Dubai Consumer Mirror

Sunday, September 27, 2009

7 things I like to see (New) UAE bloggers do more

I was asked once to give my thoughts on the UAE 'social media' scene -as someone who's been doing this for some time now- and does NOT blatantly yell over roof tops claiming to be the first, the best or a self-claimed-blog-twitter-guru after doing it for a couple of months.

After a long though, here are a few tips i'd like to share with those who have just 'hopped on' the band wagon. That includes anyone who's been doing this no longer than 1 year.

1. Stop whining
Almost every new blog i visited this year is PACKED with complaints, rants and raves.

I was no exception, to be honest. When i started this blog in 2005, I started with a lot of ranting and complaining. I complained about anything and almost every inconvenience I run into in life, no matter how trivial it may be, could end up on my blog.

Thankfully now, i don't do that anymore ... not as much at least :)

Its easy to fall for the temptation. Almost everyone thrives on spitting out negative criticism. It gives you room to unleash ur hidden sarcastic-self, and opens doors for cynical beings to jump out of the closet.

Not only that, it brings in more comments - aren't we all there for the comments?

However, it takes much more creativity and energy to highlight whats good, healthy and useful. And if there is a negative experience you want to share, do so but be fair and give people the benefit of the doubt before you unleash your wrath.


2. Acknowledge comments
I do my best to reply to every comment I get here; whether for or in disagreement with the post. Reply individually to these comments. Especially ones that you haven't seen before in your blog.

It may sound cumbersome to individually reply to 50 comments (if you are that lucky), but its about being courteous to those who spared a minute of their lives, to share their thoughts with you. You owe it back to them.

3. Get to know your first timers
I can always tell who's been here for the first time and who is a returning visitor. Many new blogs I comment on, don't even acknowledge my first-time visit, comment or interaction. I rarely go back to these blogs.

4. Be respectful, not repulsive
Some people believe they can make a stronger counter-point by adding personal insults to the blogger - just because they (1) think they are anonymous and they can get away with it and (2) they think it makes their point stronger.

Well, for (1) no you are never anonymous and you can always be tracked back and (2) No, as a matter of fact, profanity makes your argument much weaker - I usuelly delete any comment that has profanity.

5. Visit back
Its simple really - i'll scratch yours if you scratch mine. Always return the favor with a return visit. And if the blog you are visiting back doesn't genuinely interest you, that shouldn't stop you from leaving a 'courtesy I-woz-'ere comment' every once in a while.

Also, link to whoever links for you. There are tools that show who is linking to you. (if you are linking to my blog and i missed it, do let me know - happy to link back ;) )

6. Stick to something
Blogging in the earlier years, basically when this whole blogging business started in the UAE, most blogs blogged about anything and everything. Very few were specialist blogs - maybe no more 5 or 6.

I see an upcoming evolution and I'd love it if the new kids on the block can play a role to define more genre-blogs: Autos, tech blogs (i know of a couple already), celeb, crafts, environmental and maybe -gasp- a few political ones. Though i still think personal blogs will always prevail as the majority, but i believe we will see more specialists coming our way.

7. Use technology to become a better blogger
Though comment moderation may discourage people from engaging with you, but it protects fending off spam, lamers and abusive language hurlers. Also, use RSS feeds to effortlessly keep track of your favorite blogs. Email and/or SMS notifications, can help you to stay up to date on who is doing what and visitor stat trackers to know what/who is biting and what/who isn't.


Now, while I try to stick to these tips myself, I admit I can do better at it and will do better enshallah. Nonetheless, I am quite thrilled to see that blogging has gone a long way and looking forward for more blogs to follow.

20 Comments:

  • I hope your wishes are answered.
    There is an old folk story about a painter hanging his art work in the middle of the town for comments. You know what happened next.
    Complaining is the easiest thing to do. One doesn't need a brain to complain, feelings will do the job. So, why not stick to what we do the best.

    By Anonymous Kayani, at September 27, 2009 at 12:35 PM  

  • Hi from Amman, Moryarti! Just wanted to be a good commenter.

    These are good ideas, even for us old timers.

    It seems blogging has tapered off, but almost in a good way as it is back to a few instead of everybody and their brother.

    By Anonymous kinzi, at September 27, 2009 at 12:36 PM  

  • "i'll scratch yours if you scratch mine"

    mihmih

    Wow man you got khalto Kinzi to comment! You've been blessed!

