Blogging for the Right Reasons

This will be a very quick blog post just to address a growing trend I’ve noticed. It started with the wave of prominent bloggers getting hired by EMC for the vSpecialist team. With the recent VMware vExpert 2010 awards, this trend has gotten even bigger. What is the trend? The trend I’m seeing is people starting blogs just to get attention in the industry.

Of course everyone wants to be noticed in their industry. I understand that. I respect that. I want to be noticed in my industry, too—there’s nothing wrong with that. But I cannot stress strongly enough that if you are starting a blog simply to make some noise in the industry, maybe win an award, or get hired by <Insert Company Name Here>, you are blogging for all the wrong reasons.

If you’re going to blog (or tweet), do it for the right reasons. I mentioned this in my recent chinwag with Mike Laverick. The successful bloggers are the bloggers who blog because of their passion for the topic(s) about which they are blogging. Consider some of the well-known and well-respected bloggers out there:

Why do these guys blog and/or tweet? Well, I’m not privy to their thoughts, but what I get out of their writing is that they are passionate about their topics. That passion comes through in their writing, it infects the readers, and their popularity grows. But I don’t think they started out with the intent of becoming popular or well-known. They started out because there was a topic that they were interested in or knowledgeable about and for which they had a passion.

So if you’re going to start a blog, fine. Do it. It’s fun (hard work, but fun). But be sure to do it for the right reasons.

UPDATE: If, for whatever reason, I didn’t list your name above, it doesn’t mean anything! Those names just jumped out of my head as some of the many virtualization-focused blogs that I follow. In addition, I know the writers of these sites on a more personal basis than the writers of most other sites. There are so many other excellent virtualization sites that I would be remiss to try to list them all. I’ll leave that to Eric Siebert!

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39 comments

  1. Rimmergram’s avatar

    Scott, I think this is some very sound, sage advice. However, I do think blogging and tweeting are two fundamentally different things and cannot be compared in the same context of your article.

  2. Mike Shea’s avatar

    Hey Scott – I rarely comment anymore on a blog post, partially for the reason you very clearly articulate.

    Unfortunately, it seems to me, that the majority of tweeting/blogging out there is all about self aggrandizement. I think that is why we see all those Tweet fights and Blogger hissy-fights going on in our industry. (They often remind me of grade school play ground arguments.)

    I think most forget the simplest of facts – it is not about us, or our company we work for – it is about the customers we serve.

    That is why I still read your blog.

  3. brownsauce’s avatar

    I beg to differ. It really shouldn’t matter why somebody is blogging. As long as there’s good information on the blog, it’s valuable for everyone, right?
    Why are we dealing with technology anyway? Because it’s our job. I surely don’t do IT for the fun of it.
    I enjoy reading blog posts where you can see that the author is well into it and I don’t say you can’t have fun in your job or that it’s bad to have fun but it surely ain’t mandatory.
    So if somebody starts a blog because he thinks he can gain popularity in the vScene, hence make more money than that’s totally fine with me. There are no wrong reasons to share knowledge in my eyes.

  4. Mark Vaughn’s avatar

    I remember Jason Boche touching on that when he spoke on blogging at the VMWorld vExpert gathering last year. Listening to him and Steve Kaplan speak on blogging is what inspired me to quit thinking about it and finally start my blog. You were also a big help in providing me some pointers there, thanks.

    My site will never be the draw of yours or the ones you reference above, but I love discussing technology and enjoy the outlet.

  5. Christopher Kusek’s avatar

    I agree wholly, though I do find that some of the apprehensive bloggers who may not initially be blogging for the right reasons (not for lack of passion, but for lack of ‘comfort’ blogging) eventually may grow in to it, and become better writers as a result.

    You can work at, and fake good writing skills, but faking passion tends to be a little harder.

    Keep up the good work rockstar :)

  6. Bob Plankers’s avatar

    Amen. It isn’t a popularity contest, but you will become popular if your writing is good, your enthusiasm for the subject shows in your writing, and you write regularly and roughly on-topic. You’re right, it’s hard work, but like most things it gets easier with more practice.

    As for getting hired because you blog, I don’t know anybody who has been hired anywhere solely because they blog. A blog can help emphasize your excellent communication skills, and your enthusiasm for and knowledge of a topic. But you have to have those things first.

