sorts of bother for them until this process is improved dramatically.

I’ll continue writing my blog posts in a text editor or directly in WordPress. This feature in Word is still in its infancy and is pretty useless for me as it has been implemented.


  1. Hi Rhonda,
    Did you ever find a solution to the problem of Word using the same blog name for all your registered blogs. I am having the same issue. Frustrating!

  2. Hi Liz

    No, I gave up.

  3. Thanks Rhonda, what a pain. Can’t tell which blog is which!

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