me, the state of the blogosphere, and you…

Google Reader was laid to rest yesterday and ceased functioning as everyone’s de facto RSS feed reader. Five years ago, yesterday, I wrote a handy little note about how to make Google Reader more awesome. That’s how long I’ve been carrying that RSS reader around. I switched to feedly last fall, but still. GR and I were tight. Perhaps I held on too long, maybe? Because the blog format has come so far in those 5 years… and in the 4 before that when I registered this domain name nine years ago. And I’m not sure if I even know where it is now. So if you’ll indulge me, I’m going to spit out some thoughts about the current status of the blogosphere, and then see where that takes me… and you. And I’d love if you could add your thoughts/reflections and we’ll see where it takes all of us … and this space here.

The loose history of the blogosphere (as I’ve experienced it):

In the beginning… blogs were about you & me. Online diaries that we opened for others to see. My blog started as a personal webpage that I updated with “facts about me” and photos. My own personal facebook profile, I guess? I blogged (on livejournal) about my work. And my friends. And my relationships. And UCLA sports. And I made friends with those who happened to pass by and read what I had written. And I made friends by reading other blogs and passing by with words/thoughts.

kookybutkim

[this archive.org screenshot is from the day that Mr. M first messaged me…]

There were a few blogs out there that were not personal. They were like mini news sites. GoFugYourself was the first blog I remember being not personal, but instead topical and pure awesome. Dooce was around, but she was old and I just so didn’t get it.

When I found Weddingbee in 2006, it was a local blog for NYC brides. It didn’t matter… I read it because I thought it was insanely awesome. And Bee loved gocco. And I loved my PrintGocco, so newly engaged me therefore loved Bee and Weddingbee. (Did you follow that math equation??)  But soon after, Weddingbee went national and wanted bloggers from everywhere. So I applied, and 80 months ago became a “wedding blogger.” Instead of telling a personal story about my wedding planning, I was objectively “sharing” my experience in a way that others could relate/learn from/enjoy. This wasn’t about me writing what happened because it happened, it was about putting something out there that was useful and purposeful for the world. My inner “hey guys! this is awesome” self loved it. And I flipped my online voice a bit. I didn’t just write and share cause it happened. I wrote/shared because it was part of a larger story to tell or share with others.

But when I blogged for Weddingbee, no one owned a personal dSLR. We had digital cameras, but nothing crazy fancy. Camera phones were horrible. Lots of bloggers barely included pictures. And people read and loved it still. Because people were telling a story or sharing something new and making friends. And people like that.

Slowly, the blogosphere moved away from the personal narrative and became thematic and niched. Home bakers had food blogs. Visual artists had design blogs. Moms created parenting blogs. And so on and so on. Some were professional, others were hobbies. But the personal narrative diary blog faded away… and toward some sort of topic to share. Your blog was purposeful. And discrete in its identity. And valuable to everyone.

There were better photos on blogs. They were prettier in design. And they started to resemble magazine features in content. Why read magazines when Elise has a beautiful new recipe for you every day? But these were people with serious skills and time and devotion to their mini magazines. They were creating quality content because they were experts or getting experts to share.

Then Julie and Julia.

In my head, this is when I could tell people I blogged and they actually knew what I was talking about.

Blogging wasn’t a secret world. It was mainstream and cool. And you could end up with fans and a book deal and a film.

This is when the journeymen on the side really jumped in hard. In the spirit of these highly topical blogs, people started more and more of their own topic blogs either from the ground up or evolved their space into their own specific genre. Some people still sprinkled in their personal stories, but for the most part… the story left and the content/topic took over.

And suddenly everyone had a blog. About everything or anything. The culture took on a life of its own in the upper reaches too. For a while I thought everyone lived in an Anthropologie store and ate lunch at J. Crew. I was immersed, so I have no idea if blog culture was different from what was going on in the outside world, but I have a feeling it was. So that’s why everyone felt cooler. Because we were reading some underground info about something that wasn’t so underground. There were blog tastemakers setting the trends and everyone was getting carried away with each new fad. It was a cool hip little world of influencers whose identity on their blog was influencing how everyone else wanted to be seen (on their blog or in life) as well. And even though the personal had faded toward this practical angle, you felt like you knew everyone like a friend. Because there was a person behind it…  not a publishing house or a celebrity. A real person talking to you through their words in their space.

