Are You Talking at Me or With Me?

I think that sometimes as bloggers we tend to forget what our purpose is.  While many of us would continue blogging even if there were no visitors, many of us are in it for the money as well.  And the only good way to get any bit of money is to have a pretty good flow of traffic.  And unless you can find a way to get the search engine crawlers to click on ads and show as impressions, that traffic is most likely going to be in the form of readers.  A.K.A real live human beings.

Those readers WILL have an opinion on every little thing that you do.  Every post you make is open to their criticism. Every design flaw will be spotted.  And every poor choice will be amplified.

Such an event evidently happened over at John Cow recently.  In my opinion, John Cow responded quite poorly.  In a post entitled “Our Blog Is Not Your Bitch,” the Cow quickly and concisely derides the reader and in the process seems to deride all of the remaining readers.

But is your blog public property? We think not. A blogger pays for his or her domain name, hosting, design and devotes time and effort in writing posts. They provide the public with yet another digital hangout, for free. So what does a reader do? They read, sometimes have discussions in the comments section and –well, there’s no and. Thats basically it, that’s all they do.

I think someone has forgotten who pays the bills.  He goes on to blather about how it’s a readers choice as to whether they read a blog or not and that it’s his choice what content he puts out.

We don’t like it when people tell us what to do –especially not with our own personal blog. Reading our blog is your free choice, writing it is ours.

Well.  You’ve been told haven’t you.

I’m not going to say that the Cow doesn’t have some right to be like this.  It is his blog and as such, he can write whatever he wants.  And yes, if the reader doesn’t like it, it is their choice as to whether they read or not.  However, the blogosphere is a community. And in a community, people talk WITH each other, not AT each other.  What John Cow just made clear with that post is that he wants to talk AT you.  Do you want to be talked at?  Me either.