In the past few months, I've run into the same message on many blogs:
Dear Readers, We're making our blog private. Let us know your email so you can see our new blog.
This is some blog etiquette that I struggle with.
Why I won't go private
I know I'm on the Internet and the Internet is public. If I wanted it to be private between me and some family/friends I'd write an email and BCC it to all those family/friends, because that's basically what a private blog is.
Yes, there are safety concerns, but I try not to post anything that gives away our personal information. Sure it's obvious that we live in Provo and you know our names, but you can't come by and throw rocks in our window based off of information on this blog, so I'm fine with that.
I love the community that public blogging creates. I have found great blogs and bloggers through blog-hopping off of the comments I've received here. I don't want that to end. That's the fun of blogging: finding people with similar and different interests. I love it when lurkers leave a comment and I can find their blog and lurk on theirs.
This is also why I love Ravelry, too (you can lurk on people's knitting projects!). Just wanted to give ravelry a plug. :)
Why I won't subscribe to your private blog
First, it's awkward, "Hey, I've been blog-stalking you. Can I blog-stalk you some more?" Even if it's someone I know in real life (and most of them are), it's still an awkward conversation. When people go private, they do it to monitor who's reading their blog. I always imagine receiving this in return: Sorry, the reason we're going private is because of you- we just don't like you that much. So, no, you can't read our private blog.
If you really want me to subscribe to your private blog, you'll send me an email saying, "Hey, I want you to subscribe to my private blog because I like you." If you just do the "Give us your email" post, I'm not subscribing because that risk of rejection is just too high for me. It's like a special clique club that I know I'm not invited to because life experience (or high school) has told me I'm just not that cool. I'm not going to ask you to add me because I'm not going to risk it. My self-esteem is fragile enough.
Also, I depend a lot on Google Reader. Private blogs don't have RSS feeds, so I'm not going to read them anyway. If you google "subscribing to private blogs RSS" you find some advice to private bloggers: send an email to the readership so they know when you post. But then we're back to just emailing and BCCing the post.
So that's why I won't go private and I probably won't subscribe to your private blog. It's just one of those things.
Sunday, October 19, 2008