And I loved being in the know on something new. Finding recipes and crafts that people had truly put a lot of time and effort into sharing with me. Perfect cookie recipes. Awesome “new mommy” lists. Gorgeous photos of a family’s day at the beach. Pretty life. Pretty people. Pretty stuff. Useful and cool. AND… by regular folks like me.

But then it all got too big. That happened somewhere around 2011/12. I know I felt excluded by early 2012.

And all blogs suddenly needed to be really pretty and perfect.

ALL THE TIME.

It wasn’t enough to share.

But you needed the perfect photos of your pasta dinner if you were going to share a recipe.

dSLR in your hand at all times folks!

And design skills too… make sure you know Illustrator/Photoshop front/back.

That’s when I saw my friends fade away.

Their voices disappeared and their simple images weren’t popping up in my reader. I stopped seeing their simple recipes pop up. In their place, I saw pretty pictures from other blogs and had to sort through them to find valuable content. Was it that time in their life? Or was blogging looking like something new, and they didn’t have the tools/time to do this new thing.

They’re still around. Lots of them are on instagram. And they’re still amazingly talented and gifted and creative and loving in their everyday awesome way… but the blogosphere has passed them by in favor of something else and they’ve let it go that way too. It’s no longer a platform where it feels ok to just share what you thought today. Or post a photo. There are so many other spaces for that… and the blog is instead something so different than it was nine years ago.

But I miss that sharing. Not the superficial stuff on pinterest. The real 30-minutes I could spend a day reading into deep thoughts. Or a super great recipe pictured just as it would on my kitchen table and not on Martha’s.

But there’s money in content. The trendsetters get paid in giveaways. And products. And clothes. And travel. And exclusive parties. And then in cold hard cash. The latest figures I’ve heard are $2000-2500/post for the big people on a big campaign post. Everyone else is floating around $75-500/post to advertise. Or share. Or whatever.

And now I don’t know where the blogosphere is anymore.

Because I don’t trust the trendsetters who wax poetic about brands that give them free clothes. (Dear Banana Republic… I’d tattoo your brand on my arm and tweet about you all day long if you’d stock my closet!) Or those that create silly silly things that are totally useless to everyone every single day because they need to earn their $6 million in VC funding. Or those that photograph their salad and honestly provide me a recipe on how to make it: lettuce, dressing and 3 raspberries.

And I miss my friends. And THEIR stories. THEIR honest advice. Their words with no motivation but the joy of sharing.

I don’t know if still being here is worthwhile to anyone but me and my archives. Am I sailing out to sea with Google Reader? Or should I bend my sails and make this spot something different. I’ve tried to test the waters of the other side… and while it fits sometimes, it falls very flat at other times. So I’m sort of stuck here too.

Because the more I read… the less “friends” I find… and the less authenticity I see. And that’s why I loved blogging.

Sharing real stories. From real people. About real things. Not magazine stuff. Not Martha stuff. Real stuff.

So that’s me and blogs. And my blog. And my take on blogs in general.

Now it’s your turn to share. Or rant… yeah… rant like I just did. Or run away from me…. you can do that too.

I don’t know what this evolves into, or if I make it just stop evolving and turn back the clock. But yeah. This is where I am with the blogosphere and I’m not sure how to fix me/it/us or if it needs fixing at all. As long as this place bears my name, I’ll still be here.

23 comments on me, the state of the blogosphere, and you…

  1. Katie
    July 2, 2013 at 11:27 am (1 year ago)

    This is why I continue to follow your blog, when I’ve stopped reading so many. This is, in so many ways, and without my own acknowledgement, why I haven’t blogged regularly in months.

    Blogging today is content marketing. And I get content marketing. I do some of it for work every day. It makes sense, it’s useful, and it works.
    But I desperately miss the thoughtful, unpretty, unpinnable WRITING that used to take place and allow me to develop friendships with people who were, like me, imperfect (and not artist/photographers/designers).

