Monday, 1 February 2010

The longest blog-roll in the world evah!

Right. It's competition time. I'm looking for the biggest blog-roll in the world, evah. If you've got more links in yours than I have in mine you win a prize. I don't know what, yet. But I'll think of something. Oh, and while you're at it, how about your google-reader (or similar) subscriptions? Any advance on 250? Do I hear 300? 325? 350?

There's been enough navel-gazing blogging recently (guilty as charged) and I don't really want to add another post to the list. But this is important to me. I've never really satisfactorily re-constructed my blog list since site problems led to them vanishing last November. And every time I come across a long-long friend I dutifully add them to the list. And the list keeps growing. It's now so long I have to limit the number of links displayed or it runs off the page. And that's just the beginning. The number of subscriptions in my reader is even longer. Sometimes the unread posts run into the thousands. Who am I kidding. They're ALWAYS in the thousands!

But the real question, the biggest question is this: how do you make time to read them all? Do you have  a strategy, a policy, a routine. And what about commenting? Do you wait for one of the muses to descend or do you plan it? Scattergun or laser-beam? For what it's worth I read (almost) everything; I'm a fast worker.
And I try to comment on as many blogs as possible. But I also try to do them all in some kind of rotation. It never works, of course.

So what do I do? Cut down on the reading? Reduce the frequency of commenting? No. Of course not. That would be as unthinkable as giving up blogging. But I need some sort of plan. And quick.

Or there'll be no chance of avoiding this....


  1. ooh, this is a good one. My google reader has about 750 blogs in it and i do try to read them all. i use the firefox add-on better-greader to preview them in my google reader which means i can comment onto the blog from there as well, makes it much faster. Just found out you can also get this for Chrome as well which I've been playing with this week.

    I gave up on a blog roll when I changed my template because it was just getting out of hand and I nver used it for anything, i read from my google reader..

    I do have a favourites folder in greader, the blogs i love and don't want to miss if my reader gets too clogged but it's all got a bit of a mess recently and needs reorganising. i was toying with the idea of separating them into days of the week folders so on Mondays I read those one, tuesdays those etc but i think that might be just a little too anal, a too difficult to organise.

    I also rely a lot on Twitter for blog posts. If someone i'm following posts a link to a new post when I'm around i'll go and have a look.

  2. I'm fast reaching "full tilt" myself but manage to read all of them by dipping in first thing in the morning, at lunchtime and for a bit in the evening. I'm fine as long as everyone doesn't choose to post on the same day!

  3. I've got 109 blogs on my blog roll, peanuts compared to Heather isn't it? I should be able to read and comment on every post with that teeny amount. I like to read most posts and comment if I can think of something imaginative to say. I also make the effort to comment if someone's commented a few times on my blog and I haven't done so on theirs for a while. It's scattergun approach really. I always manage to miss the posts which spark lively debate and I once embarrassed myself with Josie at Sleep is for the Weak by suggesting she blog about something and she told me she already had a few days previously. Oops.

  4. That's some reading list, Heather! I'm going to investigate that Firefox add-on though, as that sounds a really good idea. To be honest, that's one of the reasons I don't use google reader as often as I should - because I can't comment. So, you've already offered me a solution to one problem. Thanks.

    I'm a 'dipper' too Steve, although it doesn't take much to put me off my stride. Maybe we should work out some sort of blogging timetable so everyone's posts were staggered? No, a step too far I fear.

    That point about 'returning the favour' is a good one, Emily. I do the same thing. But then I sometimes find I'm missing other people out completely and have to make an effort to 'get out' more. Hard work, isn't it?

  5. I've got about 250, but I don't read every post, I can't there just isn't enough time. I will read the first few lines that appear on the dashboard and then click on if it looks like something I'll be interested in.

    I probably comment on about 25% of blog posts, it depends hugely on my mood.

    I keep threatening to cull my blog roll but I'm afraid that'll I'll miss something. Instead I just keep adding.

  6. Me too! Maybe if we both culled the same ones they'd start talking about us? Or is that just my paranoia speaking?

    Might try your 'read a few lines' strategy in future. I read the whole post usually, plus all the comments. Takes forever.

    Thanks for yours!

  7. I have a blogroll on my sidebar and it desperately needs updating. I do read them all, about three times a week, or whenever there's a new blog to read. But I'm a complete saddo, because I have over a thousand blogs in my google reader; of course I don't read them all. And no, I don't get out much.

    CJ xx

  8. Over one thousand blogs in your reader CJ!! You know, when I started writing this post I thought I was overdoing it with about 500. In fact, I unsubscribed from several which seemed to be lying dormant, update-less and unloved, but didn't get very far.

