What Are The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Being A Member Of A Blogging Community?

What are blogging communities?

Are you a member of any blogging communities?

Are there any advantages and disadvantages of belonging to blogging communities?

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Do you belong to a blogging community?

When I started blogging, I had no idea that blogging communities existed, but it wasn’t long before I found myself a part of them.

What are blogging communities?

There are many different types of blogging communities. This post features my experiences with what has become known as ‘Facebook blogging communities’ – a name I recently discovered. You don’t need to have a Facebook account to belong to one of these communities.

How it all started

Within a few weeks of becoming a blogger, I was lucky enough to attend an online blogging course that WordPress ran. It was an online, live event rather than something you could do at your own pace.

Along with over 50 other new bloggers, I soon became a part of a blogging community that gradually built up. We helped each other out by reading, liking and commenting on each other’s blog posts.

Not everyone on the course became a member of the community. By the time the course finished, around 15 of us had kept in touch by reading, liking and commenting on each other’s posts.

It didn’t matter what we published or what comments we left for each other; the main thing was that all our posts got read.

During the first year, three things happened.

  • I built my own blogging community.
  • I became a member of other blogging communities.
  • Some people gradually dropped out of the first blogging community for various reasons.

What are the advantages of blogging communities?

The most significant advantage of being a blogging community member is that all my blog posts were getting read and commented on.

Apart from whoever first visited a newly published post, visitors saw my posts had ‘likes’ and comments.

I had an audience. I was not writing (speaking) to an empty auditorium.

I always found it sad reading excellent blog posts with no ‘likes’ or comments. But then I asked myself if the bloggers publishing the posts belonged to any blogging communities. Probably not!

However, regardless of what I was writing and publishing, my posts were all read and commented on. I was delighted!

Friendships formed with many of the members of my blogging community, and as more and more people joined, those friendships spread.

The same thing happened in other blogging communities. When we struggled, we all helped and supported each other. When things were going well, we all celebrated with each other. These communities were like brand new worlds outside of my everyday life.

My blogging community encouraged me to put my short stories and pieces of flash fiction into a book. If not for their support and encouragement, I’d never have self-published my books.

A few years later, I became one of the founding members of ‘The Bloggers Bash’ – an event where bloggers met up in person. Five events took place in London between 2015 and 2019, all a big success.

Photo of the bloggers who attended the Bloggers Bash 2015
The Bloggers Bash – 2015

I can’t express enough how delighted I am to have met many blogging friends at these events. I’d never have met these bloggers if it had not been for blogging communities.

Sadly, I’ve lost touch with some of the bloggers who attended those events. Some stopped blogging, while others moved away from WordPress into areas of blogging that were much more exciting. Some stopped responding to comments on their blogs, while others left blogging communities I belonged to.

Blogging communities are a big triumph.

They are places where you can talk, and people will listen (if that is what you want). They offer help, support, guidance, free advice and friendship.

I witnessed many blogging community members meeting up all over the world. These were all people who would otherwise never have formed friendships and met up had it not been for them to start a blog, many on WordPress.

When the pandemic struck in 2020, blogging communities were even more critical, especially for bloggers who lived alone.

Of course, not every blogger wants to be a part of blogging communities. It’s their choice, and I fully understand why they may not want to participate.

Are there any disadvantages to blogging communities?

Yes. But only if you create problems.

During the first years of blogging, reading, liking and commenting on each other’s blog posts helps propel you on your blogging journey.

However, as you become a member of more and more communities (and your community grows), you’ll find you have less time to read and leave comments.

As blogging communities become more extensive, they can eat away at the time you have put aside for everything else outside of blogging unless you stick to a strict rule of how much time you spend reading and commenting. Adhering to any limitations can also create problems.

I’ve seen many bloggers forced to change the comments they leave because of a lack of time to read posts. Instead of leaving genuine comments that offer feedback and discussion and prove they have read the post, lazy ‘Facebook’ type comments appear.

What do I mean by lazy, Facebook type comments?

Short one-line comments. Comments like ‘Great post’ or ‘Great story.’ Comments that never explain why it’s a great post or a great story. In other words, comments that lack any feedback. Comments containing nothing but emojis (something I am especially not a fan of) can also pop up.

I noticed (and this is where the Facebook blogging community name comes from) that the comments I was leaving became much shorter as I joined more blogging communities. My time to read and comment became even more minimal with the increasing size of some blogging communities.

