I’m about a month late to this party. Oh well. It’s still important to address.
On January 28, 2015, Andrew Sullivan announced his retirement from blogging. For those who don’t know, Andrew Sullivan is the grandfather of political blogging.
That’s probably an understatement. Okay, he invented political blogging.
A few days later Vox followed up with a report on what it meant that Sullivan had created a popular blog, but couldn’t figure out how to monetize it.
This seems to be the perennial challenge, doesn’t it? How do you make a living from a popular blog?
Klein said there were two reasons: scale and the erosion of voice. In his own words, “the bigger the business gets, the harder it is to retain the original voice.”
Can’t argue with that. His next statement is more revealing:
He was trying to make his blog — and its sizable audience — into a business. But blogging, for better or worse, is proving resistant to scale.”
As if it was an enigma. Like we haven’t solved this problem a hundred times over.
But not so fast.
Klein is careful to define his terms. Blogging is “the unedited voice of a person.” (That’s actually Dave Winer’s definition, Klein notes.) It’s transparent, off the cuff, random.