    In truth I do feel jealous of the "Specialty" blogs because it needs a lot of dedication from the blog owner to keep everything else aside. Still, though, I am proud of my blog, and it always needs improvements to its contents, which is essentially how we bloggers evolve - by reading other blogs, taking what we think is best, and try to adapt in areas and innovate in others

    By Blogger KJ, at September 27, 2009 at 12:58 PM  

  • I must admit.. I am not following all the rules now a days... I used to have 1000+ visits every month when I was very active with my blog and my friends blogs.. now I hardly get 300 visits a month just becuase I am not following those rules.

    at the moment I am moving to Saudi Arabia as I have accepted a new offer their. maybe when I settle down I will be a Saudi blogger and active again :D

    By Blogger Naseem, at September 27, 2009 at 1:15 PM  

  • Good tips but I would expect nothing less from you!

    By Blogger Mita, at September 27, 2009 at 1:27 PM  

  • @Kayani - thanks for dropping by. Yes, i know the story. So true.

    @kinzi - you are on my RSS reader and though i don't comment much, i am all caught up with your updates and little ones too – happy back to school :)

    @KJ - personal blogs is a 'specialty' too. And urs is loaded with toys others would kill to have ;)
    I think until the industry start to acknowledge blogs 'potential' the way it is in the US and EU, i think people will start paying attention and invest more in blogs.

    @Naseem - NOOOOO ... la wayn mashi we tarekna? .. yallah man, good luck and enjoy Saudi. Jeddah or Riyadh?

    @Mita - I am honored and humbled indeed :)....

    oh and thanks for the RT too ;)

    By Blogger moryarti, at September 27, 2009 at 2:16 PM  

  • Good list, Mory - I'm strongly with you on responding to comments and welcoming new people who comment.

    What I loved about starting my blog is that I got to meet so many people, in the UAE and elsewhere in the world, who I would never have met if not for blogging - you and your gorgeous wife included!

    By Blogger nzm, at September 27, 2009 at 3:00 PM  

  • Very well said, sir! An excellent guide for us all.

    By Blogger Brn, at September 27, 2009 at 3:50 PM  

  • Lovely post Mory :)

    You keep us waiting for ages but then you give us beautiful gems :)

    I agree with you in general except on 6-stick with something! I find being a generalist more fun because we live in a coloured world, and not black and white.. however my blog posts tend to eventually focus on just one topic.. and my tag cloud shows that very clearly...

    By Blogger BuJ, at September 27, 2009 at 8:49 PM  

  • Yes - I couldn't agree with you more! Well said.

    By Blogger Aaron, at September 27, 2009 at 10:07 PM  

  • Thx for reading then! Yes, the whole world is in school now, mommies are content. :)

    By Anonymous kinzi, at September 28, 2009 at 10:07 AM  

  • @nzm - likewize M.. your dubai re-visit is way overdue.

    @Brn - thanks for dropping by. Al-Ain is never the same without you guys.. my regards to the family

    @Buj - thanks habboub .. dayman rafe3 roo7i el ma3nawiyeh :)

    @Aaron - thanks! Seems like you had a great time in Beirut .. ping me next time for some 'insider' tips ;)

    @Kinzi - I didn't send my daughter to school yet - she is 3.5 and we don't want to take any chances with this whole Swineflu thing.. we are just giving it a week to see how will it go at her school. enshallah kahir

    By Blogger moryarti, at September 28, 2009 at 10:37 AM  

  • @moryarti - I am moving to Jeddah man... wallah I will miss everything in Dubai. I am depending on your blog to keep us updated about Dubai's events ;)

    By Blogger Naseem, at September 28, 2009 at 10:41 AM  

  • Hear, hear!

    By Blogger Abu Dhabi/UAE Daily Photo, at September 28, 2009 at 3:04 PM  

  • I'm guilty with #6 :)

    Great tips, moryarti!

    By Anonymous nadia, at September 28, 2009 at 6:54 PM  

  • Great tips, Mory.

    I try to stick to most of them.

    Now it's your turn to scratch. ;)

    By Blogger Dubai Jazz, at September 29, 2009 at 12:46 PM  

  • @Naseem have a safe trip and good luck in Saudi

    @AUH/DXB Photo - thanks mate ;)

    @Nadia - thank you ...

    @DJ - mashi ya 3am :)

    By Blogger moryarti, at October 4, 2009 at 9:29 PM  

  • Thanks for the tips, they will sure help me in my budding blogging venture.

    By OpenID muteherald, at October 14, 2009 at 2:01 PM  

  • thanks!
    :-)

    By Blogger Prasanth - പ്രശാന്ത്‌, at November 14, 2009 at 5:10 PM  

  • I agree 110% - well-said!:D

    By Blogger um 3eesa, at December 8, 2009 at 5:20 AM  

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