Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Is there a library community in the blogosphere? Or has it moved to twitter?

I have blogged for nearly five years. And in that time it seems (to me) much has changed. I love blogging (mostly) and even did my masters dissertation on the subject. I might sound like an old man (wait, I AM AN OLD MAN), but I feel that the library blogosphere has changed. I enjoy blogging because it creates a conversation, especially when you get comments.
I blog, but also comment on blogs in the library blogosphere. What really annoys me though is I may comment on a blog and I get no response. Many bloggers do responds to my blog and comments and thats good, because it creates a readership, a relationship and a community. But when people don't respond it creates. Nothing.
The thing is, within the UK we have some really socialable librarians and bloggers. have created new Professionals Information Day. Not only was their blog used to advertise this event, but to have a social event after but a social meet up after the event.
Other bloggers Like Owen Stephens, Phil Bradley, Dave Pattern and Brian Kelly amongst others have created library mash-ups in an inexpensive manner.
This has created a conversation and a social gathering point (whether it maybe if you were at the events or read about it). This creates community.
So what is my point? I feel within my period as a blogger, people don't communicate so much via the comments section (or do I mean MY comments section?). In many ways this is due to the loss of some great library blogs like library crunch and shifted librarian has reduced her blogging. But my biggest thing that now the comments section seems to be found at twitter. I mean i'm a user of twitter (but not a regular user), but most of my comments and conversations seem to come via twitter. Twitter users answer my questions. It seems that the conversation has moved to twitter.


thewikiman said...

Well allow me to comment on this, with a comment, on your blog…

I agree with you that comments are sort of the best bit about blogging – they’re what make it fun and worthwhile and basically two-way communication. I think partly the comments have moved onto Twitter (I’ve actually got a widget on my blog, called Twitoaster, that draws in replies to my initial tweet linking to a post, and makes them comments under the post in question, for that reason) but also there’s just more blogs, so people read more, and have less time to comment. This time last year I was subscribed to maybe 10 blogs, and now it’s more than a hundred (and that’s with regular pruning) so sometimes even if I have something to say I won’t have time to say it, and then I’ll forget all about it and never go back… Plus sometimes, I just don’t have anything I can add.

The other thing is, I think you really have to write the kind of post that calls for comments, to get them. Unless you’re an uber-blogger like Andy Woodworth (Agnostic, Maybe) for example, with 1000+ subscribers, then a post that doesn’t actively try and solicit comments probably won’t get any. That’s what I’ve found, anyway. :)

les said...

Ned, I would agree that time is often a major concern in responding to a blogpost (family, work etc all things we need to deal with). But, I do think that if you make a comment the author should attempt to respond (i've been slow in my response as i've been away). Its just common curtesy.
There are more blogs, and maybe people do read more. Causing a reduction in comments. But, in my view the comments section can add more interest to the conversation (for example woodsiegirls blog about twittering is a fine example).
As for the type of blog rather than quantity has more to do with a comments section being busy. Mine blog is predominantly a link blog to events. I rarely start a conversation piece, but I have done some (note this one). Thats why I get few comments. If I changed my approach to a more conversational blog, I have no doubt I'd get more comments. But thats another blog post :)