What blogging IS NOT. When a blog is not a blog.by Daniel Snyder on Dec 8, 2010 • 8:21 pm 28 Comments
Warning, this article is full of my opinion about blogs that are actually “not a blog”. Lately I’ve been stumbling across a lot of (relatively new) blogs, and since I’ve been blogging about blogging a lot of new bloggers are asking me for advice. Unfortunately I’m seeing a disturbing trend. Many new blogs are popping up (and have been for years and years), that are publishing content and calling it blogging, when it’s not. This post is strictly my own thoughts about people who are blogging, or are they? Sometimes these sites are just NOT A BLOG! One can blog on any topic, and since it is your own little place on the web, who am I to tell you what you can and can not post on your blog. However a lot of what people often call blogging is not, and here’s why.
When a blog is NOT a blog
Blogging is NOT reposting content you found elsewhere on the web. If that’s primarily what you’re doing, or doing a lot of what you’ve got on your hands is not a blog. If your blog consists of You Tube videos, infographics, images from celebrity websites, or articles that you grabbed from another site you are NOT blogging. Seriously. I’m so stunned at how many sites I visit that are doing nothing but reposting content they found elsewhere on the web, and the vast majority of the time the content they post was harvested from BIGGER and BETTER sites. Why do you think taking this content and posting it on your little blog is a good idea? Why are you calling this blogging? It’s not.
Share it somewhere else
There are plenty of other fantastic platforms for sharing the content you discover on the web – the blogging platform is not one of them. If this is what you want to do, then use your facebook account to share your discoveries with others. Use Stumble Upon, use Delicious bookmarks… but PLEASE stop posting it on your blog, and then publishing it and tweeting about it and calling it a new post.
In one way I do understand the desire of so many to publish something and then have visits, traffic, clicks, comments etc. But these type of blogs are not flourishing, for the most part they are filling the web with duplicate content, they are not as offensive as splogs but they may as well be. To be blunt, I must say that if you can’t write original content and actually post something that will have value to readers and groups of people other than your immediate family and friends than blogging may not be for you. Okay here’s an admission of my own guilt, when I first started blogging I posted some articles that I’d grabbed from other sites (shoot me now!), not because I was intending on stealing content, but because I truly didn’t understand blogging, and I thought that really was a common practice, oops! Well it may be common, but it’s not right. If the topic of stealing content piques your interest you may also be interested in reading a recent guest post here about article spinning.
Now I know what is not a blog…
so what IS a blog?
If you’re wondering what a good blog is full of it’s this: Original, quality content that offers advice, tips, thoughts, opinion, or help. It educates, informs, entertains, and adds value to the web. The keyword in all this is original. There are a lot of articles written about what makes a good blog, how to blog, what to blog about etc… but I think the above description just about sums it up, if your content fits that description than you can transform your blog into something that people will appreciate!
Of course I don’t want to be rude and offend people, if you are one of those who runs one of these blogs that is not a blog, well the web can be your playground (who am I to tell you stop having a blog that’s not a blog?). Feel free to post whatever content you like, just be aware with this kind of content your traffic won’t increase, you won’t have people commenting, your PageRank won’t increase, and you certainly won’t make money online. If that’s okay with you, then you and your friends will have a great time on your blog, and the readers you do have will obviously continue to enjoy the content you are regurgitating from other parts of the web. Wouldn’t it be simpler to just post a link on facebook to the original content?
Ouch! Was I too harsh? 🙂 What do you think about blogs like this? Do you stumble upon them often? What advice could you offer bloggers that operate this way?