Thursday, July 6, 2017

Inspector Gadget

Guys and gals, I've been dropped.  At least my blog has been, from my own Feedly reader feed.  The nerve!

I have been investigating, but turning up very few clues as to why.  I unfollowed my blog, then added it back.  Still can't see the latest post.  It shows up as a blog I follow, but isn't updated by Feedly to current.  I tried adding it to the "Favorites" list within Feedly, and it appeared (and current) for a brief few minutes, then disappeared again!
Then I started to wonder about all the many quilt (and other) blogs I follow.  Could it be that I have not been seeing their updates in Feedly either?  So I started looking closer, and although Feedly was telling me some hadn't updated in months, if I clicked through to the blog itself, they were, in fact, staying current.  Curiouser and curiouser.

I began to wonder how many people might be having the same issue with Feedly, and may assume I dropped out of the blogosphere?

I learned that the free version of Feedly (which is what I use) is now limiting new users to 100 blogs.  Any more than that and you have to pay a monthly fee to upgrade to unlimited.  Free Feedly didn't used to be limited, and I've followed hundreds of blogs (not that I get around to reading them all).  But I wonder if some internal metric now determines which of those I get to see in the Feedly reader free version?  

I hadn't updated my own blog in over 30 days.  Perhaps 30 days is a metric by which the blog "falls off"?  In the meantime, however, I've added blogs without an issue, and I'm seeing those people's posts in Feedly; hence, I conclude they're not truly limiting me from adding new ones above the 100 mark (perhaps I'm grandfathered in?).  But maybe, instead, the less active blogs (mine included) are falling off the radar (or reader) and not showing up as having posted anything new?

Many questions, a few hunches, but no definitive answers that I've found thus far.  Guess I'll see if this post all of a sudden shows up in my Feedly feed like nothing ever happened.  Maybe the previous post exceeded some parameter (like overall size...there were a lot of pictures in the last post).  I'll let you know.  (Edited to add:  Okay, so I see this post in Feedly...that's good, but it's still weird about the previous post.  I still have questions.)

In the process of investigating and looking into options, I've started to get reacquainted with Bloglovin'.  I'm still not thrilled with it—the layout seems a bit overwhelming and less informative to me, for starters—but at least I seem to be seeing in Bloglovin' all the blogs I follow.  Things have changed since I last used it on a regular basis, and it'll take some time to get used to again.  Also, I'm having to sort through the blogs I had been following in Feedly and add them to Bloglovin'.  Good thing it's been a holiday week with available down time, ha.

In going through the Feedly blog listing one by one—wow, a lot of people I used to follow have stopped blogging.  Maybe they are connecting on a different platform (Instagram, etc.).  But I miss you guys!  It's sad to realize the extent of the exodus, and it feels like losing friends, even though most of us have never met in real life.

Has hobby blogging become a thing of the past, do you think?  I don't know, there seems to be a different vibe than just a couple short years ago.  Not sure whether readership has increased or decreased, but it seems like people commented more.  Myself included.  Just an observation.  Speaking personally, it seems sometimes like things reach a level when you just can't possibly keep up (maybe after 100 blogs? he-he), so you give up trying and just pop in here or there with a comment when you can.  Yet reading and somewhat keeping track of where people are in their lives, feels like a true connection, even if you don't engage or comment, so when those people go away, there's that pang of loss.  Still, I totally get that there are various reasons people move on, and I wish them all the best.  It may well be that I decide to do the same someday.

Anyway, back to the story.  Along the way, I decided to subscribe to my own email list.  Why I had never done that before, I don't know.  Come to find out that in the last post, the email version doesn't have the YouTube videos embedded.  Just dead space where there was something to see in the actual post.  Good to know.  I'll keep that in mind for the future.  Also, I'm not sure I like the look of the email version, but that seems beyond my grasp of how to fix at this point.

(By the way, the music in the last post under "Listening" was by Jason Isbell, and "Watching" was the Netflix series GLOW.  Maybe in the future, I'll just link versus embed stuff like that.)

Here's a question about Bloglovin':  I've been getting periodic email notifications that read, "Bloglover is now following your blog."  After about the third or fourth identical notification, I assumed this was a tactic Bloglovin' used to get users to log in after a period of time and use the site.  A kind of solicitation, like the emails Pinterest sends to get you to click over.  But I see now, in looking at my Bloglovin' followers, that there are indeed numerous "Bloglovers."  Hence, I wonder if this is how it appears if someone follows you anonymously, i.e. the generic name "Bloglover"?

