I used to attend book sales at public libraries. It was my main inventory source for selling used children’s books. When I first started going, even though I was friendly and outgoing, the other book dealers wouldn’t talk to me and only tolerated my existence. I was a mom with a child in tow, and I didn’t fit in with their highbrow, snotty circle of knowledge of expensive books and ephemera. It took almost TWO YEARS of being at the same sales with all of them before a bookseller finally asked what I was doing. He was surprised at the success I was enjoying.
To make a long story short, most of the other dealers did eventually become friendly, and over the course of ten years, we had some good times waiting in line and chatting. I never forgot how the snubbing felt though, and I always made sure I talked with anyone who was near me in the book line – no matter why they were there. I met a lot of interesting people by not discriminating.
At first, I was wary here at WordPress. My feelings of the book snubbing surfaced again – especially since I had just written three books in three months and published them myself. I hadn’t paid my dues in the writer’s world.
I was afraid to comment on anyone’s blog for fear they wouldn’t answer because I didn’t fit in with their circle of friends. I was afraid to follow – especially another author – for fear they would chastise me for what I had done.
None of that has happened. I’ve met some wonderful people, I’m learning a lot, and most of the time, blogging is fun.
But I was freaked out again a couple of days ago. I was looking around Freshly Pressed and read the blog post about making your likes mean something. Yikes! What if other bloggers think my likes aren’t heartfelt? What if other bloggers think I’m only liking their posts to induce them to come to my blog? What if I’m intruding on someone’s blog who intended it for a select circle of family and friends?
I’ve had fun rolling around WordPress and finding blogs to read, follow, and like. I thought that’s what I was supposed to do. I always read a post before I push like. Why wouldn’t you?
I was following a lot of blogs and dropping a lot of likes out there, but I wasn’t trolling for likes or followers in return. I don’t have enough to say to bring people here. In my panic of feeling I wasn’t blogging correctly, I unfollowed a load of people, and hoped I would no longer be intruding.
The fact that other bloggers show up to read my blog still kind of freaks me out. Now I’m paranoid, too.
Well, I worry about my likes being taken the wrong way too. I often comment on posts that I read, but occasionally there will be posts where I wouldn’t have anything to say, or any comment might be meaningless, so I just click “Like” to show that I did in fact read and enjoy the post.
I think likes may be taken the wrong way because there are in fact some people who just scroll down the list of posts clicking Like without even bothering to read, and that causes some stigma maybe?
I think that was what the Freshly Pressed blogger was referring to. She didn’t want likes unless someone actually read her blog and liked what she wrote. If someone follows 100 blogs, they can run down their reader and click likes on all of them without clicking through to the blogger’s site. I can see why someone might do that to show support to other bloggers, but I want to see and read what I’m “liking.” Zen, you were one of the first bloggers to ever reply to one of my posts, and I appreciated that you commented. I’ve enjoyed following your blog.
I feel the same way. I can pick out one or two people who regularly like my posts, but it’s apparent they don’t read because they like every other post out there! Seriously, I see their names everywhere, and I’m like, “Come on. You can’t be /that/ dedicated.” And aww, thanks! And I feel special knowing that I was the first to comment, haha.
There are a lot of people who do visit click like and follow in the hope that you will go to their page and read and follow them people soon learn who these people are. I think you learn to appreciate that those who you see back day after day are genuine whether they comment or not. If I tried to comment on every post I read I would never have any time to do anything else. if someone follows me then never visits my blog again I tend to alter the frequency on their blog if I have followed in return and visit once a week rather than keeping up with each post as I do with those who interact with their followers. I would much rather people click like and comment when they have something to say than have people feel under pressure to say something. For example yesterday i had nearly a hundred views but only a dozen or so likes, it would be easy to get disheartened but i take into account that anyone reading from their phone finds it is a nightmare to like (speaking from personal experience) and that it could also mean that the post wasn’t to their taste and that is something to bear in mind for future reference, I am always amazed anyone clicks like for what I what I write so I just enjoy any I get
You’ve had some great posts to click like for! I was enthralled trying to read snippets in your notebook, and was sure I saw the word “wedding.” 🙂 (Will someone be getting married in your book?) I do appreciate seeing people who click like regularly. I don’t comment a lot on other blogs, but I’ve wanted certain bloggers to know that I stop by often and like what they write. When someone new shows up and clicks like, I try to look at their blog and follow if there seems to be a mutual interest. The worst feeling is when I’m the first person to click like, and then I realize the blogger has 1,000 followers and nobody EVER clicks like for them. There is my gravatar all alone messing up the landscape. Ugh!
i have had that aswell lol I have noticed a few blogs switch off their like buttons and comments which I don’t really get why post especially when they word it as if they want replies but make it so no one can interact with them 🙂 Eagle eye you yes there are actually two weddings although technically they are handfastenings
Hey! You do what you can do. Even if it takes a little time, most people will see who you are.
I’ll get the hang of this one day. As this is my first foray into social media, it’s all a little freaky anyway.
I love this post and can relate. I wonder about all the hidden agendas for liking posts and following blogs. I’m not a game player so I’m sometimes naive about things. I’ve decided just to do what feels right to me on my blog and be honest and truthful when liking or commenting on others’ blogs. I agree with Zen’s comment…’like’ to me means I did read the post and got something from it. Sometimes, I feel compelled to comment.
I agree – do what feels right and be honest and truthful when liking or commenting. I’ll probably be a little more cautious going forward. Just because I like something doesn’t mean I have to drop a like on it. I might visit a blogger a few times before deciding if I want to participate or not. Thanks for the comment!
Maddie, do you really think people ‘like’ without reading? Strange concept, time to get paranoid? I can see your point, and the only real way of knowing if someone has read the piece is if they then comment, but if we commented on everything we read…Well, I don’t write enough as it is.
A little tongue-in-cheek with the paranoia, but I did re-evaluate how many blogs I wanted to follow. I think I was following the crowd with some of my likes, and I decided I would interact more with the blogs I especially liked. Some people seem more approachable than others; hence, the interest in one’s dinner party and how well the food would be received. 😉 My biggest fear was that I would be perceived as liking blogs and posts in an effort to drive traffic to my blog, and that is not what I’m looking for – yet. You”re right, we would never get anything done if we responded to every post we liked.
This is the original blog post that “freaked me out.” Even though I always read a post before liking, my blog is new, and I didn’t like that I might be giving the perception I was trolling for followers. http://alateralplunge.wordpress.com/2012/07/21/dear-fellow-bloggers/
Ouch! Yes, true words indeed imparted with a baseball bat.
The Greek eveneing got stuck in mid-Med, and we had Italian instead – the friends are Italian, my girlfriend’s Italian and I cook Italian so it made perfect sense and was certainly less stressful after hours of trawling shops for non-existent ingredients. A great evening nonetheless. 🙂
You can never go wrong with Italian! Glad the evening went well. 🙂
Don’t be paranoid. I bet it’s only a small set of people “abusing” the like option. You seem like a great person. I’m a huge fan of the no-snub. Go get ’em.
Thank you for the kind words. I’ll be checking out your writing soon. I was only able to take a quick peek tonight. I appreciate your stopping by and following!
Be discriminate! (I don’t mind ;))