    I could go on and on and on. I wish I had wrote this post myself but instead I’m going to share this with everyone and say thank you. For your very astute observations. For your blog and for your friendship over the internets. :-)

    Katie

    Reply
    • Katie
      July 2, 2013 at 11:34 am (1 year ago)

      I wish I had written*** 8-) I switched grammar halfway through that sentence

      Reply
  2. Catherine
    July 2, 2013 at 11:30 am (1 year ago)

    I love this. I was really into blogging our journey etc but then as time passed, I felt like what we had to say wasn’t new or pretty or loaded with fancy pictures. I still mostly take pictures with my iphone (GASP!). I haven’t changed the look of our blog in 3 years. Does anyone really want to read about or benefit from my journey to find a solution to my overflowing spice cabinet? I felt like a big fat NO. I get inspired to post and even have list of post ideas but never get around to it because it seem like it’s not about something important enough for people to care about.

    Reply
  3. Cindy
    July 2, 2013 at 11:40 am (1 year ago)

    Looooove this post. I really wish I could blog more, just a space to throw out my thoughts, because I really don’t have anywhere else to put them. Plus there are a lot of scary people out there that might creep too far into what you blog and you might receive a lot of unwanted attention.

    I love personal blogs. It’s the only place where I can get actual relevant information and a personal experience, not a paid post about a product and how they “jazzed” something plain up. I want to know if it worked for you pre-jazzing and pre-SEO and ad revenue. And my photography hasn’t progressed to a level of “wow” but just a picture of the process is nice, not just the finished product. I remember me trying to sew together a garter as I dealt with bad lighting, me holding a tiny P&S camera and several pieces of ribbon together. Oh the memories…

    I like life. Not highly dramatized, perfectly written in short snippets life.

    Reply
  4. Amanda
    July 2, 2013 at 11:40 am (1 year ago)

    I LOVE this post and I agree 100%. I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately, and I’ve been struggling with the whole blogging world because it seems so different from what I fell in love with originally. It all is starting to feel so fake. I love that you brought this up and I hope it’s something that is talked about more in the future!

    Reply
  5. Ayesha
    July 2, 2013 at 11:43 am (1 year ago)

    I’ve blogged for a long time, too. I started in high school with livejournal, and it was just my angsty feelings about life and things I had experienced with friends. My theatre group created a group on livejournal and we shared there. I also documented a few of my study abroad travels for my friends still on lj years later. I loved it. I knew that putting stuff on the Internet was opening me up to having my life invaded, but I never worried that people would just find my blog. It was mostly just friends reading it, like it is now. I just have more friends.

    While unemployed, I started a new blog on WordPress, but I decided I had to have an angle, which I decided was going to be book reviews. I also started a wedding blog in the hopes of becoming a Weddingbee. Over time, I realized that I just wanted to write about fun things that were happening in my life outside of wedding planning and reading. My blog is simple. It’s not for people to pay me or find great recipes or anything. I just like to do it. I don’t have any web skills or camera skills, for that matter. I used to be concerned that my blog was just blah. But I have realized that people appreciate hearing about books I’ve read, because it’s like they’re getting recommendations from a friend.

    I refer to my blog friends all the time as my real friends. I feel like I know you all to some extent. Even though my blog only gets about 10 views a day, I know that a lot of those people are people I can name. And that’s comforting. I don’t think my blog will ever grow to a huge readership with sponsorships or anything like that, but that’s not what it’s for. And that’s ok. Thank you for writing this post. It means a lot that others feel the same way I do about the blogging world.

    Reply
  6. HamiHarri/AshleyHami
    July 2, 2013 at 12:01 pm (1 year ago)

    You’ve just articulated what has been floating around in the back of my mind for some time, but not yet formed into concrete thoughts. I still love reading blogs…although some of the “big” blogs get tiresome at times…same stuff/pretty pictures/perfect life over and over again. It’s not that I relish in the hardships people face, but the content has seemed less genuine in these blogs as they got bigger.