    You're the winner so far!

    Happy reading!

  9. I am always hopelessly behind with my blog reading and I have less than 100. You all put me to shame. Must try harder.

  10. I had a REALLY long blog roll earlier but decided to narrow it down to those that I read the most as it was bugging me it being so long lol! I follow 153 blogs, looked last ngiht infact!

  11. It's a matter of time isn't it pinkgecko... Although I'm quite a fast reader and an lightning quick touch-typer. That helps. As does neglecting the housework, of course.

    That seems a good, respectable number Hayley. My problem is I keep stumbling across other blogs I want to read. I never know how I've find them so I blog-roll them to make sure I can go back. Then I've got to find the time to do it!

  12. Hi T., I'm always very busy and always late and trying to catch up so I do not add the blogs to the blog roll but to my favourites, that's why my blog roll is so tiny and why I'm always late to comment. My plan is simple, "pochi ma buoni" we say in Italian, ie. just a few but good ones. Same for FB, where I've only got people I know very well and are far away from me (and a very few people I don't know personally but I like very much). What's the point of "facebooking" your next door neighbout? Ciao. A.

  13. I've added the google reader subscribe button to my browser so that when I come across a blog I'd like to check out again I click and add it. I think I have 80 some currently subscribed to. I read them all, but only comment when I have something to contribute or really, really like a post!

  14. I'm confused. I have what I thought was the maximum of 300 blogs in my Google Reader, how do people increase that number? Each time I want to add a new blog it makes me unsubscribe to make room. I usually take out those that seem dormant.
    I had every blog I'd ever subscribed to in my Blog Roll. It meant my blog was taking ages to load. I went in to amend it and accidentally deleted it! I would like to put it back at some point (when I get a minute).
    I try to keep on top of the number of posts in my reader by flicking through as many as I can each morning. I leave the ones that I'd like to read in depth and come back to them later.
    Sometimes I comment on all the saved posts, sometimes I just read them. It depends how much time I have. If someone comments on one of my posts and I realise I haven't commented on their blog for a while I'll make an effort to return the favour.
    In summary, I do what I can in the time available. I'd love to comment more, but I already have a full time 'job'!

  15. Good Grief, yes, you have loads of followers don't you. Only just noticed.

    No, I find it hard to comment and read them all the time. I sympathise but cannot really think of a solution. Go and do some meditation. xxx

  16. If I start finding I have too many unread posts in my feedreader I start cutting blogs.

    I also think it's a shame that the sidebar blogroll seems to be going the way of the dodo - as it's the main way I find new blogs these days.

  17. I've no idea how many I'm following in google reader (but had 140 posts over the last 24 hours to read) - if people have posted lots I tend to selectively read but otherwise try and make an effort (that said the back end of the alphabet has to try much harder than the start !)

  18. I am following no where near the amount you are but struggle to keep up, and look after the five children. ;0) I'd be ok if I didn't have them! After Heather posted about the add on with firefox, I find it so much better and quicker to comment etc. That's been a huge help.

  19. In the grand scheme of things, after reading this post, I realize I live in a very small blog world. That's okay by me, though. I think I would go positively batty and my work would never get done.
    I hope your readers have been much more helpful than I can be. Good luck!

  20. I have around 400 blogs in my Google Reader. It's a mixture of journalism blogs, PR blogs, parenting blogs, sleb gossip, personal blogs, news blogs...I can't remember a time EVER when I had less than 1,000+ unread items.

    That said, I don't feel I need to 'make time' to read the parenting blogs - they're my entertainment, not a duty.

    So if I only have 10 minutes, there are probably 5 very favourite blogs I'd read. If I have half an hour, I'll read a few more. Because I do the index, once a month, I tend to scan through the new additions, and I might add them to my Reader if they really look fun.

    Also, I do read the odd post during the day if I see a link that looks interesting in Twitter. I tend to use Reader, and only comment if a post REALLY interests me AND I think I have something useful to add.

    It doesn't tend to occur to me that people - even people I know pretty well - would read everything I post. Gratifying as that would be, obviously. I tend to assume that people dip in and out, like I do.

  21. I am always behind, I try to comment only if I have something new and interesting to say or if I haven't visited for a while to re-connect. My main problem is that my kids, the main inspiration for my blog tend to get in the way of my reading, usually injuring themselves, fighting or preferring me to play games with them, (how dare they!) thus I get behind and feel guilty. I try to rotate as well and make sure I visit everyone on my blog list which I am afraid is not as long as it could be. I think it is a problem for everyone as they try to juggle life, kids and careers with blogging and following.

