On the Blogging Community

“I came for writing, but stayed for friendships.” (A friend of Pauline’s: The Contented Crafter)

Although simple and real, many of us can relate to that quote. Seasoned blogger know the importance of community and the effect it has had on them. Yes – selfish bloggers exist – but for many, the interaction with a global audience is one factor that keeps them going.

The original post (On the Blogging Blues – April 27, 2015) focused on breaks, but the suggestions in the comments covered a wide range of blogging topics. This is Part 3 of the series that uses reader comments around a topic – this time it’s Community.

Thanks to everyone who contributed comments that led to this collection.

Topic: Community
Post for readers, not yourself.

Interacting with others beats counting stats.

I still struggle with the many posts that hit my reader every day – let alone replying to comments. Blogging simply takes an incredible amount of time and energy.

If quality and community are important, bloggers needs to reciprocate..

Blogging is posting, commenting, and visiting others.

The best thing about blogging is the friends you make.

The way one interacts elsewhere is an important trademark, thus causing others to want to visit.

Then again, blogging is like a collective that feeds upon one another … and I am fortunate to be in the midst of a wonderful community.

A person starts blogging because of the writing, and then they learn the power of the community.

The best blogging relationships as similar to the best in-person relationships – that is, they work both ways.

Not only reply to all comments, interact with your guests, and definitely write more than “Thanks for commenting” or “Thanks for visiting” – and then visit them. After all, don’t you want them return?

Humans are social creatures who enjoy meaningful social contact with others.

Everyone wants higher numbers, but community is more important than stats.

A blogging community is like a collective that feeds on each other – and resistance is futile.

Past Topics in This Series
Blogging
Breaks and the Blues

Next Topic: Posting and Frequency

I’ve said it many times and also written it here – I truly believe in the good of the majority of humanity … and to me, bloggers have reinforced that believe. Here’s a jazz great to end this post in a fitting way.

Advertisements

121 thoughts on “On the Blogging Community

    • Deborah,
      When I started, I had no idea about the power of the community … and what happened in the previous post is a tribute to community. Thanks for sharing your support for the blogging community.

      Liked by 1 person

  1. When I first started blogging, I thought that I just need to post something and that’s it. But when others started to like and comment on my posts, I then replied to them (and generally have great conversations with them) and visited their posts and posted comments on them as well.

    That’s when I began to realize that interactions with others is a very important component of blogging.

    Like

    • Abyss,
      Exactly … thus why I don’t understand so many of the newer bloggers that I visit and leave a comment … and they strike out in starting a conversation. Clueless … absolutely clueless. Thanks for sharing.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. “Post for readers, not yourself.”—I think that’s a good piece of advice. Unless one is posting a personal diary (which at that point might make more sense to have a private blog), we need to keep the reader in mind. They have lots of other things they could be doing. Is what I’m saying worth their time? That’s one of the reasons I strive to keep my posts in the 300-600 word range. Occasionally I hit 700 words, but then I try to have a shorter one the next time. So many blogs, so little time, right?

    You’ve always done a great job of having readable content within manageable word counts. Probably why so many people keep coming back to your blog. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Carrie,
      Agree on that bit of advice .. and for the record, in one of the previous installments, something like “post for yourself” was stated. I know I’ve switched the focus of this blog over time because of readers.

      In terms of word count, yep … I’m with you. Although I typically don’t watch my word count, one must be aware of it. On the other hand, some posts require more words.

      Thanks for the kind words. plus a toast to Starla for being the common link that brought us together.

      BTW – I think your writer side will enjoy the variety of endings on the previous post.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Blogging for me has one chief characteristic that separates it from conventional interactions such as conversation. In blogging, you can craft your response, edit it, portray the image that you wish to portray. You can act, take the time. I always thought that this would lead to less meaningful interaction, but I don’t think it actually does. I think people, despite putting on a certain digital image (ever seen St. Vincent’s Digital Witness video? awesome, I think she was talking about this), still are very genuine and that very much comes through. I don’t think this is really any different from any other community, and so it works according to the same rules we would expect in any other facet of life: respect, honesty, etc. Guess I shouldn’t have been surprised in that. Really is the community that keeps me here.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Trent,
      A wonderful analysis of an aspect of a blogging community. I’ve wondered how many are fake, but I actually believe that the majority are very real and honest. In some cases, it’s their inner persona that is coming out. Nonetheless, cheers to honesty and respect in all life encounters. Thanks for sharing!!!

