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ProBlogger – MyBlogLog

Just under two years ago I signed up for and reviewed a little service called MyBlogLog for the first time. Back then it was a metrics service to track outbound links from a blog – but nothing much more.

Since that time I’ve linked to them and reviewed them a few more times as they’ve added features – although in recent times I have to admit I’ve not really paid much attention to my MyBlogLog account.

That was until today when I found out that ProBlogger has it’s very own vibrant community.

I’d not done anything to build my ‘community’ except happen to be a member (for their metrics package) – but now this site has 539 ‘members’! You can join it at the ProBlogger MyBlogLog Page.

I’m not really sure what to ‘do’ with my community. I’ve added the MyBlogLog widget to my sidebar (scroll down a bit) – but I’m unsure what else to do.

I know I see a lot of My Blog Log widgets around – but I’m wondering if anyone has any wisdom to share on what they do with their ‘community’.

Is this just an ego thing? A bit of fun? Or is there some point to it all? Forgive me – I’m just wondering a little about what the point is.

Keen to hear from MyBlogLog junkies!

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Trent says:

    I don’t think it’s ego. Any opportunity you have to build community is a good thing, because community is what keeps people coming back for more.

  2. Hey Darren,

    It’s great to see the MyBlogLog widget on your blog. It will help build the ‘community’ of readers that frequently visit your blog and give them a sense of belonging. After all, I felt great when I saw my name on the MyBlogLog at Problogger. It’s almost an honour.

    I am sure that your community will expand now that you have incorporated it on your blog. After all, it’s a super-cool way to appreciate your readers who frequently visit your blog and love to be a part of your blog’s community. Now that Yahoo! has bought it, I am expecting few additions to the existing functionalities on blog communities.

    Thanks for adding MyBlogLog to your sidebar. Looks great on your blog.

    Cheers!

  3. Leanne says:

    I think it’s a great traffic generator, kind of like Stumble for bloggers – it’s a good thing. I check out who shows up in my widget, it’s always neat to discover a new place. ;)

  4. I have gotten to know and support some very interesting bloggers as a result of MyBlogLog, and many of them have become regular visitors and supporters of my site as well. The quality of the connections there seems to be genuine and some have even spotlighted my site on theirs. I plan to continue growing and building my community there by running promotions that are geared solely to MyBlogLog members and promoting them on my site :)

  5. Glenn Wolsey says:

    Just signed up.

  6. brem says:

    It’s a good thing. It generates traffic by the mere fact you’ve visited a blog. No need to even comment. ;)

  7. Jon Symons says:

    On a practical side, it is a good way to build traffic. I get lots of referrals from my modest community of 60.

  8. Mallory says:

    I’ve been playing around a lot with MyBlogLog in the past week or two since I discovered it. (I believe I heard about it here first actually!)

    I’m still not really sure what the purpose is either, other than building a general community of like-minded people who are interested in similar blogs. I’d like to see it gain more popularity and diversity though…I’ve noticed a lot of blogs about blogging and business there, but I’d love to see more art & design blogs, as well as other hobby and interest blogs, join the community as well.

  9. 45n5 says:

    What’s the point? Seems pretty spammy also when I just visited.

    I thought it was just for fun so I’m curious as well if there is a purpose.

  10. Cory OBrien says:

    Also, it’s nice as a reader to see your own picture show up in the Recent Readers widget. Not really useful, but nice.

  11. I’ve written about MyBlogLog a couple times – and how I’m using it on my site.

    I find it interesting to see who is visiting regularly (although it doesn’t pick up RSS readers of course) because it gives you a sense of who is actively checking your blog out. That means those people are closer to you in the bigger community.

    Primarily, I see three uses:

    * Generating traffic
    * Finding interesting content / new content
    * Meeting interesting / worthwhile people

    The 3rd reason is by far the biggest if you’re in the business of networking online to create opportunities for yourself.

