In short, I deleted my subscription service for this site.

I know this might be a pain in the ass for some of you, and I also know I’ll lose followers because of this, but I’m okay with that. Hunting a huge audience isn’t my goal here. There is a reason I’m doing this. As with any other site in the world, people come and go to Smogranch. When they go they need to be able to just hit an easy unsubscribe button, and with NO HASSLE, be gone. I feel this way because the first thing I do every morning is unsubscribe to the masses of things I somehow get subscribed to. People are digital, low-life scumbags these days, not to mention out-of-control marketing animals, who don’t seem to have ANY issues by subscribing people who don’t want to be subscribed. Not only would I never do this, I would also never try to make it difficult for you to unsubscribe. Over the past few months I’ve had people email me saying, “Sorry but I can’t unsubscribe to your site.” This drives me crazy. It SHOULD be an easy system, and I honestly don’t know why some people can and others can’t, but I can’t live with the mystery so the service is gone. From now on if you want to get here you gotta aim here and get in. No more email updates. Again, sorry, but I can’t stand the idea of someone continuing to get emails they don’t want.

These days we live in a world where the boundaries of decency and taste have been run over and crushed. People post political s*** to my Facebook timeline, they send ads to my Twitter feed and try to link their sites to mine via comments. And this doesn’t include the normal spam for drugs, sex and crazy s*** that now seems far less annoying than being put on a mailing list from a gallery I’ve never been to. I’m SO CLOSE to pulling the plug on ALL of it, including this blog, that I literally think about it every day.

Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE blogging. It is clearly the most entertaining and educational thing I do online, but I also realize the world is out there, spinning, and it doesn’t care about ANY of this. I’m just a speck in cyberspace, something I’m happy to be because I know the important s*** is here on Earth, right in front of me, waiting to be explored. I know I’m a pain in the ass, but those of you who know this site figured that out a long time ago.

50 responses to “Subscriptions”

  1. Ray K says:

    what subscribe are you talking about? The feed is still there on the side bar and all those share buttons are still in place?

    • Smogranch says:

      Email subscriptions are gone. RSS feed won’t work. Those are the two that are done. The social media buttons will remain as they don’t add anything to your inbox everyday.

    • Ray K says:

      ah – well i guess i’ll have to check in now and then.
      I was getting site feed in my RSS feed which makes it easy to tell when something is posted. Now will have to rely on memory ๐Ÿ™‚
      thanks for clearing that up

    • Smogranch says:

      I lied. Flemming suggested I keep the RSS which is easily controllable. So, it’s back. Sorry about that.

    • Mate, we only killed the email subscriptions. RSS feed is working perfectly fine as it should, it’s totally hassle free for users to opt in and out of and a nice way of getting new posts in whatever RSS reader people use.

  2. Erin Wilson says:

    Fwiw, speck or not, I’m happy that you’re here.


  3. Harold says:

    First up it’s not a problem for me about the subscriptions being gone. Somehow I was getting two of them. There’s about four sites I pay much attention to and this is one of them plus your twitter. I for one hope you don’t go completely away; selfish I know. I can’t remember how I found you in the first place but it has been helpful in many ways… helping to see a picture that I might not have otherwise and to have the discussion about how and why we take pictures. Much better than the gear [ carrot on a stick ] conversation that goes on most places. So… for me, it’s helpful to know “what Milnor thinks” whether I agree with it or not, it elevates what I’m doing. Sorry for all the noise you’re getting from the boundary breakers, had no idea about all that. Sometimes I’m thankful for the crickets ;-).

  4. david myers says:

    Dan, no way are you leaving the blog world. You are one of the few sites I check almost every day! Keep at it.


  5. Michal says:

    What Harold said … plus, I hear you. I hate people opting me in, marketing the whole thing. it’s refreshing to actually have real interaction and inspiration – I get inspired by your work to go out and do something. Hope you hang out for a good long while…so, thanks.

  6. Brendan says:

    + 1 to Harold and Michal.

    It would be a shame if you canned the blog, it is one of very few sites worth keeping up with for your views and ethos.

