Sunday, May 27, 2012

#MMONBI post 3 - Supporting other bloggers - is there a blogroll etiquette?

Showing support for other bloggers is something that any blogger who wants to be read should do - after all, no blogger is an island!  Hmm, perhaps not a good analogy... No blogger is an island with no airport!  You need flight paths between you and the other islands so that you will get the visitors that you want - can't just rely on tourist brochures (google) after all!

LOL, OK, maybe I do bad analogies!

Showing support for other bloggers can come in a number of forms:
  1. Retweeting their posts on Twitter.  Spread the reading love around!
  2. Linking them in your posts.  So your traffic will become their traffic.
  3. Adding them to your blogroll so your readers can become familiar with them.
Blogrolls can be a source of angst as well!  And is there an etiquette to follow?  Do you have to ask someone before you add them?  Or do you have to add someone who's added you?

Firstly, remember, it's your blog, and a blogroll merely lets your readers know what you read, and is also a good way to keep track of what people are writing about.  What you decide to do with your blogroll beyond that is entirely personal.  I can't speak for every blogger, but I will tell you how I decide who is on my blogroll.

I am a big fan of organised blogrolls.  You have 30 blogs on your blogroll?  How is your reader going to know which ones they want to read?  So maybe you can help them out by sorting them out somehow.

Maybe you can sort them by class.  Or maybe you can sort them by subject.  Whatever you decide to do, it will help your reader and the people on your blogroll connect to what they want to read.

For small time bloggers like myself, if I see myself on someone's blogroll, I get really excited.  I find it such an honour that someone reads me, and even puts me on their page that I can't help but add them to my own page. But imagine those big time bloggers who must be on 100s of people's blogrolls.  It's crazy to think they can add  you if their blogrolls are already chockablock!  So don't be offended if they don't add you, or don't even know you exist.  Remember, if they think you're good, they will add you.  If they don't... well don't be disheartened.  One day you might be famous like that, and can't add people to your blogroll because it's already full.  But this is a reminder to big famous bloggers, that small time bloggers do feel left out if not linked or blogrolled, so imagine how you would feel if that was you, with no link love from your own blogroll.

But what if you don't want to add someone to your blogroll because... well, you don't like them?  You don't like their blog?  Just don't add them, easy!  Do you worry about offending them?  Like, is it your best friend from high school or something?  That's the funny thing isn't it - sometimes a blogroll can be like Facebook, and people get upset when you get that friend request and you don't add them to your friends.  How do you deal with that?  In those situations, handle your blogroll like you handle your Facebook friends :)  If you don't want to offend anyone, add everyone!  Or add no-one, so nobody can get offended.  If you don't care about those sorts of things and only want to add what you want to, then do that!  Just make sure you have a thick skin if you have to deal with people who get offended.
Somebody actually coined something called Blogroll Amnesty Day.  What is that, I hear you wonder? Well, Atrios at Eschaton blog said:
...one of the big complaints by new bloggers is that it's impossible to get onto blogrolls because established bloggers tend not to add them. They're right. A big reason for that is that everyone feels a wee bit guilty about removing blogs from their blogroll, so they're hesitant to add new ones to an ever-expanding list...
Which is an interesting statement.  What Atrios did was delete his entire blogroll and repopulate it, but there was criticism that he repopulated it with what was already there instead of putting new people on there, small blogs.  A lot of bloggers followed suit and so the end result of Atrios' Amnesty Day was to make some blogrolls smaller and even more exclusive than they already were.  So it wasn't really originally a good exercise, but since then, a lot of people have taken up the movement to make it easier for the small person to be heard.  The offical Blogroll Amnesty Day (B.A.D.) is February 4.

So as part of my final post in the #MMONBI series, this is what I would like people to do. Look in your blogroll for 2 people, who have less traffic than you (Ok, this can be hard to gauge, because I don't REALLY know how much traffic someone gets), and give them some link love in your next post.  Yes, I know it is not B.A.D. but I missed it so I'm making  up for it and it IS NBI after all!

So here are my two bloggers:
  • BikesBabesBytes - Sounds kinda sexy but it's actually got a lot of WoW in it, but this is the only guildie of mine who has a blog!  Mabaho is a RL mate as well as a guildie, and like me, has 2 young kids, works, and somehow fits WoW in.  His blog has a lot about solo playing and playing WoW with limited time.
  • Pint-Sized Paladin - I first noticed Cate because she was visiting my blog.  Cate really loves all those other things in WoW, much like me!  She loves transmog, pets, mounts and achievements.  I love reading about people who love those little things in WoW, just like me!

24 comments:

  1. I have a relatively small blogroll which automatically updates with the latest posts (as you know). However, I'm subscribed to a rather long list of feeds in my reader. My link list on the homepage is broken up into several categories so that helps somewhat with my essential list of 10 or so - everyday reads are the only ones in the social blogroll for easier loading of the page.

    The other thing I've done recently is the daily paper I publish which rounds up the latest news from Twitter, as it makes it easier to catch some of the news I miss otherwise.

    Although I find for the number of comments I leave on all the blogs doesn't really reflect what I get back in return which is a shame.

    However, I do link to others frequently which is nice in terms to pingbacks, if available on their end.

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  2. I really need to do something about my blogroll. It's hardly indicative of all the blogs I subscribe to and they are all mish mashed together. I'll put it on my list of things I need to do, yike, a long list!

