Searching for blogging networks

I’ve struggled with my study this week. After the fortnightly, online #Fo09 meeting I understand why. Blogging networks form spontaneously over time between loosely associated fellow travellers. They’re not necessarily the formal networks I’ve found so easily.

My research took me to formal networks where people are blogging on a single platform. Somebody comes up with a bright idea of attracting bloggers to share their thoughts in one place. Unless the formula is spot-on, there’s a tendency for these types of formal networks to rapidly go stale.

The network I looked at listed over 600 bloggers. Around 15% contributed five or more posts, with a couple of superstars in the hundreds. The vast majority just one. Many of these were old posts. And there was tonnes of competition for your attention, with the same group having a LinkedIn group, Facebook page, etc.

Putting two and two together I suspect there was a conference or promotional push or some sort, people signed up, then…. silence.

If I can I’ll report on a talk with one of the bloggers on a shared platform.

With a new insight gleaned from our meeting I’ve decided to pay more attention to local bloggers talking about the same sorts of topics as me. I’m not sure if I’m joining or forming a blogging network so I guess the best thing to do is get started.

The concept of networking weaving – which Beth Kanter talks about quite often (for starters see “Some Thoughts About Effective Networking Online”), as well as being raised by Sarah (see “Getting our heads around blogging”) – appeals much more than having my very own ‘personal’ network. I see this as much putting in touch, as asking and conversing.   

I have the same sort of worry that Debra Maddock’s raises: “once the connections are started, you just have to keep on the tracks and never get off, otherwise it will be too hard to reconnect”.

No rush…. I guess strong relationships, even virtual ones, take time to form.

Share this article

3 thoughts on “Searching for blogging networks

  1. willie campbell

    stephen- the thread leadin g me to things says “searching for blogging netwroks” I am mindful of poster I have of a brussel sprout which says- lonely brussel sprout- willing to do anything with anyone!!!!!!
    Go to leigh’s latest post about literacy and follow the link to Stephen Downes work- most powerful (If I was clever enough I’d link you to it directly).

  2. DebraM

    Willie- I am having a wee laugh to myself-I mentioned Leigh’s post in my blog as well, but I didn;t include the link- now I want to go back to it, because of what you mention here, and I can’t find it!!! So much for hyperlinks!!!!!

  3. Sarah Stewart

    I agree, Stephen…I think we have set you a difficult task because blogging networks take time to develop & it is difficult to recognise them unless you’re part of one.

    I suggest you go and have a look at Sue Water’s blog:

    Sue is well known for her networking and facilitation skills and activities – have a look through her blog and see how it works – look at the linking that goes on as well as how/when/where people comment & have discussions.

    Hope that helps.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *