The following content is controversial. While it sounds offensive, it is really more of an inquisitive exploration. I have seen a quick mention of this topic in comments on a post or two, so I don’t think I am nuts…..today. As I am not afraid to discuss anything 🙂 I thought I would bring this icky issue into the open. Perhaps you have noticed the same disturbing trend.
If you have strolled around to other WordPress blogs for a little while, and have paid any attention at all to other bloggers who also “LIKE” a certain post, you will see them. I call them the “WordPress Lurkers”.
“WordPress lurkers” is my nickname for bloggers who appear to use the “LIKE” button without really looking at the post. From my observation, they like one post, one time. I believe this to be a heinous misuse of WordPress, for what I think they are doing is getting up a page count or “following” for their blog in the fastest and most remorseless way possible.
The (suspected) practice undermines the intention of blogging! Why would people do this? Are they just finding a blog, not reading it, then with greedy clicks, grabbing all the other “likers” and clicking on the “like” button of THEIR most recent post? It’s like a bizarre “whisper down the lane”. Is anyone reading anyone? For myself I say YES. When I press LIKE, I really have read your post and have either liked it, or felt for you, or connected with it in some way. I post comments both on first view of a blog and on the blogs I follow. After all, the blogger doesn’t blog for air. They want feedback, they want the coffeehouse conversation that is of an almost bygone age.
If you have not noticed the lurkers, and this observation is new or disturbing to you, start looking at the other “likes” on very different blogs that you follow and follow some like-roads. You will find them. And sometimes they have an enormous following. But is anyone reading them? The comments are pathetic. Again FB re-visited. The response to most comments, if one is is elicited, is generally a trite “Thanks”. To me, meaningless. To them, money.
So how did I come to notice this trend? Because I would see a post I liked with 10 or less likes and by golly, one of them was in the line up. So I went HMMM……and began to take notice. I have been “stalking” 🙂 some lurkers with large followings. And I have discovered that there are a few–very few–blogs that they actually DO follow (IE: have more than one like on the blog site, or, have even made a comment). So I assume they DO read after all. And I also discovered that only a tiny percentage of their “following” actually presses LIKE on any of their posts. What a load of …
WordPress states that around 1 million posts per day are published. My puny mind cannot comprehend the amount of likes that produces. Unfortunately, there is a (hopefully small) percentage of likes that are nothing but a quick click of the button. And for what? Why would people do this? Of course I am an idealist, I thought blogging was about the IDEA. No, for some is appears that blogging is about MONEY. Get enough clicks on your blog, or “followers”, and advertisers will pay you to put their logo on your site.
Now the merchants that set up their site as merchants are at least honest. I suspect they didn’t like my blog because they read it. They just wanted me to come to their site, and I appeared from my post to be a potential customer. But since they set themselves up as merchants, I can just smile and take advantage of an interesting, or horrifying, shopping opportunity and either look around or get off the site. And I have had some eye-opening sites that have “liked” or “followed” me. Never put the word WEED on the title of a post…… 🙂
Back to the lurkers. I grudgingly admit that one was an amazing photography studio/personal travel blog and I follow it, although I am confounded as to how he finds blogs, as he is the very first “like” on several blogs that recently started. Several of the lurkers are obviously just trying to get advertising or clicks. The one that really struck me actually emailed me suggesting that I pump her site and she would make a note about mine. As she had 1 million followers, I assume she has a staff of people emailing madly. She at least was honest in her aggressive desire for advertising dollars, but her manic site made me dizzy and I had to get off in 3 seconds.
What really set me off was a blog I recently reviewed (an obvious lurker) who stated in his “About” that blogging was all about money and advertising and personal eclectic blogs like mine were the worst. My premonition in my post “Eclectic Directions” was true, according to him. You needed a main direction or you would fail as a blogger. Ok, I will fail. But I will fail with wacky-personal-poetic-singing-humorous-Christian-real life stories that, I hope, will last longer in a readers’ mind than his “Top 10 cat jumps”.
But I also follow amazing blogs with large followings who respond personally on every comment. It is obvious that they love what they do. Their blog exemplifies blogging at its’ best.
The moral? Not everyone who likes your post has read one word of it. Love of money still is the root of all evil, even in the blogging world. It’s just a little more insidious.