Warning: this post is not about blogs in which the owner is taking a brief vacation from, or in which the real world beckons, the owner has to re-org their time, and thus posting becomes sporadic. Please keep that in mind as you read this post.
Ever have this happen to you?
Okay, got done with publishing the latest batch of comments, gave thoughtful responses to the comments and tidied up a few things on the blog. Now I think I'll go read a few blogs. Let's see, I'll go to this one....hmmm, last post was about a month ago.
Or worse, had this happen to you?
Okay, got done with publishing the latest batch of comments, gave thoughtful responses to same, and tidied up a few things on the blog. Think I'll go read a few blogs. Let's see, I'll go to this one....WTF?! It's closed?!
Yes my friends, you have just stepped into the world of "The Abandoned Blog". I'll be your guide as we navigate treacherous waters and dangerous grounds, where abandoned and orphaned blogs wait with baited breath and dull teeth, to hook the innocent reader and pull them into a world where time stands still!!
That last paragraph may sound amusing, but the overall reality of the situation is a serious and sensitive topic.
Abandoned (or orphaned) and closed out blogs.
In a strange way, I seem to have the unfortunate gift of finding blogs that become within a couple of months either orphaned or closed. I'm not really sure why that is, but I will tell you it has become as of late, incredibly frustrating.
For the most part, I do differentiate between orphaned and closed out blogs. I also differentiate between very good reasons for doing so and very bad reasons for doing so.
For orphans that I used to read, they can be broken down into two distinctive categories: 1) orphaned for a reason and 2) orphaned without a reason.
1} Orphaned for a reason: There are a few blogs that I still follow, even though they haven't been updated for awhile, simply because the blogger was kind enough to explain the reasons behind their action. This would basically be a serious re-org of one's life due to the real world economic downturn. Sometimes, when the real world beckons with a golden opportunity, you simply got to take advantage of it.
These blogs and their owners I will forever respect, simply because of the way that they handled the issue.
2} Orphaned for no apparent reason: These are the types that bother me the most. They start their blogs with enough gung-ho to feed an army, then just as quickly, they flame out. No goodbyes, no explanations, no nothing except leaving their readers in the lurch.
I actually have two followers in the collective who fit this category. The time their blogs were last updated it was Thanksgiving and Christmas 2008 (I will not provide links because I don't want to publicly embarrass them). No reason was given for the orphaning of two very good blogs, but orphaned they were. Perhaps they simply didn't have the get up and go to maintain the blog (Blogging is not for the faint at heart. It is something that you want to do. You simply can't do it at 50% and expect it to survive).
Now, closed out blogs. Believe it or not, closed out blogs fall under the same categories as orphaned blogs. Yeah I know, you're gonna say, "Bullshit." Well, hear me out on this one.
1} Closed for a reason: Now at one point I was following a couple of blogs that were closed for what seemed to be on the surface no apparent reason. One was a blog on interracial relationships and the other was someone's personal creative non-fiction blog (for lack of a cleaner description).
In regards to the first one, which was written by an incredibly talented college student, I found out through someone else's chatterbox (nifty widget you can get for your blog) that he closed it out due to being harassed and stalked on his own blog.
Sad really, if you're harassed and stalked bad enough that you close your blog to make it stop.
As for the second, she announced that she closed it out due to the rather unsettling comments she was getting on it. From what I understand, it's reopened by invite only.
And now the one thing that really irritates me.
2} When they're closed for no apparent reason. I have followed about five or six blogs that have vanished like that. I'd original found these through comments that the owners themselves had left on mine. I would investigate theirs, get hooked, then suddenly find it nuked and gone.
Bugs me to no end. I very rarely give any blogger a second chance when they nuke their blog and reopen it under another name.
I've had a total of three bloggers do that so far. All reopened under a new name. One I immediately purged when I found out that they reopened. And by purged, I'd stopped subscribing and removed links.
The other two are a bit more difficult. One has orphaned his second blog and the second nuked her second blog. I like them a lot, but I don't know if I"ll go back to them again.
If there was one piece of advice that I could give to anyone that was going to nuke their blog, it would be this:
If you're dead set on nuking your blog, please, please, please give your readers a goodbye post explaining why you're taking your blog home with you. You have a 50/50 shot of your readers understanding the why.
Also, if you plan on making your blog an orphan, please, do the same thing. Give your readers one last post explaining why. Trust me, we will understand the reasoning behind it. Shoot, we'll even take possession of it for ya and make it a group collaborative out of it.