The Manhattan Project--2016 A to Z Theme

Always a work in progress--welcome to my blog...

Monday, October 10, 2011

In Time for Halloween--And the Award Goes Too...

          It's an old scary story that I visited about this time last year in this post.   As though dressed in a fancily adorned Halloween costume my blog was once festooned with awards given to me by many of my blogger friends.  I even had a separate page set up for the overflow of the awards this blog had received.

          Then the malware scare that began sweeping many of our blogs at the end of August drove me to drastic measures.  I frantically wiped off awards from my main page and even tossed out the special page I had created for my awards.  I wasn't sure what I needed to do to clean up my blog of whatever links may have been responsible for the malware--if indeed there even had actually been any malware--so I decided to just start cleaning up the whole thing--period.

           I have often struggled with the concept of blog awards and the time it takes to acknowledge them.  First I leave a comment for the person who left me the award.  Then I add my awards to a post and include the  appropriate links.  And then, there are the various rules of the award which typically include listing some facts about myself or something of that nature.  Finally the stipulations usually request passing the award on to a certain number of bloggers which may be as many as fifteen.  But I probably don't need to tell most of you about this since you've received these awards yourself.

         So I've come to a conclusion for this issue I raised a year ago.   Awards will no longer be displayed on my permanent pages.  When I have time, I may still continue to acknowledge awards in my posts and I will come to your blog to thank you if you if I see that you've given me an award.  But I will not be spending much time adding awards and links to my site.  I hope all of you understand my decision and no one takes offense from it.

          I don't mean to sound sour about this issue, but I must prioritize my time and energy to do the things that are more relevant to what I am trying to do.   I truly appreciate the sweet attention that I receive from all of you and I hope that you understand my decision.   The biggest award that I can ever receive from any of you is that you visit, read, and leave comments.

          Keep in mind that I am always interested in having other bloggers as guests.  If you are looking for more exposure and greater opportunities to network, please email me at the address in my profile and let me know what you'd like to do.  I've been trying to have guest posters every Wednesday.  There's a place on my blog for you.

          Do you feel that I am being harsh about the awards issue?  What is your opinion of blog awards?  Are you ready to do a guest spot on Tossing It Out?

WE HAVE A WINNER!

The winner of the BlogWorld Expo pass is Beverly Diehl who can be found at Writing In Flow. Congratulations Beverly!  See you at BlogWorld.



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41 comments:

  1. Hi Lee - what you've said about awards makes perfect sense to me ... it is great to be acknowledged and I've a few sitting here I'm afraid to say. They can stop you in your tracks .. the guilt sets in .. some people are so good at just acknowledging them straight away and that's it: I guess I need to do that .. I've never set one up, or passed one on ..

    Congratulations to Beverly - the Expo sounds as though it will be fun and a huge learning curve .. enjoy - cheers Hilary

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  2. Congratulations to the person who won their award, wish I could go to the Expo, it sounds a lot of fun.

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  3. You've absolutely done the right thing. You don't see Nobel winners walking around with their medals around their necks or actors toting their Oscars. Knowing you received them is the best part of the award.

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  4. I do not feel you are being harsh about the awards issue, Lee.

    It's a bit like the place setting you never use but you put it out when your mother-in-law comes in town. Only on Blogger, she's always there.

    Or something.

    Okay, so the metaphor breaks down (if it was ever intact) but, no. You are not being harsh about the awards issue.

    Looking forward to some excellent Halloween posts from you this month.

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  5. well, most of these awards are lovely, but 90% of them really are given just to pass them on. That's why you sometimes get an award from someone u just met. It's nice, but has no deeper meaning so people shouldn't be agree if you erase them. I still have the special page for my awards, but I understand your situation, Lee.

    Glad to see you are still holding onto my award:) It really was given out with depth and special meaning, and that's why I give out my special awards once a year on a gala ceremony (we still remember your trendsetting blanket outfit from the red carpet last year he he )

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  6. I removed all the awards from the bottom of my blog for a few reasons: the safety issue of course, the fact that no one would see them where I had them anyway and the fact that I am slowly streamlining so that I can move over to bloggers new dynamic views template once they provide a few more options. The awards still exist on the post where I linked to their sender.

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  7. I can totally understand your thoughts about awards. I'm always happy to receive them and appreciate that someone has thought of me, but there's no question that sometimes it is hard to find the time to devote to them. I didn't realize there was also a malware issue involved with the pages, but that makes your position doubly understandable.

