Friday, March 30, 2007

Trying to Earn Global Online from the Philippines: Trying to Get More Traffic to My Blog, I Made a Big Booboo at MyBlogLog

I am so embarrassed!

I discovered MyBlogLog a few days ago when I saw those nice windows in other blogs with pics or avatars of Recent Readers. I clicked on the link and joined immediately to get the same widget on my blogs.

I got even more excited to discover that MBL enables you to build a community for your blog. Members just click to join.

I am also able to join as many communities as I want. The only limit is joining 15 per day. No problem, I thought. So I started clicking on pics and avatars and joining communities of blogs I found interesting.

And then I got this notice on my page saying these people had added me as a contact and that I could reciprocate or just ignore it. They were strangers but, hey, they found me interesting enough to add me as a contact so I thought it just polite to reciprocate. And since I was flattered by what they did, I thought it was fine and normal at MBL to add other strangers as my contact, too. So I started to do that.

Then I got messages from still other strangers inviting me to check out their site and join their communities. No problem, I thought. I checked out the sites and joined the communities of those I thought interesting. Then, because I thought again that it was the normal thing to do at MBL, I also began posting the same invitation to the communities I was joining. When I reached my 15 communities limit, I even posted the same invitation to communities I intended to join the following day.

What a neat way to do networking, I thought. So I planned to write about MBL on today's post. I planned to write about exactly what I did.

Good thing I checked out the MBL blog first.

What do you know! I found that a big controversy had just happened that I was unaware of. Reading through the whole thing I found to my horror that many experienced bloggers hated just what I had been doing. That it was even considered spamming! Oh. My. God. What have I done?

Apparently, it isn't kosher to make total strangers your contact and you're not supposed to leave messages inviting people to visit your blog or join your communities. I wouldn't have done this elsewhere except I thought it was the normal thing to do at MBL.

Perhaps MBL should give clear guidelines to new members upon joining. Something clear and easy for newbies like me. The Terms of Service link just won't do.I did scan through that but I thought it just dealt with legalities and such.

Now those people who have read my invitations at MBL could be thinking of me as a cheap spammer. I hope they do visit just to see that it ain't so. This blog may not be much but it's an honest effort of a newbie to learn the ropes and help other newbies along the way. It's not a get rich quick gimmick relying on dirty tricks.

I hope my blog doesn't get burned by this. I'm barely taking off here.

I guess it's true here as elsewhere. You'll learn by doing. And it isn't always pretty. You'll stumble sometimes. I just have to get up, brush off the dirt and get on with it, a day wiser.


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Bonedoc said...

Really? I was new to MBL and I am about to do the same, joining communities ad libitum, something more of a social network rather than spamming. So there were actually rules like this, joining many communities= spamming?

Thanks for pointing it out.

Tessa Cruz San Diego aka Maia Jose said...

I just read about it when I read through posts at the MBL blog. They say it's okay to join communities but apparently it's considered almost like spamming to post messages saying something like "You are invited to visit my blog" or "You are invited to join my community."

They also consider it rude to make total strangers a contact. There's no new procedure to follow, though, except the usual: reading a blog; making a relevant comment; waiting for acknowledgment and then initiate contact.

My mistake was thinking that MBL had a different set of rules because of what I was seeing all over.

John Lampard said...

(Actually I've just joined one of your communities...) Interesting post though. I've been with MBL for a month or so and so far have had none of the problems you mention.

If I see a website I like I join its community. Just about all my contacts are "complete strangers" - in 95% of cases I didn't know them before I joined MBL, and in 90% of cases had they added themselves and I haven't been the least bit offended.

I thought that was the idea of MBL, the more contacts and communities you have, the more exposure your website gains??

Mind you I don't outright ask anyone to join my community, only time I make that request to someone is if they asked me first!

Maia Jose said...

Yes, now that I know better I only add contacts who ask me first, too. But I don't mind if total strangers add me as their contact. I reciprocate. I just don't want to risk ruffling the feathers of those who don't want to be contacted out of the blue.

I've also stopped inviting people to visit my site or to join my community. I just read blogs,join the communities I like, leave comments relevant to their blogs and then hope they reciprocate on their own.

So far, so good. It's still working.

roland said...

im new to blogging, i just started last mar 15. :) i joined mybloglog last night and i have no blog networks whatsoever. i almost did the same thing - spamming, but im having a hard time which community to spam :) just kidding! mybloglog's search option is so limited. i just want to join a good pinoy community :)

Abaniko said...

As for me, I won't be offended if a total stranger adds me to his Contacts list. If he leaves a message I don't like, I can always just delete it. But I don't do aggressive networking. I just bloghop from one site to another. Leave a relevant comment if I find the post interesting. This rarely happens though. Don't worry. At least you admitted it was a mistake and have since refrained from doing it. Cheers! :)

Maia Jose said...

abaniko, i wanted to join your community but had reached my mbl limit for the day. will do so later.

roland,like you i'm interested in getting to know other pinoy bloggers and am hoping to build a network by regularly bloghopping among them. your name isn't linked to your site, though, so we don't have a way to go to your blog. do drop by and include a link.

thanks, guys, and i hope you'll drop by again.

Gunfighter said...

Simple mistake. that sort of thing just happens.



Maia Jose said...

thanks for dropping by, gunfighter. we all learn from our mistakes, that's the consolation.

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