Blogging After Posterous – Quo Vadis?

So we now know that Posterous will no longer be with us after the end of April.  Whilst there’s clearly no point bemoaning the demise of this near perfect, friendly, blogging platform, one question does loom large.  Where to go now?

I’ve been having a little play with some other possibilities this afternoon, and have reached some preliminary conclusions.

Firstly, a few comments to take into account.

  • This blog (Lingua Franca) is, and has always been, on WordPress. It was the first place I blogged, and I have always stuck with it as I find it versatile for the range of more reflective content which my posts may contain.
  • My Posterous blogs (StrictlyMiniCine, Cine365 and The Reesiepie Retrospective) were more ‘hobby’ blogs, ie to indulge and explore my love of film and song.  To this end, Posterous is perfect, as it is simple to use, handles YouTube clips with ease, and can be used via a mobile app (which wasn’t perfect, but was handy).
  • What’s important for me when migrating my posts is that I don’t have to revisit each entry to tweak it – it must be as simple as possible.  As the posts generally contain a YouTube clip, whatever I migrate to must support this easily.

I took a look at moving one of my Posterous spaces to Blogger, Tumblr and WordPress by way of experiment.  Here are my preliminary thoughts – it’s worth bearing in mind that your needs may differ from mine.

Blogger

  • I like the interface; it seems relatively easy to use.
  • Inserting a link to a YouTube video is slightly less straightforward than with Posterous, but still manageable, as is including a hyperlink to another webpage.
  • In order to get your Posterous blog into Blogger, you first need to import it to WordPress then export it from there into Blogger.
  • Whilst it brought in all the posts, together with tags, it didn’t handle the YouTube or hyperlinks properly, leaving just the (non-active) link, and no video.

Conclusion: If you’re heavily reliant on video, this probably isn’t the way to go, even thought it’s otherwise friendly to use.

Tumblr

  • Tumblr is allegedly as easy to use as Posterous. Even though I’ve been experimenting with it in secret for a while, I can’t agree. I’m not a fan of the interface, and still feel like I don’t know what I’m doing.
  • More importantly, after much research, it seems to be impossible to import posts from anywhere to Tumblr. I would have thought they would be falling over themselves to pick up the Posterous fall-out, but it appears not. *

Conclusion: Not worth considering at the moment for migration, but perhaps useful as a newbie startup?

WordPress

  • I do find WordPress a little high-maintenance at times, but my posts from Posterous were imported without trouble.  Videos were displayed correctly, in the correct place. And there’s no need for the two-phase export/import as with Blogger.
  • I don’t find WordPress as easy to use as Posterous, but then it was designed for a different purpose, so that’s perhaps a little unfair of me.

Conclusion: Not necessarily the simplest for a novice, but if you’re more confident, then it works fine.

So what am I going to do? I’m going to experiment further!

  1. I’m only 48 days in to my Cine365 challenge, and so for this blog, I’m going to do the double export to Blogger, make some time to amend the 48 YouTube links that won’t import correctly, and continue to the end of the year with Blogger for this one.
  2. As there are significantly more posts on StrictlyMiniCine, which would mean a lot of editing, I’m going to bring that one into WordPress and continue with it there for the time being.

That way I’ll be able to trial both, and reach a more informed conclusion as the year progresses.

I’d be delighted to hear if you have any better suggestions, or can let me know things I’ve overlooked or missed.

 

* Edit – Thanks to @lisibo who has pointed out the JustMigrate service, which allows you to move your Posterous to Tumblr – if you really want to! It’s free for less than 100 posts. Thanks Lisa!

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I heard it through the (grape)Vine

Since I first came across Vine just over a week ago, I’ve been mulling over the possibilities for use in language teaching.

Vine is brought to you by Twitter, and is an app (currently only available for iPhone and iPod touch – sorry Android users) which invites you to create a video of no more than 6 seconds, which then plays on loop after it’s been created.

Here’s my first attempt (created with my not-yet-fully-formed MFL idea in my head) to see how it could work (there is sound, so you may need to click the sound icon to activate it).

The ‘Vines’ are easy enough to create, and the fact that it runs on a loop means that you get a quick snatch of vocabulary which get repeated and repeated … until you hit stop.

There’s definitely something in there for vocabulary and language learning, and I’m thinking that pupils could listen to or create their own for revision etc.

Watch this space as I try to find more things to do with Vine.