    Congratulations to Beverly for winning the Expo Pass!

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  8. Hilary --Since my posts are normally sent up in advance I have to rearrange things to do an awards post or schedule them in advance. And if you do the awards like they are requested to be done then it does take a bit of time. They are great for new bloggers trying to establish a network and get known or for bloggers who are stuck for blogging ideas--the awards provide fodder for posting which sometimes came in handy when I was posting every day. Now I just have too many ideas and I'm backed up with posting ideas.

    Yeamie -- I hope Beverly has a great time at the BlogWorld Expo and learns a lot.

    Kelly - I appreciate being backed up on this and you're right. It's the thought of the award that counts, but I don't have to think about it and remind my readers every day.

    Suze -- I love the metaphor whether it fits in this case or not. I know what you mean. I don't know about the excellent Halloween posts, but I'm going to try to fit in keywords like "Halloween" in my posts as much as I can. I'm going to go back to my experiment of my very first month of blogging although to a much more limited extent.

    Lee

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  9. Dezmond -- I know what you're saying. I really hated to make my award eradication decision, but I had to decide what my blog was supposed to represent.. Your award was so directly personal that I decided to retain it on the page.

    Delores -- Agreed. I still have my original posts where the award reside along with whatever I said about them. If I wanted to I could always go back and retrieve them to put back up on my site.

    Julie -- To clarify, I don't know that the awards were in any way related to the malware issues, but not knowing what was going on I just started cleaning up. Actually I don't know if there ever really was a problematic malware issue or just a Google/Blogger glitch. In any case, I have been looking to clean up my page and this was the prod to action.

    Lee

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  10. I'm totally with you on the awards issue. I feel like a heel, but other than acknowledging the sender, I no longer post or play along with awards. It just feels like there are strings attached. If you want to give someone an award then do so without rules and expectations.Thanks for bringing up the topic.

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  11. i think it's your blog and you can do whatever you want as for the awards go i usually try to post mine when i have absolutely nothing else to say or have hit a writer's block in other words they make a great easy post for me but then again i don't have the following othr bloggers do i'm a small blog that only gets about 20 hits a day and only about 10 comments so for me it's easy. hope you have a great week

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  12. I have a number of awards.....each one I am proud to have on view. If someone can be kind enough to award me with something then it's only fair and curteous to show my appreciation.

    Yvonne.

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  13. I agree that commenting and following are the best rewards! I also prefer the awards with "no strings," and will never forget the excitement of receiving my first one! For now, I'm just grateful when people tune in. Thanks for writing this Lee!

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  14. I really appreciate awards, but I've sort of given up trying to keep track of them all and pass them on. It can take over your whole blog. :) It's really nice to be acknowledged, though.

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  15. I agree with your stand on awards. In the past I might have wanted to garner as many awards as possible. But now, I just want to write, and communicate with other writers.

    I would do a guest spot on your site! But, I haven't published anything of note.
    Happy haunting!

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  16. Better -- We shouldn't feel like heels since our concerns are legitimate. A polite thank-you should suffice.

    becca -- I just want to seem grateful for the recognitions that are bestowed upon me. But it can start getting overwhelming when I am trying to do so many other things. I my early blogging days when I posted daily and had very few comments the awards were easy to contend with and a welcome source of blog ideas. Now I have less posts to spare and less time as well.

    Yvonne -- You express what I have always felt and I have some regret in getting rid of awards and not showing them off, but when I had fears for the life of my blog I did everything I could think of to clear out potential suspects. My strategy for that was probably wrong, but my clean up had been something I'd been thinking of for quite some time. I appreciate any recognition others give me and try to express this in special blog posts. I assure you though that I don't want to appear insensitive or uncourteous. I am honored whenever I see somebody give me a nice pat on the back be it an award or whatever.

    Empty Nester -- I was so excited when I first received an "award" because I didn't fully understand them. Now I realize there are other ways for networking on blogs and I prefer those.

    Talli -- I agree totally with what you've said.

    Susan -- You've also express my sentiments well. And so far as guesting on my blog, publication is not a prerequisite. I'm looking for bloggers who have something of interest they'd like to share or a unique approach to a topic that fits well on my blog. You are welcome to guest here. Just let me know.

