Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Really Random Tuesday #17: Loyalty


An interesting discussion on a blog caught my attention last week, and instead of presenting sundry subjects in this post, I thought I'd talk about it. What does loyalty mean to you? We want our friends to be loyal, as well as our spouses or significant others, but what about in the book blogging world? We want our followers to be loyal, to keep following us (and not to "unfollow" us at the conclusion of a giveaway or on a whim). Do we also want to belong to a group of blogging friends who read and comment regularly on our posts? What is blog loyalty?

I've been thinking about blog loyalty because I read a post on Life's Not Always Fireflies & Hummingbirds that talked about cliques in the blogosphere, and I wondered if others might think I'm part of such a group. I may be part of a circle of blogging friends, but it doesn't feel like a closed circle, as they are quite welcoming to others (I am, too). I realized that I feel a sense of loyalty to the blogging friends that I've made. Rather than always trying to make friends with new-to-me bloggers, I instead try to keep the "old" friends. I have a blogroll on my blog, and these are the blogs I visit the most, out of a sense of loyalty. This blogroll lets me see at a glance when blogs are updated. I follow many blogs, but comment most often on the blogs in my blogroll. Of those blogs, I'll only occasionally add--or remove--one. Truthfully, unless I become extremely superficial, I can only read and comment on so many blogs, and sticking with the "tried and true" ones in my blogroll simply feels right to me. Of course, the exceptions to this "rule" are when I participate in a reading challenge or meme; then I typically venture to many more blogs.

When it comes to the memes I choose to do, I operate on the same principle. I tend to do the same memes over and over again, although I do branch out and try new memes once in a while. I feel that if I'm loyal to a meme I'll get better at it, and also get to gradually know the other "regulars". When I participate in the original Book Blogger Hop, I'm a bit more "promiscuous" and do meet new bloggers (it is a party, after all), and I've discovered wonderful blogs in the process (such as Leslie's blog, Under My Apple Tree, which I've already mentioned a few times), but I don't add too many blogs to my blogroll on any given day, because I don't have the time to be loyal to many more blogs.

What about you? What role does loyalty play in your blogging habits? Are you more apt to visit a blog due to a sense of loyalty, because of the topic of the post, or for another reason?

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Really Random Tuesday is a way to post odds and ends--announcements, musings, quotes, photos--any blogging and book-related things you can think of. If you're inspired by this idea, feel free to copy the button and use it on your own blog. Leave a link in the comments if you’re participating and I'll add it to this post.

For other Really Random Tuesday posts, please visit Vivienne's blog, Serendipity, and Naida's blog, the bookworm.

Thanks for reading!

23 comments:

  1. I usually try to comment on all who leave me a comment on my blogs, however, I have a choice few that I visit regular or weekly. I have a few memes I try to do each week, because I enjoy them and find many new interesting books to add to my tbr list, that I otherwise would never have heard of. Sometimes as time goes on, I may remove someone from my blogroll, esp. if they haven't posted for months. I also remove ones who are only wanting a lot of followers on their thingy, and their blog is only give-aways. I'm really not interested in a new give-away each and everyday.

    I have a poetry blog, that I mostly just follow poets or poetry memes on. They are very supportive group. Why do I say that? Because, I am not a poet, but I enjoy trying, and they always support whatever I write about. I guess that about sums up my views. And don't even get me started on the follower thingy we all have on our blogs........

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  2. Gigi Ann, thank you for your thoughtful comments. I'm glad that you have a poetry support group who encourages you. I've read some of your poems and they are quite good.

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  3. I have a group of blogs I visit regularly. And I have another group I visit every week or so. It's not loyalty so much as they are blogs I enjoy reading. The writing is good, content is interesting, they read books in genres I like and the blog has a nice clean layout and it's easy to navigate. That last one is really important, because if I can't read or navigate the site I won't be there long enough to find out if I like it. (And I won't even get started on the flash apps that make some of these blogs take 5 minutes to load.)