My comments were of no value to the blogger I was leaving them for other than to say that I had visited their newly published post (although not necessary read all or some of it).

Rather than read all of the posts, I skimmed over them because I didn’t have enough time to read and comment on everyone’s posts.

I found myself leaving the types of comments seen on Facebook. Many bloggers refer to them as guilt-tripping comments because you feel guilty for not proving that you have visited the blog post if you don’t leave a comment (regardless of whether you’ve read the post or what the comment says).

Along with other bloggers, I began to find blogging become stressful. It made me feel guilty, and blogging burnout hit me because I could not keep up with reading and commenting on other community members’ blog posts. I was overwhelmed and wrote and published the following post.

Back to blogging communities.

It was not long before I realised that belonging to large blogging communities stopped other members and me from expanding our horizons by discovering new blogs and bloggers. We didn’t have the time to search. It usually happens when blogging communities reach a certain number of members.

I began to see community members’ blog posts lacking comments from new bloggers/followers. Instead, the comment sections of their blog posts were full of the same short comments from the same bloggers.

But it wasn’t always short comments. Sometimes, the comments section was full of longer comments, but always from the same bloggers. Rarely did comments from new readers appear.

You may think there is nothing wrong with that, but one blogger recently told me that close-knit blogging communities often look like uninviting scary places, so they never left comments. ‘It was like being a new kid on the block, where outsiders would not be welcomed’ — my heart sunk when I heard that.

Image showing tightly packed books on a book-shelve
Blogging communities with too many members can look over-crowded, scary and uninviting places to other bloggers.

Duplicated blog posts filled my WordPress Reader and email box because some community members keep reblogging each other’s blog posts.

Some of the blogs of close-knit communities had conversations in the comments section that had nothing to do with the blog post’s subject (usually something much better discussed offline or on Facebook).

When I realised that I was suffering from blogging burnout, I had to change how I was blogging. The most significant action I took was to step back from many blogging communities.

Instead of skim-reading and leaving lazy comments on every blog post of other community members, I selected which of the posts I was going to read and comment on.

If the blog post’s title was of no interest or did not entice me to click the ‘read more’ link, I did not read it.

If a community member published more than one post daily, I selected one or two of their posts weekly, although the titles had to be enticing enough to make me want to read them.

I stopped leaving comments on all posts I read. If I did not have anything of value to add, I clicked the ‘like’ button and moved on to the next post (although if I had enjoyed reading the post, I shared it on social media).

I stopped feeling guilty for not reading all the blog posts community members published.

I cut back on some blogging communities by leaving them – something I have never regretted.

Balancing writing with reading and commenting on blog posts should never be a problem.

Some blogging community members may feel frustrated or upset that you are not reading and leaving comments on all their blog posts (especially if they read and leave comments on all your blog posts). Never allow it to become your problem or make you feel obliged to read and comment on their posts. That’s not what blogging is about.

If any blogger realises you are not reading and commenting on all their posts and sees it as a problem (as a handful of community members have told me in the past), ask yourself if you should be following their blog.

Final thoughts on blogging communities.

Being a member of blogging communities offers many incentives. Many bloggers are happy to have the same readers leave the same comments week after week. Some won’t care about gaining new followers or promoting their writing elsewhere, especially if what they are doing gives them a lot of fun and enjoyment.

Some bloggers don’t care about feedback. They see their blog as a place where people can pop in and say the occasional ‘Hello.’

Some bloggers are happy with their close-knit blogging community and won’t care if nobody else joins in.

Yet, seeing the same short comments on all blog posts of a particular blog day after day doesn’t inspire me to want to leave comments, especially if it’s a close-knit blogging community.

Should you join blogging communities?

Yes! I recommend that every blogger be a member of at least a couple of blogging communities. However, everyone should beware of the pitfalls blogging communities can bring (if you allow those traps to open).

Stick to no more than a handful of blogging communities, otherwise, you’ll find you will need to spread your time thinly between them all.

Do you belong to any blogging communities? What are your experiences with blogging communities? What advantages and disadvantages have blogging communities bought you? Join the discussion by leaving your comments.

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113 thoughts on “What Are The Advantages And Disadvantages Of Being A Member Of A Blogging Community?

  1. 🤔 Any person with an ounce of wisdom would know that they would tire themselves out if they read, liked and commented on every blog post from the bloggers within their blogging community (Like everything else in life, they should be done in moderation).

