I wasn't sure if I wanted to write this post at all, I ranted about it on Facebook, I ranted to my friends via chat, and I probably going to rant about it some more today at work. It made me feel better enough to where I didn't see the need to write anything, but then I slept on it, and when I woke up this morning I still felt just as strongly about the issue (not angry though) as I did yesterday. And I feel that as a blogger I am here to stay and I want to make some things clear from the start.
Be warned though, some of you might get offended at what I say. I would like to apologize in advance if I do offend you, but not for what I'm about to say as like I mentioned before the issue is one I feel very strongly about.
So the issue is: FOLLOWING and GIVEAWAYS.
Remember my recent post on how I choose which blogs to follow? Pretty much everything I'm about to say here goes hand in hand with that post.
Few weeks ago I got a comment on my Strawberry Kimono blog from one of fellow beauty bloggers, letting me know that she liked my blog, and inviting me to come to her blog if I liked to follow and enter a giveaway and she would follow me back. So I was flattered, because hey I like when people like my blog. I didn't immediately checked out her blog though but when I did I decided that I like the topic she writes about well enough to follow her, and giveaways was just a bonus so I entered.
Fast forward about a week and I still haven't read a single entry on her blog COMPLETELY. I read maybe third, sometimes half, but mostly just few lines and all because she writes in one (or two) really looooooooooong never-ending paragraphs that are extremely hard to follow. I was getting headaches instead of reading satisfaction. So on Feb 3rd I posted this on my Twitter "Just UNfollowed a pretty nice blog. Couldn't take her never-ending paragraphs though" and unfollowed her. I didn't even remember about her giveaway anymore at the time (and on the side note, her giveaway ended on Feb 5th, so I was disqualified by not following anyways at this point). End of story right? Apparently not.
Enter yesterday when I receive a comment on my kimono blog saying "Didn't win the giveaway so not following any longer? LOL! XOXO". EXCUSE ME?!! I think my jaw literally dropped at that point. I was huffing and puffing and ready to write something nasty but instead I settled on:
"No, I'm not following you because you write with very long paragraphs that are very hard to follow.
And giveaways are not the reason I follow anyone's blog. I liked your blog, I followed you because I really wanted to read what you write about, I tried to read it for a few days but couldn't deal with the paragraphs that never ever end.
Also, I still on your email updates list."
Then a few minutes later I decided that it bothered me enough to actually email her and clarify things. My reasoning for that was that I wasn't sure if she would come back to read the comment, since I believe you actually have to sign up for email updated to be notified of new comments. So if she didn't sign up for that, she would never know I posted anything. Here is the email:
This is Lyuba-chan from StrawberryKimono.blogspot.com and few minutes ago I got a comment from you on my blog about unfollowing you because I didn't win a giveaway. I must say that I was pretty offended by that comment. I replied on my blog, but I'm not sure you would read it there so I decided that it was important enough for me to clarify things, and wanted to email you instead.
When I first checked out your blog I thought I liked it, but only glanced over it at the time. I came back later and decided that I do like it enough to follow, and that's when I entered your giveaway. Fast forward a week, I've been receiving email updates as well as blogspot updates about your postings but I could never actually manage to read the whole post. You write with never ending paragraphs that are very hard to follow. I simply could not take it anymore, so I unfollowed your blog.
At the time, I completely forgot that you even had a giveaway until you reminded me today.
Hope this clarifies my reasons.
You might ask why I never emailed her and brought up my critique of her writing/blog in the first place. Well... it was because no one asked me of my opinion and I do not make it a habit of giving one unless asked. Plus what if she gets offended and I just create drama? Better just quietly leave and forget about it. I can't change every single thing in the world that bothers me anyway right?
I never got a reply to my email, the comment in question got deleted from my blog (by her), she unfollowed me and instead this is what she posted on her twitter: "taking time out to write detailed reviews apparently is an annoyance for some". Ok, how is me saying "never ending paragraphs" can mean "detailed reviews" is beyond my understanding. I follow PLENTY of bloggers who write LONG, DETAILED reviews but guess what? They use proper paragraphs and it is a breeze to read! But when I read her blog I find myself figuring out where it is best to insert paragraph breaks, and I'm not even an English major! That is bad. That is bad enough to set up Lyuba's red alert and stop reading, otherwise I just might go a little bit crazy.
Now on to the giveaway question. It is bad enough to consider that someone would unfollow you because they didn't win a giveaway, but how shallow it is to actually go and say that to that person? This is the reason why I got so offended. Of course, no one can knows what goes on in my head so I'll just say it to make things clear: I will not follow a blog that I do not like no matter how great the giveaway is. If I follow you, that means I LIKE your blog and if you happen to have a giveaway, and I happen to enter, then it's an added bonus. And I do not enter every giveaway. If I unfollowed every blog where I didn't win a giveaway, I would have no blogs to read. It's as simple as that.
For someone to take my pretty constructive criticism (and several people agreed with me at this point) and twist it around to say that I don't like her detailed reviews is pretty sad. Maybe she didn't initially ask me for my opinion, but with that type of comment on my blog she opened up herself to it. But looks like she wasn't prepared for what I had to say.
So this is my little bit of my (first) blogging drama. I, maybe naively, thought that I could avoid it since I am fairly new to blogging world and by no means popular, and I don't go out of my way to promote my blog under every comment I make (instead thinking that if someone likes my blog, they will find me and they will follow on their own) promising to follow people back. Looks like I was wrong.
Again I would like to apologize if I offended anyone with my words, or if someone thinks that this issue is too insignificant to write about. I still stand by my words.