July 5, 2006

So What's the Deal With the New Townhall.com Blogs?

Hatched by Dafydd

Today, when I type in http://www.hughhewitt.com/, that URL is now just a "parked domain" pointing at http://hughhewitt.townhall.com/ instead. Hugh is evidently a partner in the new Townhall.com reintroduction.

But what does that mean? Hugh writes,

Attract. Inform. Activate. Motivate.

That's the purpose of the new Townhall.com, and I hope the launch will inspire you to begin blogging today, or if you have been blogging, to move your blog to the Townhall platform where we believe your traffic will increase substantially given the nature of the more than a million users Townhall.com already has.

I'm still confused, however: what is the incentive for someone moving his blog to Townhall.com? I clicked on the advert in the (gigantic) sidebar that reads "Create Your Own Blog," and it's less than informative, telling us only the following:

Start Blogging In 3 Easy Steps!

1. Name Your Blog

2. Choose a Template

3. Determine Your Blog Settings

Start Blogging!

This tells me exactly nothing, other than that the copywriter overcapitalizes and loves exclamation points. For example, here are some questions I still have:

  • Townhall.com may have "more than a million users," but evidently what they don't have is SiteMeter, or any other independent traffic monitor... so it's a bit hard to tell whether traffic goes up or goes down when a blog moves there.
  • Granted such a blog ends up with more readers; but how much of the ad revenue does the blogger keep, if any? I presume Hugh gets a lot; but then, he's an actual partner, not just a random blogger.

    Do the Townhall.com bloggers get readers but no money? Or do they get significant money? Nowhere on the site does it tell us; the site map currently has nothing on it but a list of the bloggers on the site. What's the business plan?

  • If a blog already has a distinct style, such as (ahem) Big Lizards, would the owner really have to dump the style his readers have come to know and loathe, just in order to -- I mean know and love, just in order to get it on Townhall.com?
  • For those bloggers who already have a somewhat successful site, by the curiously low standards readers of Big Lizards have come to expect, can it be simply "mirrored" on Townhall?

    That way, the reader could access one version by going to www.BlogMonkier.townhall.com, and see the site in one of Townhall's templates; or he could go to www.BlogMoniker.com directly to see the site in its pristine originality. Or does the agreement require that all other mirrors or versions of the site be terminated?

  • How much control over the HTML code would a Townhall blogger have? (My off-the-thumbnail guess is "none whatsoever.")

Does anybody out there have an inkling of the answers to these questions? If so, will he tell us himself, or do we have to wait to hear the dirty version from Eric Lichtblau?

Hatched by Dafydd on this day, July 5, 2006, at the time of 1:36 PM

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The following hissed in response by: drdoct

yet another pajamas media like launch. Another question would be who controls the content? What happens if you drop F bombs and want to turn Liberal?

The above hissed in response by: drdoct [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 5, 2006 2:16 PM

The following hissed in response by: Garrett

So go over to Town hall and try to leave a comment. Cripes, you have to give your street address. Thanks, I already get enough junk mail. color me not impressed.

The above hissed in response by: Garrett [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 5, 2006 7:08 PM

The following hissed in response by: cdquarles

And a silly simian banned troll from CQ is just so juvenile.

What I dislike about the new Townhall.com is the death of their RSS feeds.

The above hissed in response by: cdquarles [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 12, 2006 11:48 PM

The following hissed in response by: cdquarles

I forgot to mention this. I have been a part of Townhall from its BBS days (that is, before it moved to Compuserve in the Bush 41 days).

The above hissed in response by: cdquarles [TypeKey Profile Page] at July 12, 2006 11:50 PM

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