Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – June 2022

These 13 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Happy Jubilee.

Jubilee #WordlessWednesday #Photography

June is Pride Month. Happy Pride. Is ‘coming out of the closet’ and telling family and friends that you are gay still as difficult as it was 40 years ago?

Throwback Thursday – True Stories: Gay Memories – Coming Out Of The Closet #LGBTQI #LGBT#PrideMonth

  • Who or what is to blame for almost destroying the world?

Flash Fiction Friday – Who Is To Blame?

  • Are you stressed out by dealing with too many spam comments on your blog? How to deal with spam comments and eliminate the stress without disappointing your readers.

How To Deal With Spam Without Closing Comments On Your Blog Posts

  • Where do you keep your marmalade sandwich?

Perhaps you’d like a Ma’amalade sandwich, Your Majesty? Tea With Paddington Bear

  • How many numbers can you see?

How Many? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • What secret do the stacking stones hold?

Flash Fiction Friday – Secret Of The Stones

  • When did you first meet a gay person?

True Stories: Gay Memories – Meeting Another Gay Person For The First Time #LGBTQI #LGBT

  • What are the signs of the beginning of summer for you?

Waiting For Summer #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • What danger and dilemma lurk on the other side of the door?

Flash Fiction Friday – Dilemma

  • Can you see the mountain range in the sky?

Mountains In The Sky #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Freedom comes in many forms. Are you thankful for your freedom?

Flash Fiction Friday – The Two Faces Of Freedom

  • Which way would you go? Right, left, up or down?

Where To Now? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

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Monthly Round-Up May 2022

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – May 2022

These 11 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Have you heard of the Wordless Wednesday photography challenge? How participating can help your blog and photography website gain new followers.

How To Participate In The Wordless Wednesday Photography Challenge And Gain New Followers

  • They were about to be evicted. Would anyone come to their help?

Flash Fiction Friday – Evicted

  • Could you live without social media for 31 days?

Reblog Of The Month: Have You Ever Been Tempted To Switch Off Your Social Media?

  • What strange objects have you found in water?

Strange Objects Found In Water #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • How many old and outdated blog posts do you have live on your blog? They could be damaging your blog.

Throwback Thursday – Are Your Old Blog Posts Damaging Your Blog? How To Stop It Happening

  • A mother will do anything to save her children, won’t she?

Flash Fiction Friday – A Matter Of Life

  • Be careful. You’re always being watched, even when having breakfast.

Did You Know That Something Is Watching You? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Have you heard of Throwback Thursday? It’s the day you can bring old blog posts back to life. Read on for more details on how to participate.

How To Participate In Throwback Thursday And Help Your Old Blog Posts Get Noticed

  • What is the secret behind the name Buttercup?

Flash Fiction Friday – Buttercup

  • Look closer. You may see more than you think you see.

What Can You See In The Spring Meadow? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Tanya has a secret weapon to help her group. But what do they need help with?

Flash Fiction Friday – Now It’s Your Turn

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Monthly Round-Up May 2022

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How To Participate In Throwback Thursday And Help Your Old Blog Posts Get Noticed

What is Throwback Thursday?

How do you participate in Throwback Thursday?

Throwback Thursday is the day to bring your old blog posts back to life.

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Are you making the most of your old blog posts?

We all have old blog posts in our archives, many of which are like buried bits of treasure that can reward us again. Throwback Thursday is the perfect day to bring out those old blog posts again.

Only use blog posts that are still relevant, although always ensure you first make any necessary changes to the posts you want to highlight.

How to participate in Throwback Thursday

Select a favourite blog post that is at least a few months old.

Share it via a pingback or link in a new Throwback Thursday blog post.

After all, not only will some of your readers not have seen the post the first time it was published, but new followers may also not have seen it.

However, as I mentioned, rather than publish the whole post again, the idea behind Throwback Thursday is to include a link to the post you want to highlight in your Throwback Thursday post.

Here’s an example of one of my Throwback Thursday posts.

