But when I do, I include a ginormous image of them and proceed to go on and on and on with my theories about everything in the universe.
My stats follow a predictable pattern, with some days lighter and other days more popular, but generally staying between 100-200 visitors per day. Yet on May 3, I had a big spike up. Why? Well, I’ll tell you! It’s because on May 3 I posted my “scavenger hunt” results from the April A-Z challenge. I linked about 25 blogs on that post and many if not all of those bloggers popped in to see why I tagged them. Not many commented though, and none followed me or returned to read anything else.
What does that tell us? A few things. First, linking other random blogs is a bunch of work with little benefit. Sure, it was “fun” for my OCD to get nearly a perfect score, but there is nothing to celebrate about a one-time spike in hits if those visitors aren’t actually interested in anything you have to say. It’s a vanity spike, in both directions. I get to feel smug about a wild swing upward; they get to feel smug about being seen. That’s the end of the relationship though.
Second, all those award posts operate on the same principle. It’s actually akin to an MLM scheme. You spend time answering questions, composing questions, and tagging friends. The award creator gets to sit back and watch his hit count rise ~ assuming you link back, which many do. He’s made one post, but he’s now getting zillions of views, for doing practically nothing. YOU are doing the work; he is getting a few bucks from the ads on his page. Nice, huh?
I am starting to feel the same about blogs that post only prompts and no content. In fact, I’m going to quit following them. I never see “Nox,” for example, ever liking or commenting on my posts, even though I’ve linked his blog, The Daily Spur, many, many times. What’s the point of that exactly? It’s of no benefit to me. There are others in this category I will be unfollowing as well.
Third, some of you are not on Facebook or Twitter, so you can ignore this section (assuming anyone has read this far!). But for those who do participate in those media, you may have noticed lately, as I have, an absolute barrage of questions from public pages, such as radio stations and celebrity accounts. I block them all at the source on FB, but it’s a never-ending task, as more pop up daily. (I mostly ignore Twitter except for a few tweeps I like and search out specifically. The feed is impossible to deal with.)
I have asked FB friends WHY they continue to answer these stupid, pointless questions… and no one can really explain. The person who posed the question does not give one speck of a crap what your favorite childhood toy was or which band you liked in high school. Plot twist! They are only trying to ramp up interaction on their posts for MONEY. They’re businesses. Would you stop in the street and take random polls from strangers asking what color underwear you have on? No? Then why answer online? I just don’t get the motivation here. Just bad habits? But the public pages have found this to be a winning format and churn out more meaningless garbage on the daily.
Facebook won’t allow you to block all public pages or limit your feed to friends only. That’s because they are also making money via your engagement with this nonsense. (So is Twitter.) The longer your eyeballs stay on the sites, the better for Mark and Scott. Participating on public pages doesn’t increase interaction with your own friends either. Only individual posts do that. But what it can lead to is (1) a more comprehensive profile of you for advertisers to exploit, and/or (2) a nice big flamewar over a political disagreement, which could result in you getting banned for a month for calling someone stupid. Yay victory.
Blogging is still vastly superior to both FB and Twitter due to that fact that you can curate your feed. That’s one of the biggest draws for me ~ seeing posts from those I’ve followed ONLY, with no trash sandwiched in between. Oh, they try! WP puts suggested post snippets after your followed ones (when you’re not using the app), but it’s easy to ignore them. Most importantly, the whole post doesn’t get shoved in my face a la FB.
What was my main point? Basically a reminder to self: don’t get sucked into contests and other linkypoo crap that is a waste of time and neither helps my writing nor generates sales thereof.
Image is mine.
©️2021 Paula Light and Light Motifs II. No unauthorized use permitted. Please check out Paula’s books for sale on Amazon. Thank you.