06 May 2012

social commentary Sunday . . . 'the jaded blogger'

Greetings all,
Have you noticed a little pity party around blogland??  I get . . . 'it's my blog i can do/ say/ post what i want' . . . however lately, some posts are beyond venting, it is whinge-filled jaded blogging.  It might be a gorgeous blogger having a bad day with a 'woe is me' post & it takes guts to show your green emotions - jealousy, envy . . . but some are pure the-blogging-world-is-against-me.    
Jaded blogging can range from not feeling welcome at a blog conference to not being nominated for blog competitions.  I might sound jaded myself by saying i'm over the 'vote for me' requests for various writer & blog awards (with cash prizes, flights, status & exposure) as i've never been nominated/ entered in any such competition . . . i don't mind, i'm happy where i sit in the blogosphere.  Acceptance is the basic human desire, such events can strike a divide, who is hot & which blog is not, ouch.  It bruises egos, even cyber ones. 
Then there is the PR sponsorship debate - do we charge for it, or are we so flattered a company found us/ offered a product to trial/ giveaway/ promote, we're so excited - we do it for free??  I originally started my blog as an extension of my business 5+ years ago, but since my husband moved interstate & overseas to live (in January 2010) + i started to shut my business down - i genuinely blog for him, it's just heart warming readers are with us.  When sponsorship opportunities come along, i accept some of them, i want to charge a fee, however my blog was never intended to be a money making tool - such options barely existed when i started & i always made more money promoting myself.
    However, there now seems to be a sense of entitlement, people starting a blog from scratch (no fame/ brand/ book/ personality behind them) expecting 50 000 hits a month & a solid income from their blog.  It simply doesn't happen that way.  In my first 3 years of blogging, i posted 3 dozen times.  I was too busy raising children & sewing, so when i commenced regular blogging in 2010 - it was a much more competitive, interesting & larger blogosphere, with local conferences & global events.  I never checked statistics, but my children love looking at the search words "Mum, some creepy person found your blog by searching 'children in bikinis'" much to my horror & no, i'd never post a picture of my children visibly wearing bikinis!!  So it was with much excitement they discovered my hits as '234 567' this week, i appreciate every hit.  A blogger recently wrote "everyone finds their statistics depressing" but i disagreed & am constantly thrilled when i peek at them, really, that many people read this post, i'm truly flattered, NOT disappointed, NEVER deflated.   
 I've read blogs, i admire very much, posting that they weren't a finalist in a writing competition so perhaps they should give up writing altogether & stop blogging; to others listing all the classic blog must do milestones . . . including a rainbow birthday layer cake, talking about your sex life & suffering depression/ addiction.  They were actually brilliant posts, content & intent.  I have seen more than a few of my favourites switch their blogs to 'private' for various reasons, i would never blog about anything i didn't mind my worst enemy or my own mother reading.  Clearly my children read my blog, so i write honestly, with heart & no regrets.  Some bloggers demand "don't stalk, if you're here, leave a comment or it's rude".  Others insist you must have left 10 comments in the past month or don't enter my giveaway!!  Then some switch off comments as they find it sad when they don't get any for a post.  This isn't what i thought blogging was about.   
Then there is the status of how many followers you have.  I adore my readers, thus naming the 'follow' section as such.  I comment, i join in memes & list parties, i make an effort, i hope enough of an effort, to put up quality posts & visit them too.  Then you read a blogger begging "i get 5000 hits a day, why aren't you all following me" geesh - wondered if those readers took a peek at your blog, as they saw you on television, but didn't like it, so don't follow??  As for some of these celebrity bloggers, how many comments are a suitable amount to leave before you realise they are never going to know/ care who you are & visit your blog??  Actually make that, ANY blogger!!  It's just courtesy don't you think, to say hello & thank you, rather than chase new followers/ commenters constantly??  Cherish the ones you have.  Do you follow blogs with fewer followers that yourself, or are you a social media climber??
Just for some random light entertainment, so this commentary isn't too serious . . . my children taught their chicken to ride a camel.  
At the end of the day 99% of us blog for fun, it's a nice escape & for housewives like me, reading blogs is kind of like office chatter, you're my colleagues out there & it's our supportive community.  I don't mind if you're making money off your blog, i'll still read, you're not a "sell out" (not my words) & if it's really positive for you, well done.  I do loathe the blogs where there is SO much advertising down each side of the screen, i can barely focus on the post, it defeats the purpose, non??  So sad when the potential of paid endorsements changes the way a blogger writes too. 
I have been wondering about going to a blog conference in Sydney next month, i'd love to meet the bloggers i follow, for real & for true, but i'm not so sure i want to sit & listen to all the ways you can increase traffic - i'm a bit old fashioned i guess, i still believe blogging & hits should be based purely on genuine content, what comes naturally to you, not tricks, bells & whistles.  So here's to blogging for fun & any fame/ fortune/ awards are just a gracious bonus, right??  Love Posie