Throwback Thursday – Are Your Old Blog Posts Damaging Your Blog? How To Stop It Happening

What you should do with your Throwback Thursday blog posts.

Only publish the post on a Thursday. That may seem like common sense, but I’ve seen bloggers publish them on other days of the week. Some readers may find it odd publishing Throwback Thursday posts on any other day than a Thursday. After all, the clue is in the title.

However, don’t worry if you miss publishing your Throwback Thursday blog post. You can always delay publication until the following Thursday. There are lots of Thursdays to choose from.

Flashback Friday.

If you’re a day late in publishing your Throwback Thursday post, you can always change it to a Flashback Friday post. Flashback Friday has the same concept as Throwback Thursday, where you are encouraged to highlight older blog posts.

Share your Throwback Thursday posts on social media using the hashtag #ThrowbackThursday so that other participants can find your post.

Tag your post ‘ThrowBack Thursday’ on your blog so that other participants can find it.

You can also include the words ‘Throwback Thursday’ or the hashtag in the title of your blog post, but always ensure you add the title of the blog post you’re highlighting. You don’t want to end up with many blog posts simply titled ‘Throwback Thursday.’

When creating the pingback to the post you want to highlight, ensure you turn on the ‘open in new tab‘ button so that readers don’t lose the page of your blog they’re on.

Not sure how to create a pingback? Click here for full details.

Is there anything else I should consider when publishing Throwback Thursday blog posts?

Yes, I recommend closing comments on the post and asking readers to leave any new comments on the original blog post you’re highlighting. That way, they will be able to see and read comments already left on the post you’re promoting. They can join any ongoing discussion. It makes more sense to have comments on the same post rather than scattered across several blog posts.

When selecting which posts to promote, choose the ones you believe your readers will benefit from and think they’ll enjoy reading again.

And that is Throwback Thursday.

Do you participate in Throwback Thursday? Do you have any questions about Throwback Thursday? Please leave them in the comments section.

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Throwback Thursday – Are Your Old Blog Posts Damaging Your Blog? How To Stop It Happening

How many old and outdated blog posts do you have live on your blog? If you don’t know the answer, you’re probably already damaging the success of your blog.

Find out more by clicking the link below.

Are Your Old Blog Posts Damaging Your Blog? How To Stop It Happening

Throwback Thursday – The day to bring older blog posts back to life.

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Throwback Thursday

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – April 2022

These 9 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Time is running out for Adam. Was he killed or murdered? Can you solve the mystery?

Flash Fiction Friday – The Last Of Adam

  • Sometimes, photos do not come out as expected.

Strange Photos #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Help me raise £250 for the British Red Cross Ukrainian Crisis Appeal by writing and publishing a challenging blog post.

Are You Up For the Unfollow A Blog Challenge? Help Me Raise £250 For The British Red Cross Ukrainian Crisis Appeal.

  • What do you see in the green shadows?

Shadows Of Green #WordlessWednesday #Photography #WordPrompt

  • Do the eyes of the waterfall see the truth? Miranda is about to find out.

Flash Fiction Friday – Eyes Of The Waterfall

  • Can you spot the missing hippo?

Have You Ever Seen A Hippopotamus In Your Coffee? #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Is there a reason why Bill never published his book? His wife is about to find out the shocking truth.

Flash Fiction Friday – The Death And Life Of Bill

  • Are blogging communities a good or bad thing? Read my experiences about the advantages and disadvantages of the blogging community.

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

  • Karl is trapped. Can anyone help him escape his prison cell?

Flash Fiction Friday – The Prison Cell

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Monthly Round-Up – April 2022

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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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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – March 2022

These 7 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Are you feeling fresh and fruity today?

Fresh And Fruity #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Are you farming your blog correctly? The blogging genie has the answer.

Are you farming your blog correctly? The blogging genie has the answer.

  • You may be surprised by what it was that gave my guest Stephen Havard the confidence to write and publish his first book. A very warm welcome to author and writer Stephen Havard.

