Thursday, October 29, 2009

Blogiquette

A little over a year ago when Laura and I decided to start a blog, we had no idea what we were getting into. For the first few months our only readers were our Mom, our two best friends and our sister. It was pretty pathetic.

But then somehow we started to network with other writers and bloggers and all of the sudden we met some really cool people. And then as we began reading and commenting on more blogs, it occurred to me that there are all sorts of unspoken rules that govern the blogosphere. Now, months later, I'm sick of living in silence. It's high time we begin to document the Rules of Blogiquette.

Here's what we've got so far:

  1. The Golden Rule of Blogging: If someone comments on your blog, you must reciprocate by commenting on their blog. It took us FOREVER to figure this one out. Uh, yeah, we're a little slow like that.
  2. Don't Blog Angry: Or at least not all the time. Ranting is fun if you're anonymous, but if you're an aspiring writer (or really, an aspiring anything) you're going to scare people off if all you do is bitch and complain about rejections. Our rule is: Don't worry, blog happy. And if you don't blog happy, you'd better blog funny. Deep stuff.
  3. Do Unto Others: You know the drill, it's probably not the best idea to write nasty things about other people. That kind of stuff almost always comes back to bite you in the ass. Be honest, but treat people with respect.
  4. Stalking is Encouraged: OK, who doesn't love seeing a new address come up in StatCounter? We see cyberstalking as an honor, not an offense. Of course the judge and jury may rule otherwise...
  5. Be Consistent: Whether it's content or just the regularity with which you post, make sure you're relatively consistent. No one likes random more than Team LiLa, but we don't mess with our posting schedule. We're here five-days-a-week. We may not have anything interesting to say, but we'll be here. Consistency over quality, that's our motto. Man, that really doesn't sound good.
Now, we may break a rule or two (or three) here and there, but for the most part, we try to be good little bloggers. Although, I'm sure we're missing some really obvious, crucially important Blogiquette rules. Post yours in the comments.

39 comments:

Abby said...

I don't know if this is a "rule", :) but I think it's kind of tacky when someone pops onto your blog for the first time and says something like, Hi, I'm new here. My blog's awesome, you should check it out. and then they leave a link. But, maybe that's just me.

Great post! :D

sraasch said...

I think about this all. the. time. It's like a juggling act -- keeping track of who visits your blog, whose blogs you need to visit, etc etc. Always takes up a good chunk of my day, but totally worth the return.

Natalie said...

Love the rules ladies. I think you got all the big ones. I would add: Try not to write insanely long posts (you know the ones you have to scroll down 10 times to read the whole thing--unless it's filled with pictures). I love reading blogs, but I sometimes skip the crazy long ones :)

MeganRebekah said...

Very hilariously articulated! Well done!

Alea said...

I agree with Abby. People's profiles lead back to their blogs so we can check it out if we want to.

I tried doing to whole commenting on people's blogs that comment on mine but it's just way way way too much work. I also tried to response to all comments on my blog but I just can't do that anymore either. I try and answer questions if they are asked but yeah.

I do try and communicate with people outside of my blog on things like twitter, facebook and goodreads though.

~Jamie said...

It took me FOREVER to figure out the comment thing too! But I am getting WAY better about it :)

Tess said...

I agree w/ Abby. I once had someone say 'man, look how many followers you have and look at all the blogs you follow - how do you do that and how can I do it?'

it was an innocent and well intended question, but I kind of felt like someone had peeked in my medicine cabinet and then said, "what's that fungus cream for?"

so - I guess my rule is be discrete about your spying on their stats. a little tact goes a long way.

L. W. said...

I was ready to quit blogging after two posts. I was sure no one would read it save my mother, but then I decided to be o.k. with that. And THEN, my sweet friend w/a well-read blog started commenting and took me under her bloggery wing. Thanks for the blogiquette lesson, and thanks to Natalie for the reminder about long posts. Done that.

Corey Schwartz said...

Okay, here is the one blogiquette thing I don't get... responding to everyone's comments. I barely have time to read new posts every day. I certainly don't have the time (or the memory) to go back and check to see if someone responded to a comment I left on an old post. Is it just me?

T. Anne said...

Yes, I concur with the rules. Although I do give lee way for sick days or busy moments life may toss out at people ;) And even though I'm relatively new here, I heart your blog. ;)

Tere Kirkland said...

Solid rules. I know I'm guilty of not commenting on some blogs the day they comment on mine, but I think I get around enough that it works itself out.

Something I always sort of sweat is whether to leave a comment when I don't have anything new or interesting to add to the conversation.

Suzanne Young said...

I think you have wonderful blogiquette. Now, if only I could remember which one is the salad fork....

Dominique said...

I use the Silver Rule when blogging.
Do not do unto others as you would not have done unto you.

Corollaries: Don't trash other people's books/blogs/pets etc. Don't ignore the nice comments people leave you. Don't hack their site and turn it into one about socks.

Anissa said...

Great post! I agree all around.

ali said...

You did awesome with the rules, ladies!

I agree with Abby and Natalie too.

I *try* to respond to my commenters, but typically only if they have allowed for return emails through blogger. I don't sweat it, if they don't.