48 comments:

brismod said...

Ha! I had to laugh about the awards business. No one has ever nominated me either. I think it's hilarious that I nominate myself each year and never win!!
I totally get what you are saying though. There can be a lot of angst in the blogging world. It's a shame because it should be fun. At least that is the way I'm approaching it. xx

Salley said...

Touche..Posie.... well said.

Sophie Slim said...

What a nice post :) And you know, I totally agree with you, which is why I think you should go to that conference :) Be a genuine person amongst the crowd of self promotion and self deprecation.

TBH - I just unfollowed a whole lot of australian bloggers, they were exactly as you said, woe is me pity party thinking they are all that and a bag of chips, and I have no time for that negativity in my life. I hope the australian thing was just a co-incidence. I've never come across a NZ blogger like that, actually, I think we suffer the opposite some times, I think a lot of NZ bloggers think too lowly of themselves.

Good post, and I am pleased you wrote it :)

Jan-Maree said...

Oh Posie, I am so with you on that - I blog for fun and to have a community to share with. If you comment that is great and i reply, if you don't that is fine too. i don't always have time to comment either. Aussie heroes is about as hard as I want to work with a blog but Cherry Red is just for fun!

Kirsty@Bonjour said...

I started my blog as a journal for our time in France and to motivate me to stay on top of my photos (I tend to take them, download them and never touch them again, blogging forces me to cull, organise and edit. Yay!) I was surprised that people were interested in what I was doing given all the amazing blogs out there. Now the interaction is one of my main reasons for continuing, online friends are great!
I don't begrudge anyone making a living from their blog (esp if it means they get to stay home with their kids, something I hope I can do). Also, blogging takes a lot of time - it's nice if you can be compensated a little for providing others' entertainment. That said, I'm turned off by obvious advertising, follower-seeking action too. I just scroll down or if it gets too much just unsubscribe. Each to their own. I'm pretty fussy now too as time is so hard to come by - I don't want to spend it reading ads!

mel @ loved handmade said...

It's really a shame when it all starts to be about the numbers. I'm thrilled when I get comments, it's always nice, but I can't expect every person to leave one, I don't leave comments all the time, there just aren't enough hours in the day, but I do like to get around and read what everyone's up to. I'd love to meet some of these wonderful ladies, what fun! Like you, I started my blog to promote my business, but it quickly became so much more. A place to record moments in time that would otherwise be forgotten. A place to 'meet' and get to know some beautiful & talented people. It's a bit like mums group on line & I really enjoy it..x

Anne said...

I follow blogs for enjoyment and only comment if the topic interests me. I've only started a blog so that family and friends can keep up with what we're doing once we start traveling, it will also be a journal so I don't forget things in my old age :). I figure if people are interested, they'll read it and if not, it certainly won't worry me.

Lisa - Sweet Little Pretties said...

I Agree! Blogging isn't all about numbers but I love the community we make and the friendships. I would love to comment on everyones blog but there is simply not enough time. I am heading to the conference next month to try to learn more.

ThePassionateShopper said...

I started blogging last year. I totally do it for my own enjoyment, started a new career & found I didn't really have much time for hobbies, but blogging is something that I can fill into my otherwise unpredictable life...even if I didn't have followers I think I would still blog as I find it cathartic.