How I Boosted My Confidence To Write And Publish My First Book – A True Story And Guest Post By Stephen Havard @StephenHavard

  • A brief, honest and to the point look at the world of blogging over the last eight years.

Blogging – Is It All That You Want It To Be?

  • Have you fallen into this blogging trap? I did. And this is how I got myself out of it.

Are You One Of The Victims Of This Time-Wasting Blogging Trap?

  • Shanaya Simmons was looking for a change in her life, but was ‘change’ ready for her?

Flash Fiction Friday – The Other Side Of Change

  • Have trouble getting visitors to your blog or to read and leave comments on your posts? Here are 7 methods I use that have resulted in thousands of readers reading my posts and leaving comments.

7 Methods You Can Use To Make Visitors Want To Read Your Blog Posts

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Are You One Of The Victims Of This Time-Wasting Blogging Trap?

Over the last eight years that I’ve been blogging, I’ve learned a lot about the blogging world, which I like to share and discuss. 

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Are you wasting time when blogging?

My recent post, ‘Blogging – Is It Everything You Want It To Be?‘ got lots of you talking. And I’m hoping this post will get you all talking again.

What Do You Not Like Talking About On Your Blog?

Many bloggers don’t particularly like talking about certain subjects, such as why they unfollow blogs or feel guilty about unfollowing a blog they’ve been following for years. 

Another subject that has occasionally come up in the comments sections of some of my posts is feeling obligated or obliged to continue following blogs. You usually have no interest in these blogs, but you return the favour because they read and comment on your posts.

There are many other subjects, but I’ll keep those for another day.

From the beginning 

When we first start blogging, most of us will follow many blogs simply because they followed us first. As time goes on, the number of blogs we follow grows, and before long, we find ourselves with a massive list of blog posts to read. 

When I first started blogging, following all the blogs that followed me was something I did. If another blogger left a comment on any of my posts, I’d heard it was common courtesy to read and comment on one of their posts. It was a big mistake!

As time went on, I soon felt guilty if I didn’t read and comment on all the blog posts of all the blogs that followed me. 

Although I was publishing much less, some of the blogs I followed published up to five posts a day. It wasn’t long before the reasons why I started to blog soon began to disappear.

The time-wasting blogging trap 

Some days I found myself reading and commenting all day long, with little time left to write any blog posts. Blogging soon lost its sparkle, became a chore, and made me feel guilty and stressed.

I soon realised that I was reading and commenting on blog posts I didn’t particularly find interesting. Why was I doing this? Was it because those bloggers always read and commented on my blog posts? 

The honest answer to the last question is ‘Yes.’ Because they were reading and leaving comments on my blog posts, I felt obligated and obliged to read and comment on their blog posts even if I didn’t find their posts interesting.

Do you feel guilty if you unfollow a blog? 

I then started worrying that the owners of blogs I unfollowed would get upset with me for unfollowing their blogs. But I needn’t have worried about that. I found out that WordPress does not give bloggers a list of those who have unfollowed their blogs. 

The only way somebody may know I have unfollowed their blog would be the sudden lack of hard to write comments I was leaving. 

I then realised how much time I’d be saving myself by unfollowing all the blogs I often felt obligated to read and comment on because they had followed my blog first or were reading and commenting on my posts. 

It wasn’t long before I cut the number of blogs I was following from just over 500 to 130! However, some of the decreases were down to unfollowing blogs that had remained dormant for over six months. There were lots of those too. And I also unfollowed some blogs for different reasons.

Are you one of these bloggers?  

I occasionally hear from bloggers who tell me they feel obligated to continue reading and commenting on blogs they don’t find interesting simply because those bloggers read and leave comments on their posts.

I’d feel so guilty unfollowing them,’ are the words I hear often.

It’s a situation that shouldn’t happen to anyone in the blogging world.

