Facebook as a blogging platform, considered.

January 24th, 2014

Euan Semple and I have been having similar thoughts. In a perceptive post he writes:

…As people have moved into places like Facebook and Twitter the energy has moved away from blogging to some extent. Less comments and less people using RSS to track conversations. I, like many bloggers, used to post links to my blog posts on Facebook or Google+. Then I realised that I was expecting people to move from where they were to where I wanted them to be – always a bad idea.

So I started posting the entire content of my blog posts on Facebook and Google+. The process is the same, I get the same benefit of noticing things that blogging gives me, the same trails left of what caught my eye, but the conversations have kicked off. I love the forty or fifty comment long threads that we are having. I love the energy of the conversations. It’s like the old days…

And I have to agree. Much as I dislike the tabloid-style, ad-infested nature of Facebook, it does seem to be where the conversations are happening. Yes, some of the smarter people are on Google Plus and App.net, but just not very many of them, and I’m letting my App.net subscription lapse this year. I am even starting to tire a little of Twitter’s 140-character limit and, more so, of the difficulty of having real multi-person conversational threads there. And even though it’s now easy to reply to posts here on Status-Q using your Facebook ID, where your thoughts will be preserved for viewing by other readers, many more people prefer to comment on Facebook or Twitter when I post notifications there.

Euan and I have both been blogging for about 13 years. In that time, a variety of other platforms have come and gone. I expect that quality blogs like his and John’s will outlive Facebook, too. At the very least, I expect that I’ll be able to find good past content on them (see my recent post), long after the social network of the day has changed its ownership, its URL structure, its login requirements or its search engine. So I’m not going to be abandoning Status-Q any time soon: it’s not worth putting much effort into anything that you post only on one of these other platforms.

But his idea of cross-posting the whole text of one’s articles is an interesting one. Facebook is clear, at least at present, that you still own it, though they have a non-exclusive right to make extensive use of it – something those of us who occasionally post photos and videos need to consider carefully.

But I also need to consider the fact that I actually saw his post on Google+, even if I then went to his blog to get a nicely-formatted version to which I could link reliably. Mmm.

Posted on Friday, January 24th, 2014 at 10:42 am and filed under Internet.

3 Responses to “Facebook as a blogging platform, considered.”

  1. Geoff Says:

    It’s such a pity there is no neat way of copying the FB conversation back onto the blog :-) Then you could have the best of both worlds

  2. Phil Boswell Says:

    It is possible to display something which looks like a FB discussion thread on a blog or newspost, I’ve seen it around.

    Now whether that thread is actually being shared between FB and the “host site” is not something I’d considered.

  3. qsf Says:

    I think that, if it looks like a Facebook thread, it’s probably actually hosted on FB and just displayed on another site.

    This might be worth doing, but it would mean that FB could change things later – insert advertisements, for example – which I don’t fancy too much. And they tend to look ugly. If there were an API so that you could include the content only, that would be great, but hardly in line with FB’s business model.

    No, I think I may just have to insert links in my articles to where the FB discussion is happening. Oh, wait, I don’t think there’s a way to do that, is there? Grrr…. walled gardens….

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