Thursday, 15 March 2007

Blogging

A recent report suggested that nearly 50% of teenagers write a blog but you have to wonder who (if anyone) is reading them - which is exactly what I was wondering about Sintoblog. Neither the blog or the wiki are attracting much in the way of comments and I was beginning to think they were the great unread . However the site meter on the wiki records 20 visits last week (not counting my own) and a couple of people have told me recently that they have read my blog and found it useful so I will continue for the time being.

Nicholas Carr in today's Technology Guardian writes about how bloggers are seen as parasites i.e. they don't create new content but just recirculate material they pick up from other sources. To some extent that is exactly what I am doing although I see it as digesting material into a format that is useful for busy local professionals who don't have the time to read everything themselves.

The blogs that I use include Karen Blakeman's http://www.rba.co.uk/wordpress/ and Phil Bradley's http://www.philbradley.typepad.com/, both on Internet searching. I would not claim that Sintoblog is in the same league but does it meet a need? I would love to know. Go on - click that comment button.

4 comments:

Facet Publishing said...

Hello Carl,

I came across your blog when looking at the list of library association blogs on www.blogwithoutalibrary.net.

We started a Facet Publishing blog at the end of last year and like you I wonder if a lack of comments means than nobody is reading it. However, I've noticed that whenever I offer a 'free book' I get an almost instant response so that encourages me. Also, we have just completed a bit of market research and asked the subscribers to our monthly e-bulletin what blogs they read and some indicate that they read ours. So, that too is encouraging.

I think some blogs are really useful and interesting but it is all about the content of course. I too read Karen and Phil's blogs and, in fact, both of them are bringing out books for us shortly. Both of their blogs succeed, I suspect, because they teach you something you might not have known before.

I personally enjoy the discipline of blogging - finding something new and interesting (I hope) to say on a regular basis and looking back a couple of months it acts as a useful archive of what we have achieved too.

I hope you continue to blog and that you get lots of comments!

Best wishes,

Mark

Hazel said...

Hi Carl
PLEASE (yes, that's a shout) stop worrying about readers. The ratio is said to be 90:9:1 i.e. 90% of people read and move on (not necessarily apathetically but you've informed them - do you really want every reader to comment with "thank you for your posting which was interesting"?), 9% read and comment "when the spirit moves them" which may not be often or regularly, only 1% are active readers and correspondents. And the make-up of each of these groups will change depending on the topic you introduce. It's only going to be the pro-bloggers that get reaction in high numbers - and that's what they're looking for from a GLOBAL audience. So, keep on with what you're doing and if "Hazel from Northamptonshire" (that's me) responds you could ask why I would be interested in anything happening in sheffield anyway?

Stephanie Taylor said...

Hi Carl,

I like what you are doing with your blog and think you are building a useful additional way in to SINTO. I know I would say that!

I do think comments are not always the best indication, and in the library sector we can be a bit shy too. And, as with anything new, you need to give it a little time for people to know you are there.

I'll dig around and find out something more on how some well-read blogs have developed re. tracking readers and comments etc.

Carl said...

Thanks for all these supportive comments and yes, I will continue! Of course I do still hope that I will get more comments from my core constituency of staff in local libraries and that they will also start to use the SINTO wiki as a true community resource.