Whoohooo!! It’s Friday and I’m pretty excited about today’s FBFF topic. It’s all about blogging communities and what role they play (and are supposed to play) in the blogosphere. I started thinking about this when I read this article on IFB about the decline of interaction in comments on blogs despite no loss in readership. I thought it was something that was just happening to me, especially with everything going on in my personal life. I think the same goes for blogging communities as well, including the FBFF community. I was a part of the group in the early stages and one thing I loved (and missed!) were the informational conversations and discussions we would have amongst each other via our blogs, twitter, and the early days of the Google group. We tackled issues like sizing, blogger jealousy, buying knock offs- you name it! I loved it, I thrived on it. It always kept me thinking and improving my writing and blog.
So what happened to our blogging communities and our interactions amongst our peers? That’s what today’s questions are all about!
What blogging communities do you belong to?
I belong to Independent Fashion Bloggers, and Friend Beauty and Fashion Friday. I also belonged to Full Time Fabulous for awhile.
What do you think the roll of community is in blogging?
I think a community is supposed to be a place where bloggers can come together and talk. Talk about any issues we’re having and pick the brains of those who can help us. Talk about any hot issues that are going on in industry and the fashion/beauty blogosphere. Talk about the latest trends. It’s supposed to be a place where we can come together and talk with other people that”get” what we do. It is a place for me where I can talk about blogging, get excited, and try out new ideas, and get feedback.
Blog comments, twitter interactions and meaningful Facebook threads have decreased in the last several months. What are your thoughts on why that is?
One reason I think this has happened is the sprouting up of new mediums that we can use to promote our blogs – like Pinterest and Instagram. They are our new shiny toys and the time that I think we could be spending on intereacting we’re using to pin and take photos. I don’t think they are bad social tools (I use both of them!). I just think it’s another thing to add to our blogging plates and we simply may not have enough time to interact like we used to.
Another reason I think is just the rising popularity of blogging. I’ve noticed a huge surge in new bloggers from the time I started three years ago to now and it’s amazing! Who can halfway blame them, with the rise of bloggers in commercials and magazine spreads. At the same time, you have so many new people in the mix and many of them may not understand just how important it is to interact, comment, and get involved in meaningful conversations. Many of them are more concerned with getting their names out there – hence the many (too many) threads on forums like IFB and FBFF that are just about promoting giveaways and “follow me” posts. Honestly, it’s this flood of these type of posts that has pushed me away from getting on these forums. I get annoyed because it seems they don’t understand that growing your blog isn’t about always promoting yourself. Getting involved in the community and being an active and contributing member will help you grow your blog.
How do you cultivate community around your blog?
I try to get back to talking and writing about things that I can spark conversation. Whether it’s tackling the concept of body image or just asking what’s in your beauty bag, I want to give my readers a chance to comment and share their thoughts. I still comment on other people’s blogs and make sure they are as meaningful and thoughtful as I can.
If you could make one resolution to be a better community member what would it be?
To get involved again like I used to and do my part to get it back to the community I used to know and I love. Like I said before, I’ve become disenchanted with the communities I belonged to and maybe if people like me who miss those conversations we used to have start talking again, we can get it back to the place that it needs to be.
I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on this! What is a blogging community to you? What do you think has led to the decline in blogger interaction?