Monday, December 11, 2023

Twilight Of The Blogs

With apologies to Pete Seeger, where have all the blogs gone?  Over the years, I accumulated 69 blogs (the number is purely unintentional, but the gutter-minded may go ahead and giggle) on my little Blogger reading list (I suppose I could have thrown in WordPress blogs and other sites, but I stuck to Blogger-based blogs to avoid any tech glitches), but it looks like only 20 are still active.  4 are completely gone or have just left an empty shell behind.  2 shut down in 2011, 7 in 2012, 5 in 2013, 5 in 2014, 4 in 2015, 3 in 2016, 2 in 2017, 3 in 2018, 5 in 2019, only 1 in 2020 (people probably rediscovered their blogs with the massive amounts of freetime the crazy lockdowns created), 6 in 2021, and 3 in 2022.  Now, of course, assuming that someone hasn't forgotten their login credentials, one could always do another post at any time.  Many of the blogs as they go defunct are like that.  They start slowing down and do a couple of posts one year, then a final post a year later.  Some even spring back to life.  Eddie Campbell's blog was moribund since 2018, and really 2012, and he posted twice this year.  However, that's a rarity.  Instead, most of the defunct blogs make no formal goodbye  They just stop as the publisher lost interest, or lost login credentials, or got hit by a bus or whatever.  It is interesting to think how long a digital afterlife might exist after people die.  Print works differently, but websites have an immediacy to them that makes it weird when they're still up but abandoned for whatever reason.  At some point, Google will likely pull the plug, if not on Blogger entirely, then on the dormant blogs (they're doing this with Gmail accounts currently).  So if there's anything you like, as always, the smart idea is to save it while you can before someone gets a bee in their bonnet and deletes it.  Some of the blogs do put a gravestone up or a moving sign or whatever.  Blogs are just like zines or any personal publishing psychologically.  They fill a need for a time, and then most people move on.  A few people appear to be lifers, and those are the ones still publishing in 2023.  Blogs clearly are a little passe though.  Most folks self-publishing in 2023 are just going to start a Substack, and that's pretty cool because of the email aspect, though the constant badgering for money is a tad annoying (of course, I have a PayPal begging bowl up on my blog so I shouldn't complain).  It's cool the old blogs are still up as they have a lot of good reading on them, though given the immediacy of the Web medium I don't know how many people are going to read random blog posts from 2015 or whatnot.  I have stumbled across other cool Blogger blogs over the years, but I didn't put them on my list because it looked like the blogger had already abandoned the blog.  The Web used to be the world's greatest newsstand, and it maybe it still is, but with all the censorship (self and otherwise), paywalls, and garbage out there it isn't what it once was, but here's a toast to those still blogging away.  Cheers!

If you, like me, sometimes struggle to find something interesting to read online, why not read a novel, for example, Blog Love Omega Glee, about a couple of bloggers back when blogs were considered cooler than they are today (fun fact:  "Twilight Of The Blogs" was going to be the title of the novel before that silly fiction series about vampires came out)?

No comments:

Post a Comment

To reduce spam, I have to approve these. On behalf of the spammers, sorry for the delay!