Monday, March 24, 2008

Lessons I've Learned About Blogging


When I first started this blog a little over two years ago, I didn't know jack shit!

No doubt there are those who think I still don't know shit and haven't learned a thing.

Fair enough.

But I feel like I have learned some things about the blogosphere and I'm going to share them. Not because I think that these are Essential Truths that should serve as guidelines for all who wish to blog. Not because I'm trying to establish some misguided Blogger Code of Ethics.

No, I'm going to share them just because this is my fucking blog and I can do whatever the hell I want.

That's Lesson #1.

The blogosphere is like the Wild West but without the rampant violence, the sweet, odoriferous mix of mud, shit, vomit, urine and blood that served as "pavement" in most city streets, untreatable boils in unspeakable places and exotic sexually transmitted diseases.

Okay, my bad, the blogosphere is EXACTLY like the Wild West. But I digress.

My point is, it's your blog and you can do anything you want. There ain't no Blogger's Union, there ain't no guidelines and there ain't no rules. To paraphrase Aleister Crowley,

"Blog what thou wilt shall be the whole of the law."

Lesson #2 - Try to include lots of links in your posts. It makes it look like you have actual sources to back up whatever point you are trying to make. Plus, your fellow bloggers and readers are drawn to links like blondes are attracted to shiny objects. A clever blogger can use this to his advantage.

Lesson #3 - You're a fucking blogger, not journalist. If you were a journalist, you wouldn't be cranking shit out for free on a goddamn blog. Don't take yourself so seriously. Douche nozzle! You aren't William F. Buckley or David McCullough. Don't overdue Lesson #2. Linking to Wiki sources is good enough.

Lesson #4 - Comment. Everywhere, all the time. Leave lots and lots of comments. Leaving comments accomplishes a couple of things. It let's the person whose blog you are reading know that you stopped by, liked what you saw, and just wanted to acknowledge it. It's a lot like dropping a buck in the guitar case of a street performer. But more importantly, it gives that blogger and people visiting that blog an opportunity to ask themselves "Who the fuck is THAT idiot?" They will then click through to your blog and you might just get some more readers.

Lesson #5 - When leaving comments (see Lesson #4) try to respect the ambiance of the Host Blog. If the blog advertises itself as a family site for exchanging photos and recipes, and you see a lot of posts about young, terminal cancer patients who want to get a brazillian emails before they die, leaving a rambling rant about what a cocksucking doorknob your fucking ex-wife was and how, when she dies, you hope Satan pimps her out to the Demonic Hordes is probably not a good way to endear yourself to the core audience. I'm just sayin'.

Lesson #6 - Try to coin clever catchphrases, like "cocksucking doorknobs" or "bosshole". This adds to the richness of the blogcabulary (see what I just did there?). Aw shit. I just googled my new creation and some fucktard beat me to it by at least a couple of years. Ass Hat!! Cock Hammer! Pickle Sucker!

Lesson #7 - Don't be a dick. Don't get into personal blog battles and pissing matches with other other bloggers or commentors. Argue the facts, but don't attack the person. Making enemies online can easily escalate into some really ugly stuff offline. There are some crazy motherfuckers out there. Poking them with sticks is not a very good idea.

Lesson #8 - Lots of bloggers use a "nom de blog". Respect it. Even if you know who the blogger really is. Some bloggers may have very valid reasons for wanting to remain anonymous. By outing them, even innocently, you could do irreperable damage. They could lose their job. It could cause familial problems. See the last three sentences of Lesson #7 for further justification as to why you don't want to go there.

Lesson #9 - POST! To paraphrase an old axiom "Bloggers blog." No one is going to add you to their Google Reader if you only post a couple of times a year. WRITE GODDAMNIT! Nobody is going to read a blog that only gets updated when the seasons change.

Lesson #10 - Poach, but credit. This is like the old Reaganism, "Trust, but Verify."
We ALL poach content. Meaning we steal stuff from other bloggers. I mean, Jesus, none of us are creative enough to sustain a blog on our own without relying on the creativity of other bloggers. But at least acknowledge that you lifted something from someone else and toss them a link. Here are a couple of examples.

19 comments:

"The D" said...