  12. I joined MyBlogLog last week. Still figuring it out, but I’ve had a few people join my community already, which is pretty neat. Haven’t added a widget or anything.

    I am enjoying it as a new source to discover interesting blogs.

  13. Kiltak says:

    I just subscribed last week, asked my readers to join, sat back and watched. Surprisingly, the traffic that comes from MyBlogLog is of exceptional quality. These folks do not only pass by, they come back over and over, and they comment.

    And as everyone knows, the worth of a regular reader is priceless and is what makes blogging so rewarding!

  14. Diane says:

    I think it’s wonderful to be able to see who has been visiting your blog. It builds community. The strange thing is I’ll visit a blog I subscribe to, and often I’ll come across the photo of someone I’ve seen on a completely different type of blog. It’s a great way to know what your readers like, and where they visit. Kind of creepy? Not really. It’s like keeping track of your stats, but having a face and name to go along with it. Some may use it as an ego boost, but I think most see it as another way to keep in touch with their visitors.

  15. engtech says:

    Here’s some instructions for getting a non-javascript (image only) version of MyBlogLog to work with WordPress.com blogs (and MySpace).

    http://engtech.wordpress.com/2007/01/15/mybloglog-widget-for-wordpresscom-blogs-one-of-the-best-web-widgets-available/

    I love MyBlogLog for being able to see who reads my blog even if they don’t comment. I find it very insightful to click back to their blogs and see who they are.

  16. Garry Conn says:

    Darren,

    I was on the same page about a week ago. What do you do with your community! But what I am actually going to be doing is using the community to find others with similar interests and who publish content similar to what I write.

    Initially, when I joined I had a flood of people join my community, just as I was flooding in on others….

    But now, I am going to go back and re examine all the communities that I joined and make sure that I have a personal interest in the sites, people, and content within.

    I noticed how quickly Google indexed my profile page as well as my community page, so to me, this is now a concern with controlling my links. I am always very careful with where my site links to, and having a direct link into my profile and community page from my own site leads crawlers into areas that I haven’t investigated very well. The last thing I want is having a shallow link into a site that has content that I wouldn’t approve of. And again, I don’t even consider these “Deep Links” because in three clicks, a Googlebot could find something questionable.

    I like the service… I think that it is totally fun. I have met a lot of people and we talk and visit our sites quite a bit. MyBlogLog is great for people that want to meet other bloggers and check out other blog sites.

    Instead of putting the widget direct on my home page, I have put the widget in a secondary page and have provided a link to that page from my home page. I try to keep a fast loading home page, and having that widget slowed things down a ton.

    When people upload their avatars, MyBlogLog just reduces their pixel size and doesn’t reduce their file size. And the upload wizard will upload up to 1.5 megs….

    So having the widget potentially people can be loading in excess of over 50 megs on your front page…. Not good! and not good for dial up users…. which are people that I enjoy having visit… If people are still on dial up, there is usually something that prevents them from getting High Speed, and when I design my pages I consider this and I think they appreciate it.

    MyBlogLog is great if you want to use is an a friendship organizational tool….

    Regards,
    Garry

  17. I’ve been a member of MyBlogLog since September & am really just starting to scratch the surface. So far it seems a great resource to find like-minded blogs to comment on, glean ideas from, network with the authors, etc.

    While I have received one or two sp@mmers, the majority of my contacts are legitimate blogs.

    Now if I could just find the time to read & comment on all of those…

  18. Oops, I commented from a different email address so it likely got booted.

    Anyway, I’ve been a member of MyBlogLog since September & am really just scratching the surface. It seems to be a great resource to find like-minded blogs, more places to comment, glean ideas for posts & to network with authors. Now as soon as I get the time to do all that, I can see how it’ll pay off.

  19. GadgetsGuy says:

    I too was a little naive as to the real purpose of MyBlogLog when I was sent an invite 3 weeks ago, but I signed up anyways under the premise that any publicity is good publicity…

    Now 3 weeks later, I have gained an extra 300+ pageviews a day to my blogs, as well as discovering alot of new interesting blogs to use as sources/links to back up my articles.