When I cut down on the number of blogs I followed, it wasn’t long before some of those I had unfollowed stopped leaving comments on my posts. They must have been in the same position as I had been, or had it simply been a tit-for-tat situation? In any case, I wasn’t going to allow it to make me feel guilty.

What did matter to me was that I had finally admitted how silly I had been by continuing to waste my time reading and commenting on blogs I had no interest in reading. 

What also mattered was that I had freed up much more time to write, read, and comment on the blogs that publish content I am interested in reading. 

Goodbye guilt and stress – Hello Fun and enjoyment

The overwhelming guilt and stress feelings I’d been experiencing soon disappeared, and the fun and enjoyment I got from blogging were back.

Don’t fall into the trap of following, reading and commenting on blogs that publish content you’re not interested in reading. And never feel obliged to read and comment on someone’s post because they’ve just left a comment on one of your posts. Only leave a comment if you’ve genuinely enjoyed reading a post. 

You’ll be surprised by just how many bloggers can spot ungenuine comments.

And finally

There are no rules in the blogging world that you have to read and leave a comment on every blog post a blogger you’re following publishes. Never feel guilty for missing their posts or not leaving a comment on every post they publish. Nobody cares if you miss some of their posts. If they do, then perhaps it’s time to ask yourself why you’re following them.

Do you feel under pressure to read and comment on blogs that you are not interested in reading or on the blogs of bloggers that read and leave comments on all your posts? Do you feel guilty if you don’t read and comment on all the blog posts of certain bloggers? If so, why? 

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – February 2022

These 8 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

  • Look up and reach for the stars. They’re waiting to make your dreams come true.

Reaching For The Stars #WordlessWednesday #photography

  • Who are the men in the old photo, and what happened to them?

Flash Fiction Friday – Bar 49

  • Although worlds-apart, hiders and seekers in the gay world of the late 1970s found themselves on the same journey.

True Stories: Gay Memories – Hiding And Seeking #LGBTQI #LGBT

  • As first night nerves turn to anxiety, Arnold has a lot more to be anxious about.

Flash Fiction Friday – First Night Nerves

  • Does an orange sky in the morning mean the same as a red sky in the morning?

Sunrise Over Swansea Bay #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • A free dress for the Christmas party was all she wanted and didn’t seem a bad idea.

Flash Fiction Friday – Don’t Do This With New Clothes

  • What comes round goes around, doesn’t it?

Flash Fiction Friday – Have We Been Here Before?

These 13 free blogging tips worked for me. Join me and add your blogging tips to the list.

13 Free Quick And Easy Blogging Tips For Every Blogger

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Did You Miss Any Of These? Monthly Round-Up – January 2022

These 10 blog posts got people talking. Were you one of them? If not, join the conversations and share your thoughts.

10 Blog Posts You May Have Missed In 2021 That Got People Talking

  • This technology trick using an Apple Watch is something you’ll be delighted to know.

How To Unlock Your Mac Using Auto-Unlock With Your Apple Watch

  • Are you making the most out of the most used block on the Gutenberg Block Editor? You may be surprised at what you’re not making the most of.

How To Get The Best Out Of The Block You’re Using The Most On The Gutenberg Editor

  • Can you predict the future? This is why predicting the future isn’t as hard as you think it is.

This Is How Easy It Is To Predict The Future #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Have you ever been terrified to do something or go somewhere for the first time?

True Stories: Gay Memories – Going To A Gay Bar For The First Time #LGBTQI #LGBT

  • What are weathering whites?

Weathering Whites #WordlessWednesday #Photography

  • Did you know that keeping old, out-of-date blog posts on your blog can damage the health of your blog? Here’s what to do to help stop the damage from happening.

Are Your Old Blog Posts Damaging Your Blog? How To Stop It Happening

  • If you don’t have an ‘About me’ page on your blog or are struggling with what to put on it, help is at hand. Blogger, James M. Lane has all the answers for creating an outstanding ‘About Me’ page for your blog. Click the link in this post for all the details.

