I heard about well-established blogging organization Xanga a long time ago, but their concept of ‘Blogrings’ has only just recently entered into my field of vision. What is a Blogring? By design, it is an attempt to bring people who have specific interests together into groups where they can write about their chosen fields. OK, let me give you an example. There are many categories that your blog could fit into, anything from ‘Family and Home’, to ‘Religion and Beliefs’, or ‘Business and Finance’ could be where you decide to classify your writing. For some, I guess this kind of grouping could even help you to keep your blog more singly focused (people appreciate someone who sticks to one topic).
For the purpose of this review I decided to check out some of the blogs in an area that interests me, ‘Arts and Humanities’. The next step was to hone in even further by choosing a subcategory from such titles as ‘Architecture’, ‘Dancing’, or ‘Photography’, to name but a few. I chose ‘Writing’ for obvious reasons-I love reading and writing! So, what happened next? I was taken to a page with a list of Blogrings, their titles, information on how long they’d existed for, and on how many individual bloggers belonged to each. In the ‘Writing’ section some of the 7,187 Blogrings had over 2,000 active blogging members in each group, pretty impressive stuff! My dream of being able to connect with other people who love words and their often-secretive meanings was slowly becoming more of a reality.
Let me give you an idea of how the Blogring groups are presented. Some are very basic in their description like ‘Imagination unlimited’ (757 members) which simply states, ‘Join here if you have unlimited imagination.’ Whereas others are more elaborate and animated in their focus like ‘A perfect Ending’ (240 bloggers) whose Blogring creator candidly informs, ‘Do you like happy endings? I do. I think that everyone should live happily ever after, but the problem is that most don’t. So what’s the solution? Got any ideas? Let’s get together and solve all this. We want a Happy Ending to everyone’s problems, and By GOD – We’re gonna have it.’
Some Blogring creators