Blogging and newsletter authoring for general pundits. Closely related: subscribing to feeds which is a convenient and natural way to read and interact with blogs. These days there is a fashion for email first blogs, because it provides a handy on-ramp for people who do not know how to subscribe to feeds.
A lot of the blog discussion here assumes basic verbal punditry. The technicalities of academic blogging can be a little different; see that page for more HOWTOs on mathematical markup and citations etc.
A blog post is a very long and complex search query to find fascinating people and make them route interesting stuff to your inbox
As you start routing information and putting out blog posts, you will begin to accumulate connections. Useful information will start to stream toward you, turning you into a small hub yourself. This will allow you to collect and curate information and route it back out, which will allow even more people to connect to you, in a flywheel that lets you do increasingly useful and good work. I especially enjoy it when intelligent people attack me; I then invite them to comment on upcoming drafts.
You can also post to subreddits and forums, like LessWrong or the SlateStarCodex subreddit, that act like intellectual cafés on the internet. Pasting your posts there, it is easy to find community when you are starting out; you don’t have to scream into the void.
Be a Lighthouse ← We Can Solve This
Blogging acts as a lighthouse.
Lighthouses are famously easy things to spot. They broadcast their presence far and wide. It’s their only function. Being a lighthouse makes you easier to find, which is to say, it helps advertise your existence to the sort of people you’d like to find.
What I currently do. See static site.
Classic, and I used to use it a lot. Pro: integrates into other things well. Offers both open-source and hosted versions.
Email subscriptions are useful for enabling people who do not know how to read feeds.
Also some of the providers (e.g. substack) provide a unified experience of the blogosphere conversation which happen to be on substack; see Richard Hanania’s argument about the virtues of this. Personally I’m not that excited about the unified seamless experience that has Hanania interested. It is essentially a standard feed reader but inside Substack’s pay-to-play walled garden with no API; Avoiding that nonsense is why I left facebook and Instagram. But I get that the nice UX is a battle-tested way of onboarding some idle contributors. Meanwhile, the lack of API achieves vendor lock-in that keeps the writers on board, so it’s commercially savvy to set it up this way.
Anyway, I will continue to read substack blogs inside feedly with all my other blogs (but I will laboriously manually cross-sync my subscriptions between Substack’s walled garden and the wider universe.)
See Alexey Guzey on affordances and effectiveness of several blog-email providers, backed by an open-rate data experiment. Why I switched my newsletters from Substack and Mailchimp to Buttondown, which highlights some points of friction and interest between Substack and some others.
Ghost is a popular email/blog hybrid platform. It is open-source with a fairly cheap hosted option.
Create your own platform on the web. Ghost is a powerful app for new-media creators to publish, share, and grow a business around their content. It comes with modern tools to build a website, publish content, send newsletters & offer paid subscriptions to members.
Don’t settle for another basic profile that looks just like everyone else. Make it yours.
Publish by web & email newsletter. An editor built from the ground-up for professionals. Calm by design, with advanced workflows by default. No more suffering through clumsy toolbars or drag & oops. Immerse yourself in the story with an interface that’s invisible until you need it, and powerful when you do.
Ghost is already open-source, which is the big requirement to get started immediately.…: they plan to stop growing at 50 employees and let other companies take on the growth from there.
(For more about Ghost’s fascinating business model, see here.)
Ghost has interesting integrations, an Open API Documentation and a command-line.
Newsletter-style blogs. Intriguing features such as easy monetization and a legal defence fund for writers. As one of their competitors points out, Substack is missing certain features as well; in particular, there is no automatic integration, no API; you need to use Substack as your backend to use substack as your front-end.
My life is busy enough without copy-pasting from my well-adapted, easy blog into the substack author page, but is that roadbump worth it to access the semi-gated substack community? How many social networks do I want to be copy-pasting between?
TinyLetter is one iteration of the hype cycle ago but still seems to be a serviceable platform by Mailchimp. Also there is the mainline mailchimp.
Pretty blogs. The aesthetic is not mine, and I am irritated by the nagging to register in order to read articles. The community reading features are nice, and they go a lot of market share for a while there.
OK I guess.
Not a fan of this product. Does not integrate with anything; it is a walled garden. Not especially cheap. Websites look fine but are heavy and menial to create. Suits people who really want to use a word processor that prints to the internet, but also wants someone else to own and operate that word processor. That is not me, although some people might be into it and that is OK.
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