Reblog Of The Month: How To Create An Outstanding ‘About Me’ Page For Your Blog

  • Miriam has other deadly plans for her 80th birthday to what her daughter has planned, but what are they?

Flash Fiction Friday – Make A Wish

  • Do you use the reblog feature on WordPress? Are you downloading images from the web and using them in your blog posts? Are you sure what you’ve downloaded or shared is actually free to use on your blog? Author, writer and blogger Deborah Jay shares her experience of facing a fine for reblogging a blog post that contained an image that was copyright protected.

Why I Was Threatened With Legal Action After Reblogging On WordPress – A True Story And Guest Post by Deborah Jay @DeborahJay2

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Why I Was Threatened With Legal Action After Reblogging On WordPress – A True Story And Guest Post by Deborah Jay @DeborahJay2

If you’re a blogger who has ever used or still uses the reblog button to share other bloggers’ posts, I urge you to read this post.

Likewise, if you use photos or images in your own posts that are not your own or do not come from a genuine website that offers free images and photos, this post is a must-read.


Early 2021, during the lockdown, I had a nasty shock.

For me, the lockdown was terrific – I live in a farmhouse in the Scottish Highlands, with gorgeous gardens, have a horse and a pack of rescue dogs, and for once, I could legitimately stay at home and not travel for work. This also allowed me to sit and write without feeling like I was short-changing some other part of my life.

What I had not expected, however, was to receive an email from a law firm accusing me of copyright infringement on a photograph I’d displayed on my blog back in my earliest blogging days, somewhere around 2013.

To add insult to injury, it wasn’t even a blog post I’d put together myself, but a collection of inspirational photos on a friend’s blog, which I’d reblogged! 

I’d shared her post using the WordPress ‘Reblog’ button, and, as you may know, the start of the post appears on your own blog with a link to the original for anyone wanting to see more.

I had NO idea (this was quite early in my blogging career); this meant that ALL the photographs in that post were downloaded and stored in my own media library. The fact they were downloaded, even without my knowledge, became a potential legal problem.

If this happens to you, DO NOT ignore it.

The ‘Cease and Desist’ email came from an Italian law firm. Their client, the photographer, is based in the UK, as am I. It detailed the blog post and the specific photograph and demanded £1045.00 compensation for using the picture without obtaining a licence. This was justified as:

  • £195 financial loss (£39 per year for the licence)
  • £150 damages for flagrancy (putting the photographer at increased risk of having the photo stolen/used without obtaining a licence)
  • £100 damages for negative financial consequences
  • £150 for the absence of picture credit
  • £50 damages for moral prejudice
  • £100 damages for consequential losses
  • £100 damages for devaluing the image
  • £200 lawyers’ fees

Scary, huh?

This was what I did:

  • The first step was to check that the law firm existed, looking up their website and digging a little on Google. Sadly, for me, it was legit.
  • Then I took a look at the photographer’s site to find the photo. Yes, it was there, along with the price for an annual licence, as detailed in the legal letter.
  • So, having established that I had indeed violated copyright, although unwittingly, I checked my own post. Now, as a reblog, I could only see the first picture, which wasn’t the one in dispute. I replied to the lawyer, asking for a screenshot of the image displayed on my site. To my shock, an image came back of the entire post, with all the photos in evidence displayed on my blog. I still don’t know how this is possible, but I couldn’t argue because they had the screenshot. 
  • I removed the post from my site and also delved into my media library, which is when I discovered to my shock that all the pictures from the post were stored there. I deleted them all, just in case.
  • I contacted the original blogger and advised her to delete also, which she did. The last thing I wanted was for them to go after her too.
  • The next step was to contact the lawyer again and point out I was not the original poster, explaining it was a reblog of someone else’s post. 
  • Their reply was that while they would consider this, I was still to be held responsible because the image had been displayed on my site. They dropped the proposed settlement to £800 and gave me 10 days to pay up.
  • I contacted another lawyer for advice. This was her answer: ‘If you did not download it and post it on your site, then you did not copy it. I would argue that re-posting or embedding is not copying because the image is hosted elsewhere and therefore cannot be copyright infringement.’ Note that last bit? Unfortunately, the way WordPress works, the photo had been downloaded and hosted on my own site, even though I hadn’t known it, so this didn’t help me.
  • I went back to the Italian lawyer and again stressed that I was not the person who had chosen to use the image. I felt they were being unfair coming after me and not the original poster (which is why I’d given her the heads-up first and ensured she’d removed all traces from her site before typing this message). 
  • By now, this had gone on for 6 weeks, with me leaving it almost to the stipulated 10-day deadline when I replied to the lawyer. I never once refused to pay them, but I also did not offer to do so or haggle about the sum. I spent more time researching potential help from legal groups, but…
  • Nearly a year on, and I’ve not heard from them again! This sounds fairly simple, but believe me, it was time consuming and stressful experience.

