Bloggers Wish List for 2006

12/28/2005

>Last edition of the "post that never died." Promise. Received some great "wishes" that needed to be included. Thanks to y'all for sharing your thoughts, for the trackbacks and links. It will be interesting to revisit this at the end of 2006 and see whose wishes actually came true!

>I've added some additional excellent "more and less wishes". Not sure if this is correct "blog protocol" - but to keep life simple and all insights in one place, I'm making a management decision to include all wishes on this post. Just seems to make sense.

>It's been an exciting  year for the the virtual communities that we affectionately call "the blogosphere." As a business strategy, blogs are making their way into mainstream acceptance. More voices are being heard and listened to on both sides of the post - blogger and commenter (assuming comments are left on of course.)

Began to wonder how bloggers would like the blogsphere to evolve during the next 12-months. What would people, who have a stake in the evolution of this medium, like to see "more of and less of in 2006."  So I asked a few blog buddies (If you're name fell off the list shoot me an email and I'll add yours to the next round.)

Here's what I'm seeing ...
Many folks wanted a kinder more civil blogosphere.  Others wanted more credible and higher standards of professionalism. Bloggers were looking for less "fruit cake" or pass along information posts, without value-added commentary. Several people wanted to hear new voices including women, clients and older bloggers.

From a tactical aspect people wanted to see better use of the side bars, use of personal domain names and to kill off the concept of tags. Less ads and more content. Blog platforms that work.

Not surprising less comment spam was on several wish lists. In keeping with a more professional environment less self promotion and less whining.

Sidebar:
I encourage you click to visit some new bloggers and renew the acquitance of some blogger friends who you may not have visited in awhile.
Oh and please excuse the multiple fonts and the horrid spacing...call it technical difficulties. I have not a clue what happened.


More of ...


Yvonne DiVita
MORE Smart Women Bloggers. There are dozens now, but I want more. I want women to stand up and be counted, because blogging is word of mouth marketing at its best, and that's a task we are designed by nature to dominate.

Jane Genova
In the blogosphere, I would like to see more evidence of research on a topic, just the way mainstream media provides evidence from research.  Opinion is good but opinion backed by documentation is better.  Now that we're being taken more seriously, we have to become more serious in how we present information and points of view.

Marshall Kirkpatrick
I'd like to see more sidebar appreciation - I think sidebars are one of the most under-loved parts of every blog (am I wrong?). 


Lee Odden
What I'd like to see more of is the availability of basic ecommerce functions as plug 'n play options with major blog software packages. Blogs are good for business, big and small and I think there's a lot of opportunity for business and value for consumers with ecommerce blogs.


More niche blogging. Blogging is powerful because it is the power of niche communities. We all talk about it.

Dave Taylor
More civility and professionalism. The level of aggressive interchange in the blogosphere doesn't make "the conversation" more genuine, it makes it more juvenile and makes it harder for Corporate America to truly grasp the business case for blogging.

Donna Lyons-Miller
I wish blog people would chill & be more open minded to innovation without damning those that try new things. I guess it's another version of Peace On Earth Goodwill to Men.

Scott Allen
I'd like to see more of less. What do I mean? I'd like to see blog carnivals with the seven best posts rather than all 50 that were submitted. I want better tools for subscribing just to the information I want. I want to see people acting more as filters than as aggregators. I think posting every passing thought is passe, at least for business blogs - I'd like to see people stay more focused.

Average Jane
More appreciation for the raw skills each blogger uses:  writing, photography, design, etc.  I think a lot of bloggers fail to get the respect they deserve because their subject matter is dismissed as "too trivial" (and I'm not talking about myself here - I know my blog is all about trivial matters!)

Marc Babei
I’d like to see more blogs written by client-side marketers.

Sybil Stershic

To find more time to read other blogs on a regular basis!

Millie Garfield
I would like to see more older people discover the computer and start blogging.  Like Mikie says, "If they try it, they will like it."

