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(this might be better suited as a community wiki, can one of the mods edit it please?)

Info : I have one main blog, where I discuss IT stuff like programming, android, Java etc which compensates my day job nicely (Java developer).

I want to start blogging about other, non related interests (such as karate, fitness, languages etc).

Question : Would it be best suited to setup a second installation of wordpress for these, or should I just keep one installation and separate using categories? What are the pros/cons of doing this?

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1 Answer 1

It really depends on who your target audience is...

Keeping them together:

  • Pros:
    • It's the real you.
    • You won't need to worry about what goes where.
    • There's always something (off topic) to blog about.
  • Cons:
    • Narrow-minded readers are exasperated by diversity. Especially if some of the topics you blog about can be controversial. (And narrow-minded readers are many.)
    • It's harder to monetize, if that's the stuff you're into.

Splitting them on multiple sites:

  • Pros:
    • Readers always get on-topic content.
    • The signal to noise ratio will probably seem higher to newcomers.
    • Fickle readers don't run away when they disagree on topics that may be controversial.
    • It's easier to monetize, if that's the stuff you're into.
  • Cons:
    • It's not the real you.
    • You'll eventually grow tired of behaving like a schizophrenic.
    • There isn't always something on-topic to say, so the rate of posting may occasionally suffer.
    • Your readers' interest might fade faster: there's only so much you can read on a topic before you move on.

Tip: if you end up setting up multiple blogs, consider maintaining a twitter account or a brain dump blog, for stuff that fits nowhere.

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+1 really well put –  Rarst Dec 11 '10 at 12:06
    
Note that you can help readers keep unwanted diversity in check by providing clear cut categories. Users can then subscribe to/bookmark (unions of) specific categories they are interested in. On the other hand you have a clear target audience on split sites which enables you to write specifically for those. On a joint blog you will have milder versions of posts in order to make your posts readable for every reader (or some people won't understand considerable amounts of your posts). Consquently you might want to have a dedicated site if you go doop in one topic. –  Raphael Dec 11 '10 at 12:34
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