28 Feb
I Read Your Blog, Why Won’t You Read Mine?

Dear Mouthy Housewives,

There are a few blogs that I love.  I read every time they post and always leave what I consider to be an interesting comment.  I try to be funny and complimentary, yet a few of the bloggers that I admire have never visited my blog.  I would never ask them this directly, but isn’t that considered rude in the blogosphere?

Signed,

What Should I Do?

________________________________________

Dear What,

I know exactly what you mean.  The other day I went to see a movie at the theatre, and afterward I came home and was stunned that Natalie Portman didn’t ring my bell and ask to see some of my home movies. Can you believe the nerve?  I sat through Black Swan and she wouldn’t even spare a few minutes for some footage of my daughter’s entry into this world!

Okay, so I am exaggerating.  A bit.  Because although some people believe that it is proper etiquette to return every comment with a visit to the commenter’s blog, others don’t subscribe to that kind of blog quid pro quo.

Ask yourself why you read the blogs that you do.  Is it because you enjoy the content and find that it adds value to your life? Or is it because you’re hoping that the blogger will follow you to your own blog?  There is absolutely nothing wrong if the answer includes a combination of those two things, but if you find that you are leaning towards the “follow me back to my blog!” option, be prepared for disappointment.

In my opinion, it has nothing to do with being rude.  People are busy.  The content that you (hopefully) enjoy reading takes time to create.  Plus, we all seem to have those responsibilities outside of the blogging world (I know.  I’m in shock too.)  Or maybe the blogger of your dreams just isn’t interested in adding to her blogroll right now.  Who knows?  If you enjoy what you’re reading, keep reading.  If you feel too slighted to visit the blog again, then don’t.  But if it was the great content that you loved, chances are you’ll be back!

Good luck,

Marinka, TMH

33 Responses to “I Read Your Blog, Why Won’t You Read Mine?”

02.28.11#1

Comment by Nicole.

I feel the same way about you guys. Kidding! Please don’t go to my blog, I’m very behind in updating my cute children’s photos and random book recommendations.

02.28.11#2

Comment by Nikki.

I try to read others blogs, but I am lucky that I have enough time in my day to even update my own. (lol) I feel bad when I can’t visit others as much as I would like. I would not feel bad…you never know they might be reading, but just don’t comment! <3

02.28.11#3

Comment by Alexandra.

I often want to post on this type of question, also.

I visit blogs, because of many reasons: the person, a relationship, I love the content, I enjoy their site.

If someone doesn’t visit you back, and you feel hurt…then it’s up to you to decide to keep on visiting or not. No one is making you go to their blog. You can be disappointed, and take it personally, but the truth maybe that the person you enjoy so much IS BUSY. Living a life.

Ultimately, you, the reader, make the choice. If you feel hurt everytime they don’t visit you back, then maybe it’s time to stop the visits. BUT, if you enjoy their blog so much? Then why cut off your nose to spite your face.

Keep on visiting. You enjoy it. What else is a blog supposed to do, but entertain?

02.28.11#4

Comment by Rachel @ The Lazy Christian.

I have a hard time getting through all the blogs I’ve started reading! Some of them comment when I comment—some of the bigger bloggers don’t. I try to at least follow the people who comment, even if I can’t read their blogs all the time!

02.28.11#5

Comment by NoStylePoints.

I don’t want people to visit my blog just because I visited theirs, because then what is it? Just a tit-for-tat transaction. How boring.

Also, my time is damn limited. I follow a few dozen blogs religiously and visit maybe 100 others semi-regularly. That’s lots of blogs, and between living my life, writing, spending a little time on Twitter, and my unchanged love of books, how could I possibly follow any more blogs?

02.28.11#6

Comment by Leigh Ann.

Blogging, like any other world, has different groups, and you just need to keep reading others’ blogs leaving the thoughtful comments, and communicating with those you get along with best and who make you feel good. One thing you can’t do is force your way into someone else’s circle.

02.28.11#7

Comment by Mellowdee.

I completely appreciate what you’re sayin’, but tit for tat is such an exhausting game. I once belonged to a community where there was a handful of entertaining writers who I followed religiously. However, as my own modest popularity grew, I found myself wasting HOURS out of kindness, reading the blogs of all my followers – even if they weren’t always my cuppa tea. Worse yet, if I didn’t have time to make the rounds (because, y’know… I have a life), I would deprive myself of blogging altogether! I had become needlessly worried that people would wonder why I had been in the neighbourhood, but didn’t stop by to say hello. Stupid, I know… 😛 Eventually I stopped blogging there and started a new blog where I now get a fraction of the visitors, and an even smaller fraction of those who comment… but I’m okay with that. That being said, even if you are a fabulous writer, there’s little satisfaction in knowing that your readers are only there because they feel an obligation. I agree with the others – read the blogs you enjoy because you enjoy ’em, and show your love n’ appreciation to all the wonderful dedicated readers you’ve already got. <3

02.28.11#8

Comment by Lady Jennie.

