Sunday, January 25, 2009

Today I am a Follower

Yesterday Steve added my blog to the published list of blogs he reads. I'm honored. A bit scared - for the reasons I mentioned in yesterday's post - but definitely honored.

But it was that action on his part that got me to thinking about blog etiquette and whether or not I was doing things properly. I wasn't.

There are about 20 things in my RSS reader at this point. Some are just silly, some I am more seriously interested in, some are from businesses, and others - the most important ones to me - are written by people I know.

I feel no obligation to give regular link space to the business blogs I follow. They may get mentioned from time to time, as appropriate, but the nature of my relationship with them isn't one that requires me to advertise for them.

Nor do I feel obliged to provide regular link space to those blogs that are written by people I don't know. There are several of those, mostly artists writing about their experiences. These are valuable to me, but since the writers don't know me from anyone, there seems to be no obligation on my part to advertise for them. (I might choose give them links, though, and as with business blogs, I may mention them where appropriate.)

The last category - and the one where I realized I was falling down on the job - is blogs of people I know. I had a few listed on my site, but the full list I follow wasn't up there. That, I decided, needed to change.

These are my friends, and through the web of connections that is the Internet it is entirely possible that someone who finds me will realize they also know someone whose blog I follow. By not giving them links, I was actively doing them a disservice.

So this morning I revised the link list. I added four blogs written by people I know to the sidebar. I also added the blog of one person I don't know, but whose work I admire so much I felt that the chance of exposing others to him was worthwhile.

So once again, thanks Steve. It appears that getting in touch with you was good for me in several ways.

And for anyone else out there whom I know and who keeps a blog, consider sending me a link. If you're not on the list I probably don't know about it, and that's no good. I want to keep up to date on my friends.