Monday, March 1, 2010

Is Imitation Flattery or Just Plain Copying?

Do you believe that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery? I have friends who get so upset when another friend or acquaintance copies one of their ideas, usually it's about decor or fashion.

I honestly don't understand that because I wonder Are there really any new ideas? Aren't we all getting inspiration from somewhere, whether we do it consciously or unconsciously?

Maybe it doesn't bother me because I'm not sure anyone has ever imitated anything I've ever done. And if it ever does happen, I'll be flattered.

Many of you know Pam of Pam's Perspective. Pam is my stepdaughter, but she is also my friend. Pam has so many great ideas, and I copy them whenever I can. So far she hasn't told me to cut it out. However, I do try to give her appropriate credit.

Pam began her blog about two months before I started this one. I was immediately intrigued by the whole idea and asked her a million questions. In her usual style, Pam read books about blogging. I just copied her. Not exactly, I think my blog style is quite different but I wonder whether I would have ever gotten started here if it weren't for Pam. Much of her blog is about books (I am always asking her for suggestions of books to read) and her reviews of theater productions she has seen (I have hitched my wagon to many of her theater excursions, too).

Pam wrote a great post yesterday about the things she's learned about blogging over the last year. A couple weeks ago I wrote a post about our family which Pam played a prominent part in. In her comment she said something about taking it and posting it on her blog. That would have been fine with me, and after this post is finished, I am going to wish she had.

So with thanks and apologies to Pam for the almost blatant plagiarism, although I did make several changes to her original post, here are many of the things I have learned about blogging since Pam, I mean I, began.

1. I really don't like it when I have to type in word verification to leave a comment on a blog. Do people really get that much spam that this is necessary?

2. I don't like blogs that are all about giveaways and advertising. If I can’t find the post within a couple seconds because I have to weed through links, ads, etc., I’m out of there usually never to return. I’m not talking about the occasional give-away or fund raiser for a cause that’s important to the blogger. I’m talking about ads for toothpaste and diet programs. I've got enough commercials in my life, thanks.

3. I miss my favorite blogs when they don't post for a while. I check the blogs that I enjoy almost daily and when I see a new post, I can’t wait to read it.

4. I really enjoy bloggers who write insightful and thought-provoking posts. But I enjoy many of the lighter posts, too. Some of you are hysterical, and I love it when someone makes me laugh out loud.

5. I can't comment on every post I read because sometimes I don’t have anything to contribute and don’t want to be one of those people who just leaves something like “stopping by from SITS.”

6. I wish everyone who left a comment on my blog had their email address attached to their profile. I really like to go to the commenter to visit their blog and to say thanks for the visit. I do attempt to follow them back to their blog through their profile but some are impossible. Do you know if you're a "no reply commenter"? Check your dashboard. You may be missing out on some of the fun of blogging.

7. I love the friendships I've found with some fellow bloggers. I've gotten some great advice, support and encouragement behind the scenes and I consider these people to be friends.

8. I have to admit I’m still a little caught up in the whole Followers thing, although on my blog you’re Trackers. I do realize that of the 100+ followers I have (not that many in the bloggy world) not even half of them read my blog on a regular basis. And that’s okay. I get about 30-40 visits (I check that with Sitemeter) with about 15 comments a day. Most of the regular commenters I have gotten to know and look forward to hearing what they have to say about my posts. One very exciting thing for me about Sitemeter is that it tracks where the visitor/commenter is from. I have readers from all over the world which I am totally into.

9. I love having the opportunity to express my thoughts here on my blog. Many of my posts have been reminiscing about family and friends and I’ve enjoyed writing those posts so much. I especially appreciate the thoughtful and heartfelt comments left. So thanks for listening and participating.

10. One of the great sites that Pam introduced me to was SITS. For the most part, that association has been fun and helped me build up my readership. SITS is a group of women bloggers, mostly work-at-home and stay-at-home mothers, a group that I don’t fit into. But I have found several great blogs I may have missed otherwise, and it was exciting, fun and hard work to be featured blogger recently. Pam and I have talked about the idea of developing a SITS-style blog that featured more "serious" blogs. We’re working on it and hopefully will be able to figure out how to start our own “tribe.” Personally I would like to have more men bloggers to read, too.