I understand from years ago, mainly when posting paper letters, that sometimes the answer to such events is to continue corresponding. Never offer anything, but keep querying small details and spread it out as long as you can. If nothing else, you may well get a reduction (as I did) in the sum they demand.

I was lucky; I know others who have had to pay up. In this case, it appears they wrote me off as too much bother to pursue. 

If you should be unfortunate enough to have this happen to you, the most important things are: 

  1. Don’t ignore it – that has the potential to be very expensive.
  2. Don’t pay up straight away – always investigate your options.

Deborah Jay writes fantasy and urban fantasy featuring complex, quirky characters and multi-layered plots – just what she likes to read.

Fortunate enough to live not far from Loch Ness in the majestic, mystery-filled Scottish Highlands with her partner and a pack of rescue dogs, she can often be found lurking in secluded glens and forests, researching locations for her books.

Her first published novel, epic fantasy, THE PRINCE’S MAN, won a UK Arts Council award and debuted as an Amazon Hot 100 New Release.

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Important Reminders About Reblogging from Hugh

Reblogging saves many bloggers time. It’s quick to do and can result in more visits and comments to the reblogged post.

It’s also a safe option but only when used correctly. Here are several points to consider and note if you intend to reblog another blogger’s post or have ever reblogged another blogger’s post.

  • If you reblog or have reblogged the blog posts of other bloggers, any images, videos or photos in those posts will have been downloaded into your WordPress media library. You could, therefore, have downloaded illegal images or photos and images that are copyrighted.
  • Check the small print – Some photos, images and pictures may have a limited time that they’re free to use. After that, if they remain on your blog or in your media library, you could face a fine.
  • Consider other options of sharing blog posts where images and photos are not downloaded to your blog. The ‘Press This’ sharing button is a good option, as no images and photos are downloaded to your media library.
  • Another option instead of reblogging is to write and publish a post that includes pingback links to blog posts you want to share. Blogger Sally Cronin does this with her ‘Blogger Weekly‘ feature.
  • If you run a blogging challenge where you reblog posts from participants, consider adding links to those posts in your blog post or in a new blog post rather than reblogging them. Blogger Terri Webster Schrandt does this in her Sunday Stills photography challenge.
  • If you’re unsure any contenet in a blog post you want to share are not free to download or use, don’t reblog the post.
  • Don’t think that what happened to Deborah won’t happen to you. It can!
  • If you believe you may have reblogged posts that have images or photos that are copyrighted or not free to download and use, delete the posts immediately.
  • After deleting posts, remember to remove any images and photos that appeared on the reblog from your WordPress media library, as deleting the post does not delete them.
  • Remember that copyright laws can also apply to lyrics, artwork, drawings and text.

WordPress offers users hundreds of free images and photos. Click here for full details.

If you’re not convinced by Deborah’s experience of copyright infringement, then read Debby Kaye’s post here about a copyright experience she had where she was fined for reblogging a post that contained an image that was copyright protected.

If you have any questions about Deborah’s experience or about reblogging, leave them in the comments section. Deborah and I will try and answer them, although we cannot offer any legal advice.