  7. Duncan’s avatar

    Spot on Scott.

    What got me started:
    - Sharing my experience and knowledge and learning from other people comments!

    What keeps me going:
    - Great comments / discussions that are part of many of articles these days. I get so much appreciation in return.

    Another thing that I also stress is that some bloggers are recruited by vendors, not all of them. Part of the reason is visibility, but the primary driver from my perspective is the fact that many of them are really smart guys and they know how to explain things. They know what people like to hear/read, and that is worth a lot.

  8. LucD’s avatar

    Hi Scott,
    I’m an avid reader of your blog, but to be honest I don’t get what you are trying to say in this post.
    Don’t you think the companies are smart enough to separate the wheat from the chaff ?
    And no, I’m not looking for another job. Perfectly happy where I am.
    Luc.

  9. Jeramiah Dooley’s avatar

    I understand your point, Scott, but I don’t know that I’d go as far as to suggest that people shouldn’t start a blog, regardless of their motivations. There are many things that someone can do (let’s use writing a novel for instance) where the end result can have benefits to both the person doing the work, and to the people who get to experience that work. As a consumer of good novels I’d like to think that I am pretty discriminating about the ones I choose to purchase. I may feel that the people who wrote those novels out of a love of writing and a passion for a subject are producing better books, but I’m not going to tell someone they shouldn’t start writing a book just because their initial motivation is something other than passion. Who knows how that book turns out in the end, right? And besides, we all know some horrible novels (ahem, Twilight) that have done pretty well by their authors, so why not try? The audience is a fickle creature and will quickly let you know how they feel.

    I’m not close to being in the same league as you and the other bloggers you referenced, but I enjoy the process of creating and sharing content very much. Hopefully my experience and background color the information I present in a way that the readers enjoy as well, but that’s up to them.

    We are better off for all that we let in. The more voices the better.

  10. Bob’s avatar

    Why are you always whining about something or other? Now you’re whining because you feel that not everyone who got vExpert deserved it because they don’t have the same motivator you had for blogging.

    Along those same lines, apparently money is now your motivator, since the only thing you blog about these days is EMC; just look at the most recent “Storage Short Take”, 8 of 9 bullets are about EMC. Go back 6 or 8 months and you actually took NetApp seriously, instead of the stereotypical EMC response to anything they have to say that’s been happening.

    There’s only one reason anyone blogs and/or publishes anything: recognition. If you don’t want the attention you wouldn’t do it. If you don’t care if others read, what’s the point? If you really blogged just to share your passion you wouldn’t make snide posts like this one and would instead stick to technical topics. Instead you feel like your medium is being diluted by the masses and have to whine about it.

    When was the last time you did a technical post? When was the last time you posted something that wasn’t marketing drivel for your new employer? Remember your first post (in 2005, ::sigh::, time flies), think you’re still living up to those three promises in the last paragraph?

  11. Nigel Poulton’s avatar

    Agreed.

    I started about 4 or 5 years ago after searching the web for some info and finding it on a blog.

    I got talking with the blog owner and he gave me an author account on his
    site. I then started logging so I could share my knowledge and potentially help others.

    I get a kick out of sharing and learning.

    Nigel

  12. Kevin Houston’s avatar

    I completely agree with you. I started my blog because I love to talk about blade servers. I met with a CEO the other day who said he was afraid he would not have time to blog. I told him, when you are really passionate about a topic, it’s not a burden to blog – you look forward to finding new information for people to read about.

    I’ve considered starting up a blog that’s virtualization focused so I could get the attention of the vExpert crowd, but realistically, I don’t think it would be any good. I don’t have the same passion for virtualization as I do for blade technology. I strive to be proficient in discussing virtualization since servers are moving more and more toward that technology, but I don’t ever think I’ll be blogging about it.

    Thanks for the post!

  13. Duncan’s avatar

    it is very sad you (bob) use a post like this to attack Scott.

    Even if the content of his blog has changed that does not make it less valuable.

    When your jobrole (life) changes so will the topics you write about. If you join EMC, or any other vendor, your articles will in its turn naturally shift more towards the products you are exposed to daily. Seems to be a natural shift doesn’t it? Can’t expect someone to write about something he is not exposed to.

