The Firkin for February 2020

Beer Advocated purchased by Untappd. To be more precise, by Next Glass, the owner of Untappd. And no, they are going to merge their ratings systems. They know better than anger that fan base.

This follows upon the “other” beer rating website (RateBeer) being bought by SABInBev. Quite frankly, I have not used RB’s site since I do not want Big Beer to grab any of my beer data and since the Beer Advocate magazine stopped, I haven’t really dropped by their website either. I have had subscriptions for pretty much every beer magazine down the pike, included Craft Beer & Brewing currently but minus Beer Paper LA and blogs, the writing game is pretty scattered now.

Which means a more than likely, money or time losing situation for a passion project (like this here blog). I can’t fault Beer Advocate for going this route. It will allow them to focus on events or other projects that could not have been done due to the lack of cash or hours in the day.

The question is, what is the future of sites like Beer Advocate and RateBeer. Both have passionate defenders but I feel the initial rush of giddy beer drinkers has passed and the middle ground of fans no longer deep dives into topics like they once did. I certainly do not even add everything I taste onto Untappd, and that really just requires wi-fi and a working finger.

Perhaps, there will come a time when there are different levels of beer rating services catering to passionate niches of people. Who knows what the future will hold.