Fotoparade 2018 2 – Meine schönsten Fotos aus dem zweiten Halbjahr

Fotoparade 2018 2 – Meine schönsten Fotos aus dem zweiten Halbjahr

Heute gibt es von mir mal wieder eine Fotoparade! Das Jahr neigt sich dem Ende und Michael von Entdecke die Welt hat zu seiner all-halb-jährlichen Fotoparade aufgerufen. Diese ist bei ihm schon zur Tradition geworden. Ich bin jetzt auch schon zum vierten Mal dabei!

 

Hier sind meine vorherigen Fotoparaden:

 

 

Wenn du mehr zur Fotoparade allgemein lesen möchtest, schau mal hier vorbei:

 

Fotoparade 2 2018 – Die schönsten Fotos aus Österreich

 

Die sechs von Michael vorgeschlagenen Kategorien, zu denen die Fotos aus dem zweiten Halbjahr 2018 passen sollten, lauten:

 

  • “Abstrakt”
  • “Aussicht”
  • “Krasse Sache”
  • “Landschaft”
  • “Rot”
  • “Tierisch”

 

Wieder fiel mir die Wahl unheimlich schwer und ich habe lange hin und her überlegt. Ich hoffe, du magst die von mir ausgesuchten… Hier mein jeweils bestes Bild aus den sechs Kategorien:

 

 

 

#1 Abstrakt

 

Die Kategorie Abstrakt ist mir am schwersten gefallen. Ich fotografiere recht selten Dinge, die ich so beschreiben würde. Dieses Foto von der der Innenseite der Kuppel der Grabeskirche Jesu in Jerusalem kam dem am nächsten. Dort war ich während meines diesjährigen Israel-Aufenthaltes im August, zu dem ich vom Abraham Hostel eingeladen wurde. Ich bin mal gespannt, ob ich die Tradition fortsetze und spontan auch nächstes Jahr nach Israel reise.

 

 

#2 Aussicht

 

Die Aussicht aus dem Cable Car in den Ba Na Hills nahe Da Nang war definitiv spektakulär. Ich wollte unbedingt eine bestimmte Brücke fotografieren und diese lag innerhalb eines Themenparks, der wiederum auf einem Hügel liegt, zu dem du nur mit dieser Gondel gelangst. Auf dem Weg nach oben war der Ausblick zwar auch schon schön, aber erst auf dem Rückweg zum Sonnenaufgang hat sich der Himmel in diese wundervollen Farben gefüllt. Ein fantastischer Ausblick, den ich sehr genossen habe.

 

 

#3 Krasse Sache

 

Noch ein Bild von meiner Zeit im Sommer in Israel: Unter anderem habe ich eine Tour in die Wüste gemacht, wo auch das Kloster Mar Saba auf dem Programm stand. Das ist das einzige Kloster in der Wüste Israels, das seit seiner Gründung bis heute als solches genutzt wird. Frauen sind auf dem Gelände verboten, weswegen ich leider nicht näher randurfte. Krass finde ich das Ganze aber auf jeden Fall und daher passt es für mich perfekt in diese Kategorie.

 

 

#4 Landschaft

 

Landschaften sind ja genau mein Ding. Daher war diese Kategorie für mich wahrscheinlich die einfachste. Da ich immer viele Fotos aus Asiens in meinen Highlights habe, wollte ich hier daher eines aus Hawaii nehmen. Das hier ist der Blick vom Koko Head – einem kleinen Krater, der vor rund 300.000 Jahren entstanden ist. Früher gab es einen kleine Bahntrasse, mit der Güter auf den Gipfel des Koko Head transportiert wurden. Da diese heute nicht mehr verwendet wird, kommen täglich Hunderte von Touristen und Einheimischen, um den Gipfel zu erklimmen. Die Wanderung ist nicht ganz ungefährlich, aber der Blick war definitiv grandios!

 

Hawaii

 

#5 Rot

 

Tja, was soll ich sagen… Auch diese Kategorie fiel mir schwer. Da ich mehr Landschaften und Architektur fotografiere, habe ich so gut wie keine Bilder, bei denen bestimmte Farben hervorstechen. Höchsten das Blau des Meeres und das Grün der Wälder und Wiesen. Aber rot? Da gibt es wohl wirklich nichts besseres als dieses Bild. Leider kein WOW-Effekt, aber ok. Auch dieses Foto ist aus dem Themenpark in der Nähe von Da Nang.

Und weil ich mit dem Foto nicht so 100% glücklich war, gibt es jetzt noch mein erstes Color Key Foto. Es ist mir leider auch nicht so richtig gut gelungen, aber fürs erste Mal ist es ganz ok, denke ich. Was meinst du?

 

#6 Tierisch

 

Das Foto wiederum fiel mir wieder ziemlich leicht. Ich liebe Affen und versuche sie immer zu fotografieren, wenn ich welche sehe. Und dieser hier hat ganz wunderbar gepost, als ich auf dem TreeTop Walk in Singapur war. Mittlerweile habe ich übrigens einen Blogpost über die Sehenswürdigkeiten in Singapur geschrieben! Da habe ich wirklich all mein Wissen von ingesamt drei Monaten in der südostasiatischen Metropole reingepackt.

 

Hiking in Singapore – TreeTop Walk – MacRitchie Nature Trail

 

Und weil so schön ist, kommen hier noch ein paar Zusatzkategorien:

 

#7 Fokus

 

Es gibt wirklich einige in Orte in Singapur, die ich über alles liebe und an denen ich immer wieder aufs Neue Fotos mache. Einer von ihnen das Gelände rund um das Museum of Artscience. Ich finde das Gebäude, dessen Form von einer Lotusblume inspiriert ist einfach mega fotogen. Dazu dann noch der Teich mit den Seerosen sowie der Skyline im Hintergrund… Und schon ist Barbara happy und macht glücklich strahlend Fotos wie dieses hier.

