First Impressions: Mataroa Blog Hosting

These are my impressions about the hosted blog service  Mataroa is a minimalist type of hosted blog somewhat on the same order as  

Mostly it's the look that is minimalist because the feature list is pretty good.  I won't go through the entire list because you can see that at the link above.

What I Like

  • Comments - you can turn this feature on or off.  All comments have to be approved by you before they go live.  I'm old school on blogging, therefore I like having the option for comments even if I have them turned off.
  • Pages - the ability to create Pages in addition to Posts is important.  I've used early blog scripts that had no Pages and it was a major limitation.
  • Import/Export - you can take your blog posts with you.
  • Subscribe - people can follow you either by RSS or optional email newsletter.
  • Webring - While you can't edit your theme they do provide a means to join a webring.  That's pretty cool.
  • Analytics - these are very basic, just how many views each page or post got each day.  No other info so it respects your visitor's privacy.  It's not a lot, but it is important for a blogger to know that somebody is visiting their blog.

That's just at the free level.  The paid level adds the ability to use your own domain but get backups emailed to you regularly.  Free is free and the paid level is only US $6.00 per year.  (For now, that number has to eventually go up.)

Mataroa uses Markdown to customize your writing so there is no elaborate editor.  You can post photos as well. I have no idea how much storage space you get, but photos are not the point of Mataroa as a blog host, text is.  This is a place for people who want to write with the minimum of fuss.  There is almost no friction standing in the way of you writing a post.  

One downside is there is no site search. All blogs should have a site search. They need to add a site search.

Who is this For?

  • People who want a simple, easy to use, blog site.
  • People who prefer text heavy blogging.
  • Someone on a tight budget.
  • Someone who likes the minimalist aesthetic but with a decent set of features built in.

I have to say, I’m impressed.  You are not going get the rich and powerful feature set, syndication and community like you would with but if money is tight and/or if you just want to experiment with a personal blog Mataroa just might be for you.

Brad Enslen @bradenslen



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