Thursday, April 08, 2010

What Not To Blog

Sometimes when I'm angry I have the right to be angry, but that doesn't give me the right to be cruel. ~Author Unknown

Warning: mild rant ahead.

I follow a lot of blogs for various reasons. Many are author blogs, some are friends, some are country living or cooking blogs, some are just fun blogs I've stumbled across. But they are numerous.

I'm fairly patient and relatively tolerant about what people post. I'm well aware not everyone shares my opinions (even though I'm right *G*) and that they're absolutely free to talk about whatever they want on their blogs. Just as it's my right to follow and read or NOT follow. For the most part, if I typically enjoy a blog, a jaunt in a direction I don't particularly care for won't put me off permanently.

However...

Recently, I stopped following a blog of a person who I very much like, but who has -- in the past two weeks -- posted long-winded rants about a large religious organization who she believes is utterly corrupt, and a political rant that got ... extremely unkind and personal.

Here's the thing: I'm not a member of that religious organization, and feel much the same as she does about it, but her post was vicious and rabid. Ditto the political post. What really distressed me, though, is that she's a published author who is (I assume) trying to use her blog to promote her writing. And she's lost me and probably others from her list of followers because of her virulent rants.

Those of you who know me well know I have strong opinions on a variety of subjects. And I'm sure that some of it must leak through here now and then. BUT... this blog isn't for the discussion of religion or politics. I'm not in the least bit interested in starting debates about any of that (I'll reserve that for my IRL conversations). I find the lengthy, passionate discussion of such things off-putting ... even when I may agree with the heart of the post.

I stopped following one of my favorite authors of all time when she began getting extremely political on her blog. If I want to read a blog on politics, I'll read a political blog (and I DO have several blogs on politics in my Google Reader). I just don't expect a romance author's blog to cover politics day in and day out.

I miss her. But I haven't been back in over two years -- even though, odds are she's not still posting about politics every day (she might be, though -- who knows?). She put me off that much. Interestingly enough, I've also stopped buying her books, though it wasn't really an intentional decision (and only just occurred to me as I wrote this).

What about you? What will cause you to stop reading a blog? What do you like about blogs that you read, and what do you find off-putting?

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You Are an English Garden



You are creative and vibrant. You are inspired by everything around you, and you don't have any one style.

You like a mix of old and new. And you always have something unique to add to the equation as well.

You are informal, open-minded, and flexible. You love to play around with art and design.

You tend to change things up a lot. Whether it's your own clothes or your home, you can't stay with one look for long!



Um... 50/50.

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9 comments:

Ceri Hebert said...

As hard as I try, I know that sometimes my political beliefs leak into my blogs (not that I blog as much as I ought to) but for the most part, I agree with you. There are places I will visit if I want a good political (or religious, though I'm not overly religious) debate. An author's blog generally isn't one of them. It's just too bad she has to turn off people over something like this. Too bad no one suggested she start a completely separate blog for these more controversial posts.

MJFredrick said...

I'm with you. That, and excessive negativity.

Maria Zannini said...

Political/religious ranting is my #1 No-No in blogging.

And authors need to learn to curb their angst if they want to keep their readers.

The thing is when an author goes rabid about politics or religion, I'm going to automatically assume that bleeds onto their books.

If I want a sermon, I'll go to church.

MomJane said...

Nothing is more of a turn off than someone who rants and raves about religion or politics. These are people who think that they are the only ones who know the answers to everyone's problems. Usually they are the problem.


You Are an Urban Garden
You are hearty, tough, and a total survivor. You have a lot of strength and endurance.
You've found a good balance of work and rest in your life. You are very well rounded.

You tend to be a very practical and functional person. You change with the times.
You want to make everyone happy, and you generally do. Your presence is an oasis in this stressful world.

Keri Mikulski said...

Interesting post.. I've been thinking about blogs a lot lately - Do they really help or hurt authors?? :) Hmmm...

MaryC said...

Marianne, I agree with your point. Sure we're all human and someone might blog once about a topic that particularly sets them off, but to continuously blog about hot button topics is risky to say the least which is why I find Keri's question intriguing.

Obviously blogging has opened all sorts of PR possibilities but with what accompanying risks? Sometimes learning about an author makes you interested in their personal story as well as the stories they write, but sometimes TMI makes it difficult to separate the author from the story.

I think the question applies to other types of artists as well. I know I've been turned off to various musicians and authors when comments they made on blogs or twitter seemed cruel or unnecessary.

If I want long-winded political or religious opinions, I only have to listen to my DH. LOL

Dru said...

Continual political and/or religious rants will turn me off on reading a person's blog, as well as intolerance and negativity.

You Are an Urban Garden

You are hearty, tough, and a total survivor. You have a lot of strength and endurance.

You've found a good balance of work and rest in your life. You are very well rounded.

You tend to be a very practical and functional person. You change with the times.

You want to make everyone happy, and you generally do. Your presence is an oasis in this stressful world.

It's 80% accurate.

Have a good Thursday.

Brandy said...

I agree. I've also noticed that I don't purchase books by authors who are too negative on their blogs, or who may have gone batty online.

I am an English Garden. Eh, not too far off, though I am not big on change.

I hope you're having a delightful day!

Tori Lennox said...

I know my personal feelings on various subjects are sometimes vastly different than a lot of my friends. But that's okay. That's what makes this country great. We can agree to disagree. But when they start shoving their opinions down my throat? Uh, no. I'm either gonna push back or I'm going to pack up my toys and go home. Or both. *g*

I try to avoid getting into political/religious "discussions" for that very reason. Unless it's something so blatantly idiotic like the whackjob who protests at military funerals. That pushes so many buttons of mine I can't keep quiet about it.

As for whether I've stopped reading a blog because it's switch in content, I can't remember ever doing so but that doesn't mean I haven't. It just means my memory is deplorable. :)