What It Means to Move

I suppose I have contemplated my blog moves over the past few days for several reasons, one of which happens to be that we’re preparing for a physical move.

I am happier here, on my own domain, for several reasons. First of all, I can do whatever I like, and there aren’t limits. No one tells me what kind of files I can upload or how much space I can take up. That’s dictated by how much space I’d like to buy. I bought plenty for much less money than some of my old friends pay to be limited by an old diary service I used to use.

The first time I moved, I didn’t really want to, because I knew it would cost me. But I felt it was necessary, so I did it. And it did cost. It’s weird, but when other people had moved away from Diaryland, I didn’t really keep up with them unless I really wanted to. In fact, Cranky Dragon and Anne are the only examples I can think of. I tried to keep up with others, but I was lazy. Diaryland makes it easy for you to check and see if your favorites have updated — as long as they are also Diaryland users.

So it cost me some readers, because despite the fact that some of those people indicated they wanted to continue to read my writing, I know they didn’t. After some time, I stopped reading theirs too. It was too hard to keep up. And with the exception of about two people, I did give up. No one over there pings Weblogs.com or Blogrolling.com when they update. Yeah, all I have to do is click a link on my blogroll and check, but I don’t do it. Frankly, it would be easy for them to check my site for updates, and they don’t either. We like things simple. We’re lazy. The fact is, I have begun to find myself more attracted to blogs than diaries. They’re shorter, so the investment to read them isn’t as great. Most bloggers I read tend to know more about the web and HTML and produce really interesting sites. When I first started my Diaryland diary, like most people, I didn’t know any HTML.

I really don’t miss it anymore. For a time, yes, I missed being part of a community. After a while, especially once I had my own domain, I realized how limiting a service it was, and I would never go back. Users over there pay more per year for less than I get at my own domain — less space, restrictions on allowable files, restrictions on what you can do, from creating .htaccess files to cgi. They also get horrible customer service. The two times I’ve had to contact the people who host my website, I’ve received immediate response. I’ve never had any problems trying to get access to my site or post an entry, which I cannot say about Diaryland. So for those reasons, I really can’t recommend going to Diaryland for any of you who might not have a diary/blog, but are thinking of starting one.

I’m sure there are other services out there that are pretty good. I haven’t really checked. Upsaid is very good, but they are no longer free. They only cost $2 per month, which is much cheaper than lots of sites, and only a little less than I pay for my server space, which is $3 per month. Upsaid allows lots of different types of files to be uploaded, but there is necessarily a limit on space.

I wanted to tear my hear out trying to install Movable Type, but once I got it running, it was running smoothly. I love it. It’s very easy to use. I like the CSS-rich templates. That makes it easy to change things across multiple pages, which was not true of Upsaid necessarily.

So I guess what I am saying is that this change has been good. I’m really happy here. I can do lots of things with this place if I want to. Or I can just sit here, at my little blog, and be content. It’s whatever I want it to be. And to me, that’s what home should be.

4 thoughts on “What It Means to Move

  1. Found you via Vickie magnoliaglen. Really have to agree with you on all points of this blog. When you first start a blog you are in awe but as you grow you soon learn there is greener grass, even if it cost a bit more. My very first blog was on xanga.com it was ok and I actually still have an account but find it very very limiting.. Once I was MTed I never looked back…though I am now looking into Expression Engine.
    Your a good read. I'll be back.

  2. Wait wait wait wait. Your domain? I'm still reading you at PlanetHuff. Grr. I bounced here from my blogroll, so when I get home — not that I'm online while I'm at work 😉 — I'll have to update with your new address … whatever that might be. Hint. 😉

  3. Cranky, I e-mailed you, but in case anyone else happens by here and I've confused them, planethuff.com is my domain. Since both Steve and I keep our blogs here, we have paths with our names on them.

  4. Yes, investing in your own server is a superb idea — it's all about full creative control baby 🙂

    And I understand what you mean about building a community. On most services (livejournal, diaryland) the community aspect is built into the package. But most bloggers are an island, and it's often hard building bridges to other blogs.

    But for all that, it's worth while having your own space. It gives you room to grow and experiment :). Happy experimenting!

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