Anime Blogs Are Dead But This One Is Celebrating Its First Anniversary Regardless

Anime Blogs Anniversary
What?! This anime blog of mine has turned one year old?

This calls for a celebration post!

Except not really as I have nothing really to say. Just a quick rundown for formality’s sake.

Anyway! Within 12 months, I have published 18 articles! My most popular article is unsurprisingly my very first one but both my posts on German manga publishers needing to stop throwing gimmick extras at me and particularly my Takahiro Kagami translation are trailing behind closely. Though, if one were to ask me about my favorite one, it’d be this one.

So much for the statistics. Not gonna bring up any views since that’s not the point with a format as niché as this and they’re embarrassingly low anyway. But it’s hard work regardless and don’t you ever let them tell you otherwise!

Anime Blogs Hard Work

So instead, let me ramble a bit about the state of anime blogging from back in the days. One or the other might end up feeling nostalgic.

When I started anime blogging 10 years ago… elsewhere… it was big. Or, at the very least, it was bigger. Already a bit on the declining side of things but maybe that was just for the German-speaking sphere. Right after I had started blogging, Meidocafe suicided itself and that was that. It’s hard to explain for those that weren’t there but it was a hard loss that had some impact. Not that I care anymore at this point but it’s worth mentioning regardless as its importance on the blogosphere can’t be understated. Yet there were still many others, some with a moderate following. At some point, however, things started to fade and the links and contacts I made went 404 and bloggers turned to people with a real life. For that reason, a modern German anime blogroll is either incredibly tiny or a graveyard. To sum things up, what followed were many dead anime blogs over the years. As of now, German anime blogs are almost completely gone.

I think the same applies to English-speaking blogs by now. Compare the traffic that sites like Scamp’s or Baka-Raptor’s used to generate and now you have barren wastelands. Long story short, anime blogs are gone and dead and nothing you or I will do will change that. So instead, let’s solve the the mystery of who or what killed anime blogs!

Anime Blogs Murder Mystery

Why did anime blogs die?

I guess the primary reason is that with the Internet becoming more centralized in large parts due to the arrival of social media, a new generation of WWW users just simply wasn’t given any incentive to swarm out into the wides of this sea of data. Blogs still had their unique selling points except while they were still unique, they were no longer selling points. The same obviously happened to other kinds of platforms such as forums. Gone are the days of rural personalized pages and hidden hobby sites, urban Facebook and its friends are here! Specifically as far as anime blogging is concerned, twitter was also part of it, doing great damage to a once major scene. Sharing your thoughts with others became routinely easy and let’s be honest – is there really much of a point in writing elaborate posts about the weekly adventures of Omamori Himari and the likes? Probably not. Our lives have simply become faster and easier. You no longer needed an anime blog to express your thoughts, something that posed a demotivating entry barrier. While I miss blogs, I still think that’s a change for the better.

There is also YouTube. Barely anyone can write a text longer than 300 words but middle schoolers are already daring, well-equipped and talentless enough to pick up a camera, a microphone and upload their nonsense to YouTube. People also prefer watching things over reading them and largely, YouTube’s audience does not care much for facts or good research and that’s what helps anime YouTubers. Not that anime bloggers were any good, oh no – but when you look at the putrid pile of garbage and disinformation certain Internet personalities put out, it’s hard to feel optimistic. It didn’t used to be like this, no matter what they might tell you.

Anime Blogs Dead

So what are your plans for your anime blog now that one year has passed?

Continue blogging, of course! I’d like to keep up my current format of covering anime, games and manga within dedicated articles. Every now and then, I’ll opt for the occasional editorial and then there’s also translations to take into account. Combining my hobby of studying Japanese with my hobby of blogging sounds like PRODUCTIVITY MAX! Or work. I mean, yeah, the more I think of it, the more work-like all of this excessive and tedious stuff seems to be. But as always, we’re here for the times that are good or so at least I’d like to believe.

Maybe I’ll also copypaste and re-edit some of the content from my old blog for the occasional additional post or two. Not like anyone has actually read any of that so I might as well. Then again, so much of that stuff is so edgy and outdated, I doubt there is a lot of use to be found. And while we’re at it, you’re also free to suggest something. But I probably won’t listen!

But for now, let’s rejoice that I’ve made it through one year with no major hiccups. To another year it is then!

Anime Blogs Are Dead Long Live Anime Blogs

And remember: Always love your goth lolis, card game anime and perhaps some other things of importance in this world. Whatever those might be.

8 thoughts on “Anime Blogs Are Dead But This One Is Celebrating Its First Anniversary Regardless

  1. I am really interested about how anime blogging used to be. I envy you for being there when people used to read these blogs. What was it like? How many comments did the average anime blog get? Were the blogs any different? Did they write about the same topics as now? Are there any blogs from then that are still around? What is meidocafe? Were the blogs hosted here on wordpress.com, blogger, self-hosted, live journal or some other platform? Was there a lot of drama? Did bloggers post on forums as well or were the anime forum users a different group from the anime bloggers? Are there any blogs from back then that still get a lot of views? Did most blogs write about on-going anime like now or anime that was already finished?

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    • >What was it like?
      Active. I think there were more anime bloggers than anitubers around back then. Unthinkable these days.

      >How many comments did the average anime blog get?
      Hard to say. The amount of comments varied strongly obviously. Popular blogs would get 50+ comments easily. In a day and age when forums where still a major factor, the idea that one writer was fascinating enough to receive so many comments was just an entirely different thing. People also used to read and respond to others’ comments a lot more, including the bloggers themselves and they would get into heated arguments.