 

 

 

 

#8 Hübsch

 

Der Ausflug ins Mekong Delta war schon ein Highlight meines diesjährigens Vietnamaufenthalts. Und der kurze Abstecher zur Pagode, wo ich dieses Foto gemacht habe, hat sich für mich wirklich gelohnt. Das Fahrrad sieht doch wirklich so aus, als hätte ich es fürs Foto dort hingestellt, oder? Aber nein, das Glück war auf meiner Seite: Es stand einfach da und wartete darauf, von mir fotografiert zu werden.

 

 

 

 

#9 Relaxed

 

Lange wollte ich einen Ausflug zu den Sticky Waterfalls machen. Im Oktober habe ich es endlich geschafft. Die meiste Zeit habe ich jedoch wie hier den Sonnenuntergang genossen und Fotos gemacht.

 

 

 

 

#10 Freiheit

 

Und zum Abschluss gibt es noch ein Foto aus Israel. Auf dem Weg von Nazareth nach Haifa haben wir am Mount Precipice gehalten, um Fotos zu machen. Zum Glück! Denn das ist eines meiner Lieblingsfotos aus Israel geworden…

 

Mount Precipice

 

Das waren meine schönsten Bilder aus der zweiten Jahreshälfte 2018 zu den sechs vorgegebenen und vier eigenen Kategorien.

 

Welches davon gefällt dir am besten? Ich bin gespannt auf deine Kommentare!

Deine Barbara

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How to Make Money with Cryptocurrencies

How to Make Money with Cryptocurrencies

GUEST POST ABOUT HOW TO MAKE MONEY WITH CRYPTOCURRENCIES BY JOE TREBEK

The cryptocurrency market has become much more mainstream over the last year, leading a greater number of people to explore the financial possibilities of digital coins. Although some ways of making money with cryptocurrencies aren’t as simple as they used to be, there is still a great deal of income to be generated with these novel instruments. Here are some of the top ways you can make money with cryptocurrencies.

Mining Cryptocurrencies

The longest-standing way to make money with digital currencies is through the process of mining. Mining is the means by which cryptocurrencies are created via computational processes. Many cryptocurrencies, especially Bitcoin, have mining difficulties that require specialized mining hardware to supply the necessary processing power. Others, however, can be mined using the graphics processing unit on any reasonably good computer. If you want to make money by mining cryptocurrencies, your best bet is to hold the coins you mine and wait to sell them until prices peak. People who followed this strategy by mining Bitcoin in its early days and holding until prices reached their zenith late in 2017 made profits of tens or in some cases even hundreds of thousands of dollars.

One thing that you need to understand about mining cryptocurrencies is that it isn’t a free way to make money. Even if you’re only using your computer’s GPU, there are associated electrical costs. For more advanced Bitcoin mining hardware, these costs can run up into considerable amounts of money. Fortunately, there are several different online calculators you can use to weigh the speed and electricity consumption of your hardware against the current price and difficulty level of Bitcoin to determine if you’ll be able to turn a profit from mining.

Cryptocurrency Investment

If mining is too technical for you, cryptocurrency investment may be more up your alley. Investing in cryptocurrencies involves buying coins that have already been mined and holding them until you can sell at a higher price. The volatility of the cryptocurrency market makes it possible for individual coins to fluctuate by 10 percent or more on any given day. Be aware, though, that cryptocurrency investments can be risky. The same price fluctuations that allow them to be quite profitable can also inflate losses when they occur. If you’re just starting with cryptocurrency investing, it’s a good idea to stick to major currencies like Bitcoin, Ether and Litecoin. Because these coins have been around longer and have more stability than some of their newer peers, they’re a little more suitable for beginning investors.

Freelance and Get Paid in Cryptocurrency

If you don’t have enough money to buy mining hardware or invest in cryptocurrencies, there’s still a way for you to start amassing coins in your wallet. Several sites allow you to charge for freelance services, such as social media management and graphic design, in cryptocurrencies. This method makes it easy to trade your time and skills for cryptocurrencies, as opposed to putting money in up front. The one drawback to using this strategy is the fact that most freelancing sites only let you get paid in Bitcoin, with a small handful accepting Ether as well. Luckily, though, Bitcoin can easily be exchanged for other cryptocurrencies, allowing you to convert your earnings into the currency of your choice.

Start a Cryptocurrency Blog

Not all methods of making money from the cryptocurrency craze actually involve owning and trading cryptos. One of the easiest ways to make money is to start a niche website focusing on cryptocurrencies. By creating great and informative content, you can gradually build an audience of readers who will turn to your site for the latest information about cryptocurrencies. Creating new content regularly is even fairly easy on account of the fact that new developments in the cryptocurrency world are taking place all the time.

Once you have built your site and created something of a regular audience, you can then monetize your content. Advertisements and affiliate links placed on your articles can easily help you turn your website traffic into money. The more people visit your site on a given day, the more money you can earn from it. If you keep building up your audience, you may soon find yourself making an appreciable amount of income from your cryptocurrency blog.

These are just a few of the many ways to make money from the cryptocurrency revolution. As digital currencies like Bitcoin continue to become more and more widespread, the people who adopted them early on will see considerable moneymaking opportunities on account of their cryptocurrency reserves and knowledge in the area. It’s not too late to stake out your position in the world of cryptocurrencies and make money, so decide which model sounds best to you and get started today.

About the Author

Hi, My name is Joe Trebek and I am the creator of Surveys Say Survey Reviews. Outside of writing reviews of online surveys, I love drawing and painting. I also love to hang out with my family. I’m also a huge football fan! Go Pac Go!

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Which One Fits Me? Testing Four Osprey Backpacks!

Which One Fits Me? Testing Four Osprey Backpacks!

