An introduction: BEDN #2

Ah. It would appear that I didn’t read the instructions properly. Day #1 of Blog Every Day In November was supposed to be an introduction, and Day #2’s prompt is ‘something you made’

Ah, well. Something I made could well be yesterday’s roasted pumpkin seeds, which neatly leaves today as an introduction.

Hi. I’m Dave. This is me. I look better in black & white I think, though I generally have a bit more colour about me in rea life. I’m also not really that stern, but my default expression does sometimes come across as slightly cross. I’m not, honestly. This is my happy face:

Self

As my bio page says, I’m a blogger. Well, yes. I’ve had this blog for a few years now, but before that I lived on Livejournal where I racked up something in excess of ten thousand posts. Yes, that’s a lot. It’s a pretty scary number, but it was spread over ten years. I wrote a post about that called life online.

I’d probably describe my blogging style as ‘scattergun’ – I’ll talk about pretty much whatever pops into my head at the time. Some people say you should find your niche and own it, but my niche seems to involve all kinds of random stuff, from why Leeds has great maps and pretty cups of coffee, to musings on Bond films and pencils.

Seriously, if I followed my stats, I’d post about nothing but Bond films and pencils. It’d get boring *really* quickly.

I like taking photos of stuff. I’m a writer, mainly noodling around with short stories (two of which have been published, one in a very swish glossy coffee-table magazine). I’ve ‘won’ NaNoWriMo once, but am still suffering from the after-effects.

I like cyclist, I juggle and am a general all-round geek. Married, father of two. I also like shiny gadgets, funky websites, and good coffee, but have recently started up a tea-related blog, LetterTwenty with Liz from Margot and Barbara. She’s also doing #BEDN, you should go see what she’s up to.

I set up this blog to talk about any and all of the above. You can also find me on twitter and, to be fair, most other places around the internet.

Or you can email me. I like emails.

life online

I’ve been thinking about blogging recently and how it’s changed over the years.

Image representing LiveJournal as depicted in ...

I started blogging on Livejournal ten years ago. The thing I loved about it was the sense of community that existed – I’d arrived there along with a bunch of others from another online forum, and before long I’d made some really good friends there. In the early days there were times when the conversations going on in the comments on a blog post were often more entertaining than the original post itself.

But a few years ago something changed – people started drifting off to other sites, predominantly Facebook. The one thriving hub of activity that was my LJ friends page started to drop off.

Image representing Facebook as depicted in Cru...

I was as much to blame as anyone, I’ll be the first to admit. The lure of the shiny meant more time on Facebook and the weird kid on the block Twitter, with its odd insistence on 140 characters or fewer.

Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

It made sense, in a way. Livejournal was a place where groups of friends would congregate for a chat. Facebook made it easier to share photos and find your real-life friends to go with your online friends. People who’d never have gone near LJ in a million years were now online. It had the now ubiquitous ‘like’ button, which meant that you didn’t need to actually interact with the poster, a quick click to show you’d been there and move on. Times were changing.

I miss the old days of LJ. My friends are now scattered across different social networks. Some now live exclusively on FB, some go between that and Twitter, some still hang out on LJ and some have ventured into the side new world of Google+

Me? I’m all over the place. Facebook for people I know in real life, or who only live there – often for them Facebook *is* the internet. Twitter for the random stream of consciousness. LJ for the occasional post. Flickr for photos, GoodReads for books, the list is ever-growing.

I’ve also been tinkering with G+ since it started and am starting to get a real feeling of community there. Could it be the next LiveJournal? Should it be? G+ has its quirks too – it doesn’t like you cross-posting content *out*, but is more than happy to pull content in. I can’t use automation to post to G+, whereas I can to Twitter, WordPress, Livejournal and many other sites. My posts on espressococo get automatically tweeted out and cross-posted to LJ. I have to manually add them to Google+, for now.

G+ seems to have the most potential in terms of posting significant content (like blog posts) and interacting with people. I get a few people posting comments or likes here on WP, but nowhere near the level I used to see on LJ.

So, dear reader. Where do you live on the internet? Are you a digital nomad, wandering from site to site? Or have you set down roots?