    I used to blog often…when I look back at my posts, I’m somewhat embarrassed. Poor writing, silly topics, crappy photography (but of people I love). I stopped blogging for a lot of reasons…mainly I lost the reason why I was blogging. Was I blogging for me? For others to read? And there was pressure. Lots of pressure from reading other pretty blogs. Not direct pressure from these bloggers of course, but from the feeling that I didn’t match up.

    I mean, I seem to have time for lots of crafty projects, but not the time to take fantastic photos of what I’m working on, or the editing skills to ‘assist’ with making my photos better. I think this is why I so heavily use instagram. When I did start blogging, it was truly like an online diary of sorts. I will admit that I edited out a lot of my feelings, or things that were challenging on the home front, because while I’m an over sharer, I do think it is ok to hold back some stuff ;) Especially if I wanted to look back on my blog with a smile on my face about all of the joy that I have in my life. So, I guess instead of an online diary, it was more like an online scrapbook. Instagram sort of does this form me…although I do wish it wasn’t such a pain to type on my little iPhone.

    I know it’s just me and I’m just one reader, but I still love with your blog pops up with a new post. Like your vacation in San Fran was fun to read…and of course an Miss L posts..and crafty posts…and food posts…yep, pretty much the entire blog ;) I also really look forward to blogs like Jenna (That Wife, of course ;) and while for a long time I didn’t always agree with how she saw the world…I still looked forward to her honest posts…with lots of pictures of her lovely family, or with very little photos. Same goes for Amber from Ambergontrail. It was always more about the words, the writing…the honest human experience.

    I used to follow a blogger during the time I was planning my wedding…we were in a similar place (wedding planning, moved into a new home). I enjoyed reading her seemingly mundane posts about what carpet should she get for her living room…or how she wanted to make her own headboard. Throughout her posts I’d learn little bits about her relationships offline, how her hubby thought she was silly for thinking so much about a carpet (I could so relate to that…hehe), and how she was contemplating various options for honeymoons. I loved it! She ended up becoming a SAHM and turned her blog into a money maker…and became a DisneyMom (which part of me is incredibly jealous about!)…got a few pro writing gigs etc…and while I still follow her on IG and facebook, I can’t remember the last time I clicked over to her blog. It has a very different layout which is half ads…and then her actually posts were sponsored. Made me sad, I missed her! And with this blog change she gained so many followers…I know I kind of got lost in the mix of them. Oh well…times change, people change… It’s still a bummer though!

    All this is to say, I’m still reading blogs, and I’m always on the lookout for new bloggers that I can relate to. I’m also always holding out hope that the bloggers I used to follow “back in the day,” but have stopped blogging will start up again.

    Reply
  7. Amy I.
    July 2, 2013 at 12:47 pm (1 year ago)

    Well said! I’ve felt a lot of insecurity about continuing to blog now that food blogging is such a “thing” that I have no bandwidth to pursue. About 6 months ago I started posting again using iPhone photos instead of my dSLR and writing a quick, poorly-written blurb instead of a long narrative about each recipe. I’m so glad I gave myself permission to do that. I started my blog as a food journal for myself, and it’s come back around to that today, and I’m quite content. Please don’t go away!

    Reply
  8. Jensbrightlife
    July 2, 2013 at 12:57 pm (1 year ago)

    Kudos Kim for writing such a thoughtful post on the topic of where blogging has gone.

    Weddingbee is what really got me hooked on blogs and was WAY before I even got engaged! I loved figuring out where my favorite bees’ personal blogs (including yours!) were and following them on life post-wedding. I got even more excited when I became “friends” with and interacted with them! It encouraged me to start my own blog and join Twitter so I could become even more engaged in the online community.

    Now many of those original blogs I loved don’t regularly update anymore which make me sad. I keep every.single.one on my blog reader though in the off chance they post something. Luckily many of theses people are still on Twitter so I still feel somewhat more connected to them, but I do miss their day to day blog posts.

    I think about going back to blogging, but for some reason it seems so overwhelming now. Not sure if that is because of my own expectations, time restraints or a little bit of both. I think I also feel like I have to write a bunch of posts to make up for lost time. I love looking back on my old blog posts and seeing where I was at a little different point in my life. In fact, I just looked and my baby was teeeny tiny when I last blogged! Maybe sometime I’ll get back to it.

