Name: margalit
Location: Massachusetts, United States Professional writer, educational advocate, opinionated ultra liberal mother of 18 year old twins, living life in the slow lane due to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and diabetes.

email: margalitc at yahoo dot com

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Friday, August 22, 2008

Guest Blogging

Have you noticed the latest trend in MommyBlogging? The Bloggers are disappearing and asking other people to keep their blogs alive and well by posting as guest bloggers. I'm not feeling all that comfortable on this trend.

It used to be that when a blogger had to take time off for say, having a baby or illness, they would ask a few people to fill in and guest blog for a few days. I think that's a fair use of the guest blogger. It adds a new dimension to the blog, it introduces you to new bloggers, and it gives lesser known bloggers a forum to pick up new readers. It's a win-win for everyone.

But lately people are taking months off because they're tired or overwhelmed or bored, and are asking people to fill in the gaping blanks in their blogs. I'm not down with that. My feeling is, if you're going to take a haitus of a month, tell your readers you're taking the hiatus, put up a 'gone fishing' last post, and disappear into your real life. I know I'd much prefer that than to feel like I have to read the guest posts and give support to the guest posters. I don't really need to read the guest bloggers. I've got enough of my own life to say "enough" to blogging.

But I feel for the guest bloggers. They work hard on their posts, probably much harder than they do on their own blogs, and they largely get ignored. I know when I see a blog taking a month off, I don't even bother to read the guest posts. I don't go to that blog to read a concoction of guest posts for a month. A week, maybe. A month? I think that's asking too much of your readers. They come to read you, not a bunch of people they don't know.

If this just happened once or twice, I'd shrug it off. But it's all over the 'net right now, the guest blogging phenom. And I'm getting the feeling that we're all being ripped off. We read certain blogs because we love the bloggers. We grow to care about them, their lives, their families, their work. And then not only do they dump us for a month, but they ask us to read bloggers that they love, but who don't necessarily move us in any way.

Again, birth, sickness, family illness... whatever. Those are times when guest blogging works.

But a month off? Just take the month and don't leave us feeling cheated.

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Blogger SAJ said...

It's funny that you should write about this now that I am one of those sheep putting up guest posts for a month while I get on with my "real life". I've noticed it too and actually found it a bit amusing.

I never meant to be a sheep. I never meant to phone it in or even disappoint my loyal readers.

Instead of hanging up a "gone fishing" sign, I decided to let other's use my space because it seemed like something fun to do while I figured out what the hell I was going to do. I just needed a break. Blogher really burned me out for some silly reason (that I probably should figure out at some point). I was at a point that I felt like quitting completely. But I think I knew deep in my heart that I have something good and I shouldn't give it up.

Maybe I've lost a lot of readers. Maybe I've disappointed my loyal fans. I apologize. I do feel bad. I never meant to be fake or just do it for the ad revenue. But if anything, the break has been good for me and I think I'll come back better for it.

The guest posts have been like a blood transfusion for a blog that I felt was fading. I needed something new to make blogging fun again.

I can't wait to come back.

22/8/08 11:34 PM  
Blogger starsgoblue said...

I agree with you on this one. I don't read the guest posts either. I don't understand why they feel the need to have someone else keep posting for them. I'm not really buying that the blogger who is gone is being generous to let someone else use their space to become more widely read themselves. Maybe I'm cynical but I think the blogger who is on vacation or hiatus or whatever, is getting something from this guest blogging thing--maybe keeping readership steady and in turn keeping the revenue they generate from their blogs coming in steadily. I don't know. I'm just guessing.

I find the whole thing a little silly. I don't usually have enough material to write about in my blog let alone someone else's blog and besides if I wanted to read the blogs of the guest posters, I'd go directly to their blogs.

23/8/08 10:09 AM  
Blogger Daisy said...

Oh, gee, I was just going to arrange for guest bloggers on Compost Happens for September so I can do my day job. Snort. Just kidding! Look for lots of venting and ranting; it may be a rocky start to the school year, and I'll need my bloggy outlet!

24/8/08 10:17 AM  
Blogger Karen Sugarpants said...

I just did this b/c of moving. I posted when I could though - I didn't disappear completely. What irks me is the lack of comments on guest bloggers posts...that makes me feel bad.
Ah well - we each do what we want to do on our own blogs and honestly, I could care less what people think of what I do in my space and I know you feel the same way about your space.
Gotta agree to disagree with ya, doll.

27/8/08 10:42 PM  
Blogger Rhiannon said...

I just had guest posters for the first time a couple weeks ago while I was undergoing surgery. I'm not quite sure still how I feel about it - but it was nice to have someone (or two) to look after my blog while I was snoozing for a couple days.

28/8/08 6:03 PM  

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