There have been a few changes around the blog recently:

  1. Mirkwood is no longer a member of 9rules, following a newly adopted membership agreement which requires participation in the 9rules member forums. I left on principle, because mandatory participation, even the barest minimum of it, just wouldn’t be fun. I still regard 9rules as a network of fine blogs, and I accept the 9rulers’ view that they are better off without members who contribute only blog entries and not much else.
  2. The Policies page has been absorbed into the About page. It was self-indulgent on my part to have a separate page for legalese on such a small blog.
  3. All the blogs inside the blogroll have now been merged under a single heading provisionally (and redundantly) christened “Blogroll”. The categorization into “Litblogs” and “Interesting Places” and “Art” and “Scientific” became too artificial given the variety that these excellent bloggers bring to their online expressions.

I am also contemplating the following changes:

  1. Buying webspace and self-hosting the blog instead of keeping it at There is no real justification for this, except that if I buy webspace for email and archival, it might make sense to move the blog as well. Another reason for thinking about self-hosting is that I would be immune to Automattic‘s highly annoying strategy of introducing text link advertisements on blogs whenever they wish. I wasn’t too worried about this until recently, and so I am an even bigger sucker than “that girl again”.
  2. Replacing the “Archives by Topic” in the sidebar with a category cloud
  3. Getting rid of the “Archives by Month” in the sidebar. I hardly ever use it when I visit other people’s blogs.

6 thoughts on “Changes”

  1. I use the Archives by Month on my own blog simply because I think it allows the search engine spiders to have a way to see older posts that may be hidden. Granted, they’re also linked to by the categories but, considering they’re probably pushed down by newer posts, this makes sure that they’re seen.

  2. Mirkwood, you give me courage – I have been thinking of withdrawing from 9rules for exactly the same reasons. I don’t like being lumbered with obligations in what ought to be the free arena of the blogosphere.

  3. Drmike, that is a valid point. I was thinking of making an archive page for the month-wise archives and removing them from the sidebar, thinking that this would reduce the clutter. It’s great to see you in this neck of the woods, far far away from the forums 🙂 .

    Litlove, I wonder if you have read the long thread in which 9rulers are discussing the member exodus (I wouldn’t call it an “exodus” if only a couple dozen members leave). There is some kneejerk reaction to the news, but a few of the entries contain very reasonable arguments from both sides. These might help you in deciding whether to stay or leave.

  4. I’m glad to know that I wasn’t the only one disenchanted by 9rules’ new “requirements”. When I joined, their aim, as I understood it, was to aggregate the very best weblogs on the ‘net. Now, they only want weblogs whose authors actively and regularly contribute to

  5. Wow, I just finished reading Big Sur, a deeply sad and haunting book. I’ve noticed increased attention to On the Road lately–an article in The New Yorker a couple of weeks ago which claimed “beat” was a carnival term for someone who has been beat down or marginalized. A follow up letter from MIT cultural history professor, Leo Marx, claims that Huck Finn was the first “road” novel to explore the relationship of men and the road (or in this case the river)and in many ways the books are similar because the explore the middle ground between complete conformity and total disenfranchisement. On the Road has moved up to second on my to be read list now, thanks to your post. But I’ll have to wait until I finish my current read, Huckleberry Finn.

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