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Yes, that’s my friend Alys who blogs at Gardening Nirvana quote Frank – so true isn’t it! It’s definitely all about community for me – and sharing what we do and make too – which for us crafty types is so much fun!

    Frank, I just took twenty minutes to read your previous post and all the comments and alternate endings – .What a huge success! Congratulations on hosting another version of a blog party!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Pauline,
      I thought Alys’s quote was perfect to start this post, and cheers to you for sharing it!

      I’m glad you read the previous post. The success was much more than I expected. A great time! …. and the different endings were a lot of fun. … and I hope you noted that I took your original comment to heart during the rewrite.

      Like

  5. Good post. Like many people, I began blogging with no real understanding of the community that exists here. The dedication, interest, support and interaction within this community has surprised me in very positive ways. There is a responsibility then to reciprocate those same things to others. You’re right, community is more important than stats. I think it’s important to be reminded of that on occasion.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I didn’t really know what a blog was when I started, I just wanted to tell my friends about Bagni di Lucca. I was delighted when strangers started following. I have now met, in person and on line, lots of great people and my blog brings lots of people to our lovely village.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Debra,
      Good example of multiple effects of blogging. Besides, you aren’t promoting a business, you are simply sharing your love for an area … and cheers to that and the wonderful area that it is.

      Like

  7. I am learning an awful lot. When I started blogging here : I came out of a need to reach out to regular people and not just my angel mom’s and dad’s. When I first joined Facebook, I was needing to grieve and never realized it. Then as time passed, I still needed my angel families…..I always will ,but I needed a more “normal” ( I use that word because I can’t think of a better one). I needed to laugh more. I wanted to help others laugh.
    It i hard drawing a line sometimes.
    I really had no idea how much “Effort” it took to not only POST but to read and COMMENT. Even to like and not comment takes additional time, I don’t always have.
    I am learning to postpone a blog post or 2 or 3 to get out there to READ and COMMENT.
    It is also hard for me to come up with words to say when I comment. Something meaningful.
    Not always but enough that I struggle.
    There’s so much more I would like to say. Maybe I will later. Right now, my brain needs a break.
    My health makes it harder to be a blogger and not just have a Facebook page. I need to be here more than I can be at time. This week is a good example.
    Hugs to all.
    Sarah

    Liked by 1 person

    • Sarah,
      You have covered many of the ups and downs of blogging … and yes, so much comes down to time. Interesting how so many bloggers think that it’s all about “followers” …. they follow then never return again – which makes no sense to me. I try to visit many of the newbees, and even comment, their lack of interaction astounds me.

      Then again, time is an important factor. Writing, replying to comments, reading others, commenting elsewhere, visiting and commenting to newcomers, etc … all are time consuming … so we need the support, the laughs, the intellectual food, and more.

      Most important, hope your health improves.

      Like

  8. It’s so true that blogging takes a lot of time, Frank. I’ve been in very short supply on that between my workplace transitioning and my housing hunt. I agree with what you’ve written here. Blogging is about interacting and if you do it right, that’s an investment in time. You do it consistently well.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lame,
      Oh my my … does it ever take time – but all those who truly try realize that. Then again, as what is going on now with you, sometimes life demands more attention. I’m assuming your hunt is still in process … good luck! … and thanks for the kind words.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. This line says it for me **** blogging is like a collective that feeds upon one another … and I am fortunate to be in the midst of a wonderful community **** I started blogging to improve my writing and photography skills. Along the way, I met kind, considerate, helpful, caring people. They were willing to guide me and take me through my journey without any expectations. I visited their blogs because they were there for me. I think that’s what makes it a community.
    Great post, aFrank. Well done !!! 😎

