What shall I get my blog for its tenth birthday?

Martin Belam by Martin Belam, 27 September 2012

What shall I get my blog for its birthday?

On December 24 this year currybetdotnet will be ten years old, and that’s quite a long time to have been running a site.

Since I published my first blog post on here I’ve got married, moved to Greece, then to Austria, then back to Greece, then back to the UK, left the BBC, started at and left Sony and the Guardian, set up my own business and met Emma Rose.

Oh, and if you are wondering about what kind of idiot launches a blog on Christmas Eve, I’ll tell you. The kind of idiot who sets himself a target like “I’ll have my own self-hosted blog up and running by Christmas” and always hits deadlines at the very last minute.

So I had some ideas for a tenth anniversary present...

Move responsive

It is a teeny-weeny bit embarrassing to be doing talks about how responsive design and HTML5 are the way to go when this site...erm...isn’t. I’ve thought of rebuilding the article template at the bare minimum so that at least that is responsive.

Move to Wordpress

Adam Tinworth & I possess two of the last remaining active blogs powered by Movable Type. I’ve used Wordpress quite a bit professionally, but never made the shift personally. I’d probably take the laziest option and park everything I’ve published to date as static HTML, and start afresh on December 24 with post #1 in a /cbet_wp/ directory. Pick a responsive theme, and I’d achieve idea number one at the same time.

“Currybetdotnet X” - the book

I’ve thought of compiling an end-of-the-decade-box-set-style-retrospective book of the best bits. Possibly with a limited print edition as well as an ebook version. Not sure if there would be a market for the print one though.

A party/event

Last year at the Guardian I did UXmas with the ridiculous random advent ticketing system. Maybe this year I should do some late December Xmas/blog birthday party-event?

A massive content audit

According to the database, if you discount 21 “Friday Reading” posts, 742 in the del.icio.us links category, and 25 unpublished pieces, I’ve written 2,705 blog posts since 2002. A content audit is waaaaaaaaay overdue.

Do I really still need those blog posts saying “I’m going to be talking at such-and-such an event in so-and-so buy tickets here” anymore?

I should put nice curly quotes into the pieces that are worth reading after all this time, and delete the ephemera, shouldn’t I?

Except for two things.

One: Time.

Two: Karen Loasby asking me how I would feel if I was trying to research a project about long-time bloggers and found one of my subjects had deleted loads of stuff when digital storage costs nothing.

A public subsidy

I’ve toyed with the idea of campaigning for every broadband connection in the land to feature a £2 monthly subsidy to underpin the media blogosphere. Scrutiny of how media companies are using digital technology is a public service. The subsidy might even help fund a future regular print edition of currybetdotnet.

Shut it down

Declare that the ten year project is over and do something else with my “spare” time instead for the next decade...?

Something else...

Feel free to suggest something else...

6 Comments

More colors! As much as I love subtle backgrounds I find a lack of color to be boring ;)

+1 for an event, move to wordpress, and responsive design... maybe a renewal of blogging vows party, like an anniversary :)

I've got websites on five different domains all happily (well mostly happily) running Movable Type. As long as it's doing the job you want it to do, why bother with the effort of changing? Put your effort in to something that readers will appreciate more. Like responsive design!

Of course if it's not, that's a different matter. And to be honest I'm finding MT a struggle these days. Core platform is fine but the plugins are increasingly broken or are disappearing. The day I migrate is getting slowly but surely closer.

+1 for moving to Wordpress (+20 if you manage to import all the old content).

How about doing some tweaks to the print stylesheet (like ditching the nav, footer and social media buttons for starters)?

As long as it's doing the job you want it to do, why bother with the effort of changing? Put your effort in to something that readers will appreciate more. Like responsive design! Core platform is fine but the plugins are increasingly broken or are disappearing. The day I migrate is getting slowly but surely closer.

I started a blog in 1999 which has since been archived, but I went and checked my next blog and found I'd been blogging for over 10 years. When I worked out that blogger was using US date format, it went up from 10 years and 1 month to 10 years and 4 months. I'd better write an anniversary post...

If you know Wordpress already then switching to it wouldn't be a useful learning exercise. A "best of" sounds good. When you're picking them out you could flag them so that the full archive and the curated content are both available. A party is always good...

Keep up to date on my new blog