There was a once Tasmanian blog called dolebludger [view as archived in 2004]. I first started reading it at the end of 2003, as I was preparing to return to Australia. I think I must have discovered it towards the close of its most active period. During 2004 it began a gradual decline, although there was still an occasional brilliant post which more than justified its place in my reading list. I felt quite an affinity with this blog in the first part of 2004, as I was also unemployed in Tasmania. The blog was very quiet in 2005, and then today I got a rude shock.
The entire blog as well as its feed is now an ad!
Most likely, dolebludger has folded up its tent, and its author has literally sold the entire blog and feed as ad space. Maybe there are other possible explanations, involving hacking or death, but I think they’re pretty unlikely. It’s very disappointing because dolebludger’s author seemed so stridently anti-capitalist. How could this happen?
I know, people change over time, as do their blogs. I know as well that there is no consistent relationship between the health of a blog and the well-being of its author. But whatever the causes, I’m not happy with the outcome. Thank God for the waybackmachine, otherwise this blog would have completely vanished.
This has prompted me to end my experiment with text ads on this blog. I was going to wait until the end of month, but now seems more appropriate, seeing that I’m complaining about an example when ads have degraded a blog.
Here’s my advice to other TypePad users who are considering the ads. It wasn’t the worst thing I could do to try this, because it was very easy to remove them. The payment is based on the click-through rate, not actual clicks. This means that if you have a blog with a small supportive audience who is more likely to click on the ads, you’ll probably do much better than if you have many readers who never click on the ads. It’s strange, but I made the most money on one of the days when the blog was having domain name problems and my readership was way down. But all this talk about readership, support and revenue is making me uncomfortable, and I’m glad my ads are gone.