I don't know if you noticed but there were some changes around here while I was on vacation or furlough or whatever. The folks at Philly.com imposed a lot of uniformity across the platform, which helps them cross-promote some of their excellent content across the entire website. But there's only so much real estate (even on the Internet!) and so some things about Attytood that have been around since the blog was founded in 2005 were killed off.
One was links to the blog's archive of older posts -- that function probably didn't get much use anyway and if you're good at Googling my older "work" (but only back to April 2008...don't ask) can be retreived from cyberspace. The second change is a little harder to take -- the loss of the blogroll, or quick links to other interesting sites around the ol' World Wide Web.
Admittedly, the blogroll was waaaay out of date (also a long, boring story) to the extent that for several years there were still links to bloggers who unfortunately had passed away. That said, I still used it all the time, to find my favorite local blogs like Suburban Guerrilla or Atrios or Kiko's House and other sites that excelled on national politics or journalism or sports.
Why have a blogroll? Because a good blog is all about creating a community. Part of that is sharing the work of other writers that you enjoy -- and hoping they'll return the favor once and a while. If done right, you're not just hectoring an audience, but starting a conversation. That was the approach when I started Attytood -- it was the first "permanent" blog in the Daily News/Inquirer/Philly.com orbit, and dozens of others came and disappeared, this blog is still here. I think "conversing" with smart folks outside of our building -- rather than pretending they didn't exist -- is a big part of why I'm still here.
I've also heard that there's not as much space in print for editorials and op-eds these days. I honestly have no idea why this is -- but I do think it's a shame. Over the next few weeks, I'm going to be thinking about any ways to expand local commentary, as well as the sense of community, through Attytood. If you have any ideas on how to help achieve this, and create a new and better public forum for a city that deserves to hear a multitude of voices, please let me know. I've always wanted this page to be quirky, individualistic, fun, and definitely not cut from a cookie cutter.
And that's never going to change.