I do try to comment, especially if someone comments on mine, but I realized after (over) a year in blogging, I would rather than have some good blogger relationships and interesting reading material than have scads of followers.

02.28.11#9

Comment by hokgardner.

I was once told that the way to build my blog readership was to be a “comment whore,” so I started leaving comments everywhere, which was exhausting. I ended up writing, “Love your blog. You’re so funny. blah blah blah,” which got boring. And spending all that time being a whore didn’t drive up my readership in the least, so I gave up.

Now I leave a comment if I feel like it, and I don’t get too upset if people don’t leave comments on mine.

02.28.11#10

Comment by Kati.

I try to visit my follower’s blogs at least once, and if they have interesting content, I go back. But I do not expect the bigger blogs who have 100s of followers to do that. I comment on what I’m interested in, skim the rest.
My blog is mostly about my family’s adjustment to gluten-free and all-natural eating…I kinda get where most of the blogosphere isn’t hanging on my every word there LOL

02.28.11#11

Comment by subWOW.

I appreciate your honesty in addressing this question. I agree with your perspective when it comes to myself being the reader. In my mind, I also separate out those that are super/uber popular: there simply is no way that they could do the quid pro quo thing. They’d be spending every waking minute doing it instead of working on posts that make them so popular in the first place.

02.28.11#12

Comment by Truthful Mommy.

Thank God someone finally answered this question honestly. I TRY to visit those blogs that comment on mine but sometimes its impossible. Between writing,raising these tiny humans, working, trying to be social IRL, twitter, FB, tending to my husbands need, cooking, cleaning, and reading those that I am addicted to…there are just not enough hours in the day. I do , however, try to answer all my comments. So link your emails and remove your captchas people!I have NO TIME FOR CAPTCHA!

Steph Reply:

ok . . . i have to ask. what is captacha?

Cheryl Reply:

Word verification.

marathonmom Reply:

I concur!!! The various platforms and what it takes to leave a comment – gah- some make me create a login. I actually do have captcha on mine for spam. But eventually I try to get a comment or two around on all the blogs I read.

02.28.11#13

Comment by anna.

wow. this has given me a lot to think about. i have never thought of penalizing blogs that don’t visit mine. or movie stars who don’t vist my home.

may need to rethink my blogging/movie going strategy.

great advice as always!

02.28.11#14

Comment by knowitallnanna.

new to bogging and I appreciated your comments. It’s hard to know what’s expected of you…as though there really should be anything expected of you as a blogger. It may come down to why are blogging in the first place. Do like your site…

02.28.11#15

Comment by Tracey - JustAnotherMommyBlog.

I actually don’t like the comments that say “Love your blog! Follow me back?!?” I know they might MEAN well, but it’s kind of… insulting. As though the only reason they commented was to garner more comments for themselves. I hate that. In fact, the sure fire way to NOT have me check out your blog is to write a comment like THAT.

I used to have more than twice the commenters that I have today. When I made the decision to not focus so much of my time on reading and commenting on everyone’s blogs, the readership died away a bit. I decided that if the only reason they were reading me was for the read-back, then they must not have found me very riveting. That’s ok. I’m not always riveting. It’s a fact.

02.28.11#16

Comment by ERIN I'M GONNA KILL HIM.

It’s just not possible to visit everyone’s blog, and what drew a reader to your site may not exist in exchange for you. For instance, I have some readers who, I assume by their presence on my site, like to laugh at silly marital problems, but they’re offering home/craft spotlights on theirs. It’s just not my interest because I SUCK AT THOSE THINGS. And I have 3 children under 3 so home improvement will start in 18 more years. So, for me, it’s an issue of time and not setting ‘false’ expectations that I’ll be reading that site because I’ve visited once. I do, however, answer every comment I get in an email and respond to tweets as a way to connect to my readers because that is a huge source of enjoyment for me.
It’s about entertaining and connecting. Not doing generic pats on the back.

02.28.11#17

Comment by Mrs. Jen B.

I don’t even get that many comments and I still have a hard time visiting everyone. There’s only so much a person can do, I guess. But everyone who so far has reinforced the concept of working on your own content is 100% correct. Work on your blog and the true, authentic relationships which are growing out of it. That’s the good stuff.