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  3. I am _extremely_ selective when it comes to placing blogs in my list of links on the side. These are sites that I personally vouch for and read. I feel that I have a responsibility to the reader and wouldn't feel right if I linked a site that hasn't been updated in months or if the person quit. The criteria used for links is pretty stringent and I never hesitate to revisit and axe anyone that's been inactive. In addition, I'll link to blogs relevant or similar to the stuff I write about (Raids, healing, or guild stuff). It doesn't make sense to point someone to an EVE blog when I don't have any interest in it.

    If I find a blog not updated in a month or two, I'll just cut it from the list.

    I'd suggest starting out that a links list of maybe 10 - 15 is a good start. Otherwise, readers may be "frozen" with too much selection. I forgot the name of that psychological term when people are confronted with too much choice, they tend not to make one. So keep it small for now and expand as needed.

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  4. Whoops, that last ocmment was supposed to be me :\. Fat fingered the comment as box.

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  5. I only list blogs that have anything to do with the main subject of my site which is warlocks. If there are other blogs and websites that I think would be valuable for any readers to check out, I keep them separate by adding them as other links, and putting them into categories. I'm not sure if this is the correct way to do it, but I think it helps organize the differences for anyone who might be stopping by and looking around.

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  6. WTB someone to sort out my blog roll!

    I've got about 100 gaming/WoW related blogs in my feed reader but haven't transferred that list onto my blog yet.

    What I'm eventually aiming for is a short list of the stuff I read all the time on the side and then a separate page listing everything I read, just haven't made the time for it.

    I also need to get better at commenting on stuff. In short, I need longer days :p

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  7. I go the other way. If I read it, you're on the list. If I don't read it, you're not on the list. I try to rotate out my "fave" reads (it needs to be pruned again!) and keep the more general MMO reads segregated, but otherwise, if you wanna know you've got to click. Since I update my blogroll/feedreader so frequently AND it's so huge, it was too much of a pain in the ass doing it by category.

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  8. @Cymre - Your blogroll is tidy. What is your stance on people who put you on their blogroll? Do you feel like you should put them on yours too?
    @TotA - Blogroll tidying is always a chore!
    @Matticus - Indeed, your blogroll is extremely selective. Oh, and I have realised I haven't visited your site for a while, it looks completely different! Oh, and got to love trying to comment on one's phone... I find it a total nightmare! And TY for visiting Matticus, it is a great honour :)
    @Amijade - TY for dropping by Ms Warlockery! I think for a site like yours that is specifically about Warlocks, lock links are best, but what do you do about those who add you to their blogroll? Do you worry about them being upset?
    @Erinys - I've seen your blogroll - it's neat and short and sweet!
    @Windsoar - I like how you do favourites then your general blogroll. I did notice your other blogroll is huge...

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    1. The way I see it is this. I am also very selective when it comes to my personal interactive blogroll. I don't like to go past 10. But I do have my 'Wall of Fame' which acts like a blogroll as well.

      I can see the top 50 as an admin so I can always click through from there, there's also the reader which is rather long. But if someone makes a comment on my blog, it's an excellent reminder to go re-visit or discover a new blog if they're new.

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  9. I keep my blogroll segregated into roughly the same categories as the folders I use to organize blog bookmarks in my browser -- I never did catch onto the RSS/feedreader thing when it was new, and now I'm kind of deliberately not doing it just to be contrary. Anyhow, every five or six months, I compare my browser bookmark folders to the blogroll on my site and see if there's anyone new I need to add, or anyone who's gone inactive that I need to either remove or recategorize to "Retired Blogs".

    I've been meaning to do a post specifically about recent additions to the "Fashion" subsection of my blogroll -- thanks for the nudge! ;)

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  10. @kamalia - I was using reader but I gave up and now prefer to read them from my blogroll, which can be bad coz if there have been multiple posts I will only catch the last post. I think I need to tidy my blogroll as well! Oh and I just found someone had me on their blogroll so I am adding them into mine. I get so excited when I am on someone's blogroll!

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  11. I am still in the process of discovering all the good blogs! My own blogroll looks longer than it is because of the paragraphs about the blogs. I love visiting new sites based on links in posts more than blogrolls, though. Which means right now my reader is getting filled up with folks who play dressup. ;)

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  12. At risk of being self-serving - another thing you can do to help new bloggers through your blogroll without having to link to all of them is to link to sites that support and promote them.

    Obviously, the MMO Melting Pot is one site I'm thinking of here - since we make an effort to feature new bloggers - along with the wonderful Blog Azeroth, and of course the NBI itself. (I'd also maybe suggest linking Syp's NBI category, which lists a lot of new bloggers.)

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    1. You're already on the side bar Hugh :P Your site gets a whole button to itself! But I bet you didn't notice it, it's hiding up there on the TOP OF THE PAGE /grin :D

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  13. Yeah yeah whatever Navi. I will organize my blog roll when you clean out my underwear drawer...bow's that sound!? ��

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  14. @Shoryl - I actually liked how you wrote that little thing on each blog. What you wrote about me made me laugh!
    @Matty - If I visit you in the US and I DO clean out your underwear drawer when I'm visiting, that blogroll better look as good as a drawer or undies sorted by colour.

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  15. Navimie,
    Since I'm a newbie and don't have much of a following, luckily I havent run into that problem yet of offending anyone who has put me on follow :) Until then I'll have to play it by ear ...

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  16. @amijade - since you have caught the eye of a lot of my blog buddies those days may come sooner than you think!

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  17. I've been meaning to organize my blogroll for a long time now and this gave me just the incentive I needed, thanks!

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  18. @Toki - but your blogroll is not messy!

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