Blogger, WordPress and Typepad ruled the blogging roost for years, but a combination of Twitter, social networking and the rise of lite blogging have been eating away at long-form blog platforms.
Twitter has played a significant role in the demise of ‘full’ blogging, not because it replaced the medium but more that it claimed people’s web time and pushed the focus of web publishing towards real time. Facebook, too, is a famous online time sink. But sites like Posterous and Tumblr have refined blogging by streamlining the posting process, stripping out many of the bulky features and offering slicker, more real-time features and designs.
The latest feature to be rolled out from Posterous could be really bad news for the old guard; a WordPress blog importer due to launch tomorrow. It will grab blog posts, comments and tags, and stuff them into a Posterous account. And if, like me, you’ve had a WordPress blog for years, that’s a lot of content – which is why it could take several hours.
What’s the attraction? A less bloated back end (there’re pills for that) without multiple features you never use. An end to the barrage of spam comments that plague WordPress – Posterous is free of those, for now. And a service designed to be so email-post friendly that you never even need to login at your desktop; I post everything to my trial Posterous blog from my phone. Photos, videos, text docs, even spreadsheets – if you can email it, you can blog it from your phone. I’m converted.
On the downside, some photo and particularly video compression quality can be poor, and you need to learn tweaks like adding ‘#end’ before your email signature so your posts are formatted cleanly. But in terms of time efficiency, it’s a big improvement. Here’s uber-blogger Phil Campbell explaining why he switched:
Posterous explain it like this: From tomorrow, go to posterous.com/switch/wordpress and add your WordPress URL and logins, and the site will grab your content and load it onto a new Posterous blog. You can merge those with an existing Posterous blog and host that under your own domain.
Says Posterous: “After a few months of adding features like standalone pages, better photo management tools, SEO improvements, autopost upgrades (you can now autopost to 25+ different sites), we feel we have the best platform and want to remove all barriers to trial – and re-trial by folks who just thought we were a micro blog.”
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This is part of an aggressive campaign by Posterous to add import tools for 15 services in 15 days, which won’t exactly make them any friends. But getting backs up is a good sign that they are doing something right.