Once upon a time there was a blog platform called Posterous. It was free, easy to use and fun. It was quite innovative, providing an elegantly simple way for anyone to blog. As you might imagine, it was quite popular. It attracted a lot of attention. But, in 2012 Twitter bought Posterous. Unfortunately, Twitter didn’t want the blog platform. They wanted the talent behind it. It wasn’t long before Twitter announced it was closing the blog down.
Fortunately, two of the original creators felt Posterous was worth saving and began constructing a new blog platform based on the Posterous foundation but updated to take advantage of the latest web technology. And so Posthaven was born.
Posthaven is different in two very significant ways. First, Posthaven promises that it will be there as long as you are. How can they make such a claim? That’s the other difference. They have chosen to make Posthaven a fee-based platform instead of attracting capital in ways that hurt the user base. Users must pay to use Posthaven. It costs $5.00 a month for an account that includes up to 10 blogs. What happens if you quit paying? You will no longer be able to edit your blog, but it will remain online and viewable to all.
This last year has been a busy one. Posthaven’s first challenge was to provide a place for Posterous users to move their blogs before the shut down. After that was accomplished, they then began rebuilding the features and functions that had made Posterous so attractive. The basic elements are now in place. There’s still a lot to do, but Posthaven is fully-functional and a great place for both beginners and old hands to enjoy the blogging experience.
So what makes Posthaven blogs so special? It’s easy! Very easy! If you can send an email message, you can post to a Posthaven blog. See for yourself.
This email message . . .
. . . becomes this post on Posthaven. The subject line of the email message becomes the title of the post and the message body – including images – becomes the content. Most formatting remains intact during the transition and the results are quite impressive.
But that’s not all. Posthaven also supports a very nice email subscription service for each of its blogs. Visitors can subscribe to have posts delivered to their inbox within seconds of being published. And, not only can visitors subscribe, but the blog owner can also send subscription invitations. So, a Posthaven blog can be an affordable and easy way for a society to build an email news service for their membership.
Other features include:
- Email posting
- Online posting with embedded media (photos, video and documents)
- Image galleries
- Support for multiple contributors
- Comments with spam protection
- Email subscriptions and RSS feeds
- Private sites with passwords
- Autoposting to Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin
What’s still missing? The biggest thing is themes. It’s also one of the toughest. Right now all Posthaven blogs have the same plain vanilla look. It will be a while before Posthaven will have theme choices at the level of currently established blogs. I can live with that. The elements I wanted most are now in place – email posting and subscriptions, media management and private sites. I can wait for the others.
Now that you know what Posthaven is, let’s look at ways you can put it to work. As it stands today, it can be an amazing email news service for your society members. Use it to announce meetings and other events, distribute newsletters and announcements. A Posthaven blog would be a great way for a special interest group to share ideas and topics of interest. If you are encouraging your members to blog their family history, this is an easy and affordable way to get them started. A Posthaven account supports up to 10 blogs. That’s just $6.00 a year per blog!
Would you like to learn more? The Posthaven Gazette is a Posthaven blog offering news and tips. You can subscribe by email or RSS to include it in your newsreader. You’ll find a Posthaven Primer at Scribd. It can be read online or downloaded as a PDF document. It is currently being revised to include the latest feature updates and the updated version should be published – at Scribd – later this week.