Friday, 28 January 2011

Hows That Again? (Part 2)

4 More Mind Boggling Issues (At The Moment)
By Pandora Poikilos

When I first used this title back in October 2010, I had no intentions at all of it becoming a series but here we are, with more issues that have me wondering if I've knocked my head very hard somewhere on opened my eyes into a different dimension.

Life Be Damned
In recent weeks, we've met a great group of people on Facebook. Some through the Pledge of Responsible Social Media Users and some through groups such as Bloggers Network and Blogging Lovers. It's great when you meet someone, have a peep into what their mind can produce and realise how easy Social Media makes this effort. Then, outside this great group people come another breed.

Be it from lack of understanding, lack of interacting with people or just plain ignorance, they use these spots as a constant avenue to market their not so sensible products. These days, most bloggers (me included) would love it when their blog gives back some monetary value. After all, a lot of time and effort has been put into it. Here's where it goes wrong. One blogger posted link to a site that claimed to be an online public pharmacy and had a link for next day delivery of Tramadol. Irrelevant of your condition, location or obviously age.

The site was filled with bikini clad women who had breasts that could shame Pamela Anderson promoting Tramadol. What do scantily clad women, breasts and Tramadol have in common, I really don't know. I've had Pseudotumor Cerebri for seven years, two years out of that was spent taking Tramadol until there were discussions about banning it. Now, here's what bothered me. There are people around us who have no idea of what they sell, accept no consequence for their actions and consider selling pharmaceuticals as affiliate marketing. If it's this easy to buy drugs (with a guarantee of next day delivery) what are we saying, life be damned? Benefit of the doubt, the blogger who posted the link might have been a pharmacist who was aware of what he was doing but at the same time I am rather certain no self-respecting pharmacists would associate Neurology drugs with scantily clad women, big breasts and be sending out links to random people.


I'm confused
Networked Blogs is a very cushy tool for a lot of bloggers around the world. Not only can you link your blog so it posts your feed directly to your Facebook profile and groups you manage, it even provides a forum where you can talk about your blog, link it, invite others to read it and so on. One of the more common discussion threads is 'you follow me and I'll follow you' and then of course there's loads of other links to recently updated blogs, interesting reads and so on.

The service boasts more than 1.6 million monthly users. All this gives you an idea of how much is actually said in one day on this forum. When someone asks me, if I'd like them to follow my blog, my answer is simple, if you read it and you like, follow it. If it's not your cup of tea, then so be it. We're all different and there's no changing that fact. Why would I expect someone to blindly follow a blog they might later find is a contradiction to what they think or feel?

This answer that I so often give, actually got someone offended. The blogger replied that it was very confusing. Some people want readers, some people want followers, some people want comments. It was on the tip of my tongue (well, fingers) to say, do as you wish. Why keep following? Why keep imitating and not having a voice of your own? We are different to create unique unity. Good things that makes us work together and yet some people insists on making simple things complicated.


You follow me and I'll follow you
This isn't the first time this issue has had me raising an eyebrow. When I first started Peace from Pieces way back in May 2010 and started actively posting in July, I tried this concept. Does it really work? And is it really that simple? Are people so equal that they will do to you as you have done to them? No. Not everyone is. You have some amazing people who reach out and keep coming back to your blog giving you ample encouragement to keep going and then you have those who are so stuck on being followed, they forget that at some point, we also need to be followers, all of us.

I could provide you with a very statistical debate on whether this concept works but I'll provide you with an even simpler example. The Blog-A-Licious Basic list is now way beyond 200. I started it because I wanted to have my own system of reading blogs, commenting on them, promoting them. Then from that, since we have reached out to so many people, we recently launched Blog-A-Licious Premium. It's worked out great. More than great and I am very thankful. But here's a thought, with more than 200 listings, all done for free, there are far less thank you(s) and even less reciprocals.