    There's a couple of memes I enjoy like Mailbox Monday and the original Blog Hop and when I have time I like to use those to visit new blogs. I guess I'm loyal to those but I do try to participate in others once in a while.

    Time is really the issue here. I would comment more, read more and write more if I could. I also have a garden blog, which I have been neglecting but once gardening season picks up I'll do more with that, and I spend time on my photography, and my day job, and on and on.

    About cliques... I'm not really seeing a clique in the high school sense of the word. It's more like groups of friends who have known each other for a while. I've been blogging since 2005 and I've run into all types out there. The book blog community is very warm and welcoming. Most of the time when I leave a comment I get a return visit (and I do the same). When someone doesn't respond to me I figure they are busy, had nothing to say or my message was overlooked in the shuffle. Whatever the reason I don't take it personally.

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  4. I feel the same way! There are so many fantastic book blogs out there that it would be impossible to read all of them every day. I'm loyal to those in my Reader and try to visit others when I have time. That doesn't mean I don't enjoy the others or don't want to welcome them, it's just that I have to try to find a balance.

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  5. This is an interesting topic Suko. I definitely have blogging friends that I visit regularly and vice versa. I read their blogs because I am genuinely interested in what they are blogging about.

    I comment on new blogs I come across if I enjoy the post or have something to say. If someone new comes along and comments on my blog, I like to return the visit as well.

    Of course, there are not enough hours in the day to visit all the great blogs out there.
    So I do stick to my regulars. Some of these bloggers I've been reading for years.

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  6. These are all well-composed, in-depth comments, and it's nice to know that we're all pretty much on the same page. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this topic.

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  7. I'm bad about commenting at certain times but I have a bunch of blogs that I try to visit on a regular basis. I like to do different memes because it helps me to find new blogs and new bloggy friends :) And I always try to take the time to comment on a new blog once in awhile especially when they posted a review on a book that I've read or really want to read. Great post!

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  8. Oh wow, I didn't know there were blogger "cliques"! LOL! I try to be as loyal as I can to my favs. and post comments and I always try to venture out and visit others but I can't do it all the time.
    Interesting discussion and I'm enjoying reading the comments.
    Natalie :0)

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  9. For me, it's all about time. There's never enough of it! I try to comment on everyone's blog who comments on my blog. I, also, try to branch out to new blogs through the blog hops. It's just hard to keep up with everyone.

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  10. I'm enjoying the comments as well, which have turned into a discussion. So many book blogs, so little time. . . .

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  11. I love to follow my followers. I love that my blog appeals to Americans and Canadians more than my own countrymen. I don't know why that is, but I am working on it through Twitter. I don't really follow a lot of the memes, apart from your Tuesday one. I seem to be making a lot of my own up at the moment, which are purely to please myself. I don't like to feel pressured to follow a meme, and I think that is why I love your one so much. We do it because we enjoy doing it not because we feel we have to.

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  12. I wouldn't say that I am in a blogging clique, but I do have blogging friends that I am extremely loyal to. I often will go check out the blogs of people who leave comments on my blog, and then add them to my reader and become a follower of their blogs as well. I always have more room to make friends, and I love discovering a new blogs and bloggers to make friends with. I am also very loyal. When I make a friend and add someone to my blogroll, I hardly ever "clean house" and get rid of them in my reader. It does take more time to read and comment on all the posts, but I look at blogging as spending time with my friends, and since I am alone most of the day, I get a lot out of the friendships I make. This is a great question and was very interesting to think about!

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  13. Vivienne, thank you for your kind words about Really Random Tuesday. It's been a lot of fun to read your RRT posts, as well as those done by others. They're all different and creative. How interesting that most of your followers are Canadians and Americans. I think most of mine are American, although I do have followers from many different countries.

    Zibilee, you have a great attitude. I like to meet new blogging friends, too, and I do, but then I run out of time to visit so many blogs--or read! I guess it is not a real "problem"; and staying loyal to the blogs in my blogroll helps.