    Do enjoy the rest of your day, Hugh.

    1. Unfortunately, some bloggers believe they have to visit, read and comment on all the blogs they follow, especially community members’ blogs, Renard. I’ve witnessed some bloggers crash out of blogging because they couldn’t keep up with it all. Many don’t like admitting to it, and many more dislike talking about it – hence my post.

  2. This is a great post, Hugh! When I started blogging, I spent a lot of time building followers. I followed some suggestions to visit, comment, and follow. Many followed back. I then took part in different challenges and wrote poetry and other post and published my poetry book. Then I found meaningful conversations and exchanged comments with authors. The author group became my community. I love photography and take part in the photo challenges. The photography group became my other community. Some of my followers only comment on books or photography but some comment on both.

    I can hardly keep up with visiting all the members in these two communities. I don’t have time to explore new communities. I’m happy that I know many bloggers very well to call them friends.

    1. Hi Miriam, thanks for your comments. Remember that you don’t need to visit, read and comment on every post of these community’ members. This will free up more time for you. Select a few and dicard the others. I always look at titles of blog posts first. If they don’t entice me to click ‘read more’ I delete the post and move on to the next one regardless of who the blogger is.

      If any of your community members feel neglected because you don’t read, like, and comment on all their posts, ask yourself if you should be following them. I’ve had a couple of bloggers who told me they were unhappy with me because I had not read and commented on all their posts. I unfollowed their blogs and left it like that. I’m afraid I won’t be told by anyone that I must read and comment on all their posts.

      If you are in the position you say you are and that you can barely keep up with visiting all members of the two communities you mentioned, I recommend you take some action so that you don;’t feel overwhelmed. You’ll feel much. better for taking action rather than let it all build up. I’d hate for you to go down that route.

      1. Good advice, Hugh. I unfollowed many blogs because some don’t even click like to my posts but show up on my Reader. I’m getting to a point that I only want active followers and I want to be active my the blogs I follow.

        1. I don’t expect anyone to follow my blog and click ‘like’ on my posts simply because I follow their blog. Sometimes, there are blogs I follow that publish interesting content that gets me talking, but they don’t have any interest in the content I publish. I accept that. But I certainly unfollow any blogs cluttering up my WordPress Reader with uninteresting content, Miriam.

  3. I never knew there were blogging communities?? I agree with you in some point but i believe there is a reason why some of them stop blogging. I have to say that your message is in fact helpful and informative. Thank u for sharing my friend.

    1. There will be many reasons why some people stop blogging. Too many to go into here, but I always find it sad when somebody gives up because they believe they have to read and comment on every post of every blog they follow. That always takes away the fun of blogging.

      I’m glad this post has helped. Thank you for joining the discussion.

  4. Interesting. I’m not part of any blogging communities. I recently started blogging a bit more on my personal website and I re-enabled comments for the first time in years. It’ll probably take me some time to find like-minded people and small communities. I have definitely been guilty of that kind of “Facebook comment” that you described. I’m going to make more of an effort to leave useful feedback or tell people when their post had an impact on me. This one did.

  5. I guess I’m not sure what you mean exactly by blogging community. I have people I follow due to interest and people who follow me due to interest, but it’s not a formal community. And yet it still feels as if I belong to a community. I don’t think I have ever read every post put out by a particular blogger. As much as our interests may overlap, there is still the occasional post that doesn’t catch my interest. And there are some bloggers that are so prolific that I may comment once or twice a week. I’m interested in their blog, and I want them to know that, but I can’t keep up. I know what you mean about the “great post” comments. Fortunately, I don’t get many of those.

    Excellent topic!


    1. Thank you, Michelle.

      Blogging communities consist of the same bloggers who tend to read, like and comment on each other’s blog posts. However, another example of a blogging community is a blog where the host sets a weekly or monthly blogging challenge. Participants who join the challenge regularly then make up the blogging community. It sounds to me as if you do belong to a blogging community.

