I just read MizFit's post about blog reading and felt I had to respond. But following the "If it's more than a few sentences it's probably a blog post of its own and not a comment" rule that I have established for myself, I decided to respond here. After all, MizFit does not sound anxious to learn about feed readers (one of which is Google Reader), and I respect that:
I dont have a Google reader. I, in fact, had no idea what a Google reader was until recently. Im still not sure how to create one and add blogs to it. Please to not enlighten me. From all I can tell said reader is nothing but a source of frazzlenessment/pressure.I, however, find the feed reader to be a huge time saver. I don't have to click around to my favorite blogs to see if there is something new, and I don't get led on a down-the-rabbit-hole journey of going from this blog to that to that one and on to another one... that could go on all day for me. It really is all about setting limits for yourself. MizFit imposes her limits by ending the blog reading when the coffee is done. For me, there are a few ways I impose limits:
- I populate my feed reader with blogs I like. If an author I enjoy links to another blog, I scan that blog to see if there are other interesting posts. If someone makes an insightful and interesting comment on m blog, I click over to see if it seems like I'd enjoy reading their blog on a regular basis. If it seems interesting, I subscribe.
- I don't feel obligated to click links just because the author of a post put them in. I only click through if it seems like there is something truly interesting behind the link. I don't feel obligated to comment on every post I read, either.
- If there is nothing in my reader, that means none of the blogs I like enough to follow have posted updates. This means there's nothing to read. That saves me the time of clicking around to a bunch of blogs that have no new posts.
- I remember that no one is paying me to read blogs. If I'm reading a post and it's just not grabbing my attention, I move on to the next one. There is no requirement that my eyes have to go over every sentence before I move on. Corollary to this rule: If the blog author has posted ten new updates since the last time I read, and none of them seem interesting from the previews in the reader, I feel free to click "Mark All As Read."
- If I "Mark All As Read" too many times on a particular blog, I think seriously about unsubscribing. I try out a lot of blogs for a while but if I find the posts boring, I don't feel the need to continue reading the blog. I can always stop back and check it out again later.
I think the key is to keep this all fun and not for it to feel obligatory. It shouldn't be a chore. I have noticed a lot less comments on the blogs I read and I think it's because most of us are using feed readers. I do miss the more chatty community I used to see on blogs sometimes.
What do you think, has the blogging community changed or is everyone just getting busier? Do you use a feed reader or just visit the blogs you like?