By Tom

Annoying Blog Habits

Those of us who spend the majority of our workday (or even our entire day) on the web have strong opinions on how certain things should or shouldn’t be.

That is, we have ideas on how things should or shouldn’t work:

  • Modals are annoying and are of no use.
  • Mailing lists are generally meant for spam and product upsells.
  • Retweeting content you’ve already tweeted is redundant and annoying.
  • …and so on.

And maybe I’m off base in generalizing here. I mean, this is exactly how I viewed certain things for a long time.

But the more I interacted with others who live in a variety of timezones, and the more research I did on topics as it relates to blogging, the more began to second guess my initial opinions.

Annoying Blog Habits

I know, I know – it’s not all that big of an idea is it? We should be open minded to all sorts of things. It’s not always as easy as it sounds especially when we’re at least perceived to be proficient in a field.

Houseflies. So annoying.

As I’ve made changes to some of the things on this blog, I started thinking about a more general question:

What if everything you think about blogging is wrong?

First, maybe it’s worth talking about some of the changes I’ve made to this blog over the past few months:

  • Comment Policy. I used to have a relaxed take on comments, what I would permit, and how to handle them. But experience changes things. Now, I moderate much more than I ever have before. I feel better about posts and I’m happier with how commenting has done since.
  • Updated About Page. About pages are easy to setup and easy to let age (or even rot). I scrapped my previous page, started over, and have been working to keep it updated. This has generated more emails and communication with others. People actually do read this stuff.
  • Schedule Management. I used to keep post ideas jotted down in a notebook and would work on them whenever possible. I still maintain that notebook for when I’m about and about. Now, I use tools like CoSchedule to help me handle posts and associated tweets.
  • Tweeting Posts. At one point, I was no fan of “ICYMI” tweets. As my Twitter habits changed, so did my appreciation for these types of tweets. I think these types of posts are the most annoying for people who have Twitter open most of the time and/or who follow a small set of people.
  • Mailing Lists. It’s not so much mailing lists themselves that bothered me – after all, most of them are opt-in – but it’s how we invite people to join. Usually, we ask people to sign up via some annoying them like a modal. At the recommendation of a friend, I began to try it. And it’s working.
  • Though I’ve not done a deep-dive on any of the above (and maybe I should), you see how they’ve all had a positive impact on this blog. Sure, there has been some pushback (and I’m all for that), but that happens with almost everything we do.

    But First…

    The point is that here are five things that I used to be against but I use almost daily. So the question remains:

    What if everything you think about blogging is wrong?

    I’m going to talk about this more in a follow-up post. I’m interested, though, in hearing what you find annoying about the web and things you’d never do.

    Even more so, what are some things you thought you’d never do but have changed your mind.

    Your Annoying Blog Habits (Are Now Mine) was written by Tom. For more information about WordPress, development, and resources then visit Tom McFarlin’s blog.

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