The other day I found it useful! Have not worn many of my nice work clothes for some time as I have mainly been in scrubs. The other day I was buying a jacket I thought matched a skirt I'd bought previously - lucky I had blogged about it & was able to confirm it was the right one without having to go home & check first!

supermac said...

I agree with you on all counts.. Bravo, Posie.

Jen R said...

Hehe...thanks for the giggle on a Sunday night....as a newbie to blogging I find all that stuff funny...I love following new bloggers and giving them some blog lov back that I have received. xx

Tania said...

Oh, it gets a bit exhausting, doesn't it? My real life is catching up with me these days and blogging is usually booted to bottom priority. This has made me realise how much I miss it. The recording of ordinary (precious) moments and the camaraderie of hanging out with bloggy pals. Simple!

Sally said...

Oh Jennie! Insiders + your social commentary really do make my Sundays. You've hit lots of nails on the head here. I suppose we're all human so approval is important but taking life & blogging too seriously won't end well.
Happy Sunday to you :)

Elle said...

Wow I am so impressed you get that many views. Last night I danced around the house because I was 2 off 100. Even when one person comments it's like the BEST thing ever. I really LOVE blogging and very slowly and I mean s-l-o-w-l-y my numbers are increasing, but I don't see the point in pushing it. I only follow blogs I like and only follow followers who I am genuinely interested in. I only comment on posts that interest me and if all these things mean that I get a few people reading my prattling then that is great. If I get to stay at home all day and earn a few bucks from it would I look a gift horse in the mouth? No... of course not, but I wouldn't chase it. This is a great post, really reminded me of why I started blogging and what it is all about. It is so easy to get caught up on statistics and wondering if you should pretend you are mormon or not...

Love Elle xo

Megan said...

Some excellent points Miss Posie! I have quite a few blogs in my following list that I used to comment on regularly and then sort of stopped when the person either never returned the favour or didn't reply (if I asked a specific question) to my comment. I blog to make new connections so there needs to be a bit of give and take! I always try to make the effort to either respond to a comment or visit the commenter on my blog, however seeing as it is smaller that is a lot easier. Hence why I like the small personal blogs better.

However, that's not to say the follower envy doesn't hit me, and I still get excited when I get a new follower. And even more excited when I get a comment!

Go to the conference, I bet everyone there would love to meet you too! Surely there is a choice of which seminars you sit through and you can just avoid the 'increase you traffic' type ones?

samara_joy said...

Hi Posie!

I love your commentary - something always a bit more "meaty" !!

I love your attitude on your blog and blogging... and I never forget that you commented on one of my posts after I commented on one of yours (for the first time after being a long time silent follower!) It felt like community!

Keep up the good work!

Samara xx

Becky said...

Very true. In saying that, why hasn't anyone commented on my last post, huh?

MultipleMum said...

You make me laugh Miss Posie. Love this series x

Posie Patchwork said...

BrisMod i had no idea you could enter yourself into competitions??
Becky, you crack me up, i went & commented, gorgeous post too!!
Samara, love that you referred to this post as meaty, yay, i really enjoy these social commentaries.
Lisa i might go to that conference, i'll see if it suits the family, maybe next year, i'm sure these conferences will get even bigger & more frequent in the future.
Thanks for the comments ladies, love you so much, love Posie

Helen said...

I really love this post! I have been blogging for a long time, before blogging was known as blogging and have never been into the whole popularity contest thing. Can't believe some peoples attitudes or driving forces! This stuff should be for fun :)

ClaireyHewitt said...

The blog world is a crazy mad place. It is mor life like than people think, there are businesses in the neighbourhood, there are the nasty people and the popular girls. There are relationships that break down and things sometimes go pear shaped, but at the end of the day, bloggers do good things. Most bloggers are good people.

It all just needs lots of grains of salt to get through sometimes.

And my apologies, I wrote my first and last request for votes in a recent competition. It was difficult. I was so stoked to be included, could not believe I would get on the list, but also knew I would never win and would never have the votes. I also hated asking for them as much as you all hate reading about it. For some of us, we need to learn things the hard way.

Xx

Nat - Muddy Farmwife said...