ADVERTISEMENT – UNPAID, COLLABORATION

I’ve been traveling with my Osprey Farpoint 40 for about two years. It was love at first sight and I always enjoyed traveling with it. But this year, I wanted more space. Since I started dancing Kizomba, I am on road with a lot more clothes and also with several pairs of dancing shoes and the 40l backpack just got too small. That’s why I tried four completely different backpacks from Osprey. Here is my overview:

 

Osprey Sojourn 60 – For everybody who needs a bit more space

The Sojourn* has 60 liters and is a trolley, but you can unpack the hidden straps and use it as a backpack. It’s the perfect size for me when I’m in Asia. Everything fits in there! I also really like the structure: The main compartment doesn’t seem so big at first but really offers a lot of space. It has two smaller pockets on both long sides and in the lid. This is really practical and I use it to structure things I take with me. That way I always know what’s where and I can quickly get the things I need.

In addition, the Sojourn has a compartment on the top when it’s upright. It’s great for storing things you don’t want to put in your handbag or pocket, but you want to have them somewhere where you can quickly reach them. What makes it irreplaceable to me:

  • the above-mentioned compartments
  • the size so I can take anything I want with me
  • the hidden straps that make carrying the bag much easier in certain situations

The only negative point for me is that the bag, when standing, is exactly where my hands are, when I just let them go. Now you’re probably wondering why that’s a disadvantage. Very simple: If I have to carry the bag, for example, on a staircase, I have to lift it while angling my arms. That’s pretty exhausting. But I can’t blame Osprey for not being taller. And in an emergency, I can still turn the bag into a backpack.

Osprey Farpoint 40 – Practical for every trip

As the name suggests, the Farpoint 40* has 40 liters. It still complies with the guidelines for hand luggage and although I would not have thought so at the beginning, I never had to check it in. Unless I wanted to.

There are two compartments: The main compartment, which has another pocket in the “lid” – and a laptop compartment in the front, in which cables and the like can also be stored. The backpack straps can be hidden to turn the backpack into a large carrying bag. There is also a belt, which you can attach when you hide the straps. This function is especially useful when you check the backpack instead of taking it as hand luggage. The straps can quickly get jammed in the baggage claims. This happened to me on my first trip to Israel in Tel Aviv at the airport. The only way was to cut it off… Therefore, I can only advise you to hide your straps if you do not want to take the backpack as hand luggage. What makes it irreplaceable to me:

  • the compartments
  • the size

Osprey Daylite Plus – Ideal for day trips

This daypack Daylite Plus* is great for all kinds of excursions. Because there is also a laptop compartment, I already used it when I went coworking. It offers just enough space for everything you need. If you want to take a lot with you, this backpack is probably not your first choice. My camera just fits in there when I’m on tour with all my cables and case with the electrical stuff.

The best thing for me, though, is that I can attach it in front of the sojourn. So it doesn’t take up extra space and I don’t have to take it with me as hand luggage backpack. What makes it irreplaceable to me:

  • the size
  • the possibility of attaching it to the Soujourn

Osprey Utralight Stuff Pack – Your friend in emergency situations

I had the Ultralight Stuff Pack* with me on my Croatia tour because it is so flexible that it was ideal for the motorcycle tour. You can fold it up and make it very small. So it fits in every pocket. Or you can use it as a daypack. I’ve had my MacBook and all my electronics in it for 3 weeks now. Although I was a bit skeptical at the beginning whether it could survive the almost 10 kg, it completely convinced me of its durability.

Whether you want to always have it with you in case of an emergency or as a main backpack on a minimalist motorcycle tour… I have always been able to rely on this backpack. Which makes it irreplaceable to me:

  • the size
  • it’s super handy
  • the durability

 

Final Thoughts

Believe it or not: Since I am now building a base in Chiang Mai and will take quite a lot with me, I decided to take all four with me on my next trip. They are all simply unique and for me in their own way irreplaceable. So I can decide for my shorter trips within Asia which backpack fits best to the corresponding trip!

PS: I got the backpacks (except from the Farpoint 40) for free to test them. My opinion remains my own though and is not influenced by this collaboration.

PPS: All links with an asterisk (*) are affiliate links.

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Fotoparade 2018 – Meine schönsten Fotos aus dem ersten Halbjahr

Fotoparade 2018 – Meine schönsten Fotos aus dem ersten Halbjahr

Heute gibt es von mir mal wieder etwas ganz anderes! Michael von Entdecke die Welt hat zu einer Fotoparade zu Fotos aus der ersten Jahreshälte aufgerufen. Diese ist bei ihm schon zur Tradition geworden. Allerings bin ich erst zum dritten Mal dabei! Umso mehr freue ich mich! Wenn du mehr zur Fotoparade lesen möchtest, schau mal hier vorbei:

Fotoparade 1 2018 – Die schönsten Fotos des Jahres?

Die sechs Kategorien, zu denen die Fotos aus dem ersten Halbjahr 2018 passen sollten, lauten:

  • „Nahaufnahme“
  • „Nachts“
  • „Nass“
  • „Kontrast“
  • „Farbtupfer“
  • „Schönstes Foto“

Die Auswahl fiel mir wieder alles andere als leicht. Wieder habe ich es leider nicht geschafft, ausschließlich Fotos auszuwählen, die auf Reisen entstanden sind, über die ich geschrieben habe. Das liegt vor allem daran, dass ich in den letzten Monaten mehr mit der DSGVO als mit dem Schreiben von Blogposts beschäftigt war und damit noch viele Orte offen habe, über die ich nicht geschrieben habe. Trotzdem bin ich ganz zufrieden mit der Auswahl! Hier mein jeweils bestes Bild aus den sechs Kategorien:

#1 Nahaufnahme

Im Februar war ich an einem ganz besonderen Ort – in einem Resort, das die ganze Insel eingenimmt! Cempedak Island war für mich das reine Paradies und ich habe jede Sekunde dort genossen. Mir war daher gleich klar, dass eines meiner schönsten Fotos von dort sein musste. Und beim Durchschauen der Bilder dachte ich sofort, dass diese Aufnahme ideal zur Kategorie “Nahaufnahme” passt.


