Blogging on WordPress: Where Have All The Good Blogs Gone?

In my previous “Full Moon” post I stated that  February was a great month to look around and take stock of where you are and what you had now, and suggested that beer bloggers  take a quick look at their blog rolls to make sure they were up to date .  Taking my own advice, I spent some time one afternoon and ran down my own, and was shocked to find that I should have taken my own advice sooner.

missing bloggers

That’s right, bloggers are missing.  Which shouldn’t be too surprising, I mean after all many of us have taken short (or in some cases not so short) breaks from the constant cycle of scheduling, researching and writing it takes to maintain a full time blog.  Whether it be because of family reasons, technical reasons (my laptop is currently in California because apparently we couldn’t find anyone who can solder in Delaware, which is why I’ve been posting a little sparse recently) or just needed some time off to recharge.  But sadly, if you blog long enough (and apparently it doesn’t have to be that long) the truth of the matter is that after a while you will lose blogs that you enjoy reading, and think that other will enjoy as well.  People tire and move on, sometimes as if in mid-sentence, while others learn over a short span that blogging just isn’t for them.  One day you’re scrolling down your reader when you realize you haven’t seen a post from one of your favorite blogs in a very long time.  You hope it’s just an oversight, that you missed the most recent post in the vast current that is your WordPress reader.  But then you look, and your fears are confirmed.

So was the case as I scanned down my blog roll.  Some of them I knew I hadn’t seen in awhile, others I was pretty sure I’d seen recently only to discover that it hadn’t been nearly as recent as I suspected.  A quick scan of my stats revealed that a few other bloggers that I follow but who were not on my blog roll had also not posted for a long time.  Deciding to look into this further, I came to the conclusion that I needed a bigger sample size so I looked at the blogs that have followed mine over the years.  The numbers are pretty staggering.

Of the 202 WordPress blogs that have followed my blog, an amazing (to me anyway) 47 (23%) have not posted since June of 2013, or no longer exist.  An additional 8 more blogs have not posted since October of last year, and of those 55 total blogs, 6 never got passed their first post if they even made one at all.  This means that of the 202 blogs that have followed  me 27% haven’t posted in the last 4 1/2 months and 3% never got out of the starting gate.

However, all news wasn’t bad.  A couple of people actually popped back up while I was writing this post, and I discovered that one person that appeared to be gone had simply moved to another blogging platform.  I probably knew this, but forgot to capture it in my blog roll, and eventually, well, just forgot.

I thought I’d lost MeganVSBeer  for awhile,a nice blog that presented the opinions of both craft beer and homebrewing from the perspective of a woman.  Megan hadn’t posted since August, but I can’t blame her however, her family was blessed with a baby last year and I remember what a time black hole that was.  Happily, she did post back in January to catch everyone up one what’s been going on with the family, so hopefully she’ll be more active as time permits.

I was hoping that Will over at Brew-Trek was just taking an extended break since he too had not posted since August.  A photo heavy blog, Will does an excellent job on his posts on craft beer locations. Not only is his blog visually pleasing, but Will had a great knack for really talking to, and getting to know, the people behind the location (which is something that many bloggers (including myself) neglect when doing location reviews) and making the story about them.  I’m glad to report that Will posted another excellent establishment review yesterday and says that he’s been very busy with his other venture Beerporium but hopes to get back to adding more entries very soon.

I owe Gary over at Lyrics, Libations and Life because he introduced me to one of my now favorite beers.  A teacher and fledgling homebrewer, one of Gary’s early batches was a Saison that he intended to make with Sorachi Ace hops.  After reading several posts on his site, I discovered myself trying a beer made with those hops in the form of Brooklyn’s Sorachi Ace, and fell in love with it so much that it’s now a go-to for me whenever I find myself in a craft beer bar where it’s on draft.  The 3L site is down however, and Gary appears not to own the URL anymore.  But I’m happy to report that Gary is still blogging and his dropping the URL was a conscious decision on his part due to an issue with WordPress.  You can now find him on Blogspot.

And while I was happy to reconnect with these three, others weren’t so lucky….

The Beer Revue – Mike and Carney wrote a very good beer blog, and were active in the blogging community.  They both jumped onto a post I wrote about my blog writing process, which resulted in several very funny posts about theirs (here, and here).  After a few months of inactivity, Mike came back stating that he was continuing without Carney (although he is still active on twitter), but only wrote two more posts.  The site has been inactive since January of 2013.

Sauce Boss – Like many of you I don’t follow just beer blogs, and the next largest segment of subjects I do follow are food blogs.  Sauce Boss was a blog I had the pleasure of following right from the beginning.  The self proclaimed “Culinary Dark Genius”, Sauce Boss had an exceptional flair for food, a biting wit and prose style that would make Hugo Weaving in V for Vendetta jealous.  His last post was a biting tirade against AT&T back in August.

Fill It or Spill It is another blog I’ll miss greatly.  In a world full of verbose and over complicated beer reviews, Ed’s site had a very easy concept, review the beer and then state whether or not to Fill It (have more) or Spill It (pass).  Ed isn’t gone from the craft beer community as he’s still very active on twitter, but his blog hasn’t been posted to since May of last year.

