This blog is not for the light-hearted or easily offended. If either one of those descriptions applies to you, i would suggest you start drinking before you read this blog. A sense of humor is suggested. If you don't have one that sucks for you … find one and get a life!

In which blogging is a sociological experiment

 

I view the blogging world as a huge sociological experiment.  One of the reasons that I’ve continued blogging, besides the fact that it keeps me amused, is to watch the myriad of interactions and “types” of bloggers out there.  Now I’m sure you’re thinking mom bloggers, food bloggers, lifestyle bloggers, etc. etc., etc. but I really mean the types of people that actually blog.  I’m not going to go into all the awesome bloggers out there.  There are many that are helpful and wonderful and approachable but where’s the fun in that?

 

The “disingenuous” blogger

 

This blogger says they’re blogging just to keep a “journal” and that they “don’t care” if anyone at all reads their blog.  I call bullshit because if that were the case they’d have a journal and a scrapbook.  They wouldn’t be in the public domain tweeting out their posts encouraging people to read their blog.  If they didn’t want it to be read why would they put it out there and why are they attending these conferences, which specialize in SEO and brand marketing?

 

The “social climber” blogger

 

They say “I can’t wait to meet you in person” and then, when you go up and say hello to them and give them a hug, they’re practically turning their heads in a 360 degree circle looking for people who are more important than you so they can abruptly dump you in the middle of a sentence and run up to someone else and say “I’ve been dying to meet you.” The best part about this type of blogger is that after the conference they DM you and say “isn’t it awful we never had time to chat?” Are you fucking kidding me?  I thought you were going to unscrew your head while we were briefly talking? I’m not sure what they hope to accomplish but I assume they think that “hanging” with the cool kids will increase their readership and that they can network their way to the top.  I’m waiting to see if this suck up style approach works, case study in progress with two women.

 

The “I’m too good for you” blogger

 

Believe it or not, every single blogger started out with one reader.  Some people are truly unique and some people work it like a business but we all started out the same way. Some blogs were simply there earlier than you so while they’re nothing different or special, they’re at the top of the blogging food chain. However NOW, by virtue of sheer numbers, somehow they’re “better” than you and can barely be bothered to give you the time of day.

 

I get their attitude to some degree because I’m sure they don’t want to be harassed by beginning bloggers all the time but getting there first doesn’t mean they’re better, just more attuned or in my opinion, just damn lucky.  I’m not completely sure that these women mean to isolate themselves because they think they’re better or if they’re actually shy inside and never expected to be in this situation.  Case study still in progress here too!

 

The “I’m nothing like I present myself” blogger

 

This is similar to the disingenuous blogger but these people aren’t at all like the online persona they’re selling.  They either come across on their blog as a badass when they are, in fact, a cupcake or vice versa.  I think their blog is their alter ego or what they wish they were.  It’s kind of like how Beyonce has her “Sasha fierce” stage persona.  To me, there’s nothing more disappointing than finding out the person you read and love simply doesn’t exist.  It doesn’t bother me per se; I just find it interesting.

 

The “authentic” blogger

 

Nothing really drives me crazier than the buzzword of the year authentic.  I feel like everyone is trying to prove that “this is really you” when I fact, when this is really you there’s absolutely nothing to prove.

 

If you’re trying to prove that you’re really funny or really honest or really this way then you’re really just full of shit. I remember the first time someone said to me “you’re the real deal because you’re so authentic” and thinking, “what the hell does that mean?” I didn’t realize that I had a choice to be me or someone else.

 

 

The “networking” blogger

 

This type of blogger is a social gadfly at this event.  What I like about this blogger is that at least there’s no pretense.  They are working the room but when they talk to you they’re happy to talk to you, just don’t expect too much of their time.  What you see is what you get so I’m all-good with this.

 

The “I have no clue why I’m doing this” blogger

 

This is me. I admit I have no clue why I’m doing it.  On the other hand I do care about my numbers and I have no idea why.  I’m not attempting to monetize it but it’s a personal game for me.  I like the challenge of it, not me versus you but me versus me.  I think it’s because I’m a math person.  I loved being 27 years old because it was 3 cubed.  Last year I was 52 years old, which I equated to a deck of cards. This year I’ll be 53 so that’s a prime number which is always awesome (I love prime numbers).

 

So to me, I love tracking my stats because it’s fun and I can see progress.  Progress towards what? Truly, I have no idea.  I never had a real goal.  At first I wrote to get my stories out.  Then I wrote because my kids said I would quit and that pissed me off so I informed them that I’d last a year.  They bet against me and they lost.

