Lake Atitlan, Panajachel, Guatemala

“Reading and writing are acts of empathy and faith. Guard that trust carefully — in this rapidly changing business, it’s the only sure thing.” ~Erin Keane
"Never give up. And most importantly, be true to yourself. Write from your heart, in your own voice, and about what you believe in." ~ Louise Brown

"Write something to suit yourself and many people will like it; write something to suit everybody and scarcely anyone will care for it."
~Jesse Stuart

"A writer's job is to take one thing and make it stand for twenty." ~ Virginia Woolf

Sunday, April 21, 2013

About Arlee Bird's Post on the Reciprocity of Blogging

Arlee Bird, the A to Z Challenge founder, wrote a post on Friday about the reciprocity of blogging that is a must-read for anyone who blogs, whether you are part of the A to Z Challenge or not.

I've been blogging for 4 years and it can get discouraging when people don't return comments or follow back. If one is following new blogs of interest and leaving comments regularly, then certainly others should return the favor. (Not constantly, of course, since we all have lives outside of blogging, but you know what I mean.)

When it happens, you have the reciprocity of blogging, creating a happy, rewarding experience for everyone involved. When it doesn't, one wonders "Why am I doing this again?"

Even those of us who have been around for awhile need to participate in the reciprocity of blogging. Which is one of the main reasons I join the Challenge each year. It's a great opportunity to discover new blogs of interest, and to set goals of my own.

I'd love nothing more than to get my follower count to 1075. I also want to discover new Wordpress blogs and follow them, since my author website is on Wordpress. I'm quickly becoming a fan of Wordpress, really like the clean, professional look of those sites, and I follow only a handful-- ones I found through the Challenge.

There's so much that can be said about the nature of blogging-- the etiquette, the purpose, designing one's site-- but Arlee's post was one of the best I've ever read. Here's the link again, and as Challenge participants, I hope we will take his challenge to us to heart. Let's not forget the reciprocity of blogging, because without it the exercise of blogging seems rather pointless.

26 comments:

  1. I agree! I return the follow of anyone who follows me unless his profile doesn't link to a blog or I find the blog really offensive. And when someone begins commenting on my blog on a regular basis, I return that as well.

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  2. I'm always surprised by the number of people who don't follow back, even after I've left comments and tried to connect. I started taking it personally, so I rarely seek out people to follow anymore, though I always follow back if I can find a link, like Alex said above.

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  3. I want to follow back and try and do it every time, but the Google Friends Connect thing has me puzzled. It's like calling someone (don't I sound old-fashioned) who does not call back. I realize how important it is to promote ones book, but since I am not writing one, I am very happy with a small number of followers but interesting hits from all over the world.

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  4. Thanks for visiting my blog. I am following you through BlogLovin'.

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  5. I try to follow back and comment on as many blogs as I can, but I think some people just lose interest over time. I'm pretty sure half the followers in my GFC haven't visited my site since the first time. C'est la vie.

    mood
    Moody Writing

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  6. I absolutely agree, and at the same time I'm horrible about following up. But I'm trying to fix that. About a month back I found out that almost all the blogs I love to follow and read were lost from my follow list somehow, and I miss them terribly, but I'm trying to build them back up.

    BTW, I have yours in my RSS feed so I don't lose it again, and I've loved all your posts this month - such great recipes it will keep me trying new things for a while ^_^
    ____
    Find me:
    Blog: http://allysonlindt.com
    email: Allyson.Lindt@gmail.com
    Twitter: @AllysonLindt

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  7. Some bloggers never reply to their commenters. I eventually stop following those blogs. I've been the first person to comment on some of the blogs in the challenge, and I'm not in the challenge.

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  8. Always trying to improve my blog skills, both in content and follow up. As with so many things how does one fit it all in ? Great post by Arlee. Thanks for taking the time to share it.

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  9. I always try to visit anyone who visits me and there are regulars I visit every time they post. I do need to respond to commenters in a more timely fashion.

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  10. I agree. There have been many blogs I've followed and tried to connect with the person hosting, but sometimes they may not be interested in what I have to offer on my blog. I follow anyone I can find a link to who follows me and i try to visit them as often as possible. I pretty much try to reply to every comment via e-mail too.

    I also use the A-Z to find new people. I want to connect. I want to be involved and so during the A-Z I might neglect people I already follow in favor of finding new people to enjoy.
    ~Summer

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  11. I admire your tenacity on this blogging reciprocity. Good post.

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  12. Thanks for everyone's feedback. I think everyone tries to implement the reciprocity of blogging as well as they know how, or are able, but posts like this are such excellent reminders. Especially for those just starting out and those like myself who can lose the vision after doing it so long.

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  13. Coming over from the A-Z challenge. Thank you for visiting my blog. I am going to be trying some of your recipes. They sound easily delicious.

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    1. Lyndagrace, Easily delicious is just what I'm aiming for! Thanks for stopping by :)

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  14. That post really resonated with me and I was actually the first to comment. In the space of a couple of hours my new followers jumped.

    I wonder if newer bloggers even realised mutual reciprocation was the point?

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    1. Donna, I wonder as well. I appreciate Arlee's tireless efforts to spread the culture of blogging. It's such a relatively new thing and there's a learning curve.

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  15. Great post. Being fairly new to the world of blogging still, I feel like these are all things I'm learning.

    Have fun with a-z.

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  16. I feel bad when I can't check up on all the blogs I follow. I like to try and leave some kind of response to most articles I read. Even if I don't have anything to really add, I like letting the blogger know I've stopped by.

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  17. I do my best to reciprocate - but, in your position, are you really in a position to read and comment on all 1075 (soon, I hope) posts from your followers? I love the blogworld - and do my best to comment on as many as I can, but if I spend too long on it, there's no time left for writing, or Life!

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    1. Jo, If all 1000+ followers left comments on my posts I would most definitely find a way to reciprocate. And when someone does leave a comment and tell me they're a new follower, I go to their blog and comment and follow. Unless their name sends me into the great sinkhole of Google + where I can't get to their blog, then I give up. As it is, I only get a handful of followers who regularly comment, and not even every time. I wouldn't expect them to either. So a dozen or so makes it pretty easy to follow back and comment back. And no, not every time someone posts. I couldn't keep up with that.

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  18. Good post and reminder! I'm behind on my A to Z but catching up today (good thing our doctor had an out-of-town conference so we have a day off!)! Thanks for commenting on my blog too--sorry I'm so late in commenting back.

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  19. I try to keep up with commenting to comments and getting to all the blogs that I follow, plus visiting new sites...it gets to be a full time job! Not that I don't like the job...just that there are a few other things to do each day...like write the next blog, oh, and laundry.

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  20. I have done as you have, Karen (with a *whole lot* fewer followers) and reply to comments when they call for a reply, but not every comment.
    They way I feel about it, the blogger has had their say in the post. The comments are the place for the reader to have their say. An auto-reply to every comment feels forced and well, almost controlling-intrusive. As if the blogger can't let anyone have the last word...
    The best reciprocity is to check the commentator's own blog, and comment there!

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  21. Thanks Karen for promoting this. I find it hard to keep following... like others above!

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  22. You are so right! It can be very time consuming, but its important and most people appreciate it.

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  23. Hi Karen (and Lee via telepathy!) .. I couldn't agree more and hope I've followed the right code of conduct .. I have some really wonderful blogging friends - who support, cajole, encourage ... and who give back as well as get my comments on their sites ..

    I really do appreciate each of my followers .. and everyone who comments however sparodically .. they're just a fun group of interactive people .. love them to bits ..

    Cheers Hilary

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