  6. I’d never thought of blogging communities as a distinct thing, with ‘edges’ you could cross over into or out of the group. To me they are more like Venn diagrams, overlapping circles of contacts and networks. I participate in quite a few challenges on a regular basis and I see some of the same bloggers involved in all of them, others in only one. Plus there are people in my network who never do challenges but are consistent readers and commenters (proper comments!) on my blog as I am on theirs. Are we a community of two, I wonder?
    I have a stronger sense of community with my Virtual Tourist network , even though that site closed in 2017. Some of them are among my blog followers but by no means all. We use Facebook to hold our community together, reaching out to others not on Facebook from time to time so they feel involved. And we meet whenever we can – small meets when one member visits the home town of another, and big organised meets such as the one I’ll host next month 🙂 These are multi-day gatherings, sharing meals and exploring the host region together, but they’re also very much about building the community and spending time with friends. These experiences have left me very open to meeting up with blogger friends if I get the opportunity!

    1. A community can be any number of people over one. So as soon as you connect with someone and read, like and comment on each other’s posts, you’ve your own small, close-knit blogging community. There is nothing wrong with that, but some bloggers can find large-close-knit communities somewhat overwhelming and unfriendly. Take, for example, the blogger I quoted in this post.

      Meeting other bloggers can be a fantastic opportunity. I attended all five of the Blogger Bash events held in London from 2015, and they were terrific days where many new friendships were formed. So if you get the chance to meet up with fellow bloggers, I’d certainly recommend it.

  7. I didn’t have a community of other bloggers to start with. But I did have a circle of friends from living in several different places. I did join a Google blogging group but like you eventually didn’t have time to read their posts. I have gone back to trying to read one every day by the fellow bloggers who continue to read my posts. I’ve been blogging since about 2015. You voiced all of the pros and cons that I too have experienced. Thanks for clarifying a lot of what goes on in a blogging group.

    1. You’re welcome.

      Those people you mention that read your posts, so you read theirs, are all members of a blogging community. It may be a small group, but many will see it as a community. And it’s great to hear that you all help each other out by reading and commenting on each other’s posts.

  8. You say it so well old chap. The part about finding time to visit others is crucial isn’t it. I’ve become like you much more adept at ignoring posts even from bloggers I count as friends (such as this Welsh bloke with the two cardigans..) if the title or openings don’t grab me. And the manage subscriptions facility to check who I follow and from whom and when I receive notifications and when they last posted is crucial to keeping things fresh. I think you posted about that before but I wonder how many know it exists?
    Like you guilt is pretty much a thing of the past when it comes to blogging.
    Odd looking at that photo and working out who is still blogging. Be good to Bash again, wouldn’t it?

    1. I have a habit of saying things as I see them, Geoff. I may upset a few readers along the way with my frankness about the blogging world, but I think the majority probably nod their heads when reading my posts, although most would never dare write about it. I believe that is why these types of posts I write and publish seem to attract a lot of excellent discussions.

      Titles of blog posts are so important. They’re the gateway to your blog and need to tempt people in, yet I see many dreadful titles. I see them a little as the name of a book. If it has a good title (and cover), I will pick it, read the back cover (the about me page of a blog), and delve in if I’m still interested.

      I tend to unfollow a blog if there has been no fresh content published in the last six months, and I have seen no signs of the blogger in the blogging world. I like keeping things organised on my blog. A neat blog gives the impression that the blogger cares about their readers (my personal take on it).

      Some of those in the Bloggers Bash photo seem to have disappeared. I’ve not seen them leaving comments, and some of their blogs have been abandoned. It’s sad to witness, but I guess people move on.

      Thank you for joining the discussion.

  9. I love this post and agree with it totally. I love being part of a blogging community but it can be very time consuming. Like you, I only pick out those posts which I’m really interested in to read and comment on. However, I do try and offer a proper comment on those rather than just a generic one.

    1. Thank you for joining the conversation, Jeanette.

      You certainly have the same attitude as me when it comes to choosing which blog posts to read and which to leave comments on. I think most bloggers prefer good quality comments rather than the short Facebook type comments that add no value. I certainly do.

  10. I think blogging communities are beneficial 1) when you are new to blogging and like to expand your reach, and 2) when you are looking for new blogs to read and follow in a niche you are interested in.

    I think I’m a member of a couple of blogging communities on Facebook, but I have been ignoring them. I don’t have time to get involved in blog exchanges. Whenever I’m back in the US, I will be on a clean-up mission regarding Facebook groups and blogs I follow on WordPress.

    As far as readership, I would like to attract new readers to Roaming About but I’m happy with my current followers as well. I can tell that most only read my posts when they find them interesting and they only comment when they have something to say. They are following your advice, Hugh! 🙂

    1. I agree with your first sentence, Liesbet, but be careful when blogging communities get too big as they can eat up all that time you have for discovering other blogs outside of the communities you’re in.