I learned the Golden Rule the hard way: I totally trashed a YA fantasy book in a review before I realized my book would be in competition with that writer/book and I didn't want any bad blood between us. I know now, that I don't my name associated with any nasty thoughts or actions, ya know?

In the blogosphere, I think you need to always act with an eye to the future--don't write or do something you're going to regret later.

Thanks for the great post! The comment trail is really interesting too :)

Mariah Irvin said...

When I first began blogging, I would wonder where all my "followers" were. Was I not funny enough? Did I smell? Then I realized I had to go out and find people, rather than expecting people to haphazardly stumble across my blog.

sunna said...

Lovely rules! And so true. (confession: I've been known to throw a mild rant out there every now and then, I admit it. :)

Sarah said...

As you guys are the blogging queens, I have to agree with all your rules of blogiquette. I'm a little, er, slow when it comes to these things, but I'm figuring it out.

Shelli said...

maybe responding to awards - so rude when bloggers dont - right? like they're sayng "F you and your award. Stick it where the blog dont shine"

Alea said...

Shelli I used to think that too until I started getting like 10 awards week after week. There was no way in hell I could keep up with all of that! I try and still say thanks if I can but can't pass all those on anymore.

emery said...

Having just made my blog public last week, I am still getting my footing. This list helps- at least I'm better than I am at my Twitter account =/

You guys are the best; keep it up!

Frankie Diane Mallis said...

OMG right after the day of my first ranty-rant! I need to go post something supa positive now:-)But as usual, awesome post. It took me 2 years to figure these things out, I think I still don't know what I'm doing half the time.

ElanaJ said...

I love all of these! One thing I try to do: when I find a new blog and follow it, I try to leave a comment. It might take me weeks to get back to it, but if they're consistent, eventually, I'm reading every single day.

bryna said...

good rules.. it took me a while to work all the "rules" out.

Kate Walton said...

You definitely have the 'funny' down pat ladies :)

Kelly H-Y said...

Blogiquette! I LOVE it!!! Very good list, by the way!

Hardygirl said...

Alea--agree!! Those awards get to be like chain mail. We finally just gave up (gosh, did that sound smarmy? Like, we've won SO many awards . . .).

Good to see the blogiquette put out there for the world to see. It's hard to figure all that out on your own!

sf

anna said...

Great tips!(I'm new to the blogging world) This blog is great by the way :-) I guess it's true about stalking. For some reason or another we love that so many others check out what we're doing. Who knew stalking would become a social norm? Generation Creeper, but I'm ok with it considering I'm a major offender.

storyqueen said...

Ha! Generation Creeper!

Well, I can't post regularly...sigh. I try to post twice a week. Working full time I just can't manage more than that, plus, I probably just don't have that much to say.

Well, I don't have much to say that's meaningful....

Now your blog...I would miss it if I couldn't read it every day.

Shelley

Little Ms J said...

My blogging rules for ME:

1. Never blog about work details. I need deniability.

2. Never blog angry. It makes me cringe when I read it the next day and realize what a self-absorbed brat I can be.

3. Never speak ill of Mr. J unless it is to poke fun in a loving way. He buys me sparkly things and makes me laugh. That is all you need to know.

My blogging rules for YOU:

1. If you are in my life, you are on my page(s). I will change your name and details if necessary, but to know me is to love me is to give me material.

Christina Lee said...

looks like you got them all! one additional omne for me--if someone "follows" me, I usually try to follow them back :)

Girl with One Eye said...

Being in the blogging world for a week I really appreciate knowing there is blogiquette. (I'll get right on number one, especially since I just found the comments section of my blog, go figure)

Here's a question though, if someone joins your blog do you have to join theirs?

Because I DO make sure I check out their blog but if it's not quite what I am looking to read up on everyday I don't follow.

Alea said...

Girl with One Eye- I definitely don't think you have to follow everyone that follows you. I actually hit a cap on blogger at 300 blogs, it wouldn't let me put anymore into my reading list!

confused homemaker said...

I'm good with stalking, but I can't blog when angry. Great, that means I'll just stick to doing it when drinking. Oh wait, that's probably no good too.

Robin said...

Great rules! I would add that I love it when writers blog about their books AND about their personal life (at least a little).

I grow a bit tired when blog posts are only about where and when someone will be speaking and then posts about how awesome it was to speak there. Not trying to nit-pick, but I like a little spice with my meal. Something unexpected, ya know?

Love your blog. Keep it up!!! :-)

jdcoughlin said...

Yes. Great rules. I too shall blog by them. Been making it up as I go along, not working out so well. I didn't follow blogs for a while, just hopped around, but now I follow big time. Now I'm into following peoples journeys. It's kind of like mini soap operas, you know.

Erica said...

Those are great rules. I really and truly try to comment on all my comments and the blogs I follow, it does take time, but I too think it's worth it.

I've been busy with work this week, so I've slacked the past couple days, but I'm going to try and catch up!

NaNo is going to keep me busy- as it will for a lot of us :)

Great post!

jessjordan said...

I think I've said this before, but when I'm short on time, I always check out your blog ... even if it takes me a couple of days to get around to it. So I can't think of anyone better to post rules on where we should all put our salad forks!

Pen & Ink said...

Great advice.