    Heck, I even found a few blogs to read just for 100% pure personal enjoyment (/me waves @ TriniGourmet …)

    As a regular reader of ProBlogger, I was more than happy to join your community Darren! I hope you take it to a new level now that you know we’re here! Keep on Bloggin’ Bro!

    GG

  20. Jeff O'Hara says:

    Here is Techcrunch’s issues with mybloglog, i’m still pretty unsure of this service considering it’s spam problems.

    http://www.techcrunch.com/2007/01/10/mybloglog-got-spammed-and-so-did-we/

    -Jeff
    http://blog.zemote.com

  21. Sounds like it’s an excellent option for bloggers who want to disable comments. They just move the discussion onward so it’s more of a community rather than a cult of fans. And the blogger saves themselves from having to deal with spam and other comment hassles. I think I’ll take a look at it.

  22. Karen says:

    Glad to see I’m not the only one perplexed as to what it does. I must find time to go and see what the hell Ive signed up for and how to utilise it better. Anyone with tips on that would be great :)

  23. Scot Herrick says:

    I’m hoping it turns into a “poor man” forum device where we can ask questions outside of the comments on the blog.

    For example, tomorrow I am posting about how to tell a company’s culture before an interview and gave the “sneak preview” question on MyBlogLog in my community. Hopefully, it can be another way to build community.

    We shall see. It is an “experiment grande.”

    Scot

  24. Ken Y-N says:

    I’m also in the “nice, but what do I do with it?” camp. One thing I’ve learnt, which I like, is the outgoing links list. Due to the nature of my blog, my first link on almost every page is one I don’t want people visiting, but it’s always a popular click-through according to MyBlogLog. I’m going to add some sort of off-site link marker, just to see what happens to my figures.

    On the negative side, I saw hanging around a friend’s blog a user by the name of “persiannazi” with a swatsika icon, but there is no simple “Report this user” button.

    Agreed about the other problems regarding massive images and spamming logos. I, however, like one or two sites that run the 16×16 icon strip of 40 or so users – is that a pay-for option?

  25. Angela says:

    The neat thing about MyBlogLog is that you get to see who has come to your blog. Think about this.. how many poeple do you suppose come to your blog and don’t leave a comment with a link to their community? Aren’t you curious to see who they are and what they are up to? I have found so many talented writers through MyBlogLog just from checking out their happy smiling faces!

  26. ariel says:

    I use it – love it so far. My community in case any of you are dying to be a part of my posse as I know you are:

    http://www.mybloglog.com/buzz/community/shakewellbeforeuse/

  27. Meg says:

    I joined 12 days ago and have built up a small community of 30 and network of 63 “friends”. It’s good for getting people to discover your blog, particularly when you are new to blogging and also page views.

    It’s all about give and take though, unless you are a “big name” blogger, I think it’s nice to support those who support you (i.e I join your community, you join mine). Bottom line – a myspace for bloggers.

  28. Enblogopedia says:

    Nice implementation Darren!
    It gives me some traffic..and I believe it will get you some as you are a problogger.

  29. I’m like you Darren – I was around when it came out as a little stats package and now looks what it has become.

    I see those widgets all over the place – have of course signed up and now must find out what all the fuss is all about.

    Dare I say it, but am I the only one starting to get a little social networking fatigued – what with so many offerings and each one trying to out beat each other by adding numerous bells n’ whistles.

  30. Hey I just joined Mybloglog and I kinda agree with Meg…and about the give and take so. I join yours and I hope you join mine..
    Big ups Darren.

    Hey scot it a great idea to actually generate ideas from your community..I think I’ll try it

  31. Maki says:

    I pretty much use MBL to put a face to a name. It’s very easy to communicate with blog owners on the MBL interface (no emails required) through private or public messages so I really like that interactive aspect of being in a community.