    What is really the problem here? The fact that EMC was smart enough to recruite many of the top 20 bloggers? if that is the case, again no one is stopping NetApp from doing the same. (Having a decent social media strategy is actually import these days!)

  14. slowe’s avatar

    All,

    Thanks for the awesome comments! I really appreciate everyone’s feedback.

    Rimmergram,

    Agreed, blogging and tweeting are fundamentally different media that must be utilized differently in order to get the most out of them. I’m more getting at the motivations behind the use of Twitter or blogging, and really more focused on blogging than tweeting.

    Mike S,

    Thank you very much for your vote of confidence; it is appreciated.

    Brownsauce,

    Maybe you will gain popularity and thus gain a better job as a result of blogging. I would contend that your readers—and therefore your popularity—will be able to determine what your true motivations are. The most successful bloggers are those who are blogging primarily because they get a kick out of sharing information with others. Yes, these bloggers might have secondary motivations (increased visibility, popularity, etc.), but their true motive is information sharing. Their passion drives them. Readers will notice.

    Mark V,

    I blogged here on this site for almost 3 years before I started seeing any real traffic. I wasn’t blogging for popularity; I was blogging because I loved sharing information. That’s still the case today. It doesn’t matter how popular your blog is (or isn’t), just keep following your passion. Keep it up!

    Christopher K,

    You hit the nail on the head—you can’t fake passion. It’s passion that drives us to share the information with others, and it’s passion that draws readers in.

    Bob P,

    You make an excellent point: blogging by itself won’t get anyone hired. You still need the real technical and people skills to get the job. Thanks for pointing that out!

    Duncan E,

    You make much the same point as Bob Plankers; blogging is only one skill in a list of skills that people must show in order to get hired or promoted within an industry. And you’re right about the dialogue—it’s great to get to share with others and get information from others.

    LucD,

    You’re right, in much the same way as Bob Plankers and Duncan. Blogging isn’t all there is. And I’m glad that you’re happy where you are—that’s the most important thing.

    Jeremiah D,

    I guess our personal opinions differ. I would tell someone not to write a book unless they are passionate about the subject and/or passionate about the idea of writing a book. That’s just my perspective. I respect your viewpoint, and of course people are free to do whatever they want: start a blog, write a book, whatever. My point is that don’t expect success just because you have a blog. It’s not an instant key to fame and fortune, and I think that a lot of people see it that way.

    Bob,

    I’m not whining about the vExpert awards; those awards were given out by a whole group of people who took the time to evaluate each candidate’s advocacy activities. If someone is out there supporting the community, he or she should absolutely be recognized. If vExpert is that recognition, then great—I’m happy for them. My point is that don’t expect to receive fame, fortune, popularity, great hair, and a clear complexion just because you have a blog. So many people are starting blogs simply because they think having a blog will open new doors. Maybe it will, maybe it won’t…I contend that a site that exists *only* to bring popularity and visibility to its author and *isn’t* being written because the author enjoys sharing information with others won’t succeed. Oh, by the way: depending upon your definition of “technical posts,” my last technical post was on May 11, 2010, when I posted a wrap-up to my series on recommendations around creating service profiles on Cisco UCS. With regard to my very first post on May 11, 2005, those three items weren’t promises—I said that I hope what I publish here will accomplish one of those three things. And much of what I publish here does. Thanks for your comment!

    Nigel P,

    A very common theme is that most successful and popular bloggers really enjoy sharing information with others, explaining complex topics and teaching others how things work. This is the passion I refer to, and I believe that it’s what draws readers in. It’s not hard to tell who is passionate and who is not.

    Kevin H,

    I have to applaud you for staying focused on what you are most passionate about. I guess I’m just too “technically hyperactive,” and I end up sticking my fingers and my brain into too many places. Oh well, at least it’s fun and I get to share information with others!

  15. Forbes’s avatar

    I’d just like to chime in and say that I have to agree 100% with you Scott.
    I started blogging a few years ago because there was something I wanted to put out there. I certainly didn’t do to it to get myself noticed, its not in my nature to be self-promoting (its a British thing). I made a conscious decision not to have a twitter account, as I felt I wouldn’t necessarily add a great deal of worth to the crowd.
    I think all of us in the IT industry, especially those of us who make the effort to follow industry news, suffer from extreme information overload. You just have to look at the long list of sites that are aggregated on Planet V12n.
    If you want to start blogging, you really have to figure out why and what your going to concentrate on. There are already plenty of great sites that cover the breaking news when a new product or patch is released.
    I’m really saddened when I hear “start blogging and you too can become a vExpert”.

