Tag Archives: blogging

A community built for writers needs a platform strategy

2018-06-21

Facebook’s founder Mark Zuckerberg once said that online communities can’t be created. Communities exist both in the real world and online, and all you can do is to provide tools and services that attract community members to your platform. Writing Cooperative is a community for writers, but the story how it was born is quite exciting.
writers with laptops around coffee table, photo by rawpixelPhoto by rawpixel.

Two complete strangers Jessica Jungton and Sand Farina met on the brand-new blogging service The Medium when it was just launched. They realized they both wanted to have something that would help them and everyone else write better. Since Medium provided some rudimentary tools for editing, they started from there.

In 2014, the founders of the Writing Cooperative opened it for business. Writers quickly discovered the community, and the founders asked a few people to help them run the business.

Everything seemed to be going well until Medium changed the features it provided to its users. Since the Writing Cooperative relied completely on Medium, it was a major problem for the business. After some tweaks, things worked until Medium changed its functionality again.

Recently, Medium started charging visitors for reading articles. Accidental visitors can read three articles for free, and after that they have to purchase a monthly subscription. This new policy is bound to have a huge impact on the number of visitors who would like to read the Writing Cooperative every once in a while.

Today, the Writing Cooperative doesn’t rely on Medium alone anymore, but uses messaging service Slack for communication as well.

You can read the story with the founders’ remarks at ProWritingAid.

I am surprised that a fairly large community like the Writing Cooperative has stayed on Medium. The changes the platform does will never end. The community will encounter problems in the future as well. Writing Cooperative admits that they don’t know how their revenue from Medium is made up.

10 years ago, I was one of the founders of a network of small businesses. We needed online presence and tools. We settled on a platform (it doesn’t exist anymore) that was perfect to our needs because it was intended for small businesses. We started building on the platform, but pretty soon, we realized that we couldn’t rely on constant technical and business model changes the platform was having.

We created our own site. Fortunately we had graphic designers, programmers and writers in our network who could share the work. It required more initial work and money, but we were happy after it was done and live on the internet.

Ebook news digest: respect privacy when photographing, blogging tools, news editors set free

2017-05-21

News on ebooks, photography, writing and ereaders

Woman reading an ebook on an ereader, photo by wolfg
Know Your Travel Photography Rights
Wanderness

The title of this excellent post should be something like “How to Respect Privacy Laws when Photographing Overseas”. Every aspiring street photographer and traveler with a camera should read this.

Tools I use for Writing, Publishing & Blogging
Write & Publish like a Pro

These are professional tools for a blogger who is running a blog business. Backup is priority number 1.

How to buy and read ebooks in Edge as part of the Windows 10 Creators Update
PC World

Microsoft Windows 10 features a store where you can purchase apps, games, movies and music. Ebooks haven’t been available so far, but they will become into the store soon. Windows 10 developer version already includes the new store with ebooks, so it is safe to assume that it will happen.

Gvido dual-screen e-ink music sheet gets an unbelievable price tag
Slashgear

A dedicated device for musicians: dual-screen E ink device. Only in Japan, and the price tag may suit for the famous artists only.

The Lighter Side of Finland (6th Edition)
Russell Snyder

If you want to learn something useful and be amused while doing so, The Lighter Side of Finland is for you, especially, if you are interested in the Nordic culture or have travel plans for Scandinavia.

New York Times will offer buyouts to editors in push to transform editing
Poynter

The New York Times is one of the few successful news organizations that has managed to convince readers to pay for digital news. Nonetheless, the old business structures will have to go as the newspaper is preparing a new way to edit news articles. When plenty of experienced editors are let go, we expect some of them are going to establish new startups and independent publishing companies.

Travel Photography Tips and Techniques
Picture Correct

Tip number 10 is very important for everyone who is shooting to document a destination, for instance, in order to write an article or a travel guidebook. Also, when documenting, you must take photos of subjects you may not like or don’t see as very photogenic. You may need it later when you write.

Onyx is launching an E Ink notebook (and several eReaders)
Lilliputing

This is strictly in the rumors category: Onyx may launch a laptop with E ink display. It is called the Onyx Boox Typewriter. Well, let’s wait and see. An intriguing idea, though.


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Ebook news digest: travel blogging vs writing, publishing vs self-publishing, best travel camera

2017-02-26

Ebook news digest February 26, 2017

digital nomad working at a terrace near fruit farms of Murcia
Published Author Book Writing Tips
(Heidi Cohen)

Heidi Cohen has compiled the best book writing tips from successful authors into this article. If there is one thing that caught my eye in these valuable tips, it was the fact that so many authors emphasized two things: ensure you have a clear message or goal for your book and start marketing instantly when you know that you are going to get the book published (one way or the other).

Best Travel Camera 2017
(Mel365.com)

Many travel writers (and writers of other genres) take their own photos for their articles and books nowadays. Writers may not want to dive deep into mysteries of photography technology, but capture moments, facts and sceneries with decent equipment. What is the best camera for travelers is the question that the long article answers in many ways.

Pros And Cons Of Traditional Publishing vs Self-Publishing
(The Creative Penn)

Joanna Penn’s article on traditional publishing and self-publishing is almost like “Everything you ever wanted to know about book publishing” in one article. An excellent article to read, even if you already have published a book. I would categorize Klaava Media as a hybrid publisher, because we take every author and ebook as an individual project and tailor the co-operation with the author accordingly.

Ask a Digital Nomad: How Do You Choose Where to Go Next?
(The Ramble)

Digital nomads who have traveled and work for a year or more talk about the places they like to stay. How do they choose their destinations, why and how long do they stay in one place? Many nomads agree that moving too often is not the best way to go, but where they go is a surprisingly wide and open field. I am waiting for the moment when a digital nomad says he or she has spent a winter in Lapland.

3 Big Differences Between Travel Writing and Travel Blogging
(Travel Blog Success)

This article gives plenty of insight on the freedom of blogging and on the realities when working for someone else. That’s the fundamental difference, and truly understanding it will save many writers from a lot of agony.