Ten Years of Blogging

I got an inkling to check my archives today, because I faintly remember started blogging in the summer, lo and behold today the 16th is my tenth anniversary of blogging on this site. Hooray!

From Friendster to Flickr to Facebook I’ve always been active on other sites, what we now call social media, but as my interest in those has waxed and waned I’ve always come back to my home on the web, powered by Open Source software on a domain I own. This is definitely the longest sustained activity I’ve done, and I don’t see any reason why I wouldn’t continue the rest of my life, however long or short that may be.

A little of my personal history with blogging: the first blog I remember reading was Zeldman.com, who also introduced me to building websites as a craft rather than an output of a program. His site was personal (and still is) but mixed in technology with a flair and often linked to the other strong voices on the web of its day, like Anil Dash and Jason Kottke. (Both still blogging today.) Everyone seemed to be using software called Movable Type, so I fired that up on matt.mullenweg.com and began haphazardly publishing. (I might dig up those entries and import them here at some point, though it would be really embarrassing.)

Much of my senior year was consumed by two things: preparing for my senior recital (I studied jazz saxophone at the High School for the Performing and Visual Arts) and participating in an economics competition called Fed Challenge. Our team made it all the way to nationals, I believe the first academic competition our school had won, but did not win final award. (In a heart-wrenching turn of events, Susan Bies actually announced we won and we lept up to celebrate, then she said “Oh, so sorry.” and said the actual winners were another school, to this day we still don’t know why that happened.) Our economics teacher and coach, Scott Roman, set up a summer program where we’d all return back to Washington D.C. and for a few weeks to continue studying (and preparing next year’s team) and seeing everything we missed on our first trip.

At the same time all this was going on, I had discovered the open source b2/cafelog blogging software, and project called Gallery. I was user #540 on the b2 forums (called “boardom”) and began helping out around there and publishing hacks, which were code modifications you’d copy and paste into files because there were no plugins at the time.

I’m running out of time, so I’ll skip to the end: I started using Gallery on this site (the first album is from June 1) and about two weeks later published the first post, an emo complaint about airport security written while flying into DC. I never imagined when starting that I’d be able to keep it up for another month, much less a decade.

47 thoughts on “Ten Years of Blogging

    1. Not at all, by the time I got started people had been doing a couple of years already, and services like Xanga, Livejournal, and Blogger had millions of users.

      1. And b2/cafelog!

        I remember having to choose between WordPress and b2evolution(?) when it was clear that b2 wasn’t going to be updated anymore. I think I chose well. :)

        Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

  1. There would be very few blogs which have been posted to as regularly as this one.

    Whenever I visit your website I usually get lost looking at the pictures of people over the years. It is amazing to see how people have changed over the years.

    This site does really showcase some of the power of WordPress which is not apparent at the surface. I’m sure it also inspires many, like me, to use WordPress in ways other than that of blogging and building websites.

    Looking forward to another decade of blogging!

  2. Congratulations on the 10th anniversary of blogging Matt! I remember starting 3 years ago in 2009 with my own blog so I have a lot of catching up to do and dents to put in the blogging world.

    Keep doing what you do and cheers to another 10 years.

    Best,
    Jonny Rowntree
    jonnyrowntree.com

    P.S – thank you for creating free software which has impacted on the increase of jobs on the Internet now compared to 10 years ago!

  3. Congratulations on your 10 years blogging. Of course, I think you can also take credit for millions of other people who have already celebrated 10 years blogging, like myself…

  4. If archive.org is right, June 1st, 2002 here, started a website with entries in reverse chronological order where my CMS was just copy/pasting html table rows. I have to admit you made your blogging way more productive than I did :D

    In fact, my first real (b2, then Drupal, then WordPress) blog started in 2004 has just a total of 364 posts.

    Congrats, and really excited to see where the next 10 years takes us.

  5. I believe this is also my 10th year of blogging. Unfortunately, I’ve lost most of my earlier entries because I use to do everything manually! When the page was starting to get full, I’d delete the older entries to make more room. It was horrible. Thank god for WordPress!

    And happy 10 years! And here’s to 10 MORE years of blogging!

  6. Wow congrats Matt! 10 years and still blogging on, way to go… Many thanks for WordPress, you made people’s lives easier. Easier in the sense that some are blogging due to boredom, it’s a great outlet to get oneself busy and be inspired by the many active bloggers in The Daily Post (http://dailypost.wordpress.com/).

    All the best and stay blessed! :)

  7. I’m coming up on ten years next month, you’ve done a much better job at updating more regularly than I have. Congratulations, Matt. :)

    And you look so young and adorable in that first gallery.

  8. I remember you as a scrappy kid who “borrowed” his mom’s car to attend SXSWi. You’ve come a long way, sir. You’ve changed the world. Keep rocking WordPress and your other products and projects, and keep keeping it real here. Love ya!

  9. I started my first blog on Blogger and later when I took blogging seriously I moved to WordPress. Now I’m proud to be using WordPress. One of the most used CMS in the web today! Matt you and guys are doing just more than awesome!

  10. Happy anniversary :) Woot!

    I’ve been working in Internet tech since 1996 (you can tell because I cap “Internet”), and I remember when I was first introduced to blogging and RSS. At first I was like, “this is just an easier way to make a web site.” But then I realized that it was an easy way to make a web site! :-O Blogs did for the web what digital video did for cinema.

    It must be an amazing feeling to have been such an important part of that.

    Now, some house-keeping: why can’t I check the “Notify me of follow-up comments via email” option? I keep missing responses to my comments…

  11. Congratulations on your ten glorious and productive years on the web. May you have many more. Your posts are instructive, occasionally humorous, and downright fun!

  12. happy bloggie birthday. found you thru 30 under 30 or some innovative link +been a fan since. also loved your previous clean-cut picture/avatar, but little change, always embraced ;) xxom

  13. Hi Matt, I can beat the decade by a year, I started immediately after 9/11, but only about 8 years of WordPress after starting out on Blogger. Like you despite lots of activity on other social media, the blog is “home” the long term resource for “my content”. No review of blogging should forget Jorn Barger of course; he’s totally on Google Plus these days.

  14. Congratulations on your blogging anniversary Matt. My first blogging script was an application called “Simple PHP Blog” which used “flat files” instead of a database. At the time, my host provider didn’t provide access to MySQL without requiring a huge extra fee for the service (remember those days). I eventually switched to a new host provider and remember to this day my first “5-minute install” of WordPress.

    I often wonder if “blogging” would have ever become popular without Open Source software? Something about ownership and portability of your own site/content seems to make the experience unique from what social media can provide.

  15. Back when b2evo forked; Eden and I would sit on IRC and make fun of what a silly name our “competitor” had chosen. WordPress. Psh. We were going to take over the world.

    Being 15 was the best.

  16. I started blogging last year and a few months down the line I really thought about quitting. I felt weird typing away at a keyboard and never being sure that any of my posts were being read by anybody, Then one fine day I got reblogged and in a pretty short while there were a bunch of likes and follows and soon I was talking to real people. Now blogging really feels great !….. Maybe now I might still be blogging 10 years down the line.Thanks for all the new social features on WordPress.
    Happy Belated Anniversary!

  17. Wow I can imagine how things have changed. I’m in my second year and about to conduct a massive over haul of my site… Cracking stuff.

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