      And I’m glad your readers are following my advice, although I can’t help but think that some of them won’t know who I am.

      Good luck with the Facebook and blog clearout. You’ll feel much better after doing it.

  11. Thanks Hugh for the insightful post. It didn’t even occur to me to try this out. Any tips on where to start or how to find relevant blogging communities to join?

    1. You’re welcome. I’m glad this post has helped.

      The best place to find blogging communities is by searching for subjects you enjoy reading and then looking at the comments sections of the blogs that come up. If you see regular comments from the same people on all the posts, it’s a blogging community.

      Another excellent example of blogging communities can be found in blogging challenge posts. Most have communities, many of which are very welcoming to new members.

  12. I find there are far fewer trolls on the blogs. Of course, we all occasionally run into a bad apple, but generally, it is a supportive community filled with like-minded individuals. Like anything, I think one has to balance it with the other things going on in their life. We can still enjoy it and realize that many other items should be prioritized ahead of blogging.

    1. I’ve had my fair share of trolls on my blog, and I see many of them springing up on specific niche blogs such as political blogs. The best way to deal with them is to ignore them and never approve their comments. They soon get the message.

      I agree entirely about balancing blogging with the rest of our lives. It’s just a shame that some bloggers end up giving up on blogging because they feel obliged to read and comment on every post of community members. It should come to that.

  13. There is so much info in this post, Hugh, that should motivate a blogger whether new or veteran to blogging! Funny as I read, I really didn’t think of myself as being in a particular blogging community, although I had my circle of bloggers created from those early WordPress 101 classes. Perhaps that is a community whereby many have come and gone by now. I also have to agree that, like you, the motivation to write a book or two, came from the blogging community. I also don’t use social media much for blogging. I have a Facebook page that I use to share Sunday Stills posts when I can, but I don’t really follow a Facebook group that focuses on blogging.

    In my case, I tend to gravitate toward challenges where a natural community is created with bloggers regularly and consistently linking to the challenge host’s posts. It is within those challenge communities that I feel a loyalty and motivation to not only join the challenge, but also leave useful and positive comments, and even share the post when possible. As you mentioned, a community is created when bloggers physically meet up, like at the Bloggers’ Bash, and perhaps at bloggers’ conferences, which I have attended over the years. Blogging communities can also be created when a small group of bloggers gets together due to geography or an individual meet-up. Those communities are super special and have been the balm of my friendships over the past few years. I hate to mention names, because I may leave someone out inadvertently, but in your case, I consider you a dear friend and if either of us were to visit each other’s cities, we would definitely meet for fun and food!

    I hope I am thinking about this right, at least this is what I consider blogging communities. Of course, with my Sunday Stills challenge going into the 4th year, I have a loyal set of folks who blog consistently and it truly warms my heart to have weekly conversations with folks and find so much in common. And to think I held my nose in the air at the beginning and didn’t want “just bloggers” to read my posts, but to appeal to a wider audience. For what? A supportive community who reads and comments (and reads self-published authors’ books) etc, is really where the fun is and therefore a hobby is formed! And that is what I promote on Second Wind Leisure Perspectives. yay, LOL! Sorry for the ridiculously long comment but that’s what you get for writing yet another proactive and on-point article, Hugh!

    1. My first blogging community was formed when I did the Blogging 101 online live course, Terri. Those in the community all helped each other by reading, liking and leaving comments on each other’s posts. It was a great way to start blogging. Eight years on, and only three of the original community still left who blog regularly.

      I wonder how many bloggers like us only published books because of blogging? I know I’d undoubtedly have not self-published my two books had it not been for the blogging communities I belonged to. The support and encouragement I got from them were terrific and helped me achieve the dream of having a book with my name on the front cover.

      The Bloggers Bash was defiantly something that sprung up from a blogging community. But like any community, people come and go. The problem can be when some of those communities become so big that you feel obliged to read and comment on all the posts published within those communities. It’s one of the reasons why I had to step back from many blogging communities and decided to leave some. Blogging then became much more fun again. But, of course, as a host of a challenge, you should always read the posts and leave valuable feedback (although I do know of some hosts that do not).

      There are lots of close-knit blogging communities. Even I belong to a few. As you rightly say, these are the ones where members would visit each other if in the area. These are the communities that many new friendships are based upon – where (if it had not been for blogging), paths would never have crossed.