    Very much appreciated by all of us.

  7. Mikko says:

    Awwwww man! I just found you and now you’re gone then. PLEASE bring the RSS back! After all it’s really not something that can be “pushed” on you. If someone today knows how to subscribe to an RSS feed, they also definitely know how to unsubscribe from one.
    If you had some kind of email-subscription-thingy in place also then fine, that SHOULD go, but preeettttttypleeeeaaase give the RSS for those of us who really want it?
    And merry holidays and all for you! Excellent blog you have here!

    • Smogranch says:


      It’s back. Sorry about that. Flemming explained the entire process to me, and RSS sounds like a self=inflicted system that is easily controlled by you guys. So…it’s back.

  8. Jason Timmis says:

    I’ll throw in a ‘hell ya’ and a ditto across the board…and that I’m so old school I type in your website every time I visit anyway so you won’t be able to get rid of me that easy ๐Ÿ™‚

    All the best to everyone for the holidays.


    • Smogranch says:

      You are Canadian, used to doing this like chopping wood, swimming with whales and hiking mtns in those short shorts with an axe. Getting to my blog is EASY.

  9. LionelB says:

    I have no idea what subscription is. Sounds like importing into personal life the sort of business obsessions found in airport bookshops – “How to sell yourself to the devil in two easy steps – firing your first thousand lesser beings before celebrating with the lease of a corporate jet.”
    Your blog is an oasis from all of that. A sanctuary. Like Harold, I am selfish and hope that this crumb of comfort in a deeply troubled world doesn’t go away any time soon.

    • Smogranch says:

      I never even thought anyone would READ this post let alone check in with “Don’t go.” Or, “Keep the RSS!” Shows you what I know.

  10. Jerome says:

    This could be my cynical view, but that’s probably the price of this successful (in my opinion) blog and career you have. It’s a mediocracy out there and unfortunately the really good elements are eventually driven out, hopefully that won’t happen here. I really enjoy the honest and articulate opinions you put on here and twitter, and we all share the email noise frustration (at different levels obviously)

    cheers Daniel

    • Smogranch says:

      Alas, I’m not going to kill anything just yet. Plenty of posts lined up. I did however, start today with another round of “unsubscribes.”

  11. James says:

    Hey Daniel,
    Your perspective, I take very seriously so even without the bookmark in three browsers, I think โ€œSmogranch” everyday and I check in to see what’s happening. At a minimum, I hope you can continue with the blog even if you have to delete the other stuff. For me, I burned-out on the digital foolishness a long time ago and wiped out everything in order to concentrate on the my actual photography, my blog (, and bookmaking. Like you, I heavily considered getting rid of the blog, but being an ex-writer, now photographer, it is a perfect way to combine the two and minimize muti-tasking. I’m still working on deleting a lot of stuff in my life in order to make more time for photography and reduce the aggravation of digital living so I completely understand whatever course you take.


    • Smogranch says:

      “Digital foolishness,” I really like that. It’s so appropriate. If you can write you NEED to keep blogging. Most of us photogs struggle with the words, so when someone can do both it’s magical.

  12. bob soltys says:

    No problemo. Your site is one of the few I actually go to.

    You’re absolutely right about the political c*** and spam. Not a day goes by I want to dump FaceBook. When the automatic video ads come, that will probably be it.

    Meanwhile, thank you for your inspiration, and for your devotion to film.

  13. Neil Holmes says:

    You had me worried for a minute Daniel, I really enjoy your contributions, I use the RSS feed, its only one click to unsubscribe, which I’m not planning to do any time soon!

    Wishing you & your family a Happy Christmas,

    Cheers Neil

  14. Chris says:

    Don’t pull the pin on the blog it’s one of my daily check ins and very inspiring. If you need Viagara I can kindly send you the address of a company that updates my inbox daily ๐Ÿ™‚

  15. Sean says:

    Good. Glad you’re not going anywhere. Yet.