    I hope you continue to blog in just the way you are now! Even though I don’t comment a lot, I’m sure I can speak for many when I say we are all still here! :-)

    Reply
  9. Kristie
    July 2, 2013 at 5:15 pm (1 year ago)

    Great post! I don’t have much to add to what others have posted. Just wanted you to know that someone else read your thoughts and can relate to them!

    Reply
  10. Talda
    July 2, 2013 at 7:39 pm (1 year ago)

    This. All of this. I’ve met a lot of friends through blogging, including my future hubby. I still remain amazed at how writing about our lives could bring so many different people together. I do feel that the smaller, personal blogs are lost in the shuffle. I’ve been struggling with getting back into the blogging groove and I couldn’t really figure out why. I want to write but the internal pressure to write something witty or insightful was so overwhelming that my voice felt choked and forced. I do hope I’ll be able to get back into the swing of things.

    Reply
  11. Christine
    July 2, 2013 at 11:22 pm (1 year ago)

    For what it’s worth, I enjoy reading your blog. I love any post related to Disney, seeing how you spent a weekend/vacation (because sometimes it inspires me to do something!), and just random thoughts like this post. I blogged for fun in early college on Livejournal, but it was just my friends reading it. Now there’s Facebook for updates, I suppose. I love the idea of being a blogger, but I just feel like I have nothing to contribute! I can relate to your post about Alt Summit and not being XYZ enough…and the internet is already saturated with things I CAN talk about. (We had a Disney wedding, and since then, there are tons of Disney wedding themed blogs, seemingly recycling the same posts and information among themselves.) Ah well, I guess we’ll just have to see where blogs and social media end up in a few years…in the mean time, I’m still here reading. :)

    Reply
  12. estelle
    July 3, 2013 at 9:34 am (1 year ago)

    Ah! I am so behind on blog reading since this weekend so I haven’t gotten to this yet in my Reader but I love so much of what you are saying. I started following you because of Weddingbee and one of the Valetine’s Day card exchanges where you were my person. That was a long time ago, and still, here I am. Following around and sometimes marveling how our paths have crossed over the years.

    Long ago, I wanted to be a Bee so badly. I applied. I tried to mold my voice into what I thought the site wanted and it just never worked out. I wasn’t accepted, I was totally crushed, and I never thought I would be like the girls I so looked up to. The ones who were so creative, and seemed so personal in their posts. But then I had my wedding, and we did it our own way and maybe it wasn’t entirely bloggable according to some standards but I loved it all the same.

    Getting rejected by WB made me really rethink my writing, and what I was doing. I started blogging because after four years of intense writing in school and graduating, I was spent. I thought this was the easiest way to get back into it after just stopping. I started writing anonymously, then blogging about Disney, and then reviewing books. In both Disney and books, I feel like I’ve found my niche. I can be myself but still be smart or silly or creative if I want to be. But after reading this, I get it. Sometimes the personal is missing. I never wanted to be a Disney blog that just took news and put it on site like it was mine, exclusively. I always tried to put my own spin on it, and after 2 years in this “world”, we dont’ always get to see WHO the writer is.

    I like to mix my blogs for that reason I think. Something personal, something historic, something new and fashionable and fun. But over the years, I have stopped following certain people when it seems like they are just… following the trend or doing something because of sponsors. I get it’s a way to make money and I’d love to make even like a dollar on my blog sometimes (or at least cover hosting fees) but it really does take away form the person. So many times blogging and reading about other people’s lives have given me comfort when I’m going through a big change and feeling alone. I don’t really have too many places to go and hang out and read when I am feeling blue.

    Is that silly? I don’t know. Twitter and the internet has become my own friend matching place. I meet a lot of people this way, and some of them are my best friends now. We go out to dinner, and hang out for real and EVEN SO there are so many instances where I have found our the voice does not match up to the human. And I think that has a lot to do with the change in the internet, the branding of PEOPLE. I feel like people think they need to mold to your needs or interests to BE FRIENDS. And you know, it still doesn’t work that way. It didn’t when there was no internet and it doesn’t work now. That just heads to hurt.