Pledge of the Responsible Social Media Users
If ever there was a time I wanted to walk away from something I cared about very much, this would have to be one of it. As I went about creating the group in Facebook and creating even further awareness, I received loads of negative feedback. That it was stupid. That it wasn't worth it. That I was bothering people with such a trivial matter. That I should not group people together. That I was screaming fire when there was none.

As my mind twisted into quitting mode, a fellow blogger I confided in asked me a simple question, do you stand by what you say? If you do, go on, no one else can stop you. And I realised that was the best advice I had got in a long time. I'm not backing down from telling people that Social Media is an awesome tool but like everything else in life, needs to be handled with care. Would we drive around crashing our cars into trees? I don't think so.

There are far worse things on the Internet and this is something trying to warn people about it. If something needs to be added on, sure it can be tweaked to be made better. Change is a constant factor for everyone and Social Media is no different. Changes come even faster and a lot of keeping up needs to be done. If someone is going to stand by the side of me and ensure I have pebbles in my shoe as I walk on this journey, then so be it.

People seem to have gotten so used to telling someone else what they are doing isn't working right, when we could all zip up our comments, work together, improve it and see what comes out of it. Am I giving up on the pledge? No way. At the time of writing this, 99 people who have taken the pledge, people bold enough to lend their voice to this cause. Here's to 99 more. What say you?
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Books Sold - 6 Nov 2011 to 31 May 2012

Some of you have asked me for my total number of books sold to evaluate KDP Select so here it is. Bear in mind, that results will vary based on genre and author. Good luck and remember, Keep Moving Forward.

Total - 120,836

1. Excuse Me, My Brains Have Stepped Out
Amazon Kindle - 42,559
Paperback -
Smashwords -

2. Frequent Traveller
Amazon Kindle - 35277
Paperback -
Smashwords -

3. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 1
Amazon Kindle - 462
Smashwords -

4. Mirror Me Martha (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 281
Smashwords -

5. Drive On Hope (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle - 190
Smashwords -

6. Blog-A-Licious Directory 2012
Amazon Kindle - 1
Smashwords -

7. Pandora's Reading Room 1
Amazon Kindle -
Paperback - N/A

8. The Cat That Barked (Short Story)
Amazon Kindle -

9. Dora's Essentials - Examining Anxiety
Amazon Kindle -

10. Dora's Essentials - Books, Blogs & Smiles 2
Amazon Kindle -

11. Elevenses from Around the World
Amazon Kindle -

12. Genetically Modified Foods vs. Sustainability
Amazon Kindle -

Blog-A-Licius - Sherbet Blossom

SherbetBlossom

Blog-A-Licious

Dealightfully Frugal

Blog-A-Licious - The Few, The Proud, The Wife

Blog-A-Licious

My Soul Slippers

Blog-A-Licous - Textbook Mommy

Blog-A-Licious - Blue Frogs Legs

Blog-A-Licious - Pretty All True

Pretty All True

Blog-A-Licious - tbaoo

tbaoo

Blog-A-Licious

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Blog-A-Licious - The Invisible Art

Blog-A-Licious - Rediscovering Domesticity

Rediscovering Domesticity

Blog-A-Licious - Quiver Full

Blog-A-Licious - Cori's Big Mouth

Blog-A-Licious - Great Fun

Greatfun4kids

Blog-A-Licious - Busy Wife

Blog-A-Licious - Steps To Happiness

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Blog-A-Licious - Toby & Max


Blog-A-Licious - Amelie

Raising Amelie

Blog-A-Licious - Peas In A Pod

Blog-A-Licious - Riley

Blognostics - Poetry

BlogNostics

My Awards - September 2010

My Awards - September 2010
Awarded By Jo Frances

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded By Alejandro Guzman

My Awards - May 2011

My Awards - May 2011
Awarded by Kriti Mukherjee

My Awards - April 2011

My Awards - April 2011
Awarded By Roy Durham

My Awards - June 2011

My Awards - June 2011
Awarded By Sulekha Rawat

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