AOL and blogging — uh, no.
Jacqui Cheng writes at Ars Technica that AOL, perhaps in many ways the cultural antithesis of the blogosphere as Internet companies go, is making the logical move of getting out of any pretense of being a player as a blogging platform:
The two services being cut are AOL Journals and AOL Hometown. The former is a blogging service for members (a bit like Blogger and WordPress), while the latter lets users to create and host their own web pages. In a short blog entry, the AOL team offers no explanation for the closings, but it did give information on how users can save their Hometown/FTP information and migrate their blogs to other blogging services. Affected users are also being notified of the closings by e-mail.
In a way, it’s not very surprising that these two services are being cut. They are, after all, fairly redundant in a world where there’s a plethora of other (and probably better) blogging and web page creation/hosting services available. There can’t have been that many people using those services through AOL, and similarly, there can’t have been that many people working to keep them running either.
Not much use, not much money, not much sense. Of course it’s not much clearer exactly how some other far more popular blogging platforms can or will make money. But AOL has an uncomfortable history related to that topic… making money, that is… and so it goes.
Hat tip to Andie Schwartz at Cardozo Law.