Email, et al.

For those of you who are signed up for email subscriptions: Feedburner has been acting up lately. Monday and Tuesday the posts were sent as soon as I posted them. Wednesday, nothing. I changed the delivery time from 7-9am to 9-11am, even though that first one ended up in your inbox around 6pm.  As a recent trend, I’ve been posting every Monday-Friday, usually in the early mornings, if you’re curious.  But, do not fret, Feedburner will resume working again, I’m sure.

If you read a lot of blogs and websites with RSS feed, considering using Google Reader, which allows you to have all of the new posts in one place.

And a big thank you to all for reading Preservation in Pink.

Reminder: Articles due in a week, give or take a few days!

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Christmas Shopping Consideration #3

 A series of posts considering the options for Christmas shopping (online, retail, local, eccentric) and the impacts of our decisions (financially, socially, preservation-esque). This is post 3 of  4. See considerations #1, #2, #4.

Consideration 3: The Case of Online Shopping

There’s avoiding big box retailers, shopping at locally owned businesses, and the consideration of online shopping. Is this preservation friendly? It depends on how you look at it. Again, I claim no economic expertise, so please correct me where needed.

Last Saturday, I was enjoying a leisurely morning with coffee, sun shining in my windows, and some online shopping.  For whatever reason, I can stand online shopping for Christmas anytime in November, but I can’t stand Christmas actually existing in the world before Thanksgiving.  My mom happened to call as I’m doing some online shopping to talk to me about her online shopping.  We have both increased our online shopping in the past two years or so.

I find it to be a pleasant experience. Generally, I can find anything I want on the internet, google something to find a discount code, comparison shop at the same time, and I avoid the annoyances of in store shopping like long lines, the way too early Christmas music playing, wondering if I’ll find a better deal in the next store, driving in traffic, spending extra money on gas, etc. And I can do all of this from the comfort of my couch with coffee, without the worry of spilling my coffee because I’m holding too many things. 

Personal benefits aside, what can online shopping do for preservation?

In considering the environment, it obviously saves gas. Your package will still have to be shipped to you, but it will be shipped in bulk with other items. That delivery truck is going to be out on the roads anyway, but your car not on the roads is helping the environment.   

Consumers are able to purchase products from anywhere in the world, such as small, locally owned businesses. That extra revenue can certainly benefit Main Street America.  Perhaps the small businesses in small towns will have less risk of going out of business.   Or, it could help stores in your own town. For example, every store in my town closes at 5pm, which is when I get home from work. I do not have time to get to the store. Most are only open on Saturdays, which doesn’t always mesh with my schedule. Some of the stores have online stores, which allows me to shop at the store without conforming to their short hours.

But, is online shopping really beneficial to historic preservation?

Where are people shopping online? If it’s still the big box retail stores, is that helping any? It might be, because that could mean less of a need for a physical store. Maybe that gives those acres of trees or that historic street a greater chance of surviving the concrete buildings and parking lot threats.

Could increased online shopping lead to fewer packaging materials and plastic bags and paper products? An article by Koosha Hashemi from ezinearticles discusses this idea. 

With general commerce in mind, online shopping’s effect of decreased foot traffic runs the risk of drawing business away from eateries because people aren’t out, about, and hungry. And it takes away from the possibility of “community” because everyone stays at home. 

There isn’t an easy answer.  Each case can have benefits and drawbacks for historic preservation.  I think online shopping can go a long way in helping small businesses reach out to a greater customer base. What we lack for online shopping now is a database of local businesses. It currently takes a few internet searches to find what you need. 

For now, the best thing to do is weigh your options, consider what factors are the most important to you, and stick to what you believe is the best for historic preservation and you combined.

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Next in the series: gift ideas

Blogged.com

A bit of housekeeping, if you will. If you scroll down the page, you’ll see a new widget on the bottom of the sidebar. It’s from Blogged.com, which has the catch phrase “find better blogs.”  From the About Us page, Blogged.com says:

Blogged.com is about discovering what the best bloggers are blogging about right now, and about finding the blogs that will interest you the most. Blogged is updated throughout the day to bring you the latest and most interesting posts from our index of more than one million blogs.

Blogged.com is a place for both readers and bloggers.

The blogs in our database are reviewed, rated, and categorized by editors, so you won’t experience the frustration of filtering through blogs that are spam, outdated, or irrelevant. You’ll be able to find quality blogs that you would be unlikely to have found through a traditional blog search. We also offer time-based searching, bookmarking, sharing, and feedback functions. Anyone can review and rate a blog and help it rise in the rankings.

For readers we provide tools to read the latest postings on topics that interest them, to discover and explore new blogs, and to communicate with blog authors.

From the FAQ page

On what do you base these ratings?

Editor reviews are based on the following criteria: Frequency of Updates, Relevance of Content, Site Design, and Writing Style. Blogs are compared to other blogs within the same category. Blogs that have not been reviewed by an editor will receive a “first impression score” by our system, which evaluates similar criteria. Ratings are not meant to endorse, promote or advertise a blog. They are an unbiased critique by editors. Currently, we may only provide editorial reviews for English language blogs.

Who are these editors?

Our editors have a strong domain knowledge in various subjects and review blogs within their area of expertise. Editors then evaluate the blog and rank it against its peers.

(quotations belong to Blogged.com)

Here is Preservation in Pink’s listing on Blogged.com, which you will see received an 8.2 out of 10 from the editors there. Thank you Blogged.com!

  Preservation in Pink at Blogged

If you readers would like to review Preservation in Pink, please click on the listing above and the review button is on the right hand side of the page.  Or click the widget above. It just requires a few comments and a numerical rating. To write a review you need to register, but that’s it. It’s free and just one email. You can submit any blog that you have, as well. You do not have to have a blog to be a part of Blogged.com

Let’s work up to excellent!  And if you don’t think it’s excellent, please offer suggestions on how to get there. Thanks!