Today is a milestone for me, marking the day I registered with WordPress.com 7 years ago. If you do a little more digging, you’ll find that this site has been online since February 23, 2007. But let me share a little secret with you. This is not my only WordPress.com account. Like a few other old-timers I know and some folks who have recently signed up, I first joined WordPress.com back in January 2007 to stake a claim on my *other* nom de plume. I’ve been “yarnaholic” longer in my online life than I’ve been “justjennifer”, late 1990′s compared to early 2000′s. (Not much of a secret, I know, since I’ve linked to my knitting site up there under “Loose Ends“. Please try to contain your disappointment.)
“Justjennifer,” not to mention WordPress.com, has certainly changed a lot since its beginning and not necessarily for the better. My recent focus has become a little cloudy and topics that I used to feel passionate about don’t move me in the same way. I think that this is also a reflection of the lack of time that I have to indulge myself in writing here or anywhere. I do feel guilty about it. Most of my communications these days are brief notes on “social media” (Can we say “Like”?) accompanied by lots of photos. Posting on social media is a tad ironic for me, since what’s one to do if one is not particularly “social,” but not really “antisocial”? It’s a bit of a conundrum. I foresee a lot of pruning of those sites in the future as well. Perhaps the problem is needing to refocus and be less distracted or scattered in my efforts to be everywhere all the time.
During this past long holiday weekend I revisited all my subscribers’ sites and discovered that since my last visit many followers have moved on to other pursuits or have just moved on, to a “better place”. So few have managed the long haul, even with interruptions. (Well, OK. Not *all* interruptions can be overcome.) The drive to continuously provide thoughtful, insightful, meaningful or entertaining content is indeed daunting and a difficult prospect for some, including me. When I’ve hesitated or felt that both your time and mine were better spent elsewhere, I’ve thrown up my version of a “Gone Fishing!” sign or redirected you to this site’s older posts or reblogged something I found interesting. I’ll continue doing that for the foreseeable future, hopefully with more of my own thoughts as well. Thanks for sticking with me.
And as I wrote this post, this WordPress.com Award showed up in my notifications. Welcome to the new WordPress.com.
As I logged into Twitter Thursday morning, @ahoova’s tweet greeted me:
And what followed were several hours on a roller-coaster ride of emotional ups and downs and reading more about RSS feeds and apps than I’ve done in years. I consume a lot of RSS feeds in my Google Reader, but apparently overlooked this one:
Powering Down Google Reader (via Official Google Reader Blog and posted to WordPress.com via Reader’s “Send to” button.)
What does this mean for me personally? For me the Reader is not only about reading but being able to share interesting reads and not just to FB, Twitter and by email! Google Reader also lets you publish a public page of any selected feed or groups of feeds and that page itself has a feed. I’ve used them to populate WordPress.com RSS widgets on several of my sites. On this site, that’s the “Blogging News” in the footer. Come July 1st, those will disappear, unless I can find a replacement.
And on the lighter side, Ian in Hamburg has gone all out poking fun at the demise of Google Reader (with tongue in cheek…I think).
Meanwhile, over on Rob Cottingham’s “Noise to Signal”…
Noise to Signal Cartoon
Update: Will the bad news from Google never end? What’s next, Google Alerts?
Update2: WordPress.com users can import their Google Reader subscriptions to the WordPress.com Reader. Announcement here.
Could be related:
Killing Google Reader is like killing the bees: we’ll all be worse off
It had to happen. All those Facebook and Twitter accounts just languishing with posts from 6 months (or more) ago or nothing but auto-posts from other social networks that I have befriended you on already or nothing but short URL links making it look like your account has been hacked.
If you were caught in the Great Unfollow crossfire, don’t be offended. I probably connect with you in other ways. Otherwise, go start posting real content again. And in all fairness feel free to unfollow me as well if my content doesn’t interest you. We all have limited time on our plates. I would hate to think I’m wasting yours!
And since I have your attention, here’s yet another prediction of the demise of blogging as we know it. Every time I read an article like this I become more worried about the demise of lengthy or thoughtful or thought-provoking prose. Do we really no longer have the patience or time to read with intent not only articles we agree with, but articles that we disagree with that challenge our worldview. I do wonder…
(P.S. The foot is much better. Thanks for asking!)