  32. qureyoon says:

    following MBL at the first place, the idea was to encourage your blog reader, so that you as the author of your blog, can get to know each other, and talk, especially the lurker one ;)

    so it’s to allow author and reader to interact each other :)

    but of course with the recent growth, it becomes more and more of like traffic source, which is not the original idea :P though it does now bring some traffic ;)

    this was due to that each user can have it’s own community so that, users that are registered can browse through other communities too, more and more like social network now :)

    but basically it was to interact with your reader ;)

  33. Doug Karr says:

    I wrote and entry… but didn’t find a trackback (or see any listed on your blog):http://www.douglaskarr.com/2007/01/22/the-missing-features-of-mybloglog/

    Good question!

  34. Dave Starr says:

    Well I see a few voices of caution here, so I’ll add my own. I joined MBL more than a year ago when their function was to provide stats on visitors and the click through they used to leave your site. If I recall right I even heard about it from a mention here on PB back “in the day’.

    Like many such services ( performancing, even Google analytics itself) I found it slowed down page loading times. It also doesn’t ‘catch’ all the visitors … there’s no 100% service I have found yet, except the free logs provided by my site host.

    Although I removed the tracking code from the sites I was using MBL on, MBL provided no way for me to take my listings off their page, so was consistently advertising zero visitors and zero clicks … how nice. They have yet to respond to several emails asking for help on this issue. It’s kind of like one of those spammy Internet marketers “squeeze pages” where once you give up your email it is “pwned” forever.

    A few months ago they began the process of re-making themselves into a “Web 2.0 Social Network” … whatever that really is … seems as if Darren was just mentioned excessive hype in another post today.

    I found, to my dismay that anyone could “join my community” without any interaction with me. Most of the people “joining my community” used phony, silly names and resembled the children of MySpace, having no interest in my blogs just an interest in trying to have the most communities joined. A few have downright objectionable screen names/profiles.

    I again emailed MBL about a way to opt out and received no response, so I canceled my account and sent a sixth email explaining why … but again, no response. Small wonder since that was the week they were completing their multi-million dollar deal with Yahoo!, so why bother with an insignificant customer who got them to that position … we’re done with you, Dave, is their attitude and I, for sure am done with them.

    Those of you who are actually in this game with any thought of building reputation … or are older than middle school age …remember a precept I’ve always found of value:

    You are known by the company you keep. Who are those people who are keeping company with you on MBL, and why would you provide valuable free real estate on your site to Yahoo! in return for slowing your load times?

  35. Karen says:

    Good points Dave! Wow – re-thinking now my subscription!

  36. Dave – Many points I agree with there, especially your last two paragraphs.

    We older bloggers (30+) are old enough not to have to follow the herd. Just because you can use these tools doesn’t mean you have to.

    Good food for thought there, Dave,

  37. Dave Starr says:

    Re-reading my comment (hey, there’s an novel thought, wonder if I should have done that to begin with ;-)) I just want to make sure it’s understood I am not in a war with MBL or anyone who finds them useful. Indeed I would love to participate if they would only do two things: One, allow the “community owner … blogger in this case) to decide who ‘gets in’ … just like the way Yahoo runs their Messenger, anyone can try to get access to me but I am the controller, and Two, answer their darn emails.

    I wish the crew @ MBL success (they are going to need it fitting themselves into the giant corporate world of the Y!), and success to those who find it useful.