    Like

    • Isadora,
      Well stated. Yep – we started for one thing then found that and more … and the more was unexpected. Regarding this post, cheers to those who commented on the original post because this collection is their thoughts. All I did was collect them.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. What a wonderful world… actually it is not like that at least not for me in here, I mean in my country. Everything is seem in a big problem, or in chaotic problems… Most of them about politics… I feel myself lucky because I am living in a wonderful world, with this Word Press community… So as you can see, people make the world wonderful… At the beginning it was all about writing… to write… I was a writer and without writing I could have been lost… then I started to write in this language, but I noticed that there was a wonderful world with beautiful people… and still I am here, around here… I have so many (blogger) friends, and really they are as a real friend. And to be honest I don’t have a real friend in my real life… none of them is trustable… I can imagine your face, are they, the blogger friends trustable more than others? You can’t believe but yes. Yes. Can you believe this, a man who was going to an importan surgery next day and he went to the Ocean beach for me, to collect some shelfs, sands, ocean sea (in a jar) and he sent them to me, by Feedex, none of them got damaged… He sent them to me because I told him, I don’t know what the difference between sea and ocean, I haven’t been at the ocean beach… my words impressed him and he went to the ocean (he was living in US) his daugther told me that next day there was an important surgery of him. He is living in the sky now, peace be with him… I can never forget this, and how much I cried when I opened the box from USi feedex… Yes, this world is something like that… I have never seen anything like that before… I mean in my real life… I love blogging world…

    Thank you dear Frank, you made to remember some of beautiful memories… Love, nia

    Liked by 1 person

    • Nia,
      You have touched on many aspects of the blogging community with examples that reach beyond our computer screens. To me, blogging has supported my belief that the majority of the people in the world are good.

      In some way, yes, we trust bloggers more than those in face-to-face encounters. Then again, we observe so much more when we see sometime – both the good and the bad – both what we like and dislike.

      Thanks for sharing your important thoughts. More importantly, thanks for being a shining light of kindness.

      Liked by 1 person

  11. You are so right about the community thing. I didn’t know what I was doing when I started blogging and still don’t to some extent so the community aspect has been an unexpected bonus and a beautiful thing – wonderful friendships! But I still struggle to keep up and often feel neglectful of other bloggers!

    Liked by 1 person

    • JM,
      An unexpected bonus indeed. I’ve only met one of my readers, and that was a pleasure … and that will change over time. Yet, I remain confident in their goodness. Just so you know, keeping up is an issue for all of us. Thanks for sharing.

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Two of the points you made about blogging are, in my opinion, at the top of a long list of reasons why your readers appreciate and keeping coming back to your blog: (1) “The way one interacts elsewhere is an important trademark, thus causing others to want to visit,” (2) “A person starts blogging because of the writing, and then they learn the power of the community.”

    Watching Louis Armstrong perform “What A Wonderful World” made me once again appreciate why he remains the world’s greatest all-time jazz artist. Like the great painters, Satchmo, in both his singing and trumpet playing, gave audiences a reason to linger on every square inch of the canvas of sounds and facial expressions he produced.

    Like

    • Tim,
      So others know, you are only a commenter … thus one who doesn’t have a blog. … and for the record, we know each other. On the other hand, it was our conversations as breakfast and on the phone that led to start my little corner of the world. Along that same lines, you are able to stand back to share important observations here .. so thanks for sharing that. Cheers to your love for Satchmo!

      Like

      • I’m glad you became a blogger. Before our breakfast conversations I had never followed a blog regularly, and really didn’t understood what blogs were all about. Thanks to you, I now have a better appreciation of the unique power blogs have in the modern age. I have no doubt that the Founding Fathers would have been simultaneously thrilled and horrified had they been able to peek into the future and see free speech as exemplified by afrankangle. For sure, it would have thrown the Constitutional Convention into a tizzy, knowing that one person, without the permission of government, who knows a lot things about a lot of stuff, and who has the courage to voice opinions about that stuff, could sit in their home each day over a cup of coffee, and communicate their views to every citizen in the Republic!