FIRST!!

Nice Job your retarded, and better looking twin brother would be very proud.

Stinkbait Boucher said...

I'm a little put off that I didn't merit at least a "fucktard" or "douche nozzle" link.

I'm over it already though but only because you speak the God damned truth.

For the next revision I would like to see rule #4 amended to include language encouraging people to leave comments ON THE FUCKING BLOG and not in a blogger's INBOX (with the obvious exception being those private exchanges that needn't clutter the posts).

For every comment that I get on my blog (I think I'm up to ten for the year) I get at least 3 or 4 dick-skins who need to send their own brand of wisdom by way of the "Contact Me" link - because their insights are so deep that readers' heads just might fucking explode should they be exposed to their blinding brilliance.

Oh, and nice post Mr. Buckley.

Xavier Onassis said...

Lesson #11. Respond to your Commentors.

Hello, boys.

the D - PICKLES!

stink - "For the next revision I would like to see rule #4 amended to include language encouraging people to leave comments ON THE FUCKING BLOG and not in a blogger's INBOX."

Good point!

"For every comment that I get on my blog (I think I'm up to ten for the year) I get at least 3 or 4 dick-skins who need to send their own brand of wisdom..."

"dick-skins!" Well done!

Stinkbait Boucher said...

Thanks man - I was trying to pay homage to rule #6. A little weak, I know, but I panicked.

Spyder said...

Excellent! Thanks especially for #8. See you Wednesday?

Xavier Onassis said...

stink - that's okay. I'm sure if you had more time you would have come up with something like "puss-oozing foreskins". I'm sure that's where you were going. I have faith in you.

Xavier Onassis said...

spyder - You're welcome Betty! I know that the State Farm office where you work would fucking FREAK if they found your blog and then Frank would have to support your family on his municipal water works salary. That would suck ass.

emawkc said...

I would suggest an addendum to #4: Every blogger likes to get comments from sycophantic suckups who tell them things like "nice job" and "you speak the God damned truth" and "see you Wednesday."

BTW - Nice job.

Xavier Onassis said...

stink - "I'm a little put off that I didn't merit at least a "fucktard" or "douche nozzle" link."

I've added an easter egg, just for you.

emaw - "...Every blogger likes to get comments from sycophantic suckups who tell them things like "nice job" and "you speak the God damned truth" and "see you Wednesday"...

Can I add "sycophants" who like to start comments with "I would suggest an addendum..." and who finish up with "BTW - Nice job"?

I think I just violated Lesson # 7 several times.

That shit happens sometimes.

Stinkbait Boucher said...

Wait a minute. Isn't there a rule about chain-smoking monkeys who use words like "sycophants"?

Nice job emawkc. You speak the god damned truth and I like your style. Smoke that simian.

Spyder said...

XO- Thanks a lot buddy! I'll be cashiering again at the bowling alley soon I'm sure. And leave Frank out of this. That lazy ass couldn't find water if he pissed himself.

emaw- You still owe this sycophantic a drink you stud muffin!

meesha.v said...

this is almost like a "10 commandments" redux. you must have seen the reruns over the weekend

Dexter Colt said...

I have the attention span of a humming bird (not that I actually know how long they attend to things) so I only got through the first lesson. And, I agree! The blogosphere is the Wild West. Not the shitty Will Smith version, but more like the Deadwood version.

If you followed lesson #1 with Lesson #2:Blog without wearing pants...then I am already adding you to the upper pantheon of genius bloggers.

Poodles said...

If blogging is the Wild West I must be one of the whores since I don't own a gun.

Dan said...

Your description of the wild west pavement lacks one of the greatest commonalities - horse shit!

crse said...

HA!!! Words to live by (although I don't) Sir. Really can one overuse the term "fucktard"? Douche nozzle is nice but ill have to work on the flow....

Heather said...

But Betty doesn't mind it if her regulars at Legs know about her blog, right???

Spyder said...

Mistress Heather you are a bad bad girl!

Serenity said...

Nice job, XO. Are these going to written in stone like the ten commandmentz or just pixal form for the world to see?

Long time reader, first time commentor. I was inspired by your blogging lesson thank you.