Wednesday, 29 September 2010

The Case Against Syndication

Manchester's Social Media Café meets monthly in The Northern, a bar on Tib St in the Northern Quarter.

I went a few months ago to see if there were any other writers there, who might be doing a similar thing to me, and to do some shameless self-promotion whether there was or not.

The topic of the night was syndication. The idea: The more places your blog is held, the more people will see your work. But why upload your entries to each blog one after the other, the SMC organisers suggested, when you can “syndicate” your blog sites?

You upload to your primary site, and your secondary sites are automatically updated with the same information. Sounds like a good idea. I don't do it, though, and my blog content appears on five separate web pages simultaneously. I copy and paste for two reasons. The first: I can't figure out how to do it. Second: I wouldn't want to do it f I could.

Let's say there's a problem with one of your sites. You've written something, and someone takes offence to it. They contact the site administrators. They could get you shut down. It's extreme, but it happens. It's happened to me. If the complainant spots the work on one of your secondary sites, it will still appear on the rest of your web pages. But if they get your work taken down from your primary site... you lose it everywhere.

Another advantage to non-syndication: you can modify content for each blog. What you do in everyday life might be fine for anyone to read. But if you're a professional cage fighter who relaxes by flower-pressing after training, and you're keen to extol the virtues of both, you might feel that they don't sit together. Not syndicating allows (and requires) you to use your own judgement.

Some websites like are a pain in the arse to format. When I paste a blog into Webs' blog uploader, the site throws out all of my paragraphs and a lot of the spaces between words. Out of all the blog sites I've tried, Webs takes the longest to tweak text. Some other blog-hosting sites aren't much better.

The point is that, as a blogger, you are the king of your blog kingdom. You are in control of your output. The Copy and Paste functions are your weapons. Use them to protect and tweak your work, and your reign shall be long and prosperous.

1 comment:

CageFightingBlogger said...

Oh, and would you look at that? Facebook's Live Blog application seems to have stopped working.