What was bensinterests?

Looking back on my favourite blogging experience.

A post for #WeblogPoMo2024.

For #WeblogPoMo2024, I’m writing about the weblog-of-sorts I maintained for the longest period: a Tumblr account called bensinterests.

I started it on a quiet January day in 2010. The last meaningful post to the site was at the end of May some five years later.

It wasn’t a place where I wrote much of anything at all but instead linked to things I enjoyed - pieces of art, Peanuts strips, Wikipedia entries, pieces of music. There’d occasionally be a few sentences giving some context but, in the main, it was just link-after-link-after-link.

I’d had a far more discursive Wordpress blog with a pal a few years before this. Even though we built up an appreciative audience in our comments and on Twitter, the effort of writing regular longform pieces became a drag and it quietly faded away. At the same time the music forums I loved to frequent were slowly closing down or becoming abandoned as Facebook took over everything. I didn’t have an online place I could call home; Twitter was nice but moved too quickly. The fun I’d found in the Internet was changing and I didn’t want it to die.

I set up a few Tumblrs around thistime, all of which are remarkably still online. I liked the idea of a really simple interface, liked the templates, liked the ease of uploading an image or a YouTube link or a quote. I had an an account which solely shared my Hipstamatic photos (now there’s a very 2010 sentence!), another which shared screenshots when my Mac’s graphics card flaked out and produced scrambled output, one for commentary about music, another for information I’d found but didn’t appear to be elsewhere on the Internet at that point and probably should’ve been.

But bensinterests was the main one. I had the link-in-bio everywhere. I loved the template - a simple white background with primary colours for different types of post. I loved the content, which I described as ‘the little things that appeal to me’. I loved how it presented me to the world. It was very curated (another very 2010 sentence), very non-threatening, very simple, and very wholesome.

But I still abandoned it after a few years. The world changed. I changed. A Tumblr (well, many Tumblrs) wasn’t right for me.

It still has a very fond place in my heart, particularly in 2024 as I look back at past endeavours and try blogging again.