    Okay, this is a novel. But I think what I’m saying is… I really like what you said here. I hope you don’t go anywhere. I always love reading about your adventures and checking in. I hope people maybe infuse a bit more of their real lives in the blog (even when they don’t want to get too private) or at least step back and see what they are putting out there and if they like how they are being perceived? Maybe it’s time to get back down to the basics.

    Reply
  13. runningnekkid
    July 3, 2013 at 9:37 am (1 year ago)

    I started over on LJ as well, when the BB my friends and I hung out at went kaput. Starting with a group of friends on LJ made for such a diverse and active community. I made more friends, had my opinoins challeneged regularly when my friends presented lives I hadn’t even considered. I grew personally through reading about my friends’ lives, and, I think, I gave some of that back to several people.

    Now my LJ friends list is all but a wasteland, with various people (including me) trying valiantly to rally but always falling flat. It just feels so different now without all of us.

    Now I blog at my own domain, mostly read by the same women I met at that old BB over ten years ago. I write super personal posts and only recently started being conscious of adding photos to make my posts more share-able. I’ll never be a big hitter but I’d like to make more friends. If facilitating the current sharing process helps me reach that goal, then okay.

    I’ve joined a couple of blogging groups recently, also looking for friends. And while the groups are fairly diverse, of course the most active members are going to be the ones focused more on readership. How do I get more page views? How do I do a promotion? How do I monetize my blog? Ah, the million dollar question. How do I make money on this? Do I really want to?

    If you read most “how do I be a better blogger” articles out there, the focus tends to be on everything that you described above. Pick a niche. Add pictures. Write smaller posts. Be an expert. Blah blah blah. Well, I reject that vision of blogging. I believe you become a better blogging by writing your ass off the best you cand and pushing yourself to post publicly as often as realistic for you. Post good content. Post honest content. Be yourself.

    I’ve been seeing more people insert themselves into their niche blogs. I recently read a wonderful post discussion cooperation and middle ground in the middle of a trifle recipe. It was wonderful. I don’t share food posts, but you bet your ass I shared that. I believe we’ll see this more and more, as people crave more relationshipping and use whatever platforms they have to explore that craving.

    At least, I hope so.

    (Great post!)

    Reply
  14. JenG
    July 3, 2013 at 8:39 pm (1 year ago)

    I’m a million miles away (it seems anyway!) in lifestyle and location (married, no kids, in corn country Illinois), but I still read your blog because I feel like I could be your friend, because it isn’t all sponsored posts and perfect photos and all the things that bloggers have moved toward. I started reading during your Weddingbee days and your posts still resonate. I may not ever get to move to California, though I’ve been job searching for 3 years, but I like seeing snippets of that life. I don’t think anything needs fixing or changed. I think you are right where you need to be.

    Reply
  15. Kim@NewlyWoodwards
    July 8, 2013 at 9:28 am (1 year ago)

    You articulated this really well. My move away from Reader actually gave me a really good opportunity to “unfollow” blogs that for some reason I started following. And I’m continuing to pare down my list.

    I love to blog and enjoy sharing. But I agree that the perfection that is everywhere in our Pinterest world is hard to live up to. There are times that I nearly keep myself from blogging something because it’s not pretty enough or perfect enough or creative enough. But, I didn’t start the blog to be a Pinterest superstar. I started it because I enjoy sharing and like recording the moments in our life. So, I continue on. Blogging what I want. Sometimes I take on sponsored posts, but I’m turning most of them down because it takes the fun away.

    Anyhoo, I can really see both sides of this issue. I see that some of these great bloggers are truly running a business. But most of us can’t live up to that. And don’t want to. And shouldn’t have to.

    I’ve enjoyed reading your blog for a long time. Just wanted to pop over and share my (rambling) thoughts.

    Reply
  16. suki
    July 19, 2013 at 10:49 am (1 year ago)

    a kindred blogging spirit! ;-) so glad we got to meet yesterday!

    Reply
    • Kim
      July 20, 2013 at 8:01 pm (1 year ago)

      So happy we met! Can’t wait to see you more online!

