Next week on September 15, I will be joining the Software Freedom Day here in Cebu. Aside from signing up GBG Cebu and Third Team Media as sponsors, I have volunteered to speak about a topic closest to my heart in celebration of software freedom: Blogging + WordPress.
My Blogging History
I started blogging last 2004 and my first blog was hosted in Blogspot. It was one boring afternoon at my OJT work where I decided to create a blog to initially just document my thoughts. And that’s what blogging is for right? Just an online journal of information. You post articles, videos, or photos – anything to your fancy really. They are shown with the most recent post first and the older post next – in reverse chronological order. You can participate in blogs by reading, commenting, or adding to a discussion.
I still have my first blog up. I made it 8 years ago so a lot of things have changed. For example, I already have a domain name for it. I have trimmed down the mushy, corny posts and archived them to the depths of the interwebs. My needs for blogging grew over the years and I needed to have more control on how it looks, how it works.
A Note About Blogging
Over the years, blogging’s original use as a personal journal has evolved. You can now create a photoblog, a travel blog, or use a news blog to post recent happenings in your location. Even big name online publishers like Huffington Post are now using blogging CMS.
Microblogs are special blogs that have very short posts (via Brainpop). This includes sites like Twitter, Plurk, Facebook, G+.
This blurs the line of what blogging is. Does your use of a blogging CMS make you a blogger? Does microblogging also make you a blogger?
For those that publish articles, the bottomline is that when you write online, you a way to manage this content. And you need to find an easy, convenient way to do this.
And so the best solution I found so far for both me and my clients’ publishing needs is WordPress.
What is a CMS?
Here’s a fact: WordPress is a CMS – a content management system.
As if writing is not hard work in itself, anyone who’s not techie will certainly get overwhelmed with the process of publishing an online journal. It really is overwhelming if you do it manually – designing layouts, creating web pages, scripting to make it work how you want it to. Thankfully, there are softwares that help you organize and manage web content. And that’s how WordPress comes in handy.
Not just a blogging platform. It means that even SMEs and solo entrepreneurs can use it for their business websites.
I would be biased if you’ll ask me why I love WordPress. I love it because it’s free, easy to use, and very powerful. So I crowdsourced the question to my Facebook publisher friends and asked them –
Why do you use WordPress (software) and what makes it the best for blogging?
Out of 104 votes, the top three reasons include the following:
- WordPress is easy to use! / Because it’s user-friendly. (51 votes)
- WordPress is easy to customize (21 votes)
- It’s SEO Friendly 🙂 (14 votes)
Right up in 4th place is – Wordpress is free (12 votes)!
Reason 1: WordPress is easy to use / user-friendly.
WordPress is well known for its 5 step / 5 minute install. Almost all hosting companies give you an option for a 1-click install on cpanel. It is also easy to navigate and easy to add articles.
Reason 2: WordPress is easy to customize.
Two words: Themes. Plugins.
You will never run short of themes for your WordPress. Also, there is almost always a plugin solution to an extended functionality for your site. Much like Apple where there’s an app for that, in WordPress, there’s a plugin for that!
Reason 3: It’s SEO Friendly.
Categories, tags, h1/h2 tags – they all help your content move in front of the search results.
Finally – in line with celebrating Software Freedom Day, let’s celebrate that WordPress is free and open source. Hurrah! Here are the slides for my talk.