#2 Nachts

Für mich immer ein Highlight: Singapur! Diesmal konnte ich zwar auch ein paar unbekanntere Orte der Metropole wie die Insel Pulau Ubin und das Naturreservat Bukit Timah erkunden, aber irgendwie gehört es einfach zum Pflichtprogramm, Gardens by the Bay zu besuchen und diesen einzigartigen Ort auch von oben zu bestaunen. Mir verschlägt es jedenfalls immer wieder den Atem.

#3 Nass

Die Kategorie “Nass” ist mir echt schwer gefallen. Ich habe im ersten Halbjahr 2018 mehrere Wasserfälle und Hot Springs in Asien besucht. Am Ende hat jedoch ein Wasserfall in Europa das Rennen gemacht: Die Plitvicer Seen sind einfach traumhaft schön und verdienen meiner Meinung nach einen Platz in dieser Reihe. Das hier ist mein absoluter Favorit von diesem Tag!

 

#4 Kontrast

Auch bei den Kontrasten habe ich mit mir gehadert: Ein Foto aus Berlin stand gegen dieses Foto aus der kroatischen Stadt Rovinj, wo ich das Tanzfestival Summer Sensual besucht und eine Woche lang Kizomba getanzt habe. Das ist der Blick vom Mulini Beach, wo jeden Abend private Tanzpartys stattfanden. Die Sonnenuntergänge waren einfach spektakulär. Und dieses Bild ist zudem eine Premiäre: Es ist vollkommen unbearbeitet!

 

#5 Farbtupfer

Was bringt schönere Farbtupfer als Streetart? Daher hat nach viel Überlegen dieses Streetart-Foto aus Rotterdam das Rennen gemacht. In den Niederlanden war ich zum Einen für die Traverse18, zum Anderen für das Dutch Kizomba Festival, das nur eine Woche nach der Traverse in Tiel stattgefunden hat.

 

#6 Schönstes Foto

Mein schönstes Foto ist mal wieder eine Spiegelung. Wer mich kennt, weiß, dass ich immer und überall auf der Suche nach Pfützen oder Glasflächen bin, die wunderschöne Spiegelungen aus dem Nichts zaubern und die Welt noch schöner machen. Für mich jedenfalls. Diese Spiegelung habe ich auf meinem Sunrise Photo Walk in Berlin fotografiert. Es war ein kalter Morgen, aber das frühe Aufstehen hatte sich gelohnt. Als ich von der Ubahn hochkam, sah ich die Pfütze fast noch bevor ich das Brandenburger Tor selbst sah.

 

Und hier kommen wie immer noch ein paar eigene Kategorien:

#7 Wolken

Bali steht für vieles: Tempel, Zeremonien, Vulkane und Reisfelder. Letzteres habe ich mal ganz anders interpretiert und in der Regenzeit ein Spiegelungsfoto in einer der Reisterrassen von Jatiluwih gemacht.

 

#8 Architektur

Mein Sunrise Photo Walk in Berlin hat mich echt umgehauen. Shots wie dieser vom Marie-Elisabeth-Lüders-Haus und vom Pau-Löbe-Haus sind für mich als Asien-Freund eher eine Seltenheit.

#9 In luftiger Höhe

Als letztes Foto gibt es noch einen weiteren Klassiker von mir: Ein Foto mit Sonnenstrahlen. Auch das hier war in Rotterdam und zwar auf dem Euromast – einem der höchsten Gebäude der Stadt. Solltest du mal dort ein: Das war mein absolutes Highlight!

Das waren meine schönsten Bilder aus der ersten Jahreshälfte 2018 zu den sechs vorgegebenen und drei eigenen Kategorien.

Welches davon gefällt dir am besten? Ich bin gespannt auf deine Kommentare!

Und wenn du noch mehr schöne Fotos sehen möchtest, schau doch mal bei meinen Bloggerkollegen vorbei, die ebenfalls an der Parade teilgenommen haben:

Deine Barbara

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Changes due to GDPR on Barbaralicious

Changes due to GDPR on Barbaralicious

By now, almost everyone has heard of it: The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into force on the 25th of May of 2018 and has not only caused a lot of confusion but, above all, it has caused companies and website owners to try like crazy to implement the corresponding changes.

It’s been on my mind for more than two months. I collected the information on many pages and mainly followed the steps of a blogger friend of mine from Reisen Fotografie Blog.

A completely new development has even led to me being certified as a Data Protection Officer.

But now, let me show you what I changed on Barbaralicious to comply with GDPR.

Comments

On Barbaralicious you can leave comments under blog posts. Since May 25th, this requires an additional checkbox, which must be clicked. With this checkbox, you confirm that you agree that I will save your data (name, email address and – if you enter it – your website) after submitting the comment.

For the implementation, I first used the plugin WP GDPR Compliance. After a few weeks though, I inserted it via a code snippet to get rid of the plugin.

Up to now, the IP address was also saved when sending a comment. This is no longer allowed. Therefore, two changes were necessary:

  • It is now necessary to prevent IP addresses from being stored
  • All previously stored IP addresses must be deleted

I made these changes on the FTP server or in the database via MySQL.

 

Newsletter

I’ve been wondering for a long time whether I’d like to keep the newsletter or not. The effort of changing every single post (I had manually inserted a signup form under each blog post) and that I had to ask my subscribers for a new opt-in spoke in favor of deactivation. In the end, however, the latter turned out to be wrong. After I received emails from lawyers who said that a new opt-in was not necessary if the email addresses had been collected with a double opt-in, my decision was made: The newsletter remains.

