On Blogging, part 2

For a dizzy day last year, I made it onto WordPress’s Growing Blogs list, at 68. Didn’t last, and I dropped out again shortly afterwards. For a while, though, I had an ambition to get back there, or even snaffle a blog of the day spot. I didn’t obsess about it, you understand, but it would have been nice. And then I stopped fretting about it and got on with what I do best – writing.

The last few hours, though, I’ve been having another poke around, paying particular attention to the quality of what’s there and I found myself wondering – what quality?

For openers, the default subtitle of every WordPress.com blog is “Just another WordPress.com weblog” – which is editable, the idea being that you put something informative and hopefully interesting in there. And why wouldn’t you? Well, a lot can’t be arsed and, to me – a potential reader – that says screw you, I don’t care about you enough to encourage you to read.

In one way, that might make people click through to see what it’s all about – thus enhancing the position in the listing, but on the other hand, there are those, like me, who will think, sod you – if you can’t tell me anything I’m not interested. I suspect we’re in the minority.

Then there are those who do tell you a lot – but don’t inform. For all the information you can glean from them, they may as well be strings of random syllables. Who knows? Perhaps they are… Some are cryptic, which can be interesting, many are simply baffling, and very, very, few say, Hey, this is what my blog’s about – come see! Yeah, OK, mine does, but mine’s not there.

This is not sour grapes, by the way (well, not mainly – I’m only human).  I’m content with the way my blog’s growing – I’m just intrigued by what might, at least in terms of hits, be considered an elite, of sorts. Though sadly, zillions of hits is no guarantee of quality, or even literacy – my personal blogging bête noir – look, if you’re illiterate, don’t have a goddamn blog, OK?

Which brings us on to the ever-popular “put an ill-written, mind-numbingly stupid, caption on a poor-quality photo of some poor dumb animal being forced to do something against its nature. Possibly to do with “cheezeburgers!” ” WTF?

Online celeb magazines are just as grotesque as their paper counterparts  and, sadly, just as popular.

Ah, then there are all those blogs concerned with gaming cheats, regarding which I can only repeat, WTF? Look, gaming is OK, if that’s your thing – it doesn’t ring my bell, I’ve got real life to keep me occupied – but if you’re going to play games, what the bloody hell is the point if you’re going to cheat? And there are so many of these blogs (not to mention websites), that it makes me wonder if anyone actually plays honestly.

What is really mind-blowing, though, is when someone provides a cheat that doesn’t quite work as advertised, you should see the vicious bitching and whining – look, you losers, if you can’t work out a cheat for yourselves, don’t criticise those who are trying, no matter how unethical that might be. That applies in any field – if you can’t do it, don’t ‘kin bitch and whine at those who do (or try to).

As for the religious blogs, well, what can I say that won’t bring down a bunch of deluded psycho on my head?

I was going to mention football blogs but, hey, I do have some standards.

This blog, as I write, is No.2 in the Top Posts from around WordPress.com list and it’s terrible (I don’t know what the actual content is like, or if it’s reliable; there is clearly no respect here for the reader and I can’t be bothered with it). The spelling is atrocious, the writing is dire, and yet it’s clearly getting way more hits than mine, but you have to scroll a hell of a long way down the comments to find a critic. And just look at some of the comments – do I really want a community consisting of people to whom spelling and grammar (even the very concept of language), are utterly alien? No thanks.

If that’s what it takes to get to the top of the WordPress listings, I don’t want to play, thank you very much. I’d rather stick needles in my eyes than sink to that level. The thing is, I couldn’t write it anyway – I can no more let such childish mistakes go uncorrected than I can fly. One commenter asks “Are they deliberate?” but wouldn’t that be even worse? Pretending not to know any better would be more offensive to me than the genuine article, and even more inexcusable. Worse yet, some commenters say it’s wrong to criticise the spelling (but don’t forget the writing, too) – that’s like saying it’s wrong to blame a baker for being too dumb to put yeast in the bread because, hey, it’s still bread, innit? Bollocks! Likewise the commenters who say the crap spelling doesn’t detract from the message – yes it does, if you have any standards at all. That sort of attitude is why schools are churning out kids who are functionally illiterate. Get the words in the right order, more or less, don’t worry about spelling, grammar or punctuation, and it may get you a gold star and a pat on the head. It will also get you a life on the dole, or flipping burgers. And writing blog posts that piss me off!

And there’s the porn blogs – what’s that about? I’ve no innate objection to porn, in its place, but blogging about porn is just, well, weird. It’s like blogging about blogging.

Er… Oh.