02.28.11#18

Comment by thepsychobabble.

Instead of commenting to get comments, why not save your comments/time for when you really want to say something?

I know what you are saying. There are people I adore who I’m fairly sure have never seen my blog. And yes, I would LOVE for them to read/see it. Like, this one time, one of them actually LEFT A COMMENT on my blog. I was over the moon for the rest of the day. I couldn’t get the husband to understand, but I’m sure you do.

But I try to keep in mind that these people I adore are AT LEAST as busy as I am. Time is a precious commodity, and who has it to spare, you know?

02.28.11#19

Comment by Steph.

wow. I had no idea that there were these blogging etiquette issues behind the scenes so to speak. I guess that is because although I enjoy blogs, I don’t have one. I don’t comment every time I read because it seems boring to say “that was so funny/heartfelt, etc. love your writing” again and again. although you can be sure that is exactly what I’m thinking if I am a repeat reader of a blog. Marinka’s advice, as usual, is spot on.

02.28.11#20

Comment by Wendi.

I actually DO try to respond or visit someone’s blog when they leave a comment. I feel it’s the least I can do for someone taking the time to read me.

And by doing so, I was able to find blogs that I now love to read.

Except for that one about marrying your cousin. I’m still trying to forget about that one.

02.28.11#21

Comment by Cheryl.

Nothing relevant to add to this conversation except to say: Marinka, you are all that and a NY Cheesecake. Gawd, I miss NY Cheesecake.

02.28.11#22

Comment by Betty Herbert.

So interesting to read all these comments. I find myself in eternal spasms of guilt that I don’t read the blog of everyone who reads mine. The problem is, I just can’t keep up. I read as many as I can (and as many as are relevant to me), but I can’t possibly get through them all. As it stands, I dread opening my blog reader every morning.

The thing is, the world of blogging is simple. You just have to read the blogs that interest you. Write a comment if you have something to say. And make your blog as interesting as you can.

The tricky part is not taking it personally. It isn’t. Go out there, be kind, be sincere, and be patient. Don’t get involved in pointless ‘follow me, follow back’ games.

02.28.11#23

Comment by Wendi @ Bon Appetit Hon.

I have to second what Wendi said above (hey girl!). When someone takes the time to leave a comment on my site, and they include a URL to their blog, I check them out.

Sometimes their site engages, entertains, or otherwise gets their hooks into me and I start following them via reader. I may just stalk them privately through my reader or I might add them to my blogroll.

I’ve discovered some of my favorite bloggers because of comments but I don’t expect people to start reading me just because I read them.

02.28.11#24

Comment by By Word of Mouth.

Comment for comment … I do my utmost to comment back to people when they have left a comment that is actually about my blog topic. The ‘nice post, or ‘followed from the hop’ isn’t really personal. Love the one’s that come to my e-mail and do not have the no reply comment feature .. because you can answer back right there and then – and then I feel all commenty powerful and stuff.

02.28.11#25

Comment by Margaret (Nanny Goats).

This message needs to be written, preferably in the form of vandalism, on every publicly seen brick wall on the planet in the hopes of quieting the constant whining that occurs with this topic.

And don’t get me started on people who actually say “Stop by my blog sometime!” in the comments. As if that is an interesting comment to make.

02.28.11#26

Comment by 2girlsonabench.

This is a great topic and we wonder about it too, basically agreeing with most of what others have commented. We love to try and comment back on other blogs and try to because we believe in blog karma, but would understand if the love isn’t always reciprocated.

02.28.11#27

Comment by dusty earth mother.

I love reading others’ blogs and don’t at all expect anyone to read mine.

DUSTY EARTH MOTHER’S LAST POST: “This Is The Funniest Thing You Will Ever Read And It Will Change Your Life So Come Visit My Blog. Now.”

02.28.11#28

Comment by Issa.

If there were 900 hours in the day, maybe we’d all do this. As it is, I rarely have time to comment on my friends blogs half the time, much less start adding new ones. I adore my readers…the ones who comment and the ones who don’t. I respond to comments often. But I honestly can’t go to everyone’s site and comment too. It’s just not humanly possible.

02.28.11#29

Comment by amy.

Kind of related but I used to follow a blog where the writer commented or emailed personally on each comment made.

I told her I would rather she wrote another post than reply to all of us (with something short and sweet and probably cut and pasted).

Tit for Tat is silly! If you enjoy the blog hope she is spending her available time writing another great post!

08.31.13#30

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