About two months ago, I stopped microblogging on this site. At first it was just an experiment, but I like what I’m doing now and I think I am going to stick with it. Since I previously blogged about microblogging in Jekyll, I wanted to post an update describing what I’m doing now.

I’m still microblogging, but I’ve switched to a Micro.blog-hosted weblog, which is at fiona.micro.blog. I post links, quotes, photos, summaries and other short posts there, while I use fionavoss.blog for longer, titled blog posts.

Why I did it

The main reason I did it is because, with over 200 posts, this site was getting really slow to build, and it was obviously going to get worse over time. I like to tinker with the layout and organization of this site a lot, and waiting 30+ seconds for the site to build every time I changed one line of code was really annoying. Micro.blog-hosted blogs are actually powered by Jekyll, too, but since they are not fully customizable, having a large number of posts isn’t a problem.

Another reason is photos. While I did set up this site for microblogging from my phone, I never took the time to set up photo uploads. With the Micro.blog-hosted microblog I can post photos without having to take any extra steps.

Finally, another annoyance was that I had some formatting issues when trying to post from Quill or the Micro.blog app to my site via the micropub endpoint I was using. The > character would get converted to its HTML character code, breaking my Markdown formatting. Since I post a lot of quotes, this was pretty annoying.

How I did it

I’ve hidden my old microposts on this site, but I haven’t removed them. This was easy because I was previously using categories to separate my long and short posts. I just removed the short posts from navigation, so that my home page and topics page only list long posts from my articles category.

The individual pages for my microposts are still up, so any links to them on other websites still work. Unfortunately that means my site is still slower to build than it would be if I got rid of the short posts, but it is faster than it was when I was including them in the index and topics pages.

How it’s (not) affected my writing

One of the things I liked a lot about microblogging on my own site was that I found writing untitled posts took a lot of friction away from my writing process. I am still benefitting from that effect, even though I have a separate microblog now. Sometimes, I will start writing a post for my microblog, and when it gets longer than planned, I will give it a title and publish it on this site instead. Here’s an example of a post that grew that way.

On posting to Twitter

I also experimented with turning off cross-posting to Twitter, although I have it turned back on at the moment. The reason I turned it off was because I was annoyed with how certain posts appeared in Twitter, as I described previously.

However, one of the reasons I am on Twitter is to keep in touch with friends and acquaintances in my industry, such as people I’ve met at conferences who live in other cities. Cross-posting helps me achieve that goal, because it means friends on Twitter can see what I’m up to. I think it’s likely that I will experiment with turning cross-posting off and on some more, but I’m happy having it on for now.