Susan Getgood
With the corollary that I’d like to see more awareness by folks that they are responsible for their own success (or lack thereof). ….. You want to succeed at something, take charge of it – make it happen, don’t keep listing all the outside forces that prevented you from succeeding. You won’t win all the time, but you, and no one else, owns your success.

Tim Jackson
More people blogging. Yeah I know, everybody and his grandmother is already starting a blog, but there are many more people out there who should be lending their voices to the chorus who should be blogging too. Plus many more companies need to start blogging. Like Dana mentions, the person to person interactivity of blogging is still deeply under utilized. I know that from my own brand's experiences, blogging has been a very successful tool in getting consumers to reconnect to the bikes I sell. More creativity in the kinds of blogging going on. More humor. I think too many bloggers take themselves far too seriously. A little humility and a sense of humor goes a long way. 

Marianne Richmond
In keeping with the season, less fruitcake blogs; Johnnie Carson said there was only one fruit cake in the world and everyone just kept sending it to each other. If just passing along information read on someone else’s blog, please at least add an adjective or a reason why it is being passed along, in a conversational tone... More tech support for the non-intuitive.

 Grace Bonney

I’d love to see more original blogs. Copycat blogs seem to sprout up every day and I’d love to see some really original content that speaks to a niche that hasn’t been covered yet. I’d personally love to see a site for travelers that care about design, a resource of sorts.
 
Scott Burkett
-I would like to see the people who will never make any money from their blogs remove the third party advertisements from said blogs.

-I would like to see more business bloggers ... fewer pictures of people's dogs and more thought leadership.

-I would like to see better ways of finding business bloggers.

Elisa Camahort
-Research: if you're gonna say it, cite it. Cite something. I don't even know you, don't ask me to just believe you!

-Useful and user-friendly tools. That work (and I mean with full functionality) on Macs!!!!!
-'Live and let live' attitudes from bloggers of one type toward bloggers of another. If you don't like it you don't have to read it, and you don't have to write one like it.
-That being said, my personal preference is: more context and commentary

Dana VanDen Heuvel
-I'd like to see more people move beyond 'blogging' and reach deeper to the 'metaphors' that blogging represents like customer-to-corporatation (read: people-to-people) connection and the role blogging plays in the participant economy.
- Let's see more bloggers realize that they are part of changing the world as we know it, even if only in some small way in a little corner of the world. Online conversation is a beautiful thing.

Bill Flitter
Marketers need to consider blogging seriously, if not by creating a blog for their brand at the very least participate in a constructive manner with the community they serve. This could simply be just commenting on blogs that mention their brand. Let your customers no you are listening. It makes for a happier community.”

Elana Centor
If I am going to be completely honest and self-absorbed, the thing that I would like it see more of in 2006 is more traffic at FunnyBusiness. My second wish for 2006 is that I would like to see "professional journalists" get over themselves in their attitude to those of us who choose to blog.

Nick Jacobs
I'd like to see Republicans and Democrats come together for the good of the country for the first time in 14 years.

Peter Flachner
-I'd like to see more new bloggers joining in the fun. I've walked a couple of techno-phobic friends through getting started recently, and it has been such a pleasure to watch them "get it".
-I'd like to see more people using their own domain names - this is going to be a huge issue as blogs develop and grow.
-I'd like to see more originality and care in blog design.-
I'd like to see more thought put into blog archives. -
I'd like technorati (or equivalent) to work as advertised.
-I'd really, really, really like to see the word 'blog' disappear. Blogs are websites. Let's just call them that.
-I'd like to continue to meet amazing people through my blogging adventures.

Sally Falkow
Communication is the universal solvent. It never hurt to communicate more. Blogging is the way to reach out and communicate with people.  Making yourself and your company real to your audience is a good thing. Learn to let go of the ‘message’ and really communicate with your public.

