On Friday, AfterEllen is shutting down.
Trish Bendix announced this on Tuesday, September 20th, on her private blog:
Over the last 10 years, I’ve published a lot of very personal things on AfterEllen. I’ve written things people didn’t agree with. I’ve written reviews of work created by peers that they didn’t necessarily love. I’ve written about being married and then not. I’ve published interviews that were painful to get through and worse to relive during the transcribing and writing process. But nothing has been as difficult as what I’ve had to write today.
After 14 years, AfterEllen as we know it will be effectively shutting down as of Friday.
It’s painful to read. I have a storied relationship with AfterEllen. A billion years ago, they were tiny and asked me for images from a fansite I ran to use on theirs. Of course I said yes. For years and years, I followed them. From basic HTML to Drupal to WordPress and now… well. Now we say farewell.
You can hate what AfterEllen became, and you can disagree with some of Trish’s choices (goodness knows I have!) but the landscape of homosexual havens in the early 2000s was so very different than it is here in 2016. What AfterEllen gave us was a refuge beyond LiveJournal (yeah) where we could find kindred souls. The site gave us a place where we knew we weren’t alone.
Things have changed a lot. Back in the early and mid-2000s, you could make a living on your Google Ads. Now? Well. We don’t even come close to breaking even, but then again we’re not trying and we’re running this as a hobby site. Sites like Autostraddle wouldn’t have happened without AfterEllen, and I’m not sure we would have either.
Thanks for keeping things going even when times were hard, Trish.