Unstated rules and hidden parameters are confusing to me. As a rule-follower by nature and nurture, I appreciate knowing where lines are drawn. Sometimes I need lines drawn with a big, thick, black marker because I’m rather detail impaired.
Well, it seems that I stumbled over some line that WordPress has drawn which is intended to limit spamming. This is how I inadvertently got into today’s pickle.
One of my life and blog cores values is reciprocity, especially when related to my peers and friends:
Earn friendship through reciprocity, generosity, and fun.
I’ve been scratching my head for some time to figure out how to live out reciprocity while blogging. Part 1 is simple. If someone follows me, I follow them (with rare exception.)
On Twitter this is called Follow for Follow #F4F. Regarding Twitter, Crowdfire let’s me see who’s following, who’s not, etc., so I can easily build a reciprocal community.
Part 2 is not so simple. I enjoy following a wide variety of blogs. Yet, unlike Twitter, I’m surprised by how many bloggers don’t follow back. I’m sure there are many good reasons for this but it does break my reciprocity rule. When a blogger tells me that he or she doesn’t want to be connected with me through a follow, I believe them and wish them well.
Since there is no way, that I’m aware of, to track following and unfollowing I tried a workaround. I thought, if I delete blogs off of my Blogs I Follow list that I don’t recognize, if they follow me I can refollow them via my Followers list. Not so fast.
I went to the list of Blogs I Follow, to the oldest followers and started deleting those I didn’t recognize. Glitch 1: the name that shows doesn’t necessarily match the name of the blog. Also, many don’t include a gravatar picture to match the blog either.
Working between the Blogs I Follow list and my Followers list I was cruising along until…I wasn’t allowed to follow back. I did a quick google search on the topic and found a semi-heated forum debate where some members wanted to follow without limit while others appreciated how the limit prevents spamming.
But what I can’t find is the answer to this question. What are the parameters for following blogs without being flagged as a spammer?
In the mean time, I’m able to slowly follow back via my Followers list, although my follow sometimes doesn’t stick. There appears to be a delay and, perhaps confusion, on WordPress’s part as the Follow button turns into a hazy Unfollow button before it turns into a full Following button.
Clearly, my workaround didn’t work out as an easy fix and I do hope my confusion didn’t bother anyone. And I do want to find a straight-forward way to build a reciprocal community on WordPress. Any suggestions?
How do you manage who you follow and how do you take care of your followers?
Confused in Arizona ~~~~~~~~ Angie Mc