Thursday, 11 June 2009

My Welsh Blogosphere - Chris Jones

The Cambria Politico blog is a manifestation of Cambria magazine’s online activity. Cambria is a glossy bimonthly print magazine with an international subscriber base. For the past decade or so we have concentrated on publishing high quality articles about Welsh life, history, culture and all the good things about Wales and the Welsh people that we admire.

Our strategy for Cambria is to expand our readership and widen our audience. These days this can only be done by doing things online. Print is still the preferred choice of medium for our main readership and we will still, of course, be catering mainly for this. However, we have always had a great deal of content that we cannot put into the magazine for lack of space, because it is time sensitive, because it is unsupported by advertising or is unsuitable for other reasons. This is the material that we are starting to make available online using the website or a blogging channel and we are still learning how to do this in a way that complements and has synergy with the print magazine.

Cambria has always had significant political content in sections such as Pierhead and in articles contributed by the journalist Clive Betts, Siôn T.Jobbins, Henry Jones-Davies and other well known figures – so we are not new to the political scene. However, politics is a rapidly moving news stream so we decided to try our hand at getting involved in the so-called ‘blogosphere’ with Cambria Politico. This has proven to be much more successful than we had anticipated. Cambria Politico is starting to drive traffic and subscription revenue and is attracting much more attention and reaction (some good, some bad, and some downright viciously ugly!) than we have ever received in terms of polite ‘letters to the editor’ or other feedback.
We are also finding that we are reaching a wider, savvier and possibly younger and ‘net aware’ audience than would have been possible with the print magazine.

Although computer literate, we are not ‘techies’ in the sense that people think of web designers and the such, so we have used the excellent freely available software tools available on the web. We started on Blogger (don’t we all) but quickly migrated to self-hosted Word Press which provides the functionality and scalability that we need to run the site properly. We will most probably stick with this.

Cambria Politico is now a monstrous baby that constantly needs feeding and changing (with the occasional projectile vomits). It is also growing and evolving technically as new social media tools (RSS, Twitter, Facebook) become available for integration. For non-techies like us, Word Press makes it all do-able without having to get tangled up in code, so you can see we are big fans. Another really clever add-on that we have adopted is to be Apture enabled. This adds content to our posts in the form of Wikipedia articles, video, images that we could never provide ourselves and which gives more background substance to the posts.

With a year or so of experience and mucking about as it were, we are quite pleased with how it has gone for us. It has also been interesting and instructive to follow those intrepid pioneers of the Welsh blogosphere (whose posts appear above). We make no secret of our political leanings (Plaid) nor do we pretend to be impartial or unbiased. This is a blog after all that has many disparate strands, contributors and voices – some calm and considered, some with suppressed rage at all that is going on with politics in Wales. Above all we are Welsh and proud of it.

(Written by Chris Jones, Cambria magazine online editor)

This is post twenty two of a series of articles giving a chance to Welsh bloggers to have their say on the state of the blogosphere and where it's going. If you're interested in contributing place feel free to contact me at

No response to “My Welsh Blogosphere - Chris Jones”

Leave a reply

Comments are welcome and encouraged. Please make sure to keep comments relevant to the blog post (this applies to any links that may be included).

Rude, wasteful, off-topic are discouraged but will not be deleted. If you want to make yourself look like an idiot you're very much welcome to.

Comments are open and unmoderated (unless you are commenting on an article over 5 days old), and do not necessarily reflect the views of Welsh Bloggers In The Pub.

© 2009 Welsh Bloggers. All Rights Reserved | Powered by Blogger
Design by psdvibe | Bloggerized By LawnyDesignz