  16. Jeramiah Dooley’s avatar

    If your point is that starting a blog doesn’t equal immediate success, then I totally agree with you. I just don’t like to be the one to tell people not to do something, whatever their reasons are. If they are happy, I’ll be happy for them.

    I’m not disagreeing with your premise. I might not encourage someone to start a blog, or write a book, but I don’t think I’d actively discourage them either.

  17. Andrew’s avatar

    Scott,

    Thanks for your post…it’s inspired quite a…uhhh, response! While I agree that you should start, and continue, to blog because of a passion for the technology, I have to agree with brownsauce in stating that it shouldn’t matter what your motivator for starting is. If you are passionate about the material then you will continue beyond the first few posts, if not you will fade into oblivion…perhaps the community at large will benefit by the post(s) you made, either way there is nothing lost by trying….and there is definitely no wrong reason to share information.

    As for getting hired solely for being a blogger, I don’t think (or hope!) that happens. But I do think that, depending on the agenda of the employer, the difference between two candidates with equal technical merits may be their “voice” in the community.

    While I don’t think ill of you, or EMC (or Chad at EMC specifically), it’s not beyond comprehension that EMC hired as many of the top 20 bloggers as possible simply because of the reasons that were pointed out by Duncan…having such a large following, coupled with the natural shift in focus due to a job change, leads to more mind share for EMC among the followers of said new employees.

    That being said, I don’t believe for one second that was the motivation behind Chad’s recent hirings….he’s just crazy like a fox and realized that people like you, and fellow bloggers, have that passion that can not be trained into someone, but is so invaluable to a manager, and any company, regardless of product.

    Many companies could learn volumes from Duncan’s comment to Bob that “Having a decent social media strategy is actually import these days!”, I think far too few companies take it seriously, especially considering how many sysadmins get information from bloggers such as yourself.

    Hope to hear many more great things from you,

    Andrew

  18. slowe’s avatar

    Forbes,

    I think I’m part British too; I’m not generally into the whole self-promotion thing. I just write because I enjoy it and I love talking about storage and virtualization and networking. And again, I think that readers pick up on that, and will gravitate toward people who are blogging because they enjoy it and genuinely want to share information with others.

    Jeremiah D,

    I am definitely saying that having a blog doesn’t mean instant success. I am also saying to others out there who might be thinking of starting a blog: don’t do it unless it’s something you’re passionate about. I believe that passionate bloggers will produce more material, more relevant material, and on a more regular basis than non-passionate bloggers who are just looking for a “quick career fix”.

    Andrew,

    My perspective is this: if a person wants to start a blog but doesn’t really have a passion for the underlying topic, or doesn’t really enjoy writing, or doesn’t enjoy sharing information with others, that’s fine. I think said person is far less likely to find success as a blogger, but the choice to embark upon the journey is certainly up to each and every individual.

  19. Michael McNamara’s avatar

    While I certainly agree with the general theme of your post but I don’t believe there is anything wrong with promoting yourself or your knowledge of a specific topic(s). I only started blogging a few years ago when I tested the job market and realized that personal networking and Internet presence can mean the difference in getting that first face to face interview or introduction.

    I guess that success is a relative term specific to every individual. I feel successful on two fronts. I’ve learning a great deal about hosting, Linux, PHP, WordPress, MySQL, etc, but I’ve also met a very large number of folks from all over the globe. I even managed to help a few of them along the way.

    In this context I would equate blogging to visiting the gym. In the few weeks of spring you see a lot of new faces around but as the weeks go bye you start to see fewer and fewer of them until the only folks you see are the regulars. The people that are dedicated enough to keep coming back and putting forth the effort like yourself Scott.

    Cheers!

  20. Chad Sakac’s avatar

    For what it’s worth – speaking for myself (it’s so weird to read stuff where people talk about me – I’m just a dude, and put on my pants one leg at a time like everyone else), I’ve never hired a blogger BECAUSE they are a blogger.

