Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: northern Deep South
Bikes: Fuji Touring, Novara Randonee
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I'm not quite sure what you're asking for, wiim.
If you're looking for what makes a good read, it starts with a good writer, someone who updates regularly, and integrates pictures with his writing. (Using "his" in the generic his/her sense, of course!) Helps if they're writing about a place I'm interested in, but the real jewels are those who can make me interested in the place they're riding. Using CGOAB as a reference, I'll only read about a third of the journals past the first 2-3 pages, and there's usually 2-3 writers I'll follow through their journey.
Content? The classic who, what, when, where, why. It doesn't need to be terribly formal (Purpose. Route. Ininerary. blerg). The first few pages I look for how well the author writes, to tell the truth. If they don't interest me, there's more journals in the water. I'll admit I like some pictures, but when somebody dumps two dozen pictures on a site without bothering to label them, or talk about them, it looks more like fodder for a scrapbook than something I want to waste my time on.
As an author? Get out of my way. Give me a structure I can live with, and a way to upload/compose/edit without too much hassle. Using CGOAB as the touchstone, I figured out in a day and a half of occasionally trying everything I cared about; daily title, check; paragraphs, check; pictures (inline, please!), check; captions for those blasted pictures, check. I was able to write and save files offline, then cut and paste into the site, upload the pictures (and captions) quite easily. (Never didi figure out how to use email to update and upload, but then, I had web access any time I had email access, so it didn't bother me.) My daughter was disturbed that I couldn't put a video on crazyguy, but given the storage and download requirements for a video, and the editorial quality of most videos (moving snapshots), I don't care too much about it.
I guess, at root, I'm pretty conservative about an online journal or blog. Tell me a story. I really don't give a flip as to whether you've figured out how to invert a line of text, make it dance across the page, or sing and dance. Guess that's why I don't like most Flash sites.