        Like

  13. Interesting post, Frank. I blog as a creative outlet. It’s a different type of writing from what I normally do. I don’t pay attention to the stats, but I’m glad that some people seem to enjoy what I write. I also did not know when I first started that there is a community that develops with blogging. I have several blogger friends now, and I always look forward to their comments. I always respond to comments! It’s fun, too, to have international virtual friends.

    I have to put a limit though on how many blogs I actually follow regularly (yours is one, Frank)
    and respond to. When bloggers do multiple posts every single day, I usually do not comment on all of them, and honestly, I don’t always read all of them.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Merril,
      Seems many of our stories are similar. The international and national flavor is very meaningful to me. As some like to say, “It takes all kinds to make the world go around.” … and (to me) blogging supports that.

      I had to chuckle with your comment about multiple posts in one day. No way I can keep up with that … so i won’t even try. Then again, until not long ago, I was one who posted every day (for whatever reason). Since cutting back, I feel great self-satisfaction. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and for supporting my little corner of the world.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Some bloggers write – total verbal diarrhea, frankly! Really? Must you fill my email with 3-4-5-6 blog posts per day? Some I totally “flushed”, others I changed the status to show up only in my reader (where I never go…) Too bad really, because some of these writers are truly interesting but it was the equivalent of reading a novel a day! Can’t keep up and an occasional “like” made me feel like a fraud.

        Like

    • Val,
      MANY thanks for your kind words. To most of us here, most of these bits reaffirm or remind – both of which we need.

      Just so you know, I think there are 2 more posts in the series.

      Like

  14. I think community is the thing that keeps me blogging, Frank. I probably spend more time commenting that posting, these days. I’ve met so many great people (of course including you!). Like most things, my time is limited and my time on WordPress is somewhat cyclical and summer is just a very busy time, but it’s so great to communicate with my blogging peeps!

    Liked by 2 people

  15. The reciprocal thing is absolutely key. I’ve noticed without a doubt that when I go through periods of time where I visit and comment on blogs less, the comments on my blog become less, and equally, when I sustain regular high levels of commenting on others (which I haven’t been able to do for quite a while!), comments on mine go up. I think some people spend their energies unwisely when trying to get their stats up, they spend their time promoting their blog, which may increase visitors and subscribers, but if you want to increase comments, and thus, the supportive community, you have to comment on other posts, AND reply to every commenter on yours. Of course this doesn’t apply if you’re a celebrity, or have achieved some high blogging superstar status, but for the rest of us minions it does 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vanessa – a fellow minion.
      Great points about reciprocating … and the fact of how some focus on chasing the stats as opposed to forming (or becoming part of) a community. As we know, those people clearly identify themselves.

      Off topic – if you get a chance, see the post before this one. You will love it!

      Like

  16. I never had a clue that a blogging community existed. When I was on Blogger and Tumblr, I barely had any interactions. Moving to WordPress was an eye-opener! I originally started writing to see if I had anything to say that anyone would want to read. Then through the magic of blogging, I discovered like-minded individuals. Some, I have no idea where the origins or our relationship started! I absolutely love it. It’s so funny because my family does not understand at all the importance of this community to me.
    It has seen me through some pretty difficult stuff and I have received love from all over the world. No words can explain it to those who don’t understand it. I have built some pretty solid relationships and am convinced that, if – no, strike that! – WHEN I end up in the hometown of some of my blogger buddies, (and I plan to do so) I will be received with open arms.
    There are stats? (Just joking. I couldn’t tell you where I stand in that department having checked once!)