 

By then I had some readers, went to some conferences and made some friends so I set a goal of a thousand readers a day.  I’m pretty sure I’ve reached that although I don’t completely understand that feed crap so I’m not exactly sure what any of it means. Yesterday, Nicole explained all that Alexa rating stuff to me and my Alexa rating was awful. I suppose that I could make a new math goal if I wanted with this “Alexa thing” but my motto is I’ll do it if it takes absolutely no annoying work.  Increasing that sounds like work so I doubt I’ll do it.

 

I’m sure there are many other types of bloggers as well but I’ve gotten bored with thinking about the entire thing.  Truth is that many, and possibly most, people don’t actually know why they blog or if they do they don’t want to admit it.  They don’t completely understand their motivations. Many people have the goal of making money and subsidizing their income but for some reason, they don’t want to admit it.  They say they’re looking into “monetizing” their blog as If apologizing for that fact.

 

It doesn’t really matter what type of blogger you are or what your motives are to me.  What’s important to me is that if you’re talking to me, please be present.  At least pretend that you want to talk to me although I’ll most definitely see through that.  I can’t do anything to help anybody so I can’t imagine there would be many suck-ups but I can’t stand that.

 

I just want to have fun and I expect the people I’m talking with to enjoy talking to me too.  So what do you think? Are there more categories I’ve missed? Agree? Disagree?  Just curious …

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33 Comments

  1. Mayor Gia
    May 8, 2012

    Hmm….I’m not sure. I don’t really feel like I fit into any of those categories, tbh. Maybe the “i have no idea why i’m doing this.” Or can there be a “because its fun and i don’t have a ton of hobbies” category? I probably fit into that one more…
    Mayor Gia recently posted..Work and Social Media, An ObservationMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      Well, it can be fun and a good hobby … i have other hobbies actually, although they’re probably not hobbies…hmmmm

  2. cmichaelsny
    May 8, 2012

    Sociologists focus more on societal institutions and how the institutions affect people.Thanks for a great sharing..
    cmichaelsny recently posted..How to Get Rid of Acne Scars FastMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      well, you can see that i did very poorly in sociology in college. i guess it was really just my little experiment

  3. How much do I heart you, let me count the many ways ;)
    You have fab, fun reader friends just like me, who are the same in real life as they are on the their blogs and head to conferences just to be with you and talk smack about the others … who are not as authentic and awesome as we are.
    On a side note, we are no longer allowed to use the words authentic or awesome.
    By Word of Mouth Musings recently posted..Pawcurious A Muse and a MemeMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      that comment was awesomely authentic … i think

  4. Kristen Daukas
    May 8, 2012

    I’m doing it because I started this blog 8 years ago (yes… well before “mommy bloggers” was even a term) and it’s literally become an online journal of our lives. It’s changed over the years from what they’re doing to what they’re doing and how it’s making me unravel at the seams. Everything you describe up there is probably the #1 reason I don’t go to blogging conferences. If I want to network with you, I can do it from the sofa in my living room where the wine is free.
    Kristen Daukas recently posted..Money and the Recession: Full Disclosure?My Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      well, the thing is that i have met some great people and had a ton of fun so that makes it all worth it

  5. Jana (@jana0926)
    May 8, 2012

    One of your best. And oh-so-true. I’m sure I’m not going to have time for you at Type A because I’ll be too busy trying to find somebody better than you to talk to and network with so I can turn my authentic blog into well, a non-authentic one. But I want to remain authentic to my true self and write for myself, not others. Oh hell, who am I kidding… let’s get drunk together!

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      hahaha…well, of course we had coffee together so we’re beyond all that already…i don’t know how much I’ll make it down there. Depends on Keely

  6. Jen Anderson
    May 8, 2012

    Hmm…I wonder which kind I am. I’ve never made it to a conference. I don’t even blog enough to think about going to a conference. Maybe I’m not actually a blogger at all. Maybe I’m a writer trying to build an audience so when I finish my novel I can show publishers that I have tens of readers already.

    Or does that me self promotional and just really bad at it?
    Jen Anderson recently posted..Okay, Okay!My Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      that makes you honest because it’s the truth!!! I went to my first conference because someone dragged me there. I had fun so i went to another. I have to admit that i totally enjoy them

  7. Jester Queen
    May 8, 2012

    Hear hear!! {Applauds madly} That was so AUTHENTIC {ducks flying shoe}. Seriously, though, I love your descriptions. And what I love even more is your math identification. You’re writing this awesome book about your son with Asperger’s, and your own love of numbers is actually very close to a similar adoration described to me by a friend who is himself on the spectrum. (Not that this means YOU are on the spectrum or that all people on the spectrum love math. Just that it’s hilarious for you to have a son on the spectrum and identify so strongly with numbers in a way that some who are on the spectrum do. There, I think I’ve qualifiered myself to infinity now.)
    Jester Queen recently posted..SITS Girls Spring FlingMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      hahaha…i do love numbers. Thanks for your comment. did you get my email?

