After nine years of curating one of the leading LGBT news and opinion blogs, Pam Spaulding announced this week that she is shutting down Pam’s House Blend, and will no longer be contributing daily after this month.
Citing health concerns, North Carolina-based Spaulding wrote that she was unable to continue creating daily content to the blog that bears her name, so she would be closing it down.
As an out, African-American lesbian in the South, Spaulding has been one of the most outspoken voices for the LGBT community online. Her blog — which featured a stable of contributors from across the country — became a rallying point for young LGBT activists who expressed frustration with the Obama administration’s slow initial progress on LGBT issues, and frustration with traditional LGBT organizations.
Through her blogging, Spaulding was able to influence several key LGBT grassroots actions, including becoming one of the original authors of The Dallas Principles, a set of principles for guiding grassroots LGBT activists.
“The Blend sat in a unique place in all of this — I brought the perspective of a black lesbian living in the South to the dialogue — broadcasting a voice certainly not represented in the power structure of the LGBT movement,” Spaulding writes in her announcement. “It was the first major blog to feature a transgender contributor, and it was important to me to bring talent to the blog from under-represented regions and voices.”
In June of 2011, facing the cost of operating a high traffic site like Pam’s House Blend, Spaulding allowed progressive blog Fire Dog Lake to acquire the Pam’s House Blend site in what FDL founder Jane Hamsher called a “perfect union,” and operate the blog as a separate channel, allowing ‘The Blend,’ to continue to operate, while freeing up Spaulding to concentrate on managing the group blog and writing, rather than having to operate a site on her own.
“I think it’s a perfect union,” Hamsher wrote at the time. “[A]s the task of hosting a blog and performing the tech, legal and security work to keep it up and running becomes more and more complex and expensive, it will free Pam and her fellow bloggers to spend their time doing what they do best, which is blog. It also allows us to feature the work of a really amazing group of writers on FDL, and be tremendously enriched by the PHB community.”
Spaulding says that contributors Laurel Ramseyer, Alvin McEwen and Autumn Sandeen will continue to blog on a rebranded channel on Fire Dog Lake, and that pamshouseblend.com will continue to operate as an archive.