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January 9, 2009

Posterous – If You Can Handle Email, You Can Blog

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Blogging has become a ubiquitous source of entertainment, information, education, and news but that doesn’t mean everyone has taken the initiative to create their own blog. The primary reason for most folks is technophobia because creating (and maintaining) a blog must be complex, right? Wrong.

The absolute best example of painless blogging is Posterous, a phenomenal new web application that employs something we’re all intimately familiar with – email. Instead of requiring users to login to a backend editing console for writing new blog posts, Posterous is run almost entirely from your own email account. Just type a note and email it to [email protected] and within a few minutes your blog post is live for the world to see.

As one might expect, Posterous is smart with your emails in that it picks up your formatting like bold, italics, colors, etc. But even more impressive is Posterous’ ability to handle attachments to your emails like photos, MP3 files, videos, and even documents. Photos are resized and slideshows are created automatically when two or more pictures are included. Audio files, videos, and documents are embedded into a simple web player for easy access by your blog users. And if you include any URLs to other websites, Posterous will automatically convert these to clickable links.

Posterous is continuously adding new features – all with the fundamental requirement of being easy to maintain for even the most novice of computer users.

Practical Uses:

  • Create a Posterous site for someone who would like to blog but doesn’t have the technical prowess or time to handle a traditional blogging system
  • Use Posterous as a microblog journal of your daily activities, just shoot an email whenever something big happens
  • Archive all of your photos on Posterous – with no resizing required and automatic slideshow creation

Insider Tips:

  • If you include a URL to common video sites like YouTube, Posterous will automatically embed the actual video for you
  • Feel free to attach any media file to your email, Posterous will ensure it gets sized correctly and even add a viewer/player automatically
  • If you use an email signature or your company has one of those annoying legal disclaimers, just include #end at the end of your message and everything afterwards will be removed

What we liked:

  • Everything about Posterous is simple including signup (there is none)
  • Automatic handling of virtually any media file (audio, video, picture, and even documents)
  • Ability to autopost to a variety of places including WordPress blogs, Twitter, Flickr, and more
  • Multiple author support

What we didn’t like:

  • No ability to choose from alternate designs or create a custom theme
  • Limited to 1GB of total storage (for now)

Alternatives:

We don’t know of anything quite as simple as Posterious, but you can consider these other blogging platforms:

Company Info:

  • Launched: June 2008
  • Privately Held
  • Headquarters: San Francisco, CA
  • Founded by: Sachin Agarwal and Garry Tan
  • Web site: http://posterous.com

Costs:

  • Free

Comments

  1. Thanks so much for the review. Theming is on my computer now, working hard to get that going in the coming weeks.

    We’re thrilled to hear your feedback and definitely please keep in touch.

    -g

  2. Garry, you are my hero! So happy to hear theming is eminent…can’t wait.

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