  22. this is a great post because these are questions i have blog roll isn't as big as some of these lovely people but i do try to comment's been a crazy fall/early winter for me, so my blogging and comments have been sparse! take care and thanks for posting this blog!

  23. PS I also just realized i haven't added any new blogs lately...haven't been scanning any...i must do that soon!

  24. Dot, myself, I successfully resolve the too-many-blogs-to-comment-on problem by not having many friends.

  25. Thanks for all the advice folks... and for generating such an interesting discussion. I forgot to mention that as a time-eater, too - reading the comments under posts especially when (like the above) they're often mini-posts themselves. But again, that's the fascination of blogging.

    Not sure I'd be a ruthless as Dan and start cutting blogs. For a start, I'm not sure where I'd start. And anyway, it sounds so much better in Italian (thanks Antonella)!

    Not sure why you're reader seems limited Sandy, especially as Sally has 400 and CJ over 1000! But I am beginning to think that the blog-roll's getting out of hand. Maybe small is beautiful as far as that's concerned, and subscriptions with the comment add-on in a Firefox browser is the way to go?

    Right, I'm off to do what Jenny suggested now. Ommm...

  26. Oh, and I something I completely overlooked... the carnival! There's a great one today with sixty entries over at Insomniac Mummy's blog. At the risk of overloading everyone, here's the link:

    It's worth it!

  27. I used to be really good and go to every single blog on my roll... but now I'm just very confused.
    I have 91 on my 'moving' blogrol and 15 on my 'sleepyheads' blogrol. My Google reader is a mess.
    I need help. Sometimes I just want to run away!

  28. What you need is a blog-secretary Scarlett! I would offer to assume responsibility myself, but as you can see I'm not qualified. Is anybody?

    Great to hear from you again!

  29. WHAT??? THIS IS MY MAIN BLOG??? And all along I thought you were at the other address. WHAT???

    Nevermind. Now I have found this one, it explains why you never post...

    *tears hair out*

    (My reader is doing my head in. Over a hundred posts to read this morning. NOT funny. Tell me if you find a solution.)

  30. Oh sorry Mwa! I suppose, though, that IS the solution... just point your reader at blogs that never get updated!

  31. scattergun... although i will check into the blogs i like to see if there are any updates. i'm rubbish at updating my blogroll. it's a bit fiddly, and besides i reckon everyone already knows about any that i read....

    it's just never going to be possible to read everything online... (that's the understatement of the millennium! apols!)

  32. Oh my goodness - how do you find time to do anything else if you have so many blogs to "service"?

    I keep my Reader list regularly pruned - I have a hardcore of about 30 that stay on there permanently and then I add others that catch my eye and delete them after a while. Makes my life more interesting.

    The ones that stay on there are, in general, the people who read my blog and with whom I feel I have some kind of social interaction. there are a couple I just read because they interest me and don't comment.

    I don't have a blogroll on my blog though. If I did I would try to keep it to about 20 or 30 blogs I think.

    I had no idea people read so many. Don't they get a bit samey after a while?

  33. Scattergun is good... that's basically what I do BwB. But I always worry that I'll miss something really good. I suppose I'm just nosy, I mean 'naturally curious'!

    Well, in a way dot2dot yes. But it's a kind of 'same but different' so you're always likely to stumble across a real gem. That's what keeps me reading!

  34. I am completely behind at the moment due to travelling and trying to earn a crust from this writing malarkey! I always try to visit blogs of those who have commented on mine but I think my approach is pretty hit and miss and I feel continually guilty about ignoring brilliant bloggers. I think I should be given detention quite honestly!

  35. I have around 100 in google reader and I read them via my iphone. The ones I want to comment on I star and then have a comment frenzy every couple of days if I can (this one has taken a little longer). I import my blogroll from google reader so it has all of the blogs I follow but I never use it myself.

  36. As you can tell, because I'm currently working my way through your last 8 posts. I don't have time to read them all, I tend to have a catch up in the school holidays. I sometimes pop in to a blog, read and just leave, but other times I sit and focus on reducing the 500+ posts in my Google Reader (yes, really!) I have had a couple of culls and got rid of some blogs that I no longer find interesting, but the trouble is, most of them I do!

  37. Ok, HCM... You're rusticated for a week - during which time you can catch up with all your blogs. (Don't you just long for that to happen?)

    I think that's part of my problem Kelly - my blogroll and google subscriptions don;t dovetail... so although one is under 100 (99, to be precise) the other is well into three figures and the total number of blogs to read is unmanageable.... But they're all so good!

    You're very dedicated though Carol... I'm not sure I'd work my way systematically through my own archive, let alone anyone elses... But then, perhaps (comments, passim) that's got something to do with my attention span?!


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