    The best blogs are written from a source of passion. If I look back at my own blog, the ones that I think are the best, the ones that have the most community value, the greatest ongoing number of comments and hits…. They are also the ones I can remember thinking in my heart “this is really cool!” as I was writing them.

    Sometimes, it may come off as a vendor commercial, but working for a vendor, sometimes the really cool stuff I feel passionate about is the stuff I see in my day-to-day life. I do it on my own. No one asks me to do it. Conversely, sometimes, it’s purely in the VMware space – because I’m a true believer and think there’s some really, really cool tech that impacts people there. If I worked for VMware, perhaps people would critique that too.

    But back to the “hiring people because of their blogger persona….” Let me break this down from my perspective.

    When I look to hire someone, passion is one of the most important qualities I’m looking for. Passion powers us as humans. It enables us to do superhuman feats (whether you’re climbing a mountain, competing in the olympics, writing code that will change the world, installing stuff, working on marketing or sales – whatever).

    Yup, at EMC, I have hired a lot of prominent bloggers – but you folks don’t see the full picture – we hired 75 people in Q1, we’re hiring another 48 in Q2 then likely another 39 in Q3, and then another 50 in Q4. The skillset needed is crazy narrow, and the talent pool is remarkably shallow.

    Scott can vouch for this – in the “new vSpecialist hire onboarding” (we’re on class 002 right now), the number of people who are “bloggers” is actually a minority. To the blog-o-sphere/twitterati, it’s the center of the universe, but it’s not in the real world.

    Look, the impact to me, purely from a “hiring leader” standpoint at a large IT leader is very basic. You can read passion in a blog. You can see from popularity one of two things – they spout incendiary crapola (and gather the nutbars) or they produce value. You know value when you see it. You can get a sense of someone’s communication skills. It’s much more powerful than a resume to get a sense of someone.

    (BTW “nutbar gatherers”, I’m not interested in you. You can work for the other guys)

    Passion, proven ability to produce value, good communication skills – think about it – that’s a killer set of things to have in someone you want to be part of a team with similar shared values.

    @bob – man, I know you’re likely going to disregard my comment based on something (I don’t know what). Its not likely the contents of my words.

    That was a zero class comment, and Scott deserves better. It’s also totally off base. I know Scott personally as a human being, and he does not post (and neither do I, nor the vast majority of the people in the community) for “recognition”. I’d ask you to apologize, but I don’t get the sense you’re that kind of individual.

  21. Omar Sultan’s avatar

    Scott:

    I hear what you are saying, but I think in the long run, bloggers who don’t really bring anything to the table will fall by the wayside. I agree with @brownsauce that why someone initially starts blogging may be less relevant than what they have to say.

    The flip side of this is that I believe that there are a lot good folks out there who could bring a lot to the table, but find the whole blogging thing intimidating and a post like this, from someone respected in the blogging community might simply make blogging seem that much more daunting. For those folks, perhaps it might be helpful to hear why you follow the folks you read on a regular basis. I know you mentioned passion in the original post, but that’s kinda a squirrely concept to nail down.

    Regards,

    Omar Sultan
    Cisco

  22. slowe’s avatar

    Michael M,

    I agree—there’s nothing wrong with promoting yourself or your knowledge of a topic. But if you look at *why* you blog, I would wager that the self-promotion is probably secondary to the learning experience (trying something new) and the sharing of information. Your passion, like so many bloggers, is a passion for sharing information with others. And that’s cool.

    Chad,

    You are absolutely correct! A *lot* of the people EMC has hired are not bloggers, do not post tweets, but yet are absolutely skilled and insanely passionate. As several others mentioned earlier, blogging doesn’t get someone a job; it just helps show the innate qualities that will get someone a job. And I guess that’s kind of my point: having a blog doesn’t mean instant success. You’re still going to have to show up, bring your A-game, and produce great content. People who aren’t passionate can do that, sure, but the folks who are passionate—the ones who do it because they *want* to—are the ones who are going to be most willing to invest the time and energy to make that happen.

