Thinking of starting a blog? What platform will you use?

So you’re a writer and you’d really like to start publishing your writing online.

Nick Schäferhoff, from New York City, has put together a very useful and informative website called Website Setup - and his article titled “The 10 Best Blog Sites - Detailed Comparison” does a fantastic job describing your options. These include Wordpress, Squarespace, Wix, Weebly and more.

There’s another kind of publishing platform that Nick only touches on - Digital Sharecropping.

“The term sharecropping refers to the farming practices common after the U.S. Civil War, but it’s essentially the same thing as feudalism. A big landholder allows individual farmers to work their land and takes most of the profits generated from the crops.” Sonia Simone of CopyBlogger explains.

A very common example of digital sharecropping is Facebook. We create content and post on Facebook, and Facebook makes money from our content. Others include Vocal Media, Medium, Google+, and LinkedIn. In all these cases, writers create the content and then publish it on ‘someone else’s land’. The advantage of utilizing a sharecropping model when you’re first starting out is that the landlord has already done all the marketing and building. All the writer needs to do is publish their piece. And you can link to your writing from your own social media platforms.

A primary disadvantage of these platforms is that the ‘landlord’ owns your work. And the landlord makes all the important decisions.

“If one of these social media/blog platforms were to turn off its lights, your content would disappear. If they changed the rules (as they do), your content would be subject to those changes. If they became irrelevant, and people no longer went to the platform, your content falls into the darkness with it.” KVNW

Most experts advise against taking a Digital Sharecropping approach to publishing your writing. Or setting up a business website for that matter. It’s recommended that you:

Get your own domain name
Set up your own website and host

If you need help with any of this, Goodwin Creative Ltd creates beautiful Squarespace websites. The functions of Squarespace include blogs, galleries, email campaigns, online courses, appointment scheduling and membershp management.

At Goodwin Creative we are all writers and content creators. We look forward to helping you get started!

Jude Goodwin