Even I’m a bit shocked by the title of this post. Have I really been blogging for fifteen years? I keep double-checking the math but it keeps adding up. In November 1997 I added a feature to my two-year-old peace website. I called this new entity Nonviolence Web Upfront and updated it weekly with original features and curated links to the best online pacifist writing. I wrote a retrospective of the “early blogging days” in 2005 that talks about how it came about and gives some context about the proto-blogs happening back in 1997.
But I could arguably go back further than 15 years. In college, my friend Brni and I started an alternative print magazine called VACUUM. It came out weekly. It had a mix of opinion pieces and news from all over. Familiar, huh? Columns were made up from a dot matrix printer and pasted down with scotch tape, with headlines scrawled out with a sharpie. The ethos was there. Next April will mark its Silver Jubilee.
What’s most striking is not the huge leaps of technologies, but the single-mindedness of my pursuits all these years. There are cross-decade echos of themes and ways of packaging publications that continue in my work as editor of Friends Journal.