      The Sunday Still photography challenge you host is another excellent example of a blogging community. What does concern me about some blogging challenge communities, though (not the Sunday Stills Challenge), is that they can come over as very close-knit and unwelcoming places for new bloggers. I recall somebody linking a short story to a story I’d published for a challenge. She’d linked to my story because she said the community where the challenge was hosted came over as overwhelming and too close-knit. I was so sad when she told me. It made me think that some of my comments within that community were part of what she was saying. But she assured me they weren’t, so she linked to the post I had published. Since then, I’ve always thought more about the types of comments I leave.

      Thanks so much for joining the discussion, Terri. I’m glad you enjoyed this post. It seems to be a great talking subject.

  14. I have been blogging for over ten years now. I have what I call my Blogging Family. They are a small core of people who are always in touch. Being a photo blogger, with the occasional poem or short story, I find reading long posts eat away at time. Photo blogs are easy to whizz through and leave comments. Yes there are the “I love these” or “Great photos” and sometimes just emojis but other times there are conversations about life occur.
    Yes people come and go. From the initial group I do wonder what has happened at times when they just disappear.
    My Blogging Family has been built doing photo challenges and now I host photo challenges which opens up my blog to a different range of people from all over the world.
    Another thing I do is always use the bloggers name in replies. It gives a bit of a personal touch.
    I was just going to write “Great article Hugh” 😂😂

    1. Many refer to Blogging families as close-knit Facebook communities. There is nothing wrong with that, but some bloggers can find them scary and somewhat overwhelming places, especially where the community is always the same and leave comments on each other’s blog posts regardless of what has been published.

      Many people believe that short posts are much better than long posts. This is true where time is an issue, but when it comes to SEOs like Goggle and Bing, they will consistently rank longer posts higher. So I guess if you are looking for new followers and readers, longer posts are better, although I’d recommend a much less publishing schedule.

      Did you know that SEOs also look at the comments sections of blog posts? If there are lots of long comments, they consider it a longer post and will trank it higher because the post is getting lots of engagement. However, they don’t count short comments.

      I’ve known many good bloggers who have disappeared from the blogging world. Most of these simply stopped publishing posts and stopped joining in conversations. Some left blogging because they no longer enjoyed it. While others moved on to other things. It’s sad when it happens, but like anything else in life, change is good.

      Blogging challenge communities are another great example of blogging communities. However, I recall somebody once linking a story to a post I’d published for a challenge rather than to the host’s blog. When I asked why, she said the community where the challenge was hosted was too close-knit; some of the comments made her think that outsiders were unwelcome. It shows that we have to be careful with what comments we leave and moderate.

      And I agree entirely about using a blogger’s name in comments, but sometimes it isn’t always easy to find out their name.

      Thank you so much for joining the conversation on this post.

      1. Thanks for replying. I don’t pay much attention to stats, numbers of followers or rankings, I do it for fun although it would be nice if more people bought my photos 😁

        1. Well, there you go. If you want more people to see your photos and buy them, maybe it’s time to think about some of those stats and work on getting new visitors to your blog. Good luck.

  15. I don’t think you have to worry about anyone, new blogger or not, feeling unwelcome at News & Views, Hugh. I can’t think of a more welcoming blog than yours 🙂

    1. That’s so kind; thank you, Aimer. I always try and make all visitors feel welcomed. I’ve visited other blogs where I was made to feel most unwelcomed (not your blog, though). There’s always a lovely welcome there, too.

  16. I love my blogging community(ies). It took shape over time, changed, grew, shrunk, grew again… I built mine by checking out other blogs with topics or purposes I liked, following them seriously, and getting discovered by those bloggers or their community members. That natural development when you are interacting.

    1. And engaging is another natural development of building a blogging community. However, I much rather only engage when I have something of value to add than leave a Facebook type comment that does nothing but tells the author I visited. My passion for an honest discussion that adds value makes me feel that way. Plus, it seems a shame to leave a short comment that adds no value to an excellent post that a blogger has obviously worked hard on.

      1. You know, maybe that is, why I don’t like Facebook. Overall it appears too superficial to me. In my opinion, a serious comment digs into the matter of the post. A simple “beautiful” is meaningless. And as you said, it shall reflect the appreciation for the blogger and their work.

        1. I agree. And I’ll be honest here and say that I have sent some lazy ‘useless’ comments to the trash bin when I believe they’ve only left a comment to try and get some free publicity. I can usually pick up on the readers who don’t read posts but leave useless comments.