    This blog has been an inspiration for me. After checking in daily for the past three years or so I have now have Moleskines full of (crappy) pictures, notes on probably never-to-be-started projects, business cards, maps, as well as half-finished Blurb books, flimsy handmade books made with the cheapest B5 office paper, and of course 2 M6s that replaced ALL my digital gear.

    I get the pulling the plug thing though. I really do. If I EVER see one more post anywhere that mentions street photography I’ll be cutting the cable on the Internet.

  16. mike a says:

    I know these things can be a pain but I check your blog everyday. I Love it man.

  17. Daniel, as Flemming already said: “the RSS feed is totally hassle free for users to opt in and out of”. True. So I’m pleased you reactivated this feed. Thanks!

    And please don’t quit blogging, don’t leave. Just close your eyes and think of that georgeous Dan-bag Arthur made for you! Feeling better now, yes? I told you, it works ๐Ÿ™‚

  18. david behar says:

    no apologies needed daniel. been tearing what little hair i have left out of my head these past few days just trying to do a simple thing like having my OS work as it should. . .without having to spend hundreds more for tech. support. . . just to have a recently purchased system OS work as it should.

    sigh. scares me to think what good my digital camera would be without the monster sitting on my desk. solution? simple.

    moving forward into the past. tried and true. film. my new old school device arrives next week. aperture, shutter, film speed, focus. . .manual focus.


    first morning of the new world age.

    • Smogranch says:

      Digital is a lifestyle. A lot of folks love it, but it does include a perpetual upgrade scenario. I am not in love with that lifestyles, so film works well for me.

  19. Eric Labastida says:

    Dan WHO? Smog WHAT?

  20. Randy says:

    about a year ago, i re-named my cat, Smogranch.
    everytime i call him, i think of your blog.
    thanks for sticking around, your writings are well worth reading.
    Happy Christmas Dan.

  21. LionelB says:

    Until I read about the woollen jumpers, I had thought that the earnest discussion of the Rolleiflex by ‘yoof’ drawn together by their enthusiasm for ‘fixies’ (fixed wheel bicycles) was merely an aberration. Now I learn that there is a global phenomenon, a growing genre known as the Hipster. These young men espouse what may in shorthand be called Smogranch values. While the world undoubtedly needs more Hipsters, a terrifying prospect nonetheless for the New Year, Daniel, when hordes of these nerd fashionistas discover your blog and turn it into a cult sensation. Hold on tight !

    • Smogranch says:

      I’m pretty sure the hipster would be appalled by my site, especially because they are my least favorite demographic on Earth. They are however dominating certain parts of the photography world. Proof that a 50mm, a 5D Mark II and a pastel colored website about all you need to officially go into business.

    • LionelB says:

      Saved ! Maybe I was reading about a sub-species. It is all way too complicated.

  22. cam says:

    just another vote to keep the rss feed. i have it plugged into my daily ritual and when there is a new post i know about it! thanks anyway!

  23. Kurt Gonska says:

    I don’t know about your specific problems with unsubscribing, but I’ve been in charge of many email lists in the past and I found that the vast majority of people who claimed they couldn’t unsubscribe simply didn’t try to do it themselves out of laziness (e.g. they’d reply to me to tell me to take them off the list without first clicking the unsubscribe link at the bottom) or they were….how shall I put it…technologically challenged. It’s a shame you’re taking away a HUGE convenience for many people because of the problems of a few.

    I’m really interested in your blog, but unfortunately with my busy schedule I think I’ll probably view it about 10% as much as I have in the past (when it landed in my inbox and I read it 100% of the time).

    • Smogranch says:

      I like to inflict pain on my followers. Okay, maybe not. Gonska, ten percent from you is worth about 10000000% from the average human. I’ll take what I can get.

    • Kurt Gonska says:

      You raise a good point. However, I’ve shared your blog with many people whose 100% is worth only 100% by forwarding the email with the blog post inside. I can get them to open and read an email from me, but sending them to a link is like sending them into the abyss. And no one wants to end up in the Milnor abyss.

    • Smogranch says:

      What do you have against the abyss? There are a lot of my friends and family down there. Can’t be all bad.

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