11. I love the idea of Awards, at least at first I did. The first couple awards that I received were very exciting because I took their sentiment seriously. But there is a responsibility involved in having an award given to you, and I took that seriously, too. It got very difficult and time consuming to do what was required and to pass them along to other bloggers. So I became an Award Free Blog (copying Pam once again). I look forward to and enjoy receiving and reading comments on my posts and that’s enough for me.

12. Currently I think I have 149 blogs in my Google Reader. An impossible number to keep up with. Soon I plan to go through them and reluctantly let some go. That’s a difficult decision but it needs to be done. I tend to follow anonymously at first just in case I don’t stick around, and then I won’t hurt anyone’s feelings if I decide to drop out. The one exception to that rule is if I find a new blogger that I think I will continue to enjoy. I know how excited and encouraged I was to get my first followers so I like to pass that feeling on.

Despite some of the things I mentioned here that I don't care for, blogging has been a wonderful experience that has brought out things in me I had either forgotten about or didn't know were there. Most definitely it has become a part of my life that I hope will continue.


~Kristen~ said...

You have said so much of what I think and feel about blogging! Can I copy you?! ;-)

I am going to check out your step-daughter's blog, too!

Midlife Jobhunter said...

I had no idea you and Pam were related. How lovely how you write about her.

I also agree with many of your observations. I recently added the word identification as I was receiving odd comments. Seemed to have eliminated them even though I hate having to type in a word also.

How lucky you can get such good book recommendations from you. Godd choice of a person to copy.

Housewife Savant said...

You did a great job Pamndy.

Seriously, I'm all about Number Two. Haha.
I hate the ads.

Anne said...

How funny - I read your blog and I read Pam's blog and I had no idea you were related! It really is a small world.

kaye said...

well said :)

Pam said...

Flattery. Definitely flattery. Thanks for the shout out and the kind words.

arlee bird said...

I have done and do many of the things you mention. After I got rid of the word verification my spam rose only a minor bit and I just reject those comments.
I still do the awards. At first I thought like you did because initially I got several. But they've dwindled down to a few so I just acknowledge them in my Saturday post and if I have time I usually pass them on. I like to share other blogs of bloggers who have shown loyalty to mine or whom I think deserve notice.
Good overview about blogging.

Just Breathe said...

I love this post and I went over to check out Pam's post. I agree with you on many of these issues.
I have seen others who have gone award free. I'm not ready to go there but I do get it! They are very hard work. I mentioned that recently about the email. I just want to hit reply-hate getting no-reply! I like SITS too! Thanks for sharing all these points.

DUTA said...

I very much agree with what you say abot blogs and blogging.
As for the 'male issue', I do have male followers but they rarely leave comments. I often think about this , but I don't know what can be done to make them more 'involved'.

LadyFi said...

149 blogs in your reader? That's some reading!

As for new ideas: well, a new idea is made up of two or more old ones that you combine in different ways, I think. So yes - you can have new ideas and yes, they're always based on ones that already exist...

Just Playin' said...

I like your list. I try to strike a balance between reading, following, writing, getting attached, new ideas...all of that. It's been a fun year. LIke you I don't like the contesty, ads blogs.

"And so our stories go..." said...

I agree with you about people commenting "Stopping by from SITS." I find that so someone running through my backyard naked!

Dalia (Generation X Mom) said...

I didn't know you and Pam were related, learn something new everyday! Here are my thoughts...

Word verification - sorry you have to enter those on my site. I worry about spam, don't know too much about it, but am told it will help.

I agree about the giveaways and advertising completely and do the same thing.

I like real life posts. I like to read about things that I can relate to in real life. And, I love to learn new things, so anything that is going to teach me something I am there.

I agree about people commenting just to comment. If someone is going to comment on my blog, I would hope they are doing it because they want to and not because they are required.

I wish I could read all of the blogs in my reader. Just not enough time! I try to get to a handful a day if I am lucky!

Anonymous said...


can anyone tell me which is the best counter strike guide ? :)...i found this one :

What do you hither harshly it ?

Thanx in advance

Sorry for my bad english :s


Blog Design By Lindsey Joy Design © All Rights Reserved.