I made the following changes:

  • Adaptation of the signup text – now I point out tracking, storage and everything else that is interesting BELOW the signup form
  • I changed the whole signup process – everything now runs on one (!) signup page. I’ll probably have fewer registrations, but I’m legally on the safe side
  • I signed a Data Processing Agreement with my service provider Mailchimp

The Hoster

My hoster is from Germany and is called All-Inkl. They offer a Data Processing Agreement in their backend, which I simply had to accept – with one click. I am also Manager of Marketing & Sales at 2AIM GmbH. Unfortunately, the hoster of the GmbH is not All-Inkl, but HostEurope. It wasn’t that easy there, because you had to fill out the contract and indicate exactly what data was processed on the website. This contract had to be sent back to HostEurope by snail mail or e-mail.

Privacy Policy

The Privacy Policy has to be adapted. I used the generator of the German Society for Data Protection. However, I went through the Privacy Policy afterward and adapted it. It was not generated in exactly the same way as you see it now by the generator.

Social Media Sharing

In fact, I haven’t had any social sharing buttons so far, after reading a few years ago that most plugins have privacy issues. However, I now know that there is one plugin that has been compliant all the time and continues to be so even after GDPR came into force: The plugin is called Shariff. I installed and activated it on my blog. So from now on, you will find buttons under my blog posts with which you can share my posts in social media.

Contact form

I said goodbye to all my contact forms. Yeah, it’s been used every now and then. But I wanted to be on the safe side, so I completely redesigned the contact page and removed the contact form.

If you want to keep yours, you have to consider two points:

  • You MUST run your site via https
  • This point is somewhat controversial, but: You actually need a checkbox that says that you are saving the data. Well, some say you need it, others say it’s bullshit. If you decide to go for the checkbox, the plugin, which also adds the checkbox to the command fields, should do the trick. But since that didn’t work out for me, the decision to remove the contact form was very easy for me at the end.

Gravatar

Gravatar is the service that stores your pictures, which are then displayed next to your name when you comment. You’ve probably seen it many times on blogs. This service is activated by default in WordPress. But you can turn it off with one click. Just go to Settings -> Discussion -> Avatar. If you click the checkbox there, Gravatar is active.

You cannot delete your account at Gravatar. I wrote them but, unfortunately, the only thing we can do at the moment is deactivate it on our blogs.

Emojis

It was just as easy with the Emojis. Just go to Settings -> Write and uncheck the option “Convert emoticons to graphics”.

And if you are wondering what’s so bad about emoticons: When they are displayed as graphics, they are loaded from somewhere. They are NOT installed on your server but are located on external servers. Since data is transferred when loading something from another server, this is no longer permitted.

Fortunately, this change is quickly done.

Google products

Google is an American provider and therefore fundamentally difficult to reconcile with the new data protection laws.

Fonts

Fonts are not stored in WordPress and saved on your own server, but loaded by default by Google. I wonder, to be honest, who came up with this glorious idea. Moreover, I cannot imagine that WordPress will not provide its own solution for this in the long term. At the beginning, I had solved this via the plugin Divi DSGVO (DSGVO is the German abbreviation for GDPR), which prevents loading the fonts from Google and let’s you then choose the fonts you want to store them on your server. Theoretically, this should also improve loading time. Since this didn’t happen and the plugin didn’t do anything else, I uninstalled it and applied a plugin-free solution.

YouTube videos

I’ve been dealing with YouTube videos for two weeks. The problem is that by embedding videos via YouTube, data is transferred between YouTube and the blog without the reader knowing about it. My first approach was to replace all videos with text links. That was a real challenge with over 200 videos on my blog. After three days I read that you can add “nocookie” to the embed link. The best way to do this is to go back to the sharing option in Youtube itself and tick the box “extended privacy setting”. This is then automatically added to the link. I thought I’d be on the safe side if I just replaced the links. Wrong!

Shortly afterward I read in a forum on Facebook that a friend of mine, a lawyer specializing in online law, advised using an additional opt-in. That’s a box that appears, which readers need to check to see the video so he knows that a connection to YouTube is being established. I started using the plugin Borlabs for that.

However, this plugin also bothered me, so in the end, I decided to take down all videos and replace them with simple text links. No videos, no problems…

Maps

Similar to the YouTube videos, it’s the same with maps. Because each map establishes a connection to a server since this data is never stored on the blog owner’s server. I checked my own plugin and found a Google Maps API. Annoying! I used Borlabs for this too. Because I wanted to keep the map on my homepage. I deleted all the others though.

But after I deleted the YouTube videos, I also decided on taking down that last map. Too bad, but better safe than sorry. And I also experienced slower page speed due to Borlabs.

Analytics

Analytics was also a never-ending story. That’s why I’ve been saving it for last.

First, I decided to use Borlabs with the Optin function. But after I had almost no possibility to track my visitor numbers and the box on my blog simply annoyed me (and my readers), I decided that it was time for something new: Piwik or Matomo is the solution you can install on your own server, so no data is forwarded to third parties. I am currently very satisfied with this and hope that it will remain so.

Emails

A year and a half ago, I made a big mistake. I followed a wrong advice and started sending my emails via Gmail, although they are actually from my hoster All-Inkl. It was easier to manage than Outlook, which I had used until then, said a friend. Well, actually, GDPR existed already. But nobody cared back then. Otherwise, I would never have solved it this way. Because Gmail is NOT GDPR compliant! Google’s alternative is G Suite. This business account costs 8 Euro per month and is ok from a data protection point of view. At least if you disregard the fact that Google is an American company and that it is not really perfect.

So I moved to G Suite with all my email addresses. However, I couldn’t import all addresses, so I didn’t have old emails of my main address in my mailbox. I couldn’t search for them or automatically write emails to contacts before importing. The important thing for me was that I can write and receive emails on all my addresses from G Suite.

I had to find another solution. In the end, I rolled back everything that had been done in the past one and a half years and now receive all my mailboxes via Apple’s mail client and no longer use a third-party provider.

Cloud storage

The same applies to the cloud storage. I use Google Drive and so far I simply had an account with 1 GB additional storage. This simple account is also not GDPR compliant. Therefore, I use my G Suite account for backups in the cloud or exchanging data with clients. That sounds like little effort at first, but unfortunately, there were problems here too. It took me about a working day to solve them and I finally connected all my websites to the new Drive account.