    Lee

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  17. You sure put the heebie-jeebies into me. I'm off to go clean up my blog's appearance (and to wipe. But, that's another issue entirely).

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  18. Fortunately, I'm to the point that I've received every award out there!
    Bummer, mine's gone. That one was only given to a couple people.

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  19. Hi Lee,
    So pleased to read your posting on awards. I have always posted them because I was new to blogging and feel honored to be given one. After hearing about all the problems with them, I will be removing all of them except for the "Challenge" ones. I am in Illinois right now visiting family but plan to be doing some redesigning of my blog when I return home.
    Love, Ruby

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  20. Well, I'm in-between. I think it's is wonderful someone thought so highly of me to give me an award and I thank them. I do add it to an awards page with acknowledgment of who it came from and when (and yeah it is work). I post the most recent in my side bar but I don't create a post just for them or follow any rules.

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  21. I've had to move awards to their own tab on my blog. There are too many other things I need on the main page. Like Alex's book tour button. ;) It's nice to be recognized but I have only one day a week open for blog business. I save my replies for then.

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  22. Al -- I'm not gonna touch that. Definitely not going to touch that.

    Alex -- They keep thinking up new awards and repeating the old ones. I lose track of who I've passed them on to. I still have yours on the acknowledge post, same as all of the other awards I took off the page.

    Ruby -- Don't panic like I did if you really like the awards. I don't think the awards were responsible for malware or anything bad. I just got paranoid and didn't want to take any chances.

    Southpaw -- I eventually stopped following the rules because I couldn't keep track of everything. And it came down to deciding whether I had an awards blog or did I have other things to post about. I don't want to put anyone off about it though.

    Ciara -- Time is limited but topics aren't I have so many things I want to write about and the awards tend to create repetition. It is fun to do the facts about oneself types of things though.

    Lee

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  23. YOU INGRATE!
    YOU RUDE SO-AND-SO!

    SEE IF I EVER PRESENT YOU WITH
    ANOTHER BLOGSPOTSH!T.COM AWARD!

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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  24. Woo-hoo, I'm so excited! BlogWorld sounds like fun, and I appreciate the opp to go, very much. You'll have to let me buy you & your wife a tea or something, on Saturday.

    Yes, the awards... at first I was pea green with envy when people had all these awards and I didn't. Then I started getting them - some from people I really liked and respected - and some from people who clearly just wanted to spread a link around back to their pages, that the "you've won an award" was the first and only comment they ever left on my blog.

    I didn't want to spend my blogging time becoming the Blog Police, "This one gets put up; this one doesn't; now should I rearrange the order..." Nor to spend my time scouting out blogs that didn't already have said award to pass it along to... Easier and better, IMO, just to decide for myself - not judging on others who decide otherwise - to just not "do" awards.

    After all, *I'm* the one who's going to look at my blog every day, so *I* need to be happy with where I'm allocating my time and blog real estate.

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  25. Congrats, Beverly!

    Lee, you have VERY valid points for you decision.

    Yes, blog awards are BEYOND time consuming, but I have to admit when I first started blogging they meant a GREAT deal to me. Some still do depending on who has graced me with them.

    I have found that now I rarely pass them on unless I have the time, which isn't too often these days.

    Don't feel badly. We all understand and most of us feel similarly.

    Have a great time at the BLOGWORLD EXPO.

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  26. Mr. McCarthy -- I am so very sorry to have disappointed you. I knew my decision would affect you greatly and hope you will forgive my actions. I know how you love the concept of blog awards.

    Beverly -- You have expressed my thoughts about this very well. The whole concept is a fun way to network for many, but eventually it does become a lot of work with little gain but the goodwill of the thing, which is not bad, but it does use up valuable time.

    Michael-- Thank you for understanding so well. My first awards thrilled me, but I also had a handful of followers then. And I remain grateful for every award I have ever received or will receive in the future. I stopped passing them on partly because I could no longer remember who I had already given them to. But thanks for your words of support.

    Lee

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  27. I appreciate getting an award. When I have collected a few I do a post on them(along with anything I might have won.) I acknowledge the person who gave the award to me and if there are any rules I try to play. BUT...I don't pass them on. Instead I offer them up to anyone who wants them. And I've got all my awards on a separate page, not that anyone goes there to view them, but there they are, a kind of art gallery.

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  28. Sounds good to me. You gotta do what is best for you.

    T

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  29. Somehow I missed the scare, but I took all the awards off my home page and sidebar ages ago.