Brix’s Beer blog hasn’t been updated since May of 2012, which saddens me greatly as he was one of the first blogs I followed, and one of the first to follow me back.  It also saddens me because it shows how little I’ve been paying attention to my blog roll, and a reflection on how much housekeeping needs to be done over here.

And that’s the sad list of blogs that seem to have fallen by the wayside.  I’m currently in the process of revamping my blog roll.  The flip side of the vacancy that is left when blogs stop is that I’ve found many other quality blogs to take their place.  Hopefully they’ll keep writing.  Hear that?  Pressure’s on, boys and girls.

Time for another beer…

Author: Ed (The Dogs of Beer)

Beer Blog focused on Delaware & surrounding area. Drinker of beer. Writer of stuff. Over user of commas. Dangler of prepositions.

14 thoughts on “Blogging on WordPress: Where Have All The Good Blogs Gone?”

  1. I’m still here, Ed, and I don’t plan to go anywhere!

    But I’ve seen this too. It’s not just beer blogs, either. Writing quality posts, consistently, seems really easy until you sit down and actually try to do it. I think that’s why so many blogs don’t make it past the first post or two. There’s that rush of something new, all the energy and freshness, but it dissipates quickly once you’ve stared at a blank prompt for hours and hours.

    It’s also a crazy time-investment, so unless you’re seriously vested, it might be easy to make the blog a low priority until one day it doesn’t even register on the prioro-meter. It’s a shame, but like everything, it wouldn’t be worth doing if it was easy.

    1. I think another part of it is people go into to it just factoring in the writing aspect of blogging. They don’t realize that depending on your subject matter and what you want to do with your blog there’s a whole host of other supportive activities that surround it.

      I mean, I’m not going to ask anyone to cry for me because people send me books to review (still need to read that one) or ask me attend media events or festivals as media and other stuff like that. But it does take time. And as you know, all those photos don’t sort, cull, crop and resize, themselves.

      But again, no crying. There’s no crying in (beer) blogging.

      1. I probably spend 30% of my “blog time” on photos, 50% writing/editing, and 20% publicizing/interacting with other bloggers. So you make an excellent point.

        It’s an artistic investment that can take a long time to pay off. For the first two year, I got like 1-5 hits a day. I think a lot of people burn out when they don’t see results instantly, which is a same, because there might have been a lot of potential there.

        P.S. I am unable to cry because I am a beer blogging robot from the future and everybody knows robots don’t cry. Unless they see something really, really sad.

    2. The “supportive activity” aspect of my blog has been the main victim of my offspring’s time-suck. Most of my time is spent trying to find time to write a post every other week. Which I guess is why I am here commenting on a three month old post that I missed reading in March.

  2. Thanks for the very kind words Ed. You succinctly put how life intervenes in what we pour our blood, sweat, and beers into.

    I agree with Oliver about the desire to compose well written posts; I’ve found myself starting a post and abandoning it many times since August because I was too distracted. That’s one of the reasons I didn’t do a top ten draft list this year; while the beers I had last year deserve to be mentioned, my inadequacy in describing them aborted it.

    I think I feel more guilty about not keeping up with my Reader feed, than not posting. Your post reminded me about what a great extended community we all have that is brought together by our mutual love of craft beer.

    1. Thanks for the comment. You were one of the ones that I was shocked to see hadn’t posted in awhile. I really enjoy your posts. But yes sometimes you just get stuck. I’m MONTHS late on a rundown of the Delaware Wine and Beer Festival, and because of it the post feels like a huge anchor holding me back.

      It is a great community. But I guess like any other, over time people move out. Hope to read you again soon!

  3. I will gladly pour one out tonight for blogs lost.

    The pouring will be be beer and it’ll be into my mouth, but, whatever. It’s the thought, right?

  4. I’m already thinking about what I want to do for special posts and reviews for my 2 year anniversary in June. 2 years! And the list of topics and things I’ve got in the queue is not small, in fact, it’s quite sexy and daunting.

    Like Oliver, a lot of delay in my bigger better posts is due to photo editing. It takes a while to grind through that many photos and turn them into post worthy images. I just can’t let one go up raw! I mean….how gauche! But the more I do it, the more I enjoy it. There’s nothing more satisfying than feeling like a post you just finished was good. Well researched, well written, well assembled and well worth it! Some of the posts that initially didn’t get much traffic and interest are now some of my best day in day out hit generators. My first Q & Ale post has been one of the top posts day in day out for months now (baring a new special post that day), and it was just over a year ago that I wrote it. When it first went it up, it did alright but nothing to write home about. Now, it’s turned into a monster.

    It just goes to show that persistence pays off in the blogging game. And frankly, it takes a lot of time to figure out your niche is in the niche world of beer blogging (or any blogging theme really). As any writer will tell you, find your voice and the people will respond, but that’s also one of the hardest things to do.

    What I need to do is comb through my blog roll and remove blogs that just don’t provide the quality content that I want to have linked to my blog. I guess I’m past the days of “if you put me in your blog roll, I’ll put you on mine.”

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