Loving it Posie. Great Sunday night reading!
I love my little blog as my space in a big world, pretty sure that's how I'll stay too, and pretty happy about it.

Brave New Fiona said...

Nicely said Posie! Love it. I share your sentiments. I love that I don't have many followers, it takes the pressure off when you want to go into hiding (live in the real world and not report what you did there). I blog for me and my family and if I make friends through it- Praise God! xx Fi

NessaKnits said...

Congrats on your stats! They are well deserved!

The Accidental Housewife said...

I totally, completely agree with you.

Reading the "pity parties" makes me feel off kilter, I prefer the nice little blogs about day to day life, kids, ducks, what normal people ate for dinner... You know why? I feel a kinship. Your are totally right about this being our work chatter - it's like afterwork drinks!

I've been thinking about that blog conference too, but I think it would be overwhelming for me. It would take my focus off why I blog, brainwash me into competition.... No thanks :)

I'm lucky on my blog, few followers but very loyal. I get the same ten odd people comment almost every day! And they are people I know I would like IRL. That's proper blog-friendship :) I'm glad you're one of them!

Brenda @ Mira Narnie said...

Hooray for bloggers like you Jennie! I did do a post recently putting it out there about a sense of change I felt in the whole blogging community...I think i really needed to give my self a big reminder of why i blog. i blog for fun, for recording moments in my life as a mother and to connect with like minded people. i love what you say about us being your colleagues...that is just the best analogy ever. it's so true. if i've visited a few blogs or got a few comments, i feel like i've connected with some darling friends. as for the rest, well you won't see me going to a conference for begging for votes. come if you wish...i only want you if you want to be there! My favourite blogs are the ones that keep it real and jennie yours epitomises real. thanks so much for your insight xxxxxx

Polly said...

To be honest, its only recently I have realised that blogging is more than keeping an online diary, a business? wow, I never knew. I started my blog because I wanted a hobby and I have always loved to write. I have a few followers and receive a couple of comments each post and for me that in itself is thrilling, that people actually like what I write and want to read it? WOW. Its interesting to discover this whole other world, I don't think it is for me.

Mrs Clark said...

Love it! And I find it hilarious that there's a "cool group" in blog land but THERE IS!
This is great Posie x

emma @ frog, goose and bear said...

It's all far too exhausting. i'm happy just plodding along at my own pace and doing it my way. great post which i am so glad someone wrote!

Tales of a Tai Tai said...

I love how you said - "bloggers are like your colleagues". i hadn't thought of it in that way but it's such a good way of looking at it. I LOVE my blogging friends, for the connection, for the heartfelt support, and yes I agree. It feels like its become a little too much about climbing. The relationships are the best part. And no award exists to measure that xxx

Farmers Wifey said...

Oh lovely, thank you for this post..blogging is getting so big and there are so many parties, pr functions, votes, competitions etc that it takes it away from what I really want it to mean..to me..

I write for me, to express myself, to document our house building..and I don't blog for money...I appreciate those who do, however....

I love you for YOU..now I'm off to find your blog button for my blogroll xoxo

Amanda said...

This post has made me smile, especially the part about us fellow bloggers being your 'work colleagues', I really like that analogy :) I'm also smiling because I'm in the middle of searching online right this minute for a tutorial on 'how to make a layered rainbow cake', not to drive traffic to my blog, but because it's the cake Grace has picked for her party despite my attempts to entice her to choose a simpler one for Mummy to make :)

Blogging for me is and always has been purely for me, not to make money, not for business purposes, just for me to connect with other like-minded women. I do like seeing new faces on my list of followers or new readers commenting, but it's definitely not all about the numbers for me. I try hard to visit new commenters on their respective blogs and like someone said above, have stopped reading one particular blog because after several comments I had left her, she never once came and said 'hi' and that kind on annoyed me. I don't expect someone to follow me simply because I follow them but I always visit and comment on a new reader's blog simply out of courtesy.

I say go to the conference even if you're not interested in certain topics, it will be fun to meet fellow bloggers :)

TexWisGirl said...

well said, posie. i think we all have to find our own niche that we're comfortable in. some folks do the PR stuff and do it well. others try too hard for followers. i have to admit, i love when my follower count goes up, but i also work to visit folks who stop by to comment, just to say hello back. it is a lot of effort that is give and take in blogland. we can't forget that part. and, yes, blogging should be fun.