I probably sound really green about this stuff, and I apologize for the technical nature of this post.  Maybe your experiences can help this dog learn some new tricks.  Do you have any insights or observations to share on the subject of your favorite feed reader?  Or on blog reading and/or commenting in general?  Do you follow your own blog to stay on top of technical issues and/or see it from a different perspective?  Do share.


Lisa Marie said...

I still follow and read lots of blogs but I have noticed many bloggers post less frequently or haven't posted in a long while. I just use my blogger dashboard the way I did back in the days before GFC "went away". As a blog reader but not a blog writer the whole GFC change didn't really affect me in a noticeable way. I believe many now use Instagram rather than blogs but I still find plenty of blog posts to entertain and inspire me.

audrey said...

There are definitely less people blogging. Those that that do blog, it's less often or they have several social media platforms they use so they spread their online presence around. I think the rise in smart phone ownership helped bring about a lot of these changes. I got my first smart phone just last fall & can already tell that I use bloglovin' reader a whole lot more-- follow many more blogs. On the down side, that increase in readership Means I can't possibly comment like I used to. And I don't even follow the instagram crowd! As far as bloglover ive never been sure what that's about. Bloglovin has finally made it easier to click to the original post though and also, we can comment directly on bloglovin reader if we choose so they're getting better.

Kevin the Quilter said...

You might as well be speaking a foreign language to this non techie! LOL
I have no idea what Feedly, or Bloglovin is????

Vicki said...

The timing of this post is unbelievable! About 20 minutes ago, I read a blog post that referenced a post by another blogger I follow, but I hadn't seen that post. I went to her blog and scrolled down, only to find none of her posts were familiar, meaning none had shown up in my feed. This has been happening a lot lately so I emailed Bloglovin to ask if there's a limit to the number of blogs I can follow. I'm so tired of all these platforms hooking me in and then changing what I loved about them (I'm still mad at Instagram!). It'll be interesting to see if Bloglovin has an explanation.

Shasta Matova said...

That's too bad about Feedly. You would think they would inform you if they were making a change. I have been using Bloglovin' and still enjoy it. I follow a lot of blogs too, and I have found that even though there are blogerss that drop off and stop posting, there are plenty of others who start or pick up, or somehow were out there and I just didn't know.

Marei said...

I know diddly about the how-to's of blogging, but personally I do still read blogs just not on a daily basis anymore. Why? Because I have my phone with me virtually all the time and reading blogs on the phone is a special kind of hell. That means I have to boot up the computer and that doesn't happen but once or twice a month usually. Then, because I'm so rarely on it, I spend way too much time trying to catch up with all my blogs. YOU, my dear, are one of the few that I make sure to read each time I log on.
Also, so many of the blogs I used to like have become "commercials" in the past year or so. Specifically for the GO! system. I'm not interested in reading that kind of stuff. I want to read about people.

Quiltdivajulie said...

I use Bloglovin as a feed reader but I do not use their app. While I sometimes read blogs on my iPad, I still prefer to read them on my computer where I have a keyboard to share my comments (v.hunt and peck one finger at a time on a tiny key pad). I blog a bit less because there is more going on here and I have less computer time - but I still read and follow blogs and comment as often as I can or when I have something to share. Like Marei, I despise the commercial blogs - I understand why but I choose not to go that route. I do not comment on Bloglovin because no one can respond via email and I don't like them trying to become more than a reader. I do share photos on IG but only to drive traffic to the blog. I have a FB account but am rarely there (mostly to keep up with distant family). Each of us can only do a certain amount and my sense is that blogging takes more time, thought, and energy so some people are leaving it behind instead of quick and instant alternatives (I still prefer the thought process and the stories of blogging).

Kaja said...

I don't use bloglovin or feedly, just have a folder on my bookmarks bar and check all the blogs I like just by clicking through from that. I read a discussion about the death of blogging a year or two ago which said that it's harder to comment from a smartphone, so these days more people read but don't comment,just because the interface makes it tricky. Instagram is great if you want instant gratification, but I personally don't think it lets you build friendships the way interacting through blogs can.

Misty said...

I use Feedly to read blogs and have not noticed any problems (so far) with missing posts. I read blogs regularly and I really enjoy them.

There are probably a lot of reasons that blogs are less popular now. Like some have said, accessing blogs from a different device changes the reading experience. There is a lot more content in various formats now (blogs, videos, Instagram, etc.) than there was when I started blogging years ago.

I think also that commenting on blog posts has decreased. I get much more feedback (likes and comments) on Instagram than on my blog. Blogging is a lot more work than sharing on Instagram so I have to admit that I have asked myself recently whether it is worth it to keep updating my blog.


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