Blogging is Here to Stay (for now)

Over the past few years there has been no shortage of commentary pointing to the death of blogging. The prediction has been that people would continue to abandon long-form writing for platforms such as Facebook and Twitter which favor short bursts of commentary in exchange for instant feedback. 

I admit to having embraced Twitter for those reasons. It’s an easy way to amass a following and stay in touch with a wide range of people from family to colleagues in the history field. Topics and news events related to the Civil War that in the past ended up on the blog are now posted on my Twitter feed with a brief comment. That’s probably a good thing as it saves time and reserves the blog for more serious reflection.

But even as the pace of my blogging has slackened over the past couple of years, due to various commitments, I have never thought about abandoning the project. In fact, with the move to other platforms, blogging has never seemed more relevant.

I am encouraged that my view of this crowded social media landscape overlaps with that of Dan Cohen, who earlier this week announced that he is recommitting to his personal blog.

Blogging allows me the freedom to write as much or as little on this site. Nothing gets lost compared to a continually updated Twitter and Facebook stream of cat pictures and commentary about the Trump administration.

This site’s archive reflects close to thirteen years of thinking about American history and memory and will hopefully continue to be useful to people interested in a wide range of topics related to history and memory. The challenge moving forward will be to make this archive even more accessible.

It should come as no surprise that we still need places where we can reflect in the privacy of our own domain name.

5 comments add yours

  1. Twitter is often a cacophony of one-liners all competing to be both clever and relevant (often with the sacrifice of substance) It has disappointed me that many of my favourite bloggers have slackened (or disappeared) over the last year, leaving a noticeable gap. I found their insight, information, and the opportunity to better acquaint with them akin to a coffee house visit, complete with a two-sided conversation with the addition of the comment section. I realise that people are busy, time is limited, and indeed there is an allure to being able to shout your frustration and move on, however, I just want to weigh in and say that reading the blogs are part of my daily routine, and I hate change 🙂

    • I’ve seen it as well. One of the things that has changed for me over the past few years is that I now view the blog page as just one of many places on this website where you can find resources to reflect on about the war. Some of my long-form reflections have found a place as op-eds in places like The Daily Beast and Smithsonian. I still keep up with 4 or 5 Civil War blogs that are updated fairly regularly.

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