Mum on the Run said...

I like to keep my head in the sand out here in the blogosphere.
I like to ramble on the blog.
I like to read others' ramblings.
Keeping it simple!!!
:-) xxx

Nancy said...

I don't have a blog but love to follow others. I started through looking at the quilting blogs but found myself attracted to people who had common experiences even when they are all over the world. In fact that was the joy - finding so much in common. I do comment - maybe because I like to let the blogger know that they are not alone - or that different from others. It also reminds me of the past - my kids are older - the youngest is 16 but I remember those crazy days with young children and the effort/feeling of accomplishment for just getting out of the house. Even better when I had matching clothes and no spit up on me. Love your topical blogs Posie. And that chick riding the camel - so cute.

Mel@Georgica Pond said...

Here here! Well said Posie. I totally agree.

Joyful Things said...

You probably aren't old enough to remember pan pals. The concept was to write a letter to a complete stranger in another school, city, state, country, or continent and tell them a little about yourself and your life. They would then write back and tell you about their lives. Some where disappointing as the "friendships" were short-lived but others where wonderful and could go on for years. Blogging is like having electronic pen pals. Connections are made, friendships are formed, lives are meshed . That is why I blog.

Christina Lowry said...

The chicken on the camel aside just cracked me up! You have totally hit the nail on the head. I know you are a gorgeous and generous blogger. I love seeing your comments pop up in my inbox. I only wrote yesterday, to a friend that I made through blogging, that I can't believe people take the time to read and comment on my posts and all the good things that have come from my blog. It started as a way to be part of a crafty community and document the things I was making - as I didn't know anyone whose eyes wouldn't glaze over whenever I started talking about my craft. Then suddenly there were people complimenting me, swapping ideas, giving me inspiration. Wonderful! Anything else is totally a bonus indeed. xx

IndigoElephant :: Sash said...

Great post and so very true... I love your blog and make sure I read as much as possible! Keep up the great writing :)

Sarah said...

Very true, and quite funny. The only thing more depressing than whiney blogs is the comments section of whiney blogs full of the "Oh my, I can so sympathize with your story of nobody loves you, let me tell you how much worse my life is" litany. When I was about seven and going through a complaining stage, my Dad created his own version of the "No Parking" sign (the P with a circle around it and a slash across the letter). It was my very own "No Whining" sign posted at my eye level on the refrigerator. Quite effective, especially after guests came over and asked what the sign was for!

sascedar said...

I loved reading this post- and thanks for visiting my little blog! I write as a record for me and my family, yet I do find myself checking my stats a little too closely. And your blogging-as-office-banter analogy is spot on, I love that I can get a bunch of gossip and opinions about daiy goings-on in people's lives in the blogging community.

today i said...

that picture of the little chicken on the toy camel is so adorable!

Betty Reeves said...

I'm just glad there are blogs like this in today's day and age! When I was growing up, all we had was gossip amongst the small amount of people we knew.

I love the internet and am trying to get more involved these days. Much better than reading the paper I think.

Regards
Betty
http://www.alacraft.com.au/yarns-and-knitting-cat5

Thea said...

Just catching up with blog reading. Always enjoy your honest and fearless rants. x

le_third said...

hello there - adored reading this post ... it can be sad but true that we may lose sight of what grabbed us into blogging to begin with :) nice work best le

ps I hope your beloved stays well and safe in his line of work

Woollybutt Hill said...

I am so glad you blog - for me it is like catching up with you at the water cooler ( usually you /computer and my lunch while little ones sleep) I feel swamped with kids,farm and moving for now so sometimes I just read but always love to hear the latest and find you inspiring so after the sandwich off to sew.....Since I am not such a writer I hope you enjoy the photo's the way I do your blog. Thanks,

x M.

Tania said...

This was such an interesting post. Blogging can leave you with mixed emotions can't it? I for one tend to steer a little clear of the ones with too many ads. When I read blogs I don't really want to be a "product" to sell.
Thank you for your honesty x

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