Thinking allowed — 17 June 2014

Is the life of a blog finite?

In that I don’t mean the length of time it will be hosted, but the longevity for its author’s ability, or enthusiasm, to provide content.

The old maxim, the 100 per cent rule of internet culture, which stated that for every 100 people who read blogs (or any other internet community) only one actually provides content, while the others only lurk.

A variant of this is the 90-9-1 principle in which 90 per cent view, 9 per cent add content (comments to you and me) and 1 per cent actually uploads new content.

Given if this is true, news recently that two of London’s best bloggers are to sign off for the last time seriously reduces quality content about London.

Many a born and bred Londoner take the great City for granted. Often it takes someone with an unjaded perspective, discovering the London that Samuel Johnson’s quote memorably reminds us: “Tired of London”. Stef the author of Little London Observationist understood the great lexicographer’s words and has shared ’her’ London with us these last 5 years.

During its life the blog has given us photos of places we might have overlooked, interviewed dozens of Londoners, one of the first was – yes, a cabbie. At least we haven’t lost her; she continues to write about a wide range of places giving us little nuggets of London now and again.

That, unfortunately is not the case for Pete Stean who’s Londoneer has given us these last 7 years a veritable smorgasbord of London delights. He’s now undertaken a journalism course and cannot find time for both enterprises.

After dabbling with a number of blogs and platforms in February 2009 CabbieBlog arrived kicking and screaming into the cyber world. Its debut post had the unimaginative title ’Make a cuppa and do The Knowledge’. Not an auspicious start but it’s still with us while many blogs are ephemeral lasting months at best. The best of the survivors can be found here, or is the blog as a means of on-line writing destined to become just another fad and in future content will be left to paid professionals?

If you enjoyed reading this post, please consider supporting CabbieBlog and read exclusive chapters from my book Pootling around London

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(4) Readers Comments

  1. Wow! Thank you! I love exploring London with Bradshaw’s Hand Book to London 1862 – everyone knows of the railway guides, but the Guide Book to London is amazing and I enjoying every minute! I have been working on another project, now completed, and plan to start exploring with Mr Bradshaw again this week after a little pause

    • Your London Diary is worthy of a mention on my blogroll. I like the way you compare the Victorian guide book with your own observations.

  2. Thanks for your kind words about Little London Observationist and linking to my new blog. I was also sad to write that last post after five years, but found that my interests were changing and it was no longer big enough for everything I wanted to share. Sorry to hear that Pete is shutting down Londoneer, a blog I’ve enjoyed for years. It always amazes me to stumble upon regularly updated blogs that stem back five years or more, like yours as well. I hope you’re not going anywhere anytime soon!


    • You mean that there is something to write about beyond London?
      Good luck with the new blog.
      Incidentally I looked up my first CabbieBlog post ‘Make a Cuppa and do The Knowledge’ – which in retrospect was pretty awful – I wrote back in February 2009 but this was my first WordPress blog, I had dabbled in other platforms before. And in reply to your question: No I’m not going anywhere soon.
      Thanks for the comment and I look forward to reading about your ‘adventures’

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