1.18.2008

The mysteries of the blogosphere

1. How can bloggers be "stumped" for what to write about? WTF. Why would they have a blog in the first place? I’m stunned at the number of sites devoted to “how to think of something to write about on your blog.”

2. Are there some rules of etiquette a newbie needs to know? I've posted comments that were not that disagreeable or argumentative that got deleted. I have to assume the blogger was offended. (See #4)

3. Is it against the bloglaw to do a search by keyword for blogs you want to have a conversation with? I posted a comment that challenged the post and the blogger said I shouldn't be key word searching and to cut it out, kiss-kiss. Another WTF. I actually hadn't done a search, but her response got me thinking. I sometimes do have an agenda but so do most bloggers. Which brings us to the next question.

4. Are bloggers unwilling to enter into debate? Are they only interested in preaching to the choir? I know I would delete a comment if it was spam or an attack on me personally, but it seems stupid to not be willing to have a discussion about something. I don't know, nobody has left any kind of comment that challenged me.

5. Do non-bloggers jump from blog to blog through the various blogrolls? It would make sense, yes? You don’t have to be working on a blog to be interested in what other people are doing on their blogs, right?

6. How do I get people to read the f#%^&ing blog in the first place? Only 2 or 3 of my real-life friends and my daughters read it. I can’t even get my other friends to visit. I thought one of the ways was to visit other blogs, leave comments (only agreeable, cheerleading type comments, of course) and something that links back to my blog. OK, a couple of people have visited because of that. I’ve seen posts that have 75 comments, some have over a hundred. Is it the length of time that that blog has been around? Is it the fame of the blogger from some other activity, i.e., [redacted] is a blog done by a guy who writes for Esquire.

7. Is it unusual to obsess about the number of comments you receive? Can someone tell me how to stop worrying about it? It has occurred to me that there are visitors who do not comment, therefore there are more people reading than I am aware of. Like Cyndi. She must have been reading for a while, but didn’t leave a comment until something really bit. And how did she find it in the first place?

8. Here’s a good one, not exactly a question, but certainly food for thought. A soldier dies in Iraq and the next day a new post appears on his blog. He had sent the post to a friend with the instruction that if something happened to him, she was to post it. It’s a little odd, but when you read the message it makes perfect sense.

9. And then there's the question of whether or not to respond to comments in the comment section. I've seen blogs where the author will reply to every comment, even when they're getting 70, 80 comments. Are you kidding? And the responses to the comments take on a conversational tone, which is cool, but again, no disagreeing allowed. Are the people leaving the comments personal friends of the author? Are they just other bloggers who drop in so regularly that it seems like a bunch of friends? Do the commenters come back and read the reply to their comment? It's way too complicated. I need to know how this works.

I don’t think that’s all of my questions, not by a long shot. But now that I’m participating in this cultural phenomenon, I’d like to understand more parts of it. I realize I’m a little behind the curve, everybody else has been doing it for years; they’ve learned some of the tricks. I even registered at a site called Blog Ninjas where a blogger can get “help.” Hmmm, we’ll see about that. In the meantime, if you’re reading this and you don’t leave a comment, could you at least send another person to my blog? Hell, even if you DO leave a comment, send a couple more people here. Thanks.