Neville Hobson, over at his blog the other day, asked why he should use Posterous.
For those of you who’ve never heard of this application, it’s a blog-like platform that enables you to blog by email. You sign up for a free Posterous account which gives you a blog at www.yourchosenname.posterous.com and you can then blog by sending an email with photos, mp3s, videos or text, and even by calling in on your phone - these items will be posted on the blog automatically. For more details of how it works, check out my review of Posterous from around this time last year.
Neville’s question - and the responses he got from various people - got me thinking about how and why I use it, when I already have this blog.
There seems to be a trend towards not just multimedia but also real time, or almost real time, communication online, facilitated by smartphones with always on internet connectivity as well as SMS (short text messaging) and MMS (multi media messaging). This is emerging as a fresh form of blogging that is being called “lifestreaming” - where you stream a record of your real life on to the online space in nearly real time. Twitter is the most well-known application that enables you to do that via text. Posterous facilitates the process in a multi-media way.
I use my blog at Fusion View for posts which are more like articles or essays where I explore issues and topics in a considered way. These longer posts are interspersed with some video, audio and photo-slideshows. But it doesn’t feel like this is the right place for very informal snippets of what’s going on in my daily life. So that’s where lifestreaming comes in.
I’ve called my Posterous site the Fusion View Lifestream. Since I got my new Blackberry Bold the other week, I’ve really been having fun snapping shots of my garden and friends I’ve met up with as well as my recent jaunt down to Bristol - and then emailing them straight to Posterous. You can also email multiple photos in one email and it will create a little slideshow automatically. There is an automatic cross-posting function that sends the snaps to Twitter, Facebook and my Flickr account - as well as a range of other social media sites, if you were so inclined. This means that my friends and family who follow me in those spaces can see what’s going on for me within minutes of my snapping the pictures or tapping out the text on my Blackberry. But people who read my blog who may not be that interested in seeing my tomato plants or my tourist snaps of Bristol don’t have to be bothered by those more personal moments.
Occasionally, I get Posterous to automatically cross-post to Fusion View as well if it’s the right kind of vignette or mood piece that would fit with the blog and break up the longer, in depth posts.
If you’re lifestreaming or using Posterous, why don’t you add a comment with the link to your site - I’m curious to see who else is having a go at this!
Photo: thanks to Zest-pk from flickr.com (CCL)