    Omar S,

    Everyone’s entitled to their viewpoint; I just happen to have a viewpoint that’s a bit different. If someone wants to start a blog, go for it. But I can promise you that the people who get a kick out of sharing information (that’s their passion) will last, and the people who emerged only for self-promotion are going to fade away. So in my mind, if you’re going to do it, do it for the right reasons. Make sure you’ve got the right mind set for success, or you’re doomed to fail. I’m not encouraging people not to blog; I’m trying to tell people the things to look for inside themselves that will help them succeed.

  23. Gregg’s avatar

    I agree with 95% of your post. You should always do stuff for a passion and some of the greatest blogs out there are done by people who love the work and are therefore willing to use their spare time testing things, answering peoples questions and speaking at VMUG’s etc. But as someone stated there will always be some part of self promotion, personally mine isn’t for a better job etc but that by blogging and helping I can grow myself and become better at my job. To become a vExpert you have to really know your information obviously and be very good at what you do. I think the people with passion will do the better more accurate blogs and therefore gain the accolade whereas the people who do it because they think they’ll get a better job will soon lose motivation or give up at the first hurdle because of this lack of passion for the job/technology/community.

  24. prudhvi raj’s avatar

    Scott thanks for such nice post.. i really wondered how u people find time to blog but now i knw the answer its pure passion.
    secondly i have always considered blogging a way to share ur knowledge with others rather than becoming but dont how this changed into more of celebrity phenomena..
    Now that you have mentioned what a real blogger is, i can distinguish who a good blogger is .. and who is a popular blogger
    Thanks again

  25. PiroNet’s avatar

    I’ve gone thru the comments, most of them are very interesting, one pretty harsh thought, anyway if I would have to retain one single thing out of Scott’s article, I would say If you do something do it with PASSION!

    Being myself a passionate kind of guy helps me a lot to achieve things in my personal and my professional life.

    Again personally, I’m sure without that passion, I wouldn’t be here reading all the comments and writing my own. Actually I wouldn’t blog at all…

    Personally having my blog posts published on Planet v12n is intimidating and it makes me to think twice if not more before I post anything. Now I’ve been awarded vExpert 2010 it’s even more pressure. Such visibility forces me to work harder and longer on my articles which in turn is not a bad thing at all, it makes the posts more relevant and more interesting I hope.

    And don’t forget that for many of the bloggers, English is not our first language!

    Passion, what else?

    Cheers,
    Didier

  26. Andy H’s avatar

    Scott,

    I feel the trend is A Good Thing, overall. It means more people are blogging about virtualization! There are always going to be negative sides to the growth. For example:

    Some people will steal popular content to capitalize on it
    Some people will start their own blogs spewing FUD
    Some people will start their own blogs with questionable motivations

    The fact is the passionate ones will differentiate themselves and end up creating the content that matters.

    -AH

  27. Jon Owings’s avatar

    Hmm… When I first read this I was going to have a sarcastic response, but I am working on not saying things I shouldn’t, especially on the interwebs. Mainly because I am going to run for President some day. More on this in a second.

    I tweet/blog because I really like to share knowledge, I believe trying to articulate what I know for others is the best way for me to sort out all the stuff I do everyday. With that said in interest of full disclosure I am going to reveal my master plan before I started my blog in 2008.

    1. Start VMware themed blog to share what I learn (check)
    2. Get it linked by the Planet V12N (check, most of the time)
    3. Get @scottlowe to follow me on twitter (still working on it)
    4. Get invited to vExpert (check, which is awesome since I didn’t know it existed in 2008)
    5. Become CTO of VMware (Steve Herrod will retire someday eh?)
    6. Become a vDiva and be vFamous
    7. Run for President.

    I hope no one thinks less of me, I really enjoy what I do.

    For reals, don’t you all think you take this WAAAAY too seriously?

  28. Theron Conrey’s avatar

    Hey Scott,

    Wanted to get a clear thought around this, 140 char can’t convey
    a real thought out conversation :)

    The idea: “If you’re passionate, Share” SPOT ON.

    The comment: “The trend I’m seeing is people starting blogs just to get attention in the industry.” sits uneasy with me. People do what works. And as Duncan points out, even tounge in cheek “90% of the vmware bloggers are at EMC” http://twitter.com/DuncanYB/statuses/15849358837 has some ring of truth to it.

    The truth is, blogging pure quality, the kind of quality companies pay to write, gets you noticed.

