1
Why stand on a silent platform? Zach de la Rocha yells out on Township Rebellion.

And I agree. This is the greatest time in history to get your voice heard around the world in whatever medium suits your fancy. Do you want to write? Start a blog. Do you want to make films or have your own TV show? Start a YouTube Channel. Do you like radio? Start a podcast! Do you want to be a photographer, a fitness model, artist, illustrator? Start an Instagram account. Do you Want to be a musician? Start a Soundcloud account. There is no limit on your means of self-expression.

I wrote my first blog post on the 8th of February 2004. There was a real sense of community then, in the blogging world, mainly because it was new and people were still trying to figure out blogging’s potential. It was more personal then too. But once someone figured out they could make money from blogging, the game started to change. And once people got more comfortable with e-commerce (giving they’re credit card detail over the internet) the game changed for good.

Then social media came along and like TV killed the radio, social media killed personal blogging.

Commercial blogging still managed to thrive. The likes of Huffington Post, Tech Crunch, The Dredge Report, Gawker (now defunct) and others like them, kept blogging alive, albeit with a different cultural flavour. The days of the solo blogger (alone in his or her room) bleeding their heart and soul out into the Internet were gone. The CopyBlogger crowd moved in with the promise that if you niched well and nailed your SEO, then you could quit your day job and be a full-time blogger. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.

If you wanted to blog for the love of blogging, you took your game over to social media ‘cause that’s where the eyeballs are. And that’s fine too. But why not write from your own blog and syndicate out, which is what the IndieWeb Movement is partially about. There’s also the fight against having your data harvested and sold to any bidder and then fed back to you via algorithms designed to make you buy more goods and services that (in a Fight Club sort of way) you probably don’t need.

If you have a blog that is sat gathering dust because you fell for the rhetoric that blogging is dead or because you thought (in reference to social media) if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em and left for the promise-land of ‘likes’ and ‘hearts’ and ‘rewteets’, then dust it off, and join the IndieWeb Movement. Your blog deserves it!

Side note: Most blogs, these days, look the same -clean, neat, colour coordinated. Remember when they used to look like this?

2
Travel reminds me that people are pretty much all the same regardless of where you go or what country you’re in. Everywhere we’re trying to survive and that breaks down to 3 things – feeding, fucking, and fighting. Everything else is just a sideshow or a way to kill time between the 3 F’s.

These are the kinds of thoughts I have at 3:30 in the morning.

3
My journey to Madrid was not a direct one. For some reason, nothing was flying out of the UK and going directly to Madrid. My only options were to fly to Frankfurt or fly to Brussels and then onto Madrid. I have a soft spot in my heart for Germans. I lived in the country for 3 years. I grew fond of the people and the place and the culture. Plus I love pretzels like the Germans love pretzels. And since I had an hour layover in Frankfurt I thought I’d seize the opportunity to grab a couple of them:

4
So it’s day one of #blogpals19 and because I’m not one for always choosing the easy route, I didn’t hesitate to jump into this challenge knowing that my first 4 days of the challenge were going to be a challenge because I’m away from my home base on a business trip!

But that doesn’t matter. It’s a great opportunity to practice my mobile blogging chops. I’m using my iPhone 8+ to type this out as I taxi down the runway on LH 1112 to Madrid. I love having a small computer in my hand capable of being a one-stop media creation shop. I can write. I can record and edit audio. I can shoot and edit video. I can take pictures and edit them. I can broadcast live video and live radio. In short, I have the means of total media production in the palm of my hand. I know I’m not saying anything you haven’t heard already, but man this stuff excites the hell out of me. I get fired up every time I think about the power we carry around in our pockets!

5
We’ve done a pretty good job of domesticating humans. Law and order are prevalent in most of the civilised world. It doesn’t matter if I’m in Frankfurt or Madrid people, on the whole, behave the same – we greet each other, respect each other’s space and property. We stand up and sit down when we’re told. We stand in line. We pay for goods and services. We get up, go to work, watch a little TV, watch the news, complain about politics. We eat. We sleep. And we get up and do it all again the next day, until we eventually die.

We are well trained domesticated primates.

6
The only thing that separates us from the beasts is our imagination and wild ass capacity for creativity. So don’t be a robot. Create stuff. Express yourself in you’re own unique way.

The world doesn’t need another automaton.

It needs YOU – in all your beauty and glory.

Go make something!

Slow start, but then again, Sundays were made for slow starts. If I tap into biblical mythology, even God took a break on Sunday. I guess, the trouble with us these days is we’ve been conned into the 24/7 mentality where we’re encouraged to cram as much “productivity” into a day as we can. Gorden Geko taught us that lunch is for wimps. And in this new world, rest is for chumps and suckers! Of course, I don’t believe that! But it is the sub-text of our lives.

Tomorrow is the start of #BlogPals2019 which is a 30-day blogging challenge I’m doing with some friends. I’ve been making my triumphant return to blogging and wanted a little motivation to help keep me in the habit of posting regularly. They say it takes 21 days to form a new habit, so 30 days should be plenty to get us into the habit of posting on our blogs daily. This is where I think documenting and self-expression and advocating for things you care about comes into play. It makes blogging easier and more fun. On top of that, each new post becomes a continuation of your personal narrative. People get to know YOU through your blog.

And that’s as it should be.

It’s time to take back the web from those who just want to feed our data into an algorithm so they can sell us more stuff or tell us what to think or do. Even tell us how to vote for!

You have to throw that yoke off, be a free-thinker.

A new hope…

Join us!

1
I love the momentum that’s being regained by the personal blogging genre.

2
I’m working on forming new habits with the Internet. The last couple of day i’ve spent the majority of my day re-wiring my blog to IndieWeb standards, which has meant a lot of reading about the IndieWeb and exploring other IndieWeb writer’s blogs.

I’ve also been tinkering under the hood of my site and inevitably it crashed – twice! Ah! Just like the old days of the web when you’d spend hours trying to figure things out and experiment and have those experiments fail and then hopping on the forums to try and source an answer. It’s also been nice to write in a more relaxed manner without worry about whether or not what I am writing conforms to some marketing standard. I can let my blog be an extension of me – a place where I can share little pieces of the world through my eyes.

3
I felt like capping off the evening with something 80s. I need an 80s movie fest. In fact, time for a little Beverly Hills Cop, one of Eddie’s best movies in miy opinion.