Since I've started blogging, I've been a regular reader of many blogs, some with HUGE numbers of readers and some with small numbers. I've noticed that bloggers with relatively small numbers of readers welcome comments--any comments! However, some bloggers with larger readerships seem to hate any negative comments. I have to be honest; I don't have much sympathy for them.
One of my favorite blogs is Dooce. Heather Armstrong is funny! She's also damn successful at blogging. Not only has she made a career out of blogging, but her husband also works with her. That's pretty amazing. An article about her a year ago estimated her readership is about 300,000 a day. That's mind-blowing to me. I want to make it clear that I'm not a Dooce-hater. Jealous? Hell, yes!
What gets me is that Heather Armstrong was invited to attend a forum on workplace flexibility at the White House! How exciting! Again, I was extremely jealous. I couldn't wait to read her blogs on attending. She posted two blogs about the event within a month or so of the event. But during all this, she blogged angrily about the negative comments some people made about her attending--about how she didn't deserve to go. Recently, she posted more about the DC trip. However, she stated that she almost didn't post it because of all the hate out there about her going.
This angered me. As a Dooce reader, I was really interested to know about the forum through her humorous perspective. With a readership as large as hers, doesn't she know that everyone is not going to be nice? When you're somewhat famous, you're going to have to deal with some negativity. It comes with the high number of readers (did I mention that I was terribly jealous about this?). I do think it would have been terribly unfair for her to not blog about the opportunity to the vast majority of people who religiously follow her blog.
And not to pick on just Heather. I've seen other successful bloggers complain about negativity. Momlogic ran an article on the dark side of mommy blogging that featured a story of a woman who blogged about her rainbow pancakes. This blog won the blogging lottery. It was covered by tons of people on the internet and registered 500,000 hits (that's half a million hits, people). But the article's focus wasn't on this, but on how some people wrote less that nice comments such as, "You shouldn't be allowed to procreate if you're going to feed your kids junk!" I'm sure comments like this were very hurtful, but c'mon--500,000 hits! Of course there's going to be some negative comments when so many people read what you wrote.
I don't think my blog will ever get this many readers. Heck, I'm happy if over 50 people read my blog on a given day. But if I ever hit the blogging big time, you won't catch me complaining about some negative things people say about me. If I do, point me back to this post.