Blogger Pro

I upgraded a while back to Blogger Pro. It cost me $35 (I chose not to upgrade the Blogspot account, which is why there is still a banner. If you want to buy my banner out for me, I won't complain :)

I have been absolutely satisfied with my decision. First of all, adding link titles is an enormous boon. The URL field also has been very handy - I don't use the URL field on UNMEDIA, but take a look at how it runs on the Howard Dean 2004 blog. The effect is sort of like Slashdot - a featured link and commentary (you could even add comments using Haloscan or some other system).

One of the greatest things about Pro has been the support. Of course, Ev has been awesome in getting back to me about the occassional missing post (for example, he recently saved Bill Allison's Qutb 3:1 post over at Ideofact). Of course, Ev doesn't scale any better than Linus does :) To that end, there are two FANTASTIC groups over at Yahoo: BloggerPro2 (specific to Pro) and BloggerDev, which is tailored more at discussion of the Blogger API. These are excellent resources for Pro users and I have had excellent response.

But the most important thing about Pro is that it keeps Blogger running. Blogger.com is still the point of entry of most of the Bloggers looking for a free platform. The other options, Radio Userland/Salon and hosting your own via Moveable Type, all cost as much money as Pro do, meaning that the vast majority of new bloggers start their blogging on a free Blogger account. This has been a huge boon to users of the internet worldwide, including bloggers from Pakistan and Iran.

Most of us have started out on free blogger, and we can remember with pain the archive problems, slow servers, etc. These arise from Pyra being a victim of success. By funding Blogger with a Pro account, you are helping to ensure that Blogger remains running and accessible to millions of people.

I see my investment in a Pro membership as putting my money where my mouth is. Many blogs hosted on free Blogger have touted the wonders of blogging, its impact on the Internet, it's power in challenging the traditional media. We even have liberal blogs now :) Yet still, many free bloggers complain incessantly about the limitations of the poor overworked freeblogger servers.

Just imagine if all of us who blog heavily kicked in a one-year Pro membership. There are 8,000 blogs indexed on the Myelin Ecosystem - If just half of these upgraded to Pro, that would be $140,000 dollars. If Ev is reading this entry, I invite him to email his comments as to what he could make Pyra do with that kind of money.

Think about it. I hope you sign up too. A healthy Blogger.com is critical to the health of the Blogsphere.

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