        2. I sent them to the trash bin when they were new to my blog and wrote something like “Nice. Please, check out my blog.” This is respectless in my opinion. But yes, there are also those who only leave short comments without asking for something. Also there are some who switch between meaningful and meaningless comments. I know exactly whether they read the post or not.

  17. I’m not sure if I’d call it a community, but I have developed a few close friendships with several other bloggers, some who live in another country. We’ve dined together, vacationed together, and Zoom regularly since the pandemic started. I consider them dear friends and credit them with helping make the last two years so much more manageable. I think I’d also consider a group of active retirement bloggers (either who write about retirement or who are just living happily in retirement) a community, even though we don’t have a facebook group. Some I’ve met IRL and some I consider friends even though we’ve never met.

    1. And they are all perfect examples of Facebook Blogging communities, even though some may not have a Facebook account.

      The blogging world is undoubtedly a great place to make new friends. But make too many, and you could find yourself overwhelmed with too many posts to read and leave comments on. It’s one of the reasons why I stepped back from many blogging communities and now only read a handful of posts from those bloggers rather than believe I have to read and comment on all of them.

      I dislike leaving any comments that add no value to what I’ve just read, so I’ll support some by sharing their post on social media if I’ve enjoyed reading them but have nothing of value to add.

  18. I always looked forward to hearing about the Blogger’s Bash! I don’t think I belong to any specific groups – the writers from my old (now defunct) publisher support each other. I like to follow the ThursdayDoors folks and a few others. But I no longer try to keep up to date with everyone!

    1. Which is the right thing to do. Many feel obliged to read and comment on those who read and leave comments on their posts. It should never be like that. The Thursday Doors community is another excellent example of a blogging community.

  19. Hugh, I appreciate your insight. I have to admit I am challenged visualizing blogging communities, per se. There are blogs I follow and the same people always comment. I am trying to Like less and Comment more. Otherwise it is too much like Facebook and well, that is a major disappointment. I make an extra effort to comment on blogs I read with small followings.

    1. Danny, the people you mentioned who always comment (regardless of what the post is about) are a blogging community. They tend to press ‘like’ and leave comments on each other’s posts irrespective of whether they’ve read it or not or have anything valuable to add. They’re perfect examples of Facebook blogging communities. They also often reblog each other’s posts.

      Although some bloggers don’t care about the Facebook type of comments they get, many more prefer feedback that adds value to a post. I like comments that give me feedback and get into the discussion rather than comments that simply say ‘Thanks for sharing’ or ‘great post.’ Many would disagree and prefer guilt type short comments that merely say nothing other than ‘I’ve visited (although I may not have read your post).

  20. You mentioned two types of community – the one associated with the WP course and the other a face to face meeting. Beyond those, how do you find blogging communities?

    1. You’ll find them in the comments sections of many blogs. Do a search for blogs that publish content you’re interested in reading. Look for comments from the same people on all the posts of bloggers. They’ll always leave comments, regardless of what they say. Those are the Facebook blogging communities I spoke about in this post.

      Another example is blogging challenge communities, where a host sets a weekly or monthly challenge, and their community responds to the challenge.

      1. I’ll look out for some of those challenges Hugh, thanks for the tip. I’ve been thinking that I am confining myself to following/commenting on other blogs which do book reviews but maybe exploring other niches could be of benefit too

        1. Yes, looking at other niches can also be beneficial, but remember to only follow blogs that publish content that you know will interest you and where you’ll likely leave good meaningful comments that add value to the content of posts.

  21. I only belong to one formal community – the Senior Salon. That plus the various blogs I follow gives me more than enough reading to keep up with. Like others have said, my blog is a hobby, and if it stopped being enjoyable I’d give it up!

    1. Which is the right attitude about blogging, Clive. If it becomes a chore and makes you feel guilty or stressed, you have to change the way you blog or give it up. It should always be about fun and enjoyment (unless you make a living from it and it’s more a job).

  22. A wonderful post as usual, Hugh.
    I wasn’t even aware that blogging communities existed! Where do you find them?
    I have my own following and blogs I follow and interact with, but we’re not a formal community.