Nancy White
Well, on the flippant side, more chocolate, less baloney. Getting a wee bit more serious (because I'm still on blogholiday) I'd like to see more exploration of how blogs can support collaboration, particularly in the non profit world, but I'm happy to see it happening in any domain. How can we create both this wonderful sense of self identity that is so strong in blogs and lean it towards a group goal? Crazy? Perhaps. More generally, I will be reading blogs that:
-help me see other's perspectives, particularly outside of my culture or domains
-make me smile when I need some smiling
-offer me the chance to learn something new

Alex
To make more than 10 cents from my blog.

Mary Schmidt
1. Ditto re civil behavior/common courtesy. That said, we should use the blogosphere (depending on the blog subject matter & purpose) to raise awareness of shoddy business practices, scams, government wrongdoings and such. I do make it a practice to never say anything I wouldn't say to somebody's face (and usually have) but then I'm pretty blunt when I'm unhappy about something (principle is the thing.)
2. Ditto re getting more people involved. The more interaction we have, the better chance we'll avoid problems (versus having solved them). Example: If the GOP and Demos had really talked to each other (instead of AT each other) and focused on the issues (versus dong mass mediocrity sound bites) - we'd be in much better shape.

Wayne Hurlbert
I would like to see some technical improvements appearing in both individual blogs and in blogging software platforms. Improvements in how blogs speak to one another via trackbacks would assist bloggers in referencing one another. Perhaps an automated system that included all blogging software platforms would work well in this regard. Improved and simplified RSS feeds would help more novice RSS users add blog feeds to their subscription lists. With greater east of RSS use, and better cross interfaces, more bloggers could reach wider audiences. Better technical blogging systems would not only help individual bloggers and readers, but the blogging industry as a whole.

Koan Bremner
For myself? I'd like to see more of a blurring between the personal and professional in blogging - particularly, I'd like to see corporate and professional bloggers "let the mask slip" a little more, and show us the *real* people (not fake, airbrushed or "character") behind their blog and /or company. Companies that do that are the ones that fascinate me - they're the ones, to be mercenary, whom I will grace with my spending power (such as it is!). Of course, it won't happen - but, hey, a girl can dream can't she :)

Ivan Chew
I wish for a more robust web identification system in the blogosphere. It scares me that it's so easy to pretend to be someone else. e.g., posting a comment.

Dave Dolak
I'd like to see more focus .. blogs that stick with a theme rather than just random comments and a lot of disconnected nonsense.

Carrie
I can't help but notice that several of the wishes posted already exist. Some just haven't looked for them.  I know that bloggers tend to form cliques (ie. Business bloggers, Women bloggers, Doctor bloggers, IT bloggers, Political bloggers) and I think, most of them just need to step outside their group to find what they want. It's definitely out there. (Read more in comments)

Holly Buchanan I'd like to see more use of Trackbacks. What I love most about the blogosphere is the ability to find new and fresh voices - wonderful talented people from around the world  you'd nver know existed if it wasn't for their blogs. Interconnecting is what blogs do best. Let's do more of it.

Mike Bawdin
1. Civility in discourse and criticism. I don't have a problem with points of view that are contrary to my own, but I expect people to be decent and thoughtful in how they express their positions. Declaring that there is a "War on Christmas" or calling people derogatory names when commenting on their blog post (ref. the now infamous "pussy" comment allegedly thrown out by an Alaskan Air employee on Jeremy Herman's blog.
2. I hope we learn that no one can "have it all" - there are limits to our ability to maintain social relationships. If we want blogging to go beyond the "early adopters" those in the mainstream will need to feel secure in their space. If you talk to people who aren't blogging, a lot of them shake their head and say they just don't get it. Forming relationships through social media can be a bit like drinking from a firehose, but never really knowing when the firehose is going to be turned off and on. In a much larger sense, we have to learn that it's okay to set limits and slow down. I'm not advocating withdrawing from society as I am taking some time to get to know fewer people better - I think the result will be much more fulfilling. The implications for the blogosphere are, I think, fairly significant in the long-term.
3. All that stuff about "slowing down" and becoming more intimate with fewer people aside, I hope we'll see the birth of some significant movement back to rich sources of mass media. I'm not calling for a return to the days of the big three television networks - but now, with technology capable of doing what it can and the country wired as much as it is, there must be a way to produce a few primary sources of information dissemination that will help frame the debates and discussions we need to continue progressing.
These are three, really big ideas. But I believe each of us, as individuals, can work to make them a reality.