      Reply
  17. Sara
    July 29, 2013 at 11:49 am (1 year ago)

    I’m pretty sure I fall into the category of trying to pick a niche and working really hard to have amazing pictures stay within the niche, and provide useful/helpful information, pick up advertisers and get those travel and product perks! However, that’s not happened since I started my new shiny niche blog and to be honest, I often feel dissatisfied with the content, especially with recent real wedding posts and others like it with less of my voice in them, and I think one big reason is the lack of community. There’s no comments. Cause, I guess there’s nothing to really say. I started Sincerely-sara.com after Weddingbee (brooch here! hi!!!!) to pursue that ‘writing from the heart,’ mentality but somewhere along the line I became obsessed with the idea for a big brand-name blog. ***Sigh*** I guess I’ll figure out how to mesh them all at some point, or maybe just give up blogging altogether, too? Thanks for your insight about this and for the way you so eloquently wrote it. Lots to think about!

    Reply
  18. Katie C (@SheLikesRuffles)
    July 30, 2013 at 10:03 am (1 year ago)

    Speaking of Google Reader going away…here I am commenting on your post almost a month after the fact. I had been using feedly for a while before GR shut down, but then the day after it officially went away, my feedly completely reset itself! I logged in and there were over 6,000 unread posts…which was inaccurate, of course. I took a deep breath and hit “mark all as read” and in the process I clearly missed some good things!

    I really love this post and it definitely makes you think. Everyone seems to have a blog nowadays (you are so right about the Julie and Julia reference), and the rules seem to be ever changing. With monetization and sponsorships, etc, I do see how there has been a shift in what blogs have become.

    …part 2 of the comment next…the formatting of the comment box makes the “post comment” button disappear. I’m too wordy. Haha!

    Reply
  19. Katie C (@SheLikesRuffles)
    July 30, 2013 at 10:04 am (1 year ago)

    I feel like I can understand both sides of the spectrum on this one. When I first started blogging (also with WB, of course!), I really did enjoy the more diary-esque feel. I don’t have a lot of friends locally, so it was nice to form friendships online with other people with my interests. And I feel like a few years ago, comments were so much more abundant…and I don’t see that nowadays as much. Posts from 3 years ago on my site (when my traffic was pretty minimal) have maybe 20 comments or more on them…I’m lucky to get 5 now. I can see why it happens with a lot of blogs when they’re not sharing a personal story, but it does boggle my mind a little bit when I do share a story or something about my life and I just hear crickets. When I run into people I know, they will make a comment about how they read my blog…and it always takes me by surprise because they are obviously just passive readers (which is fine of course). Trying to build a community can be tough now – lots of people are reading…not a lot of people are putting their hands to the keyboard.
    But on the other end of the spectrum, I actually enjoy the creative side of things…working on my photography, building a portfolio of sorts. It does make me proud to look back at old recipe posts and see how they compare to the new ones I’m shooting. I’m self taught, so I guess it is just a little point of pride when I see something I created turn out pretty on the screen!

    Reply
  20. Cathleya
    October 1, 2013 at 1:51 pm (12 months ago)

    This is ca-razy (not really) but I stumbled on this post from a link from another blog. I started to read the topic without seeing your header and then you started talking about blogging about UCLA and I was like heyyyy and then I scrolled up and duh it’s YOU. #doh. This is just perfection and my feelings exactly. How many bloggers have become curators of content and not content creators, and what’s the point/why don’t we just follow that person on pinterest/why do you need a blog for that? Blogging became so exhausting to me because I felt like everything had to be ZOMGperfect…but now I realize (now that the internet is flooded with that “stuff”) that there’s still a space for personal, “I’m just me being me” content. I need to get back to the place where I can blog, just to blog. When I feel like it. With no pressure. And a lot of words, and feelings…not exhausting ideas that i struggle so hard to discover and share. Anyway, hiiiiiii. Miss you!

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  21. Stephanie
    October 24, 2013 at 8:27 pm (11 months ago)

    Wow, I feel like I just got a history lesson in blogging (PS I love history)! You’re spot on and it’s so interesting to read all this from someone who’s been blogging for nearly a decade! Great points, thanks from a fellow bee blogger!

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