By the way: If you use third-party providers like WeTransfer to send large amounts of data, you theoretically need a Data Processing Agreement. To be honest, I have hardly ever used WeTransfer. I usually do this by uploading photos, videos or documents in my Google Drive Cloud and then sharing the folders. Then you don’t need an additional agreement!

Records of processing activities

I also kept the record of processing activities until the end. In this list, you have to mention all activities in which you store data. These include, for example, comments on the blog, emails or the newsletter. The processing list must be presented on request.

Privacy policy (and legal notice) on the login page

Now it is also mandatory to have a privacy policy on the admin login page. Since the last WordPress update, you can easily set this in your backend and it will be displayed automatically. However, for us Germans, the legal notice has to be added, too. Unfortunately, you still have to change this in the code.

HTTPS via All-Inkl

If you have a security certificate via your own hoster, you don’t have to do anything. However, I had it through CloudFlare, an American provider. This offers even more advantages than just the security certificate, but I wanted to get rid of as many third-party providers as possible and didn’t want to sign too many Data Processing Agreements. Especially when the service providers are based in the USA, which is the case for CloudFlare. I had to reset all nameservers at All-Inkl (just send an email – the support team will take care of it) and could then activate the free security certificate Let’s Encrypt. The only disadvantage: From now on my page will only be loaded from Germany. From German servers. From a data protection point of view, this is awesome. However, for my loading time it is a disaster, because CloudFlare has servers all over the world and they make sure to use the closest server. So if you access Barbaralicious from Australia, the blog was previously loaded from Australian servers, while now everything comes directly from Germany.

Photos

Another insanity, in my eyes, is that photos are no longer allowed to show people EXCEPT you have them signed a GDPR compliant model release. However, GDPR also says that this consent can be withdrawn at any time. A model release does not necessarily mean that you can use the photo forever. The reason for the regulation is that from now on you can generally withdraw your consent to the processing of your data at any time. And that includes photos.

I’m very happy now that often waited a long time to take pictures without people. Even in busy squares in Berlin, for example, you can find the place deserted at sunrise. Many bloggers laughed at me or said that this does not reflect the true mood in the place. I’m glad I didn’t care.

A few more comments:

Photos taken before May 25, 2018 do NOT need to be removed from your blog or social media channels. At least, that’s not what it looks like right now.

If you’re happy now that you’re good at using photoshop, I have to disappoint you. In theory, it is no longer even allowed to take photos with people on it. So it’s not just about publishing the material. The only alternative would be analog photos that do not store any data (e.g. geotags).

Final Thoughts

I’ve been complaining a lot since I started making changes for GDPR. Not only because something new came out almost every day  and changes made preveriously were invalid again. Or because everyone says something different and you often don’t know what is right and what is wrong. I complained a lot because I really wanted to understand the technical background. That meant that I’d been sitting around on little details for days. And that was at the expense of my “productivity”. No blog post, no new e-book has come out in the last few weeks. Hopefully, this will now change and return to normal.

But a positive side effect is that I know my blog better than ever before. I still have a lot to learn, but it’s a process and I’m still in it.

PS: Photo by Seth Schwiet on Unsplash

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Eye Laser Surgery Around the World: Travel Bloggers & Their Experiences

Eye Laser Surgery Around the World: Travel Bloggers & Their Experiences

I knew that one day I would do eye laser surgery. I had never liked my glasses and, most of all, myself with glasses.

That’s why, this year, I finally made an appointment to get the surgery done. Check out my blog post about it:

Barbaralicious Goes Eye Laser Surgery!

What Did Other Travel Bloggers Experience?

Since I wanted you to have a better overview of the possibilities and experiences with other laser techniques and hospitals, I asked some other travel bloggers who did eye laser surgery around the world! Check out what they have to say:

Melanie und Thomas von Reisen-Fotografie

Patrick from German Backpacker: LASIK in Turkey!

I always knew that at some point I will get my eyes lasered. I was wearing lenses most of the time, but especially when traveling, it was very annoying and sometimes even difficult to keep them clean when I was for example camping or when I stayed in hostels. But I always felt like it would be super expensive to get it done! At some point, I did more research and realized that the exactly same surgeries which are offered in Germany for a high price are also offered in Istanbul for a small fraction of the it. Istanbul has actually some of the best eye clinics of the world, so my fear of getting such an important surgery done somewhere abroad quickly vanished after reading all the positive experiences and reviews. I got in touch with a German agency called „sehhilfe-weg.de“, who organized the surgeries in Istanbul. They even offer a complete package including flight booking, accommodation and airport pickup. But since I’m a frequent traveler and always on a budget, I only paid for the surgery (around 600€) and organized cheap flights and a bed in a hostel by myself. On the day of the surgery, I got welcomed at the clinic by a German speaking assistant and after some checks, it was time for the LASIK surgery. The feeling was certainly uncomfortable, but the whole procedure only took a few minutes and I was done! I got some big glasses for protection and was allowed to go back to my hostel, while seeing very blurry. I rested in my dark room for a few hours waiting for my sight to return, which only took until evening. I still had a weird feeling in my eyes (as if I was wearing my lenses for too long), but on the next day everything was better and I returned to the clinic for a quick after-check. I was so happy to finally see clearly again and used the few extra days I had in Istanbul for sightseeing, before returning back home. I had to use eye drops for a few weeks and sometimes felt that my eyes were very dry (especially when sitting in front of a monitor too long), but these small issues vanished soon after. I never regretted my decision to get my laser surgery done in Istanbul – great value, great result, and even in combination with traveling to an exciting city!

About Patrick and German Backpacker

Hi, I’m Patrick, a travel blogger from Germany focusing on adventure and backpacking travels around the world! I blog on German Backpacker!

Nina from Where in the world is Nina: LASEK in South Korea!

