No, I’m Not Reading Your Blog Either

I love this piece by one of my favourite writers (and drivers) David Weinberger: JOHO – June 20, 2005

No, I’m not keeping up with your blog.

I would like to. I really would. I like it and I like you.

But we’re now well past the point where we can keep up with all the blogs worth reading from the people worth keeping up with.

I just can’t do it any more.

Indeed, this is becoming a real problem. Someone from quite a well-known blog on a very well-known product was chatting via IM with me the other day, and appeared quite indignant when I expressed ignorance of a particular related product: ‘Don’t you read [[well-known blog on a very well-known product]]?’ he asked. I had to fight back, saying I had written on a related product on my not so well-known blog and asking him whether he’d read that. We reached a kind of mute stalemate while both of us quietly and strealthily read up on the other’s blog. Silly, really. Who do we think we are? Scoble?

So read David’s post. And I’d like to offer some extra guidelines to blog-reading and ego-tripping:

  • if you’re a journalist or PR about to interview someone, then you probably should have checked out their blog to see what they’ve written on the subject you want to raise with them;
  • If you’re the interviewee, don’t get too shirty if they haven’t read up, particularly if the post is more than a week old. If you want to send them links to your blog posts via IM while you chat, feel free, but don’t assume that merely by sending them the link they now understand your position on everything;
  • If you’re the interviewer, don’t lie about whether you’ve read a particular post if the interviewee says ‘I have already written about that in Feb 2002. Didn’t you read that post?’ Suggested answer: “My browser isn’t compatible with posts before Feb 2004 unfortunately.” And finally
  • With friends, don’t blather on to friends via email or IM about posts you’ve just written unless you mention them or their kids, or other family member. Do not send IM-link spam thinking your friends are going to be fascinated by pictures and tortuously long posts of your baby’s first dribble/nosepick/wind-breaking.
  • Be really, really grateful to the few people who do read your posts. Thank you thank you thank you.

On a more serious note, when does it become impossible to read even your favourite list of blogs? I’m getting to the point when I never get to the bottom of my A list each morning. I guess the solution is to mercilessly prune the list until you can read it all and consign the rest to another section (called ‘dump’). One thing I like about FeedDemon is that each ‘channel group’ occupies the whole column, reducing the size of that vast unread mass I call my feedlist.

22. June 2005 by jeremy
Categories: Blogs, Internet life | Tags: , , , , , | 4 comments

Comments (4)

  1. Sounds like you need a way to find the most interesting and useful blog posts every day. I had a post on this a while back, “A relevance rank for news and weblogs”:

    http://glinden.blogspot.com/2005/03/relevance-rank-for-news-and-weblogs.html

  2. In exactly the same boat. I generally subscribe to the feeds of a) stuff I’m interested in, b) work-related stuff c) news. 60 feeds probably isn’t many compared to someone like you, but it’s still too much for me. Vicious and frequent pruning is probably the only way. I’ve been meaning to do it for a while. However, I know I’ll only replace the pruned with new seedlings.

  3. ha ha ha… guideline #4. ROFL ROFL ROFL

    other guidelines: so true.. so true. sorry i cant come up with a better comment than this “one liner”.

    cheers mate.

  4. I use the latest Newzcrawler beta’s smart folders function – rather than reading 400 plus rss feeds, I read a couple of automatically updated saved searches, quite complex searches for words, phrases which are currently important to me. My real problem is finding time to restart daily posting to my blog… Your efforts much appreciated.