For roughly one year, specifically from the autumn of 2017 to around the same time in 2018, I lost access to the provider hosting my blog. When I was finally able to get back in, the files had been wiped out since the hosting payments were overdue. The reason this happened is neither important nor very interesting, the main point is that it happened.

I had luckily saved a backup of my blog but it was an older one. Similar to a house that has partially burned down, some elements of my blog were intact, others partially available while some posts were lost altogether, never to be recovered.

Because I had to reconstruct my blog from scratch, I ended up revisiting older posts as a starting point. In some cases I corrected basic errors or spelling mistakes while in other situations I left my writing as it was. This exercise was helpful. One keen observation I made during the process is that I wasn’t as knowledgeable about the wonders of SEO when I first started the blog so I also added or updated portions of certain posts for better search engine exposure. Finally, some posts I enhanced by either adding or in certain cases removing text. The idea behind these changes was to improve the point of the specific paragraph or overall message. To continue with my house analogy, after rehabilitating certain parts, I opted to then polish up or revarnish some aspects to improve the overall appeal and view. 

My Policy

The beauty of a blog is to view how your thoughts and ideas emerge over time. When I read through some older material, I was surprised at how my thoughts on certain topics changed or how my writing style had improved since I began this blog. Rather than do a complete revision of everything I ever wrote, which would be rather foolish, I tried to retain the original style in my adjustments by fixing the most glaring errors and at most expounding upon existing ideas.

This post really isn’t necessary since it’s my blog and I’ll cry if I want to, cry if I want to! The main reason I even dedicated the time and energy into this particular post is to make abundantly clear to my audience, whether it is a single person today or hundreds of thousands in the future, that I did not nor ever intend to wash over or erase the thoughts shared on this blog.

With that in mind, I always reserve the right to do so, after all it is my website!  But I think that changing your opinion simply because the winds of time have, or “re-creating” yourself by erasing embarrassing or older thoughts is a type of thought eugenics that I won’t participate in. 

Once again keeping this idea in mind, I really don’t see this ever happening but I would most likely just delete a post rather than attempt to reword or re-write it. Nevertheless, I always reserve this right even to do so, even if I never exercise it.

I believe that once I publish an idea, it now belongs to everyone on the Internet. Of course, I always reserve the right to make changes when necessary. In fact, I often do go back to older posts when I spot a small spelling error or grammatical foible. Similar to my original task in rebuilding the blog, I don’t ever intend on dramatically shifting or changing the essence of the message. These small updates are just to improve something I had originally overlooked. 

How I Build a Post

My general rule is the 80/20 principle. I will publish a post to the world once I feel that I’m 80% of the way there. I then review it, make some changes and over the course of a couple of weeks it’s a finished product. Sometimes this happens sooner, sometimes later, always keeping the same idea in mind, that the main message doesn’t change.

Finally, in cases where I deem a follow up or alteration to the message appropriate, I’ll add a footnote rather than edit the entire message itself, as I did with my blog about James Randi. 

Yours, etc

Jon Baumgart