What Lies Ahead for the Future of Music Blogger Journalism?


Chuck Von Rospach wrote a piece in March titled The Future of Blogging is… Blogging in which he examines the global trends of the blogosphere. He addresses the Post-Blog Era discussed in a feature on SixColors.com and the conflicting opinions as to the present state of blogging in general.

A user in Reddit’s Let’s Talk Music subforum called 2005-20013 the “peak-blog era” when discussing the future of music discovery. This proposed date range corresponds with my own music blog’s peak readership. In 2012 I had 23,000 annual views, but year for year this has steadily declined to 14,700 views in 2015.

One possibility is that my content has simply become too specialized for general audiences. Whereas in 2012 I posted acquisitions of autographed Parliament/Funkadelic LPs, by 2015 I had moved on to discuss trends in socio-musical culture and technology, and focused onseveral milestones of early electronic music.

But some of these recent articles and threads suggest that blog readership worldwide is in decline. Still others proclaim this a renaissance for long-form blog journalism in the content-rich vacuum created by the explosion of listicle articles from sites like Buzzfeed.com.

Another factor affecting the music blogging community is the prominence of streaming services like Spotify. Listeners less-inclined to read a longform article will surely opt instead for the convenience and immediacy of these services’ content.

Statista has some interesting numbers to contribute to this conversation. Looking particularly at WordPress performance over the years cited above, it appears that pageviews have steadily risen each year from 2007 to the fall of 2014.

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What do you think? Will readership continue to rise into the next generation of listeners? Or will a social media focused community of listicles cause the longform article to fall from favor?

UPDATE: A fellow blogger from another forum offered the following in response to this entry:

I think the readership will continue to rise, though not sharply, as the number of people who gain easy access to the internet rises, but the percentage of readership will continue to shift in favor of ‘instant gratification’ type articles.

To which I responded:

A sound perspective. I too think this will be the case. For my own blog, I don’t count it as a loss, as those who favor instant gratification are unlikely to be among my readers in the first place. But it does concern me for the welfare of society and internet culture at large.

It’s the classic dystopian struggle – Network all over again. And passive media consumption has been a hot documentary topic of late, with Zeitgeist producer Peter Joseph’s series, Culture in Decline, Adam Curtis’ The Century of the Self, and the free documentaries hosted by Metanoia-Films.org such as Psywar (the real battlefield is the mind), Plutocracy, and Human | Resources : Social Engineering in the 20th Century.

These films examine the post-industrial era problem of goods surplus and product efficiency and how they spelled doom for modern capitalism. Together, a reprogramming of western culture to consume goods and information passively and ceaselessly, and the implementation of planned obsolescence ensured that the capitalist dogma would remain intact.

I see the effects of this system in media outlets like the increasingly-commercialized internet and in the way western culture consumes it.  All of the elements above – cultural reprogramming, consumerist propaganda, and an increasingly commercialized internet – these foster consumers’ desire for “fast food journalism.”

He also offered an excellent article for further reading –
Is Google Making Us Stupid?


2014 in review

Before I sign off for 2014, the WordPress Stats Helper Monkeys kindly prepared an annual report for The Innerspace Connection.

Innerspace was viewed about 17,000 times in 2014 by readers in 113 countries.

If it were a concert at The Sydney Opera House, it would take about 6 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Sincerely – THANK YOU for following The Innerspace Connection, and I look forward to sharing more original content and rare music treasures with you in 2015!

Published in: on December 29, 2014 at 10:02 pm  Comments (1)  
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Celebrating our 100th Post – Silence and Empty Words

Pencils ready!

Dear readers,

This is officially the 100th entry at The Innerspace Connection.  I have wonderful things planned for the coming month, featuring more great music and original content.  Innerspace has grown significantly in its readership in the last few years, and now I’m looking to you to find out what content you’d like to see in the next 100 posts.

I’m reaching out every active reader and passive lurker who follows this blog to answer this quick-and-easy 9-question survey.  Your responses will help me deliver the content you’re looking for in the future.   Thank you!

Click here and take the survey now!

It was a wonderful weekend.  My girlfriend spend it spinning Franz Liszt LPs,  and I picked up the next installment of John Cage’s lectures and writings for my library.

I queued up one of my new genre autoplaylists of modern-classical piano works while I read.  The list consisted of composers like Zazie Von Einem Anderen Stern, Ólafur Arnalds, Dustin O’Halloran (who you likely know from his collaboration with Adam Wiltzie performing as A Winged Victory for the Sullen), and selections from Reinbert De Leeuv performing the early piano works of Erik Satie.

This put me in a nostalgic Windham Hill mood, so I also threw in George Winston’s simple but enjoyable piano solos into the mix.  I finished off the set with the Interludes LP from Mannheim Steamroller which excerpts all the interludes from the Fresh Aire series of albums.  All in all excellent “thinking music” for a summer afternoon exploring the compositional processes of John Cage.

Mannheim Steamroller - Fresh Aire Interludes

I’m still working my way through SILENCE: Lectures and Writings [50th Anniversary Edition] from last year’s Christmas wish-list.  My girlfriend and I stopped into our local used bookshop and I was delighted to come upon Cage’s Empty Words: Writings ’73-’78 which picks up right where SILENCE left off.

John Cage - Silence and Empty Words

Empty Words is hardly casual bathroom reading, as you can see from the random page selection below.  But in the full context of Cage’s writings it begins to make (some sort of) sense.

John Cage - Empty Words (excerpt)

I’ve just ordered another reference text – Audio Culture: Readings in Modern Music by Christoph Cox and Daniel Warner.  I came upon the title quite by chance while researching texts on minimalism, and upon reading a particular review of the book I instantly ordered a copy.  Here is the review – from CMJ New Music Monthly.

“[Audio Culture] is an indispensable primer full of the theories behind noise, Free-jazz, minimalism, 20th century composition, ambient, avant-garde and all the other crazy shit your square-ass friends can’t believe you actually like. With writing and interviews from all the players in question (quoting Stockhausen is five points in hipster bingo), this book deconstructs all the essential ideas: Cage’s themes, Eno’s strategies, Zorn’s games and Merzbow’s undying love of porno.” –CMJ New Music Monthly, 7/04

The humor and wit of the review sold me 100% before I’d even read the item summary on Amazon.  This is particularly noteworthy as I rarely read texts written after the late 1970s.  (I have an affinity for Golden Age science fiction and classics of music non-fiction.)

I’ll be certain to post a review of the title, along with a second modern publication which I’ll keep under my hat for the moment.

That’s it for now.  Stay tuned for more, and if you haven’t already –  Click here and take the survey now!

Happy 100!