Robert Scoble
I'd like to see good information make a come back. Reviews anyone? DPreview.com has awesome ones on camera. What if we had a review site like that for software?

Nicole Simon
We should be challenging. Expect more from the people around you, including your readers. How else are we suppose to learn and evolve if everything stays mediocre and just for the mainstream taste?
To quote one of my favorite song lyrics: "What have you done today to make you feel proud?" There are so many people and you can't be everyone's darling. Stop trying to be and make the the one person proud which really counts: You!
Say what you want: In order for you to be more than mediocre, others (and you yourself) need impulses and ideas. Tell them what you want and why, so others can pick up on your request.

Sidebar: I have read your mail and pondered upon an answer for a longer time and it strikes me, that me - the more technical geek of most of the people I know - comes up with something quite ungeeky to add to your list. I will do a podcast later this day just on this topic so you see how occupied it has me :))
Sidebar: Nicole did do a
podcast about her 2006 wishes for the blogosphere.

Less of ...

Jane Genova - Opinions that haven't been well-thought-out.


Marshall Kirkpatrick
of...well less spam blogs clogging up my search feeds would be a dream
come true!
Lee Odden
What I would like to see less of is comment and trackback spam.

Arieanna Foley
 
Less metablogging. We all talk about it. Let's stop blogging about blogging quite so much and just get to it!

Scott Allen
I'd like, of course, less comment spam and splogs.

Average Jane

I'd like to see less compartmentalizing of blogs by topic.

Marc Babei
Less mindless self-promotion i.e. Seth Godin.

Sybil Stershic
To feel less pressure & more pleasure in writing my posts.


Susan Getgood
What I'd like to see less of (in the blogosphere, and in general as well) - less whining.

 
Tim Jackson
A bit less slandering. Dana is right, fewer blogs attacking companies and people would be refreshing. It is so true that this type of behavior does a lot more harm to the collective cause and scares more and more good people out of the blogosphere. Let's all step back for a minute and recognize that our importance is not so great that we are going to change the world over night nor are we the only real and relevant voices around. The mainstream media still has a place and importance, so we need to not take ourselves so seriously.

Grace Bonney

Less comment spam.Scott Burkett
I would personally like to see the death of "tagging", or the use of "tags" on blogs.

Elisa Camahort

-Comment spamming and splogging of course!
-Content theft.
-Mirroring of the exact same bias and blindness we see in the non-blog world.
-Advertising real estate that outnumbers actual content real estate.
That should do it for now!Dana VanDen Heuvel
I'd like to see less uncivil blogging. People starting blogs just to trash companies or trash other people. If you can't say something to someone's face, you shouldn't see it on a blog.

Nick Jacobs

It would be great if every restaurant in the country started trying to help the American diet by being nutrition conscious.  Less biggie meals and less biggie butts . . .
I would like to see less of is less vulgarity in posts. It's so fucking exhausting! Also I could use a little less snarking-wh did these folks playwith on the school playgroud? Sometimes reading a blog feels like the revenge of the nerds. I am amazed at how mean-spirited people really are. Is this suppose to be humor or high art? Civility. I wish for more civility.  I believe that a little civility can go a long way.    

Scott Neal
I’d like to see more bloggers who are not professional media or professional writers start blogs.  I think we all benefit when what I call “field level” bloggers share their first-person observations and feelings with the rest of the world.”

Nancy White
What I'd like to see less of? Well, the joy of blog is if you don't like 'em, don't read 'em. So it is easy to not see what I don't want to see. Not that I believe blinders are always a useful thing - grin. I know I won't be reading blogs that:
-don't have full RSS feeds because time is precious
-are over the top with self promotion or pure publicity seeking
-support gratuitous flames because I simply don't enjoy them. I don't begrudge them, I'm not wasting my time!