    Liked by 1 person

  17. ‘Post for readers, not yourself.’: I kind of agree and disagree to this statement.
    I try to post once a day (on the odd occasion or two an extra post will slip through!), but I always try to post something different each time. I enjoy the creativity and the ‘challenge’ of getting a post out daily. I was asked once (when visiting another blog) to post less, by someone who never appeared to even visit (can’t say for definite here, but there were no outward signs they’d been lurking!), which pushed me further into posting each day. I thought to myself it’s my blog, so I’ll post when I want to, thank you very much! I love the interaction with visitors, and always *try* to keep up with the blogs I follow (unless a gnome comes along and causes me not to, Frank 😉 sorry for the ‘in-joke’ there, and I’m not entirely convinced I wasn’t said gnome in question…); but sometimes my following / visiting / commenting takes a slight back seat, shall we say.
    Loving the interaction sometimes leaves me feeling a little deflated on days when my visitor numbers are low, and I sometimes feel as though I’m writing to myself, but I always have regular visitors who come along and snap me out of my woeful self pity!
    So, I write what I like, hoping that anyone who comes along likes what I write… that’s kind of like writing for everyone, not just ‘them’ or ‘me’
    But you’re right. The blogging community is a wonderfully diverse one, and I have ‘met’ some really good people through the blogging medium.
    Sorry for the long comment, Frank… I may have been away for a while and there’s a lot of commenting for me to catch up on, but I really shouldn’t do it on one post!
    Hope you have a good day / evening (whatever time it is where you are!)

    Liked by 2 people

    • Tom,
      Much said here, but very worthwhile. So much of blogging (to me) is the double-edged sword – such as the frequency of posts, reciprocating, and who one is writing for. Simply pluses and minuses on all counts.

      I posted 6 times a week for a long time … now I’m down to 3-4 … and I feel good about. It’s easier on me while not being a burden on readers. That’s not a suggestion for you, but just sharing a story.

      Some say write for yourself … others say write for your audience. Again, a double-edged sword … and I can tell the difference.

      FYI: This post is a gathering of comments from an earlier post. I grouped the comments into categories, and turned them into 5 posts (this is the 3rd in the series).

      Liked by 1 person

  18. I’ve been away for awhile and I’ve missed my “family” here. The longer I was away, the more pull I felt to jump back in and the more concerned I became that my re-entry would be difficult. At the same time that I trust in the loyalty of my blogging friends, I don’t want them to feel as if I have abandoned them or that I blithely drift in and out of their lives. This is a real commitment for me and I hope they know it. Leaving for a while really brings the commitment into focus.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I really enjoy reading the comments that others make about community, because it validates my personal experience. I have never been too bothered about those that weren’t particularly reciprocal, but as time commitments become more of a struggle I need a degree of efficiency, and it’s a simple fact that I spend more time “visiting” blogs where the blogger shows interest in me. The blogging community really is a mirror of our other friendships. If we neglect our friends anywhere we can’t expect to feel very connected. And I discovered through this process that I really do value that connection, much more than I ever would have anticipated! And thanks for Louis, Frank. That song really takes me back–such a favorite! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Debra,
      I also try to spent the most time with those that are here. But I find it sad when those stop visiting, or worse yet, stop blogging … hence how community touches our hearts. Great point about neglecting friends anywhere. Now, get back to answering that Michael Jackson question for your granddaughters. 😉

      Like

    • Bulldog!!!!
      Greetings … I wouldn’t say that it’s missing because a) that doesn’t fit the theme of this list and b) it was on another list. Hope all is well!!!! How was your trip?

      Like

      • Haven’t been yet, going next weekend to quote on designing and building a 9 hole golf course after that it’s off to the reserve… hard to keep up these days with all that is happening… you will appreciate the work that goes into a design and costing of a golf course… want to help??

        Liked by 1 person

        • Good luck on the design … and I can’t imagine what goes into the whole process. Of course what to design a US Open course for the pros … I’ll show them! 500 yards over water …. ok … hitting three from drop zone 300 over water.

          Liked by 1 person

  20. Sweet post, Frank. I’ve always thought that you’ve built a lovely community of bloggers and friends here; and I’m happy to be a part of it. Aside from a few subscribers, and “likes”, to my blogs, rarely do I receive comments. And even though I (used to) spend more time reading, visiting and commenting on other blogs, rarely did the bloggers ever reply to my comments. Even when I don’t ‘speak’ my mind, I seem to be repelling in some way. Feels like I’m still leaning up against that brick wall at Catholic school, watching everyone play hopscotch and jump rope, but not wanting to participate. Some things really don’t ever change. 😀
    (Ironically enough, I just recently ditched one of the blogs. Blame it on Mercury retrograde. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vix!!!!