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Not sure it’s free? Then don’t reblog, copy or download it.

I thank Deborah for sharing her true story about the perils of reblogging with us and for allowing me to publish it on my blog.

Do you have any experience of being fined for copyright infringement?

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10 Blog Posts You May Have Missed In 2021 That Got People Talking

What were the top 10 blog posts on Hugh’s Views And News in 2021? Unfortunately, none of my posts made the top 10 because there is no guaranteed way to produce an accurate top 10 list based on the number of likes, hits or comments.

Not sure what I’m referring to? My blog post, ‘How Do You Measure The Success Of Your Blog Posts?‘ has all the answers, plus it has a great way of producing a top 10 list based on something far more reliable than dodgy likes, hits and comments.

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Did you miss any of these?

In 2021, 133 blog posts got published on Hugh’s Views And News. Many subjects, including blogging tips, writing, music, flash fiction, photography, true stories, social media tips and guest posts, made it to the front page.

If you asked me to recommend ten of those posts, I’d have a tough choice to make. But as I already hinted, many readers agreed that basing top 10 lists based on the number of likes, hits or comments doesn’t always work.

That’s why I’m offering you ten blog posts published in 2021 on Hugh’s Views And News that I recommend. They are not in any particular order other than the published date they appeared on my blog.

Published January 1st 2021.

What To Do With New Year’s Resolutions

My first post of 2021 got me off to a great start. And the message in it is as relevant today as it was on New Year’s Day 2021. Have you made any New Year’s Resolutions for the New Year? Read my post first before making any decisions.

Published March 9th 2021

Are You Making Any Of These 7 Simple Blogging Mistakes?

Not only do I list these 7 simple mistakes that I see many bloggers making, but I give details on how to fix them. Read my post, take action, and watch your blog sky-rocket if you’re wondering why it’s plateaued.

Published March 15th 2021

How To Reblog A Post Correctly On WordPress

I see so many bloggers reblogging posts with little care about what they’re doing or giving any reasons why they’re sharing the post. Some bloggers who reblog other bloggers’ posts aren’t aware that they could face copyright infringement. Read my post for full details before reblogging that next post.

Published May 17th 2021

These 7 Methods Will Help Get Readers To Your Blog

The most popular question I get asked by other bloggers is ‘How do I get more people to visit my blog?’ This post lists 7 easy methods that worked for me and helped me gain thousands of new visitors, many of whom followed and engage with me.

Published June 17th 2021

How Changing This Setting On Your WordPress Blog Will Help It Gain More Views

Changing this default setting on your WordPress blog is one of the easiest ways to increase the number of visitors coming to your blog. I’m still shocked by how many bloggers have not changed this setting. Are you one of them?

Published June 21st 2021

Edge Of Summer

The birth of two new characters featured a lot on my blog during 2021. Not only did they feature a lot, but they also caused one of my older blog posts to go viral.

Published July 12th 2021

Why Are Some Bloggers Killing Off Comments Being left On Their Blogs?

A question that had many bloggers shaking their heads in disbelief. Why would any blogger kill off comments being left on their blog posts? Read the post to find out the answers.

Published July 19th 2021

Nightmare In Spring

I love a twist, and this piece of flash fiction was the biggest twist I’d ever achieved. And best of all, no one saw the twist coming. Will you spot the twist before finishing the story?

Published October 18th 2021

7 Common Mistakes To Avoid When Deciding Whether To Follow A Blog

Becoming overwhelmed with blogging is something I’ve witnessed many times. It’s a horrible feeling with lots of traps waiting for victims to fall into. This post takes a good look at the biggest trap of all. Are you about to become a victim?

Published November 29th 2021

How Do You Measure The Success Of Your Blog Posts?

As mentioned at the beginning of this post, so many bloggers and readers are measuring the success of blog posts the wrong way. Are you one of them?

Do you have a blog post from 2021 that you’d like to recommend? Leave a link to it in the comments section and tell me why you’re recommending it.

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