2014 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 18,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 7 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

Pick a Size-Gallery Updated!

Another subtle update to the Gallery feature has been pushed out. This update brings to the Edit Gallery screen the ability to select image size, which was previously available only by directly editing the Gallery shortcode in the Text tab of the Post or Page Editor.

When you open the Media Manager’s Edit Gallery screen, beyond Link to, Columns, Random Order and Type, you’ll now see an additional drop down menu which allows you to select Gallery image size- Thumbnail, Medium, Large or Full Size. While I have not had an opportunity to experiment with all the Gallery Types, in the past these image size choices have been relevant only for the default Thumbnail Gallery and not the “mosaic” type of Gallery.

Your image size selection should also influence the number of columns you select to use. If your theme has a particularly narrow posting column or even a full-page template, you may need to experiment a bit with image size and number of columns to get the best result for your theme.

And here’s the bonus: you can now easily insert even a single image which will be displayed in a Gallery and then, by default, the Photo Carousel. If you wish to align your single image to the left or right and have text wrap around it, you’ll still have to get your feet wet in the Text tab of the Editor, but it’s a grand start!

Blogging 201: Set Three Goals

With the start of the New Year in September, I decided it was time for me to try something new too. Even though this is an established website with some popular posts, I feel the need to stretch and see how I can make it better for both of us.

So while I am already late to the party, as usual, here are the 3 plus goals I’ve set for myself:

  1. Spend an hour each week visiting and commenting on other people’s sites. Without a doubt, this goal is the most important to me and I hope to continue it well beyond 1st of April.
  2. Establish a regular weekly feature. Posting consistency is my biggest challenge. (I currently maintain three active sites and they are all suffering.)
  3. Within 6 months, invite 3 guest authors/photographers to post and/or interview those photographers.
  4. Increase ongoing traffic to my site. Since I prefer organic growth, I won’t say “by X% and by when” and trust that this will be a result of 1, 2 and 3.

While looking at the goals others have set for this challenge, mine are decidedly less ambitious, but certainly attainable for me with the very limited time I have available. When I shoot for the stars, I usually fall on my face. :)

Stay tuned!

Blogging 101 and Photo 101 Start November 3

Photo 101 especially for phonographers! Can’t wait to see what the WPcom Daily Post is cooking up for everyone. Sign up now.

The Daily Post

If you’ve new to blogging and missed September’s Blogging 101, never fear — a new offering starts up on Monday, November 3rd. We’re also excited to announce Blogging U.’s first photo course, Photography 101. Learn more about each and register:

Photography 101

This November, we launch a new track in Blogging U.: photography! First up: Photography 101, a photo-a-day challenge that combines a daily photo theme with photography and photo editing tips. You’ll publish new posts, make new friends, and hone your photographer’s eye.

Photography 101 is a month-long course, starting November 3 and ending November 28. This is an intro-level course open to all, from new bloggers and hobbyist photographers to veteran photo challenge participants and pro-shooters. Use the camera you like — a phone, a point-and-shoot, or a dSLR.

A note on cameras…

If you’ll be shooting mainly from your iOS or Android phone or tablet, download…

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Reexamining the Reblog

Apologies to my regular readers for yet another post on the new Reblog, but this is my current bugaboo and with good reason.

It’s all well and good to discuss reblogging netiquette and karma, but the nuts and bolts of reblogging are broken and we community members cannot fix this. Besides the written content in a reblog still being overly long, the current iteration of reblogging a post with visual content pulls every image in that post into the reblogger’s Media Library whether it’s used in the reblog or not. I’ve discussed this on this site and at length on WPcomMaven.

Further aspects to consider: what are the ramifications if someone reblogs a post that contains purchased stock images which are licensed only to the original site? What about posts where a person has permission from the original content creator to post their content (not a reblog), but then someone else comes along and reblogs it? There are too many aspects of reblogging that WPcom doesn’t seem to have thought through to the end or perhaps that their Terms of Use absolves them of any responsibility.

Don’t get me wrong, I’ve been on WPcom now close to 8 years and continue to recommend it to my colleagues and clients. However the new Reblog needs some tough love that only Staff can give.

The Daily Post

The last time we discussed reblogging, your opinions in the comments were mixed:  some of you felt that reblogging was a great compliment, and others felt that it was something akin to theft.

We here at The Daily Post love a good etiquette debate, so let’s wade back in, shall we?

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