Very few people can be effective popularizers of academic research. You need to have a particular personality type plus the interest to be able to do it. Who’s there in my field, for instance, who’s managing to do it? Me, Jonathan, and I can’t even think of anybody else. Z is more of a personal growth type of blogger than academic popularizer.
Most of academics are aware that only a narrow circle of colleagues will even know about their work. And it’s tough because so much effort and study goes into it, yet the audience is minuscule. One would think they’d be glad that somebody is bringing their stuff to the attention of readers who’d never have heard their name otherwise. I’ll literally weep with joy if somebody ridicules or tears apart my academic books on a popular blog read by normal people who are not in my discipline.
Instead of feeling glad, though, people get huffy because the way I write for regular, non-academic readers is different from the manner in which academic reviews are written. Bugs me as much as the darn medievalists who always moan that I simplify their field too much.