      >Were the blogs any different?
      Anime blogs oftentimes tended to be either episode blogs or editorial blogs. Episode blogs would cover episodes from currently airing anime with (or sometimes just episode summaries) whereas editorial blogs would write on specific topics (or, say, series reviews). Of course, there were also those that did a mishmash of both. Needless to say, episode blogging was often relatively shallow as most of the time, there is not much to say about the fifth episode of your generic seasonal anime whereas a lot of editorials focused on anime analysis in specific were really pretentious and reaching so oftentimes, you would end up with nonsense like “Nodame Cantabile And The Dilemma Of The Existential Self”.

      >Did they write about the same topics as now?
      Hard to say, I don’t read anime blogs nowadays. Probably more or less the same I suppose?

      >Are there any blogs from then that are still around?
      Very few are still active and the ones that are are way beyond their prime. If it was a super niché thing 10 years ago, it’s an almost-dead one by now.

      >What is meidocafe?
      A very old German blog that at some point kicked the bucket. It was pulling in numbers like crazy though, my goodness.

      >Were the blogs hosted here on wordpress.com, blogger, self-hosted, live journal or some other platform?
      That varied. Most that used free alternatives were on wordpress.com just like mine. There weren’t few that were self-hosted however.

      >Was there a lot of drama?
      Absolutely. The majority was quiet and peaceful but when there was drama, it could get rather unsightly. I suppose that’s what happens when people with views strong enough to write them down for everyone to see clash with others. Though it wasn’t really political like twitter drama is today.

      >Did bloggers post on forums as well or were the anime forum users a different group from the anime bloggers?
      I can’t say for certain, I’ve only ever really used German forums. I assume some did? As a blogger myself, I can say for sure that writing longer posts on forums sometimes felt draining and I couldn’t help but think to myself that it’d be more productive if I shared these thoughts on my blog instead – although a good, active forum community could of course compensate for that and made exchange worthwhile. I think bloggers were a lot more present on twitter however – which was and essentially is mini blogging.

      >Are there any blogs from back then that still get a lot of views?
      I can’t think of any. I’ve checked up a bit on the ones that were huge many years ago but they barely get any comments anymore.

      >Did most blogs write about on-going anime like now or anime that was already finished?
      Absolutely about on-going anime, that yielded a lot more comments as anime blogging was much more of a community event back then. Watching an episode and reading on what your favorite blogger had to say about it as well as arguing with others in the comment section was probably part of the appeal. Reviews of already concluded anime just didn’t pull in the same numbers as the audience had to have seen that one as grounds for discussion and relevancy quickly fades with a medium that pumps out 40+ anime every season anew. I suspect the overall increase in anime also contributed a bit to how people had too much to write about at some point, making episode blogging a lot less attractive – heck, here’s my first season, that’s barely anything by today’s standards.

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    • Maybe it’s also worth noting that the guy behind the meidocafe blog is Melonpan who went on to become relatively well known due to his eccentric Youtube videos – incidentally also under the channel name meidocafe, if I’m not mistaken. Perhaps I’m only stating the obvious, but for someone like you who’s interested in the minutiae of the anime scene’s evolution (?), it may be valuable info after all.

      I also vaguely remember that this blog had a no-comment-policy. Am I imagining things or did that change at some point?

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      • Melonpan is pretty bad as far as I’m concerned but yeah, that’s him. His blog back then was certainly unique in terms of writing style and freshness no doubt. I’m pretty sure he was the inspiration for most German anime bloggers at the time.

        Yeah, I’ve essentially done away with the no-comment limitation around the one year mark. By now, I dread the thought of people not being able to ask questions or have a productive exchange out of design choice from my side of things.

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  2. Keep blogging, i’m really enjoy ready tour thought and your writing.

    i’m new, so i try to read from the first,
    sorry i can’t support this blog but i hope you have good day to write 😄👍

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  3. What an interesting topic! Couple years too late to read this, but such a topic that’s a blast from the past. I was just thinking today how places like Random Curiosity during its prime would get something like 150 comments on a single episode of Clannad, and now new posts regarding shows would be lucky to rake in 10 comments. Man, the dynamics of this hobby had really changed.

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    • Take me back to these simpler times because I certainly do feel like a remnant of long forgotten times.

      Looking back, the entire concept of anime blogs more and more seems like not only a relic of the past but even something that *couldn’t* possibly exist. Way too outlandish and primitive for people to congregate on decentralized sites focused on a single writer mostly. Well, the 00’s were the Internet before social media had created a handful of hub areas that eliminated the diversity of the world wide web at accelerating speed. Forums, too, are mostly gone. There’s a few big ones left but nothing dedicated like a Hunter x Hunter or a Shakugan no Shana forum.

      As far as anime blogs are concerned, we used to joke it was twitter killing them and that might have been true from the writers’ side. You can easily blurt out your opinions on twitter and get quicker engagement. But looking back, I think we were blindsighted – it was actually YouTube that did us in. Any YouTube video that receives a mere thousand views is essentially a dead waste of space speaking in terms of reception yet a thousand views on a blog post would be massive. Times have changed and people prefer audiovisual feedback coupled with a stronger desire to experience someone’s online persona and form a parasocial relationship with them. Lots of text on an obscure blog just doesn’t do the same.

      The cruel thing about the flow of time is that even if 90% of the people end up going with the times because they easily can, the remaining 10% just get swept along, whether they like it or not. Oh well.

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