I’ve made quite a few awesome decisions in my life but I have to say, laser eye surgery might have been the best. I’ve been a four-eyed freak most of my life starting when I was about 9 years old. After years of traveling and not being super confident doing certain things (opening eyes under water, surfing, diving….etc) I was finally fed up and decided to get LASEK!
I decided on LASEK (as opposed to LASIK) because it’s the most popular surgery in South Korea. They have moved away from LASIK as the flap in the eye (eww I know) was the cause of 90% of the issues after the surgery. Also, if something traumatic were to happen (like getting a surfboard to the eye, or a kids finger) those with the flap would have more trauma than I would, because I don’t have a flap. For LASEK they just ‘shaved” down my eyes ball a bit… still gross, I know.
Why South Korea? In short—better technology, doctors, and a far cheaper than the USA!
The results? Freaking fabulous. In fact, I’m in Morocco surfing like a pro right now!
Cost: $1400 including everything and a lifetime guarantee.
Oliver von Weltreiseforum.com

About Nina and Where in the world is Nina?

Nina Ragusa blogs at Where in the World is Nina and has a life mission of living and working on all continents. She takes you around the world with her sassy yet informative writing and gives the low down on how to work abroad to travel more.

Monika und Petar von TravelWorldOnline

Jackie from Life of Doing: LASIK and PRK in California!

Who wants to deal with glasses, hard contact lenses, and multiple cleaning solutions during exercising and traveling? My husband and I registered for the Tokyo Marathon, and we decided to have laser eye surgery before our marathon in January 2015. We went to three different clinics in San Jose, California for quotes and surgery qualification. Prices varied from $3500 to $5300 USD per person for both eyes.

After many considerations, we went with Scott Hyver Professionals, located in Santa Clara, California. We felt comfortable with the Dr. Hyver’s team, customer service, and the lifetime surgery touch-up if needed. Several friends had their procedures done with Dr. Hyver and had positive results. I paid $4900 for my laser surgery, while my husband paid over $5000. Due to my thinner cornea on my left eye, I had the PRK (photorefractive keratectomy) surgery which removes the outer shape of the cornea for the correction. Dr. Hyver was the only doctor to recommend PRK to me. My right eye had the Lasik surgery, and my husband did the Lasik surgery as well.

On the day of the surgery, everything went smoothly. I was originally nervous as eyesight is something you shouldn’t mess with. The surgery team asked if I wanted to hold a stress ball which I declined. After the numbing drops and hearing the laser sounds, the surgery was done in less than 10 minutes. It was amazing to wake up to clear vision the next morning. Healing process took two weeks for my PRK left eye while my Lasik eye healed in a few days. We had dry eyes during our healing process, but that was natural. The procedure was a life-changing moment and would recommend it to anyone!

About Jackie and Life of Doing

Jackie Szeto is an avid world-traveler, wanderer, and blogger on Life Of Doing. She loves to spend time outdoors either hiking, biking, or walking around town. Otherwise, she is planning her next adventure or weekend trip. Jackie is originally from the Bay Area California, and currently lives in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam with her husband, Justin. Follow the adventure on Instagram.  

 

Sarah from ASocialNomad: LASIK in England!

I wore glasses from the age of 4 when I had surgery to correct a squint in my left eye.  I’ve always had astigmatism and suffered through hard contacts lenses, which I believe to be a unique form of torture.   However, it wasn’t until my 29th year that I decided to have surgery.  That’s way back in the year 2000, I finally had enough money to splurge. 

I went for Lasik at a surgery in Reading, Berkshire, England, which was close to where I was living at the time.  I selected them because of the location, and they also had a good reputation for dealing with difficult issues.  I have very thin corneas, so there weren’t many surgeries willing to undertake my surgery. 

I took the plunge, spending GBP £1,000 per eye and having them both done at the same time.  I think the worst part was the week of wearing the clunky big protective glasses afterwards!  I didn’t experience any pain and was glasses and contact lens free for the first time in my life.  Well, the first time that I could see what I was doing anyway!  The only regret I ever had was that I didn’t get it done sooner!

Angelika von WIEDERUNTERWEGS

About Sarah and ASocialNomad

Sarah Carter & Nigel Dockerty write about Gen X Travel with a Y Attitude at https://asocialnomad.com.  They like to travel slow, eat and drink local.  You’ll find them in museums, on wine tours, hiking trails and exploring temples.  Or, you can catch up with them on InstagramFacebook and Twitter.


Thomas von TürkeiReiseblog

Sofie from WonderfulWanderings: ReLEx-Smile in Belgium!

I’d been wanting to get my eyes lasered for a few years already when I finally made the decision at the beginning of 2017 when yet another person I knew told me about how great it had been for them. Initially, I wanted to get LASIK, but during my research, I found a procedure that’s even newer and better in the sense that it has an even higher success and lower complication percentage than LASIK: ReLEx-Smile.

There happened to be a doctor specialized in this procedure working from a clinic – Mediclinic – just a 15-minute drive from where I live. I didn’t hesitate and made an appointment to get my eyes tested and find out whether I was eligible for the procedure. I was!

I went back to get it done a few weeks later and can honestly say it’s one of the best things I ever had done. The procedure itself took literally just a few minutes and I could already see again straight after. I did have to let my eyes rest for a few days so that they could stabilize – jumping right back behind the laptop the next day wasn’t a great idea – and I also had to use some drops to help them heal and keep them moist.

The day after the surgery I needed to go back for a check-up, and then again two weeks later, six weeks later and six months later.

At the moment, my eyes are better than 100%. I don’t know how that’s possible, but apparently, it is. My eyesight is literally better than a fighter jet pilot right now and it has changed how I travel so much.

No more taking extra lenses with me. No more taking lens fluid and lens containers. No more lugging my glasses around. No more suffering from dry eyes after a long day because I kept my lenses in for too long. If there’s one thing I regret, it’s that I didn’t have it done sooner.