  38. Phoenix71011 says:

    I joined MBL recently in an attempt to get to know more bloggers in my niche. I have found however, that the alphabetical blog listing to be almost unusable….I don’t want to go through the names of all the blogs registered. I want to know how to find stuff that I am interested in, ie, a category listing.
    Having said that, I have met a lot of really good blogs and bloggers, joined communities, had a few join mine. I do get a bit mystified at people who seem to log you as a contact at the drop of a hat…no reading or visiting my blog….very strange, although I guess it makes their statistics look more impressive?!
    And I’m a bit miffed that I can’t put the widget on my WP.com blog, although I noticed someone has posted a way to do this. Off to check this now!
    Think your ProBlogger blog is the best, btw!
    Cheers Phoenix

  39. A little in mybloglogs defence they responded really quickly to a support query email I sent a few weeks, admitly wasn’t as complicated for them to resolve as dave starr’s issues but they were helpful and quick to reply.

  40. akshay says:

    hi problogger

    this service seems good for getting more readers to your blog and some of them may link to you thus improving your blogs rank and ultimately help in your seo efforts.

  41. Phoenix71011 says:

    Just to let you know that I managed to do the jiggery-pockery and put the MBL widget on my WP.com blog.
    Looks good too!

    Go to comment 15 for link.

  42. I have been a member of mybloglog for a month now. Before i joined that community i was wondering who visited my blog, the widget provided by mybloglog is a cool feature that answered my needs. Now the visitors at my blog has faces. The community that we build in myblog is giving us the oppurtunity to connect with fellow blogger and also to hopefully build a wide scope of readers.

  43. Greg Laden says:

    The benefit so far is to problogger. They automatically sign you up (without you asking for it) for a “trial version” of problogger. The trial version is good for three days or so, then you are “downgraded” to the non professional free version.

    Can none of you see? You’ve been SMAMMED!!!!

    Well, I’ll wait it out and see what happens. I’ve got the widget on my site, though so far it does not really do anything interesting.

    … GTL

  44. Dave says:

    As always, you’ve introduced me to something else that had slipped past in the blink of an eye. Just signed up, and added one of their widgets to my site. Be interesting to see if it goes anywhere.

  45. I agree with Gary on a few of his thoughts. Especially about how MyBlogLog slows the loading of pages. It really impacts me as I visit a few blogs from my BlackBerry’s internet browser. But it is still fun.

    I just signed up for the service and found that it sent me a good number of visitors and also the first email from a reader. So, for me it’s worked wonders.

    Though I have seen a few *not-so-professional* user names that Dave mentioned about on the site. While it is still nowhere close to the MySpace junkies, it surely is alarming. Dave, I believe you have brought up a great point about community owners deciding on membership. However, one cannot always distinguish/discriminate amongst readers just because they have funky usernames/photos. Notice that I mention funky and not objectionable.

    Overall, I find it a great way to find new blogs and feel that it could do well with a few suggestions.

  46. Maria Palma says:

    Darren,

    I joined MyBlogLog back in November and have seen a big jump in traffic to my blogs. I like to see who’s been lurking around ;) I’ve also come across many other bloggers who create quality content. It’ll be interesting to see what Yahoo! will do with it now!

Trackbacks

  1. The Missing Features of MyBlogLog…

    Darren Rowse from ProBlogger asks what MyBlogLog has done for him lately. I don’t disagree with Darren – but I see some fantastic potential with this service. I do love seeing the faces of other bloggers, especially new ones on my blog utilizin…

  2. [...] Darren Rowse wrote about a similar experience. He joined a Social Networking Site and came back later to find he had a whole community. I’m not really sure what to ‘do’ with my community. I’ve added the MyBlogLog widget to my sidebar (scroll down a bit) – but I’m unsure what else to do. I know I see a lot of My Blog Log widgets around – but I’m wondering if anyone has any wisdom to share on what they do with their ‘community’. [...]

  3. [...] If you have been visiting this weblog’s homepage over the last couple of weeks, you would have probably noticed how I have been trying out a new widget that, over time, I have grown to become very fond of. More than anything else because a whole bunch of the folks I follow on a regular basis have actually been trying it out themselves and with some very positive feedback so far. So I had to tried it out myself and see how it would go and so far I am *loving* it. It is called MyBlogLog and you would be able to find some further reviews over here. [...]