      How and the heck are you? Good to see you again.

      For a long time I’ve said that the most important decision one makes in their life is the choice of people to be around … and I see the same rule for blogging. Although people come and go, I’m very happy with my choices. (… and I’m NOT saying you’ve made bad choices!!!) So hey … hang around and I;m sure others will be other to see your work. Which blog did you shut down?

      Like

  21. I try to do my part Frank – the social interaction is a big part, which I’ve tried to encourage others that if they want more followers and interaction they have to give in this department as well. Certain topics I rarely comment – politics, but most I’ll leave a few words to connect to the blogger. If someone posts 5 or more posts a day, I have to un-follow (it gets to be too much in my reader and of my time, and then every two weeks or so I’ll go onto their blog to see what they are up too. Good post and topic Frank.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mary,
      Social interaction is important to me as well … then again, not all bloggers are that way – and I imagine some don’t understand the importance of it.

      All of us have ways around the traffic a community brings from all angles – so thanks for sharing yours. It appears we have similar tactics. Cheers to your efforts!

      Liked by 1 person

  22. I am very happy about the many relationships I have built on-line! I also try to support beyond visiting, commenting & replying.
    I have a budget, but I do buy books from my pals. Although I prefer books in print, I have bought Kindle editions. I try to limit myself because I have a huge pile up now. Although I would rather spend my time reading, work beckons…. loudly!
    I haven’t purchased a lot of art, as my home is filled to the brim with art. I live in a community of artists.
    DREAM: To have enough money to have a “Blog Art Gallery” where I could purchase art from all the artists follow, and show it for free.
    Marina (who follows you) is a fab artist. I have put aside some $ to buy 2 pairs of tights from her Society 6 shop. They are amazing gorgeous with her art on them. I will wear them, gleefully!!
    Just waiting for the next “free shipping” at the end of the month.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Resa,
      Well said about the artists … and definite cheers to Marina, whose work is fabulous. I love what I call the Marina Swoosh. 🙂 … great idea about the Blog Art Gallery!

      I’ve not an avid book reader, but I understand the quantity of authors that are out there. Wow!

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on Community!

      Liked by 1 person

  23. i may have told this story before:

    there was a guy whose blog i read often. most posts were top 10 lists, such as crime films, 70’s tv shows, remakes and sequels, cartoons, etc. each post was a good mix of entertainment, opinion, and attitude. he got tired of writing about those lists and posted a poll of what other things he should write about outside of tv and film.

    i replied, “i don’t care what you write about. i don’t read your posts for the film or tv information. i read your posts because i like your slant on things. i like the humor and information combined with entertainment. it doesn’t matter what you write about. it matters that you write it in your own voice with your own attitude.”

    he thanked me because he didn’t realize how he was coming across to others. it’s like when you mention someone and say, “i would listen even if that guy/girl was reading the phone book.” that’s what he was, but he had no idea. that’s what happens sometimes with blogging. i probably started reading here because i love all the posts about cartoons, but then you find out there’s a lot more than just bugs bunny and mighty mouse hanging around these parts.

    Like

  24. Pingback: On Blogs: Posting and Frequency | A Frank Angle

  25. I do not feel part of a community as a blogger. I am lucky to be able to enjoy powerful images and texts from talented people over the world.
    I do not write for them however or create images for everyone.
    I suppose I am not a real blogger.

    Like

  26. you’re writing about an important topic:
    “Interacting with others beats counting stats…”
    = this is also a perfect resume for me as a guitarist,
    using SoundClouds:

    Like

    • Frizz,
      Welcome first-time commenter … and you’ve started with an important post … and I invite you to read the others in the series (linked at the end).Thanks for the music that is serving as my background.

      Like

  27. Pingback: Interacting with others beats counting stats | Flickr Comments

  28. Blogging is such a great way to share my experiences with the world and make friends around the world. Although I normally post just once a week, I like to take time for my connections every day as time permits. While some of my friends say they are bored, how could I possibly be bored with writing and reading about experiences in the real world.

    Liked by 1 person

  29. Pingback: On Writing for Blogs | A Frank Angle

Comment with respect.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s