I’ve been saying for years that blogging services suck. I said it in 2004 when LiveJournal destroyed a vintage erotica journal that I liked. I said it again in 2006, when, you guessed it, LiveJournal started threatening to suspend users for posting pictures of nipples.

Well, I’m saying it again.

Of course it will come as no surprise that I’m saying it — again — because our old friend LiveJournal (that outfit makes a wonderful bad example!) deleted a bunch of journals for posting dirty stories that management didn’t like.

“Our decision here was … based on what community we want to build and what we think is appropriate within that community and what’s not. We have an awful broad range of discussions and topics and other things going on in LiveJournal, and we encourage other broad-ranging conversations on all sorts of topics. This was a specific case where we felt there was not a reason (for these journals to stay online).”

This is not a censorship issue (it’s their sandbox and their rules). This is not a rights issue. This is a no-brainer “poor stupid fuckers spent years of their lives writing their shit on a blog service that could, and did, turn them off and delete all their posts” issue.

“We felt there was not a reason for these journals to stay online.”

Why in the name of Odin’s enormous penis would you put your creative efforts at the mercy of someone who had the power to say that, and make it stick?

Dude, don’t do that. It hurts.

And it hurts to watch.

I’m telling you for the third time:

Anything worth doing on the internet is worth doing at your own domain that you control.

Aw, hell, I’m going to say it again for the kids on the short bus:

Anything worth doing on the internet is worth doing at your own domain that you control.

And this is for my slowest reader, the guy who is sounding out the words with his finger touching the computer screen, which he can’t see very well because of all the pizza sauce and popcorn butter that gets on there when he does that:

Anything worth doing on the internet is worth doing at your own domain that you control.

Are we clear?

Also, let me be clear: Livejournal is just the bad example here, not an especially bad service. All blogging services have the power to screw you over. The potential screwage is inherent in the nature of what they do.

Use your own domain. (Your registrar won’t care what you write.) Buy your own hosting. (Your host won’t care unless you post something that’s actually illegal.) Own your own shit. Don’t put yourself in the position to be messed with by somebody who can say “we felt there was not a reason” for your blog to be online.

There are other good reasons to own your own shit. We live in the era of the global microbrand. If you do anything creative, your brand identity is tied to your domain, the place where you publish all your creative stuff.

What? You don’t have a domain? You’re still putting all your shit up on a domain somebody else owns? You’re using your stuff to help them build their brand? WTF, HAVE YOU NOT BEEN LISTENING TO ME?

OK, I’m done ranting for comic effect. But I’m not kidding about this stuff. Blogging services still suck. Get your own domain. Control your own shit. Build your own brand, for you. And own it. For you.

You’ll thank me later.

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