Koan Bremner
It goes without saying that I wish a painful, lingering death on comment spammers (well, *all* spammers, actually - but comments spam is the one that annoys me the most). Not a very Buddhist attitude, I know - but hey, I acknowledge my imperfections!

Dave Dolak
I'd like to see less press about blogging. We've all heard all about it and you aren't even being close to cutting-edge by reporting in now.


Nicole Simon
I want less people who do not understand why connecting to the internet is not an addiction but a new form of social interaction. I am tired of seeing those pity looks because they think, they do have a "real life" when all they do is watching television all night or going out in bars having meaningless conversations with people they already know.

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Comments

Toby, I'm deeply hurt you didn't ask me (sniffle)

But seriously, folks - here's my wish list:

1. Ditto re civil behavior/common courtesy. That said, we should use the blogosphere (depending on the blog subject matter & purpose) to raise awareness of shoddy business practices, scams, government wrongdoing and such. I do make it a practice to never say anything I wouldn't say to somebody's face (and usually have) but then I'm pretty blunt when I'm unhappy about something (principle is the thing.)

2. Ditto re getting more people involved. The more interaction we have, the better chance we'll avoid problems (versus having solve them) Example: If the GOP and Demos had really talked to each other (instead of AT each other) and focused on the issues (versus doing mass mediocrity sound bites) - we'd be in much better shape.

Posted by: Mary Schmidt on Dec 29, 2005 11:38:23 AM

Oh, and I'd also like somebody to explain to me why Michelle Malkin is so popular - 'cuz she's a cute woman conservative? I don't find her particularly witty, thoughtful or thought provoking and she's got all kinds of cheesy ads and such on her blog. Doesn't say "class" or "serious thinker" at all. That said, I think she's marginally better than Ann Coulter(mildly amusing entertainer). And, yes, I'd say all that to their faces.

Posted by: Mary Schmidt on Dec 29, 2005 11:44:41 AM

To make more then 10 cents a day from my blog.

Posted by: Alex on Dec 29, 2005 12:55:56 PM

Toby,

Thank you again for letting me play along. I guess, really, I should thank Dana since he had the link to you and this quest. Still, thank you.

(How's that for civility?)

Posted by: Tim Jackson- Masiguy on Dec 29, 2005 2:10:41 PM

Tim - Thanks for dropping a comment on Diva Marketing...very civil friendly of you. Bloggers are the friendliest people ... sometimes!

Mary - ooops...so sorry. But I'll move your comment to the post how's that .. 2 in one?

Posted by: Toby on Dec 29, 2005 11:10:39 PM

I'd like to see people take risks and evolve business models so radical the incumbents can be peruaded to participate in their own demise. Hang on, we're already doing that. As of early next year, 2 (hopefully 3) MSM editors of the largest rags in my space will be contributing to my planned 15 Minute RoundUp News Podcast. Assuming it works, guess who holds the franchise? Guess who doesn't?

And what about those incumbents who believe they hold so much share of voice they cannot possibly be undermined? What happens when they start to become irrelevant?

All interesting stuff.

Posted by: dahowlett on Dec 30, 2005 3:20:31 PM

(sniff, sniff)

Some good lists here. Thanks for compiling, Toby.

Posted by: TDavid on Dec 30, 2005 4:12:31 PM

I don't think my wishlist will materialise by 2006 but here goes: I wish for a more robust Web Identification system in the Blogosphere. It scares me that it's so easy to pretend to me someone else, e.g. posting a comment.

Posted by: Ivan Chew on Dec 31, 2005 11:13:14 PM

This was a very interesting read.

However, I can't help but notice that several of the wishes posted already exist. Some just haven't looked for them.