About Sofie and Wonderful Wanderings

Belgium-based Sofie helps people plan worry-free trips by providing them with detailed travel itineraries based on her own travels as well as practical travel information and how-tos. And if you really don’t like to research or simply don’t have the time, she’ll create a custom itinerary for you. She’s driven by an urge to explore and a cup of green tea (or two). Check out Wonderful Wanderings.

Sonja from Migrating Miss: LASIK in Australia!

I had wanted to get laser eye surgery ever since my Mum got it when I was 16 years old. To watch her go from using contacts and glasses to nothing at all was like a miracle, and I wanted it for myself too! However, since it’s best to wait until your eyes have stopped changing and mine never really seemed to slow down, it wasn’t until I was 25 and living in Australia that I finally decided to look more into it. To be honest, what spurred me on was the thought that I might not be eligible at all, and I didn’t want to be holding out hope for something I couldn’t have! In Australia, laser eye clinics often offer a free consultation to check your eligibility and give you your options. I went backpacking in Vietnam for three weeks and after the hassle of dealing with contacts in less than ideal conditions, I decided it was time to and have a consultation. When I found out I was eligible and the great interest-free payment plans on offer, I went ahead with it! I had LASIK eye surgery with Laser Sight in Brisbane, Australia, and it cost $5000AU for a lifetime guarantee, which means I can have touch-ups or go back again should I need to. A few months after my laser eye surgery I embarked on a longer backpacking trip through South East Asia, and not having to worry about glasses or contacts while travelling in random places and doing tons of adventure activities was amazing, and has continued to be ever since!

Thomas von Pixelschmitt

About Sonja and Migrating Miss

Sonja is originally from New Zealand but is now based in Scotland, although she’s frequently travelling in Europe and further abroad. When not discovering new places, she can be found working on her blog, Migrating Miss, in a café with a coffee and cake at her side. 

Corinna Laimer von Aussteigen Bitte

Jessica from Notes of Nomads: LASIK in Japan!

A couple of years ago, I tried to get Lasik done at a well-known clinic in Tokyo. I chose this particular clinic because a friend had been there before and was happy with the results.

I researched all the procedures they had, which ranged from 154,000 to 300,000 yen (roughly US$1450 to $2840) and I decided to go with their most modern and expensive procedure – the Amaris Z-Lasik. I would also be able to get a discount of several hundred dollars thanks to a referral coupon my friend gave me.

Their one-day package is the most encouraged and cheapest option. This means that you do all your tests and have the surgery on the same day. At first, I thought this was a convenient option, but I quickly learned that it’s not the best when things don’t go as planned.

It turned out that I have thin corneas and was told that I’m not an ideal candidate for Lasik. They also said that my nose is too big for the machine (I get the first reasoning but not the second!).

I was told I’d have to go with the older Intralase option and also get a second surgery known as cross-linking. Together it would be an additional $US660.

I hadn’t heard of this second procedure before and they were really pushy about me getting it done. I only had 5 minutes to Google it in the waiting room before I had to confirm my procedure. My gut was telling me not to do it, so I didn’t.

Although it was disappointing, I’m glad that I didn’t go through with it (at least not at this clinic). It’s one thing to not be an ideal candidate and needing to look at other options, but it really felt like they were trying to sell me on a procedure that I wasn’t comfortable with just to make some extra cash.

They got irritated when I asked questions, changed their story about various things that just didn’t seem to add up, and I couldn’t meet the doctor who would be performing the surgery. When I left, they tried to coax me back by offering to “do me a deal” and recommending cheaper options that they previously said were not ideal for me. In any case, it felt far from reputable.

I’m not against looking into Lasik again elsewhere (I know lots of people who have had great experiences in many parts of the world), but I think a clinic that does the initial screening on a separate day is much better for me. I’d like to be able to have all my questions answered, feel comfortable with the procedure and meet the doctor performing it.

About Jessica and Notes of Nomads

Jessica Korteman is an Australian travel writer, currently based in Tokyo, Japan. You’ll most often find her on her blog, Notes of Nomads  delving into culture and expat life, and how to create a lifestyle full of new experiences.

Jenny from 22places: LASIK in Istanbul!

In 2015, I decided to go for an eye laser surgery at the Eye STAR LASIK Institute in Istanbul. When I tell people about it, I usually get the following reaction: “Wow, are you crazy?”. But the quality of the hospitals in Istanbul is at least as good as in Germany. The advantage: It is a lot cheaper and you can combine it with a visit to Istanbul. The price was just one of the reasons why I decided to go to Istanbul for the operation. The crucial factor was that a friend of mine had laser surgery there two years earlier after a Turkish colleague recommended the clinic. So there were two people who were very happy with the clinic. That’s why the decision was not really hard for me. In addition, the hospital had great reviews online, the contact person was super nice and I just had a good feeling. I got my surgery appointment in Istanbul just 2 months after taking the decision. By the way, that’s also a good tip for people who are not sure whether to get the surgery done or not: Just take the decision and don’t push it along. Yes or no? And when you have decided, make an appointment directly. I didn’t regret my decision – not even for a second. The experience on site was very good, the lasering and everything around was less than 15 minutes, I had no pain and see 100 percent on both eyes. We spent a whole week in the beautiful metropolis, of which the surgery took only 1.5 days. On the day after the surgery, we could already do sightseeing! I would do it again anytime and can highly recommend laser surgeries in that clinic to everyone.
Florian Blümm von Flocblog

About Jenny and 22places

Jenny and Basti are bloggers, travel photographers and founders of the successful 22places online photography course. They live and work location independent and wander around this wonderful planet with their cameras all year round! Their goal: to find the 22 most beautiful places in the world.

On their blog 22places, they share their best photo tips, teach you photography in their online photo course and give detailed travel tips on the destinations they visit.

Subscribe to my newsletter so I can keep you posted about my life of travels and as a digital nomad! You will never miss a new blog post, a new ebook or where my next adventure is going to bring us. Because it’s never going to be boring!

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