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  30. Ha!
    OK, consider yourself forgiven.

    ~ D-FensDogg
    'Loyal American Underground'

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  31. When I first joined this community I envied the pretty awards, and was overjoyed when someone finally passed one along to me.

    I happily acknowledged the giver, and happily wrote seven things about myself, and then ... and then I discovered I had to find FIFTEEN whole bloggers to pass it along to.

    I was new to the community and didn't even really know fifteen! So I had to go through my Google Reader, and find fifteen ... I really REALLY liked about five of them, but the rest I'd visited only once or twice and didn't know enough about the authors to say anything personal.

    So I read about twenty-five blogs that day (more than one post!), and chose fifteen, and wrote up the links and tried to figure out how to say something about each one that said "this is a nice blog" and avoided suggesting "but I don't really know it well" ...

    And then when all THAT was done, I had to travel around to each blog and alert them to the award. By then I had NO time left to spend on this thing, was distracted with multi-tasking other important tasks, and I think ended up posting rather inappropriately in the middle of otherwise personal, friendly conversational commenting threads something generically impersonal and almost spammy, like, "Hey you! I've given you a blog award! Come get it! ..."

    And I really kinda hoped after that that I'd never receive another award again. :-\

    I love the awards but they're like unexpected guests, and right now I'm just too busy to accommodate them.

    :)

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  32. Bish -- I think passing the awards on, especially when it's to a number like fifteen others, becomes rather difficult after you start winning several of these. I sometimes offered them up to anyone, but then again I guess that defeats the intended purpose of networking.

    Teresa -- That's the way I see it too.

    Rhonda -- The week before I removed the awards a non-blogger friend had told me that when he visited my blog there were so many things on it that he became confused. My page still has a lot going on it, but now there are a few less distractions.

    StMc - And I breathe a great sigh of relief. Perhaps I'll send you an award.

    Clickerbug-- Your story is a great rendition of how the entire process works. It is a very feel good experience to receive the award, but it does result in a lot of effort if you do it the way it's supposed to be done. It comes down to what you have time for. I'd rather have someone spend time on a comment like you have done than pass on an award to me because they felt an obligation to do so.

    Lee

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  33. I gave up awards a long time ago. It's nice to be acknowledged, but they are so much work and it always felt impossible to pass them on without leaving someone out.

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  34. I don't think you are being too harsh at all, Lee. I think I'm like a lot of people when I say that comments are more than enough for me. I have a hard enough time GETTING to my blog without fearing that I've offended someone by not acknowledging an award.

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  35. I don't think you're being harsh, I think it is very wise to know where it is best to spend your time. I am horrible about responding to the awards, it is time consuming and then I begin to feel bad that I haven't done anything about it. I like your approach.

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  36. I was kinda surprised when I got my first blog award, just like I was surprised to get comments from people who clearly hadn't the slightest bit of interest in the post they were commenting on. I posted the awards - but I felt they were kind of cheesy and dragged down the overall goal of the blog. I haven't received any awards recently so it isn't really an issue - but I do think I may take the awards off my blog. They do look kind of tacky.

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  37. We're in agreement on the blog awards and simply because time is a premium. I can spend extra time blogging or doing the award thing. Frankly, when people visit and comment, that's reward/award enough for me!

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  38. I agree with you on the awards. To pass them on to 5 or more others is a challenge for me. Sometimes I wonder if they are passed on only to satisfy the requirement set forth (by??)

    If you dont want them...dont play. I am with you on this!

    Sig

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  39. Karen -- I always feel like I either leaving someone out or giving awards to the same people.

    Bryce -- I'll take a good comment over an award any day and I think the comment is often more heartfelt.

    Heather-- Time is a valuable commodity that should be used wisely.

    Alison - I do like the way some of the awards look and appreciate the sentiments with which they are sometimes given. Too many does start to look cheesy and cluttered. I know what you're saying though.

    Thistle -- Ditto for me.

    Sig -- When it was just a matter of passing the award on to five or less it wasn't too bad, but fifteen is a bit much. That's fifteen that I have to spend time finding and then copying and pasting links to my site. That can take a good bit of time.

    Lee

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  40. I was like you, then it became too much. I try to do just like you; say thank you and pass it on! It is a lot of work and I think you are being respectful of the gracious award and your time! I think it is the best way to be! Well said~

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Lee