    I’d hate for even one new guy on the scene, who respects you, to see this and even have to stop and think “is this how I’m going to be perceived”.

    Shoot, I’ve been “blogging” (not quality mind you ;) ) for years and I never once stopped to think how it would be perceived until today, cause it was my PERSONAL blog.

    I suppose it’s nothing new, people always judge other people in every aspect of our lives. In this case, I’d just let the quality filter out the dastardly motives.

    Anywho, expanded thoughts on the matter here: http://www.conrey.org/?p=931

  29. Charlie Bess’s avatar

    One reason for starting a blog is that people can’t stop themselves. It takes time out of their life that they probably can’t afford. In the corporate environment, it can bring attention that may not always be desired when you post something that may stray too far from the corporate line.
    Even if there is no recognition from outside organizations, that is not the reason I blog, as stated by others its passion for what I post and at least the perception of sharing my perspective with others. I’ve posted for over 5 years and its just something that comes naturally now.

  30. Barry’s avatar

    I agree with you Scott you have to be blogging for the right reasons, I started blogging as a point of reference for me and to give something back to the community. I think the people that are blogging for the wrong reasons e.g to be hired and noticed and don’t have the underlying pasion or willingness to share will soon realise how difficult it is to keep content flowing and give up.

  31. Jon’s avatar

    Scott,
    Great blog post – as another person who is passionate about technology, I enjoy checking your blogs and other respected blogs to continually increase my knowledge and hopefully avoid some future headaches…
    Thanks

  32. David Strebel’s avatar

    Scott,
    I can’t totally agree with you on *why* to blog. I think getting attention is always a driving force. If no one read your blog would you still put this much effort into it? I do agree most of the bloggers that have passion for the technology do have great blogs.

    To me I dont care why a person blogs as long as they are providing good info then who cares if they just want attention.

    Keep up the great work your passion for technology really shows in your writing and is much appreciated.
    Thanks

  33. Ron Russell’s avatar

    I’m an active blogger for something else I’m passionate about and I think that when someone starts out with the wrong intent that they will notice 2 things very quickly.

    1. It takes a lot of WORK.
    2. It takes time to earn that “rep”.

    I think that most people who are doing it for the wrong reasons will come to realize that it’s a lot of work compared to just your normal job and unless they are really passionate about what they are doing that it will quickly lose it’s luster and fall by the wayside. In essence, I believe it’s self policing after the 9 to 12 month mark.

  34. jeffrey wolfanger’s avatar

    Yeah I disagree….I could care less why there writing. I just want to read factual information for solutions or what is going on in the industry….Im pretty sure not all bloggers starting up with be either a) passionate b) wrong reasons….Im sure there is a grey area.

    By the way I enjoy reading this blog for factual information not opinions…Just being honest.

  35. notablogger’s avatar

    lol’ing at your update.

    Got bombed with complaints by the oh-so-elite-web3.0-blogospheretards?

    Seriously, wankers like that are the reason why many blogs (and websites in general) deteriorated in quality significantly over the past years.

  36. Rodos’s avatar

    I am late to this thread but I say amen brother. I started blogging because I had stuff to say, my blogging has dropped off because I can’t talk about what I am doing/thinking about. I could just make stuff up but why? I have always found, like others, that my blog become a diary of my thoughts. We all like to be recognised but its a lot of effort for really very little return.

    Rodos

  37. gregwstuart’s avatar

    Scott,
    Thanks for the post. I just started blogging and I understand what you mean about blogging for attention or to promote yourself for the next award. I started blogging because 6 months ago I was introduced to a piece of software that blew my mind, that being VMware of course. I’m learning something new everyday, and I will admit that I want a lot of traffic, not for anything more than trying to gain more perspective and further my knowledge base leveraged off of the people who visit the site and leave posts or replies. I can see where you are coming from though.

    -gregwstuart
    vdestination.com

  38. slowe’s avatar

    Greg,

    A bloggers’ passion will be evident in everything that he or she creates. Those who write *only* for attention (stress the word “only”) will quickly find, as Rodos points out, that’s it a lot of work for very little return. But for those who have a passion for their topic and who have a genuine desire to share information with others and help others, it’s not work at all.

    I wish you the best of luck in your blogging journey!

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