It could be perceived that as a web developer I want everyone to build a website and get paid versus seeing potential clients place their faith and future in the hands of other paid for platforms without any guarantee that their content is safe and will be online tomorrow, the next day and forever.
Why bother with the hassle of owning and managing a website if you don’t have to? It’s a question that’s worth asking, but as someone who regularly writes and publishes content online, I’m uncomfortable with the thought of relying on a platform owned by a company whose interests do not align with mine.
You may recall the artist Dennis Cooper had his blog removed by Google. He lost all the content dating back to 2002. Gonesky, hasta lavista and all that jazz. This only illuminates that free or paid for platforms can remove your content or account at a whim and there is nothing you can do about it.
There are many lessons and questions to draw from this. He is an artist and someone complained. Someone was offended by his work - is now it's gone. You could even call it censorship. I know if someone tried to silence my voice - I'd raise all kinds of hell. I'd be pretty upset by that.
Another lesson is Dennis placed too much naive faith in the big search giant thinking "it's Google, my content will always be safe." WRONG! The other crucial part is there are no backups. That right there kills me inside to know that all that information is gone. Though I am sure it still exists somewhere, Lesson 101: Back up all your work. Then back it up again and again. For our web business all our sites are backed up daily locally and daily offsite. Several copies are kept. Even my own personal computer is backed up live, plus I have NAS drives and other backup options.
These platforms exist to make money. They may not be monetizing yet, but no one launches a large-scale publishing platform out of altruism. In the end, it has to make money or go the way of the dodo.
So you end up with a solution that offers some customization but essentially it's not your playground. They own all the toys and if you want to move on, the best you can do is do a copy and paste job of your content to another location. No doubt the new location will have a different domain and your links change and it now becomes a bit of an SEO redirection nightmare.
If it is a free service there will be ads in your content whether you like it or not. They need to monetize somehow.
Owning the means of publication of your content allows you to set the agenda — you won’t have the rug pulled out from under you after you have invested in building an audience.
It just so happens that Dennis Cooper relaunched his site on WordPress and like the article on WP Tavern suggests, "After the experience he had with Google, it would be surprising if he didn’t get his new blog immediately hooked up to a backup service for peace of mind."
What I'd like to cover is with a website, and our preference is WordPress, usually if you wanted to move it you can do so with relative ease, if you have a web developer that plays nice. Packages up your files and database into one nice downloadable file which you pass onto your next developer - with a few waves of their magical wand - your site is live someplace else. You will need an expert to set up a WordPress site or transfer one for you.
When we teach business owners how to create content and become the authority in their niche you would be surprised at how many do not have a website or even a blog. If this is you, check out our survey and help us consider building a simple WordPress solution that you do not need to set up and if you wanted to, move it entirely. You are not locked into our plans. It would be our job to ensure you get massive value but also feel 100% safe that if you had to move it. You can.
This article covers:
- 10 Reasons Why Airstory is the New Favourite Tool for Content Writers and Their Teams - August 16, 2017
- Enhance Your Blog with Stunning Imagery - August 2, 2017
- The Blog2Social WordPress Plugin Makes Posting and Sharing Effortless - July 4, 2017
- Grammarly: Catching Typos So You Don’t Have To - March 10, 2017
- Smallpdf: The Easiest Way to Compress and Convert Your PDF Files - November 3, 2016
- What happened when we moved to ONTRAPORT? - November 3, 2016
- Empower How People React To Your Video Content - November 3, 2016