    1. Thank you. I’m glad you enjoyed it.

      The best way to find blogging communities is in the comments sections of a blog. If you see the same readers always leaving comments on most of their posts, then it’s a blogging community. With Facebook Blogging communities, the comments are primarily short and don’t give any valuable feedback. Comments such as ‘Great post’, ‘Great photos’ or ‘Happy Monday,’ with no feedback on why they think the content is great. The types of comments you’d see on Facebook. They can also be full of conversations that have nothing to do with the subject of the post – general chit-chat stuff.

  23. After 8 years I still really enjoy blogging as a hobby, even though this is my fourth consecutive blog on WordPress! I find many of the long-term staying-the-course bloggers have together somehow created a kind of informal community of virtual friends, and it’s lovely to feel a part of that. It was lovely to meet other bloggers in person, too – do you think there might be another Blogger’s Bash in the future, Hugh? I think that would be such fun to attend… 🙂

    1. There are no plans for further Bloggers Bash events, Ruth, from what I know. However, one should never say ‘never.’ Given the current pandemic situation, I think it’s unlikely to happen, but in a few years (Covid willing), who knows? It was great to meet you at the events you attended. They were fun events that would never have happened had it not been for the blogging communities that were created.

  24. I would love to join a blogging community. How do I find them?

    Regarding time reading and commenting, this is a real issue. I am starting to unsubscribe blogs I am not reading. Feel a little guilty though.

    1. You should never feel guilty about unfollowing blogs that you’re not interested in and which take up your valuable time. Remember, it’s your time, so use it wisely.

      You’ll find blogging communities all over the world of blogging. It’s a case of looking for subjects you’re interested in reading, searching for them, and looking at the comments sections of the blogs that come up. If there are many comments from the same bloggers, you can almost be sure that you’ve discovered a blogging community.

  25. Hugh, I’ve always struggled to keep up with reading, comments, and sharing posts. One of the reasons I developed a poetry challenge was to connect with other folks who liked syllabic poetry. But, I have so many friends from when I started blogging, like you, and Debby Gies, Sally Cronin, etc. I’m sure I fall short at comments, too. But, I keep visiting and trying to stay in touch. I think that’s a key to the blogging community. ❤

    1. I decided to stop struggling to keep up with reading and commenting on all the community members’ posts, Colleen. If the blog post title doesn’t tempt me to click the ‘read more’ link, I’ll skip it. Likewise, if the content doesn’t interest me when reading a post, I’ll leave it. It’s helped me reclaim so much time. I feel much better about it. And I can still keep up with reading the occasional post, especially those who publish more than once daily.

        1. It is, but we should never feel obliged to read posts or get overwhelmed with it all, Colleen. A few times, it happened to me when I felt hopeless for not keeping up with reading everyone’s posts. I had to change the way I blogged or give up blogging. I didn’t want to do the latter.

    1. There are lots of communities on Facebook and here in the blogging world. It’s a case of finding a subject you’re interested in and searching for them.

      Another way of knowing you’re on a blog with a community is by looking at the comments section of their posts. If the comments are from the same readers, it’s a community.

  26. Hi Hugh! It’s me lol. I’m back from the exact same issue. It was truly creasing me. I have set myself a time target from now on so that I cannot overdo it. However, I must say it was a delight to come back on here and find you as one of my first blogs to comment on and what a useful and informative piece, too. Great to see you. 🙂

    1. Richard, it’s great to hear from you again. I thought you had stopped blogging altogether, so it’s great to see a comment from you here.

      Sorry to hear you ran into the same issues as I did. Many bloggers go through these issues, but unfortunately, many refuse to change how they blog in fear that it’ll upset other bloggers. It’s such a shame they feel that way. They usually end up crashing and burning out of blogging altogether.

      And it’s good to see you again. I still recall your Clockwork Santa short story. It must have made an excellent impression on me.

  27. I agree, that I have not found any disadvantages to being part of blogging communities. The advantages I have received and continue to receive include expanding my horizons by learning about people in parts of the world I might not have otherwise. The feedback on my writing. And the education I have gotten reading the posts and books of fellow bloggers. It’s as though I were a freshman writer and I am able to see how the senior class gets it done. All in all, I must say that being blog connected is one of the highlights of my life. xx

    1. Good to hear, Annette. I think that’s the case for most bloggers who don’t run their blog as a business and earn a living from it. Many call it a ‘hobby’ which I know some bloggers do not like calling it. But, it’s a hobby I enjoy again (after a few instances of bloggers’ burnout).

      Glad you’ve not come across any disadvantages of blogging communities.

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