I have a few pet peeves when it comes to blogging. Thankfully they are limited in number and I rarely encounter them, but when I do, I find myself shaking my head, gritting my teeth, and biting back a response. Today, for some reason I thought I would address one of my pet peeves. Perhaps you feel the same way? If not, that’s ok…..different opinions are allowed and valued here. Let me just get this off my chest though. Here’s an open letter to the bloggers that share the “Why I Won’t Read Your Posts” posts.
Dear Blogger Behind the “Why I Won’t Read Your Posts” Posts,
Let me just start off by saying that I am certain that you mean well. I mean honestly we are all in this together, right? We are a group of supportive and encouraging people. We want to lift others up. We strive to create a sense of community and positivity.
And then you come along with that post that lets everyone know that you will not read someone’s blog because of some blogging infraction that you have deemed big enough for you to quickly hop off their post and quite possibly never return to their blog again. That infraction or infractions (imagine the horror! Multiple things that go against your taste!) may lead you to lose out on following an amazing blogger. We all start somewhere and learn in varying degrees. Lord knows how many people I tick off on the daily that hate the color pink or my fondness of using styled stock photography instead of my own photos. I look back at some of my own posts and cringe at various things…content, design…you name it. I often stop reading my archived posts out of embarrassment for myself. How I hit publish on those posts I’ll never even know!
Oh wait….I know why I hit publish on them….those posts are a snapshot in time. At that point in time, I was doing the best I could with what knowledge I had. I was expressing myself with the words and design that I loved back then. I often think of deleting some of those posts yet can’t bring myself to do it. If our blogs are an online journal, so to speak, shouldn’t they have everything not just the highlight reel of the latest and greatest up to par posts?
I get the point of your post. I do. Your intention is to draw attention to something that you think needs fixing. And perhaps it does. Am I a fan of centered text throughout a whole post? Not typically. Do I love when a blogger writes in all lower case and uses absolutely no punctuation? Nope. Do I squint at the screen at the pale font color choices on some blogs? Yep. Guilty as charged on all three things (and more, if I’m being honest). BUT is it enough for me to say I won’t be reading your posts again? Not at all.
Content brings me back. Community brings me back. Information brings me back. The blogger brings me back.
Personally I feel as if those letters, however well written, are a tad bit condescending in nature. It’s as if the blogger is saying, “If you want to keep ME as a reader, here’s what I want to see.” I can’t imagine that anyone values me enough as their reader to go ahead and change something on their blog to match my tastes.
The beauty of being a blogger is owning your space 100% and making it reflective of you and your tastes. We proudly show up and share our thoughts and words on a space that we have created. Why can’t we allow others the same opportunity?
As I said, I know you mean well. There may be some great points hidden in your “Why I Won’t Read Your Posts” posts. Perhaps we can just be a tad bit more encouraging in our thoughts? Maybe a little less know-it-all-ish? Better yet…maybe we can just give the benefit of the doubt and allow other bloggers the chance to portray their thoughts and words in there manner they deem fit for their personal space? Here’s an idea…put blinders on when you read a blog that distracts you with design, color, fonts choices and more. Focus on the content and the message. Give some grace and allow others to be themselves.
So next time you get the urge to publish a post urging others to meet your blog standards think twice. Think of a better way to get your thoughts and opinions across. Perhaps a tutorial on designing blogs? Maybe a tutorial on pairing fonts? Whatever it is that irks you, try putting a positive and encouraging spin on it if you feel the urge to post.
Let’s just all be a little kinder and a little less judging, okay?
The Blogger that Refuses to Read One More “Why I Won’t Read Your Posts” Post