I know that bloggers tend to form cliques (ie. Business bloggers, Women bloggers, Doctor bloggers, IT bloggers, Political bloggers) and I think, most of them just need to step outside their group to find what they want. It's definitely out there.

Personally, I would like all bloggers to stop pretending they work for Reuters or the Associated Press and to stop holding other bloggers to that standard. On the one hand, many bloggers are saying they want more cited sources, they want this and that and then they say - wait for it - "I'd like to see more seniors blogging"! Well for heaven's sake, what senior wants to? (I have senior parents who I help get online regularly so yes, I am more than qualified to speak on this issue.)

It's hard to blog these days without being criticised for one thing or another. Seniors often have minor dementia, are isolated (that's why they blog) and most are intimidated by computers and the internet. If we're going to attack them for not holding to the same bar everyone else is pushing, then we're effectively making blogging one big ugly clique!

Whew. Sorry to rant but the contradictions of so called Professional Bloggers irritates me. I'm not normally this cranky but jeez, people need to stop with the demands, rules and expectations and just let others BE. And if something doesn't exist and somebody wants it, then that somebody only needs to get off their butt and create it instead of complaining to everyone else.

I do appreciate your blog. Wayne sent me over and he always has great referrals. Just wanted to throw my 2 cents in as an outsider looking in.

Posted by: Carrie on Jan 1, 2006 5:59:13 PM

I started my blog last summer, but placed it on the back burner until I could decide whether it was something I could maintain or not. I also spent a lot of time with my family in Germany last year, sometimes with vacations lasting 30 days or more, so I knew it wasn't the right time for me to blog. The idea of blogging stuck with me though, and for '06, I resolved to write more and to write regularly. I logged into blogger and got started 3 weeks ago. For me, it's a good resource for my design clients and friends, and it's a great way to document things that I can refer back to later on. I also love meeting people since I'm a total ENF/TP. Reaching out and making connections with others who are as design obsessed as I am makes me feel less like a freak, I guess. :) I also have to comment that I think Boston is an amazing city and I love it here; I'm passionate about everything from its rich history and architecture, to its cultural events, universities, natural beauty, and excellent shopping. It was only natural for me to want to start a blog that covers cool design spots in Boston, as well as things I've found online or while on vacation.

I'm sure some bloggers may think others are out to steal their ideas. I just don't see that as a threat. If someone popped up here in Boston with a new design blog and started posting all their favorite things, I would actually be thrilled and would want to meet them. But, that's just me! I've always been a very secure person and a big fan of sharing and promoting creativity. Plus, my writing style is my voice. It's like someone trying to copy Rachel Ray or Issac Mizrahi or something. You can TRY to copy them, but why bother, be yourself instead and people will love who you are. I also think it doesn't phase me if someone "copies" my style because it's a great form of flattery. I mean, if someone were cutting and pasting my text, I'd draw the line I guess. But, again, I just don't care. Wrapping yourself up in stressing over the competition will only cause you to lose your focus and originality, the two things that are critical to your success.

I try to stay humble when I see ideas of mine or people posting things that I recently posted about, etc. I guess you have to consider that none of us are THAT original. I mean, we can't say we were the only one who ever had the idea of publishing a blog about doggie clothes, for instance. Just because we had the idea and put the idea on paper earlier than someone else, doesn't mean they didn't have the exact same idea YEARS in advance of us but just decided to start later in the game. We can't distract ourselves with worry over who is better, who came first, etc. What matters is writing about something that you're passionate about. This will only attract the right people, meaning people who "get" you. That's really all I'm looking for, to attract people that love to be surrounded by pretty things or items they cherish, and for those that really enjoy creating a great space for themselves.

There's a place for everyone with blogs, and I'm very happy we are all a part of it.

Okay, my blah blah is done! Next post! :)

Holly

Posted by: Holly on Feb 10, 2006 11:45:42 PM

Get over yourself Grace, you're all of a sudden a design expert.....Puhhhlease!

Posted by: Renee on Feb 7, 2007 1:04:42 PM

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