    More comments welcomed. :)

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  14. (Sighs heavily) What a fascinating topic. You know I have a feeling that once I get started with this I could go on and on and on so perhaps a post on my feelings is in order. I hope you don't mind me running with this.

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  15. Your observations are very accurate, I have observed them myself, but I try not to take them personally as I am not the best networker neither. I wish I could comment more and join more memes, but my busy work schedule prevents me from doing it at the moment. I do think blog loyalty is fleeting, so I try to enjoy the little that comes my way.

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  16. Petty, I would love to read more of your thoughts about this topic! (I could have gone on and on myself as well, and talked about how bad I feel, how disloyal I feel, to some authors, because I have not been able to yet read the sequels to the books I first blogged about; but I decided to focus on the loyalty between book bloggers.)

    BookQuoter, thank you for your input. I agree that blog loyalty can be fleeting, and so I also try to enjoy the little moments that occur, the small connections, many of which are preserved in writing, thankfully.

    I'm truly enjoying hearing your thoughts, and welcome additional comments.

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  17. Ever since I started book blogging in 2008, the number of bloggers has just exploded and it is just impossible to find them all! I have followed discussions on Twitter and such about these cliques...but I'm not really sure who is supposed to be in them and what they are supposed to be about? I decided a while ago that I blog for ME and thinking about all of this extra "stuff" just takes the fun out of the whole blogging experience. If we aren't enjoying what we are doing - what is the point?

    I have a lot of blogs in my reader that I go through, but, to be honest, I don't take the time to comment some of the time, even though I am reading their posts! I will click through on the Hop links to see if I can find some "new-to-me" blogs to follow so I can continue to broaden my reach and not just stick with my "regulars". It is something I struggle with, though, due to lack of time.

    Great discussion topic!

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  18. Jennifer, thanks for taking a few minutes to articulate your thoughts about this topic. I think the bottom line is that you can't take it too seriously (I try not to). Your Hop is a brilliant meme--one of my favorites-and a great way to expand your circle of blogging friends, or just hop over to new blogs and party! ;)

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  19. I follow all the blog I do follow in Google reader so I do not have a visit schedule-some times I will have 200+ book blog posts in my reader in the morning-as I go through the articles-normally in the morning-I star the ones I want to read carefully or comment on-I know who comments on my blog and I try to be loyal to them-many book blogs are devoted to the paranormal or YA mainly-I follow many of these blogs but I do not comment on them-to me a book blog is a work of art-some you just glance at and say "that is nice"-others you can get lost in for hours-also by following a blog a long time you learn how to take the judgments of the blogger-if their tastes are like yours, for example

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  20. Great post. Like you, I comment on a couple of blogs regularly. Since my blog is about classics, I usually visit blogs focused on the classics as well. Also, I try to return all comments, and participate in one meme every week. I've discovered a lot of "new" blogs through the memes.

    I don't think a large number of followers is important. For me, it's okay to have few followers as long as they're genuinely interested in the things I post, and vice versa. :)

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  21. Mel, thanks for your input. I've gotten into the habit of starring email that I need to respond to at a later time, but not blogs in my reader (maybe because I don't read them that way). The content and quality of a blog are also important to me.

    Darlyn, thanks for visiting! Your idea to participate in one meme a week sounds like a good one. As far as followers go, I understand what you're saying. I most appreciate my readers who take the time to read and not just skim my posts. :)

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  22. Great post!! Since there is a HUGE book blogging community, it is impossible to comment on each and every blog post (or visit the different blogs for that matter). I do try to visit blogs that have left comments on my own blog and love to visit the bloggers that I've met in person. Otherwise I try to visit the blogs on my blogroll once every couple weeks.
    Stephanie @ www.stephanieswrittenword.com

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  23. I'm with you--only so many blogs you can really read in a given time period. When I pull up my reader, if I know I can't get through everything, the first thing I do is mark the ones I don't have a relationship with as read so that I have more time to read and comment on those I enjoy the most.

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