  8. Jester Queen
    May 8, 2012

    Also, if you want to have an actual conversation with me face to face, we should never go to a conference together. I turn into one of those dogs from Up! Every thing in my vicinity becomes a squirrel. I follow the bright shiny objects and chase after the next one as soon as it catches my eye. Get me away from the adult professional setting, and I suddenly turn back into a grown up, but drop me into a huge crowd of people all gathered for a single purpose, and I suddenly think I can do ALL of it. I’ve never been to a blogging conference, but this is how I behave at writing conferences, so I’m sure it’s going to be the same when I actually manage to go.
    Jester Queen recently posted..SITS Girls Spring FlingMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      that’s pretty funny…I’m usually there to have a good time and occasionally, to learn something

  9. Mama and Baby Love
    May 8, 2012

    Love it! This was my second conference and I can attest to witnessing all the different types of bloggers you mentioned. It is a very interesting social experiment indeed. Wish I would have got to meet you!

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      yeah, I’m definitely going next year though

  10. KeAnne
    May 8, 2012

    Love your analysis lol. I am fascinated by your case studies & hope to read more as the results unfold ;-). I agree about #1. I am tired of reading about bloggers dismissing validation they receive from stats/comments. Of course it matters or no one would blog!
    KeAnne recently posted..Amendment One: Don’t Embarrass Me, North CarolinaMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      love your post thats up btw…i wrote about that too although it’s posting tomorrow

  11. Pamela D Hart
    May 8, 2012

    LOVE the descriptions! I love writing (typing??) and have been writing stories and journals since I was a kid. With that said, I want to share my “stuff” with more than myself and my family; hone my writing skills, get some critique, AND meet new people, which I have, and some are totally awesome…like YOU!
    Pamela D Hart recently posted..My Jail BirdsMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      thanks Pam…i only know how to behave one way and that way is terrible

  12. Melanie
    May 8, 2012

    I am totally guilty of 1 and 5. I blog for myself and really love my readers, but also don’t write FOR them. I have to get stuff out and I hate writing pen to paper. I write so hard I get a lump on my finger. I also love the dialogue in comments. It is nice.

    I am always talking about being my authentic self and I always will. I too hate that it’s the catch phrase of the time much like “bullying.” But they are things I’ve always thought about, and I’m not going to change my wording so that people don’t think I’m jumping on some sort of bandwagon. They can think whatever the hell they want, and I’ll continue to say whatever the hell I want.

    Are there really “I’m too good for you” bloggers? I’m glad I don’t know any of them. I have met so many awesome people since I started doing this, and I value it immensely. But I can also see myself tiring of it and just disappearing one day if I don’t enjoy it anymore.
    Melanie recently posted..Don’t Worry About My MoneyMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      Great comment…there are certainly many people who don’t really give you the time of day. They don’t say it, just make themselves completely unavailable.

  13. Annie
    May 8, 2012

    Lynn, I think you knocked this one out of the park. I can relate to all of your blogger categories. I’ve met bloggers in person who I’ve written posts for and they could barely say hello. I’ve met those who say they don’t care if anyone reads their work because they are strictly writing for “fun.” But, the thing I find the most annoying is when someone writes a comment and at the end says “Now that I stopped by your blog, please head over to mine” and then they proceed to promote themselves. Tacky. If you feel like reading a blog…do it without expecting someone to immediately stop the presses and head over to your site. Maybe that’s just me.

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      I completely agree with you…there was a person who spoke on commenting and while I agree it’s nice, i find that a lot of it is gaming the system so that people will follow you back. Drives me nuts

  14. Julie
    May 8, 2012

    I don’t blog, I just read them so I am going to go and quietly sit in the corner …

    • Lynn
      May 8, 2012

      you’ve never sat quietly anywhere…

  15. Terry
    May 9, 2012

    Love the descriptions! It´s a very interesting social experiment….Thanks for sharing this to us.
    Terry recently posted..Music OnlineMy Profile

  16. Justin
    May 10, 2012

    You made me smile over this post. I can pinpoint people who can satisfy the descriptions you have given.
    Justin recently posted..how good is learn and master danceMy Profile

  17. Annabelle
    May 10, 2012

    Ha — I am totally with you on the age thing. I loved being 32 also for similar reasons.

    I can totally see how introverts could start blogs, get really successful, and not really know how to cope with a lot of people in person. It’s a different kind of a skill, I think. I haven’t been to any conferences, but I imagine it can get pretty overwhelming.
    Annabelle recently posted..The Shoe I Hate To LoveMy Profile

    • Lynn
      May 11, 2012

      i think that introverts do get popular and then what do they do? amazingly enough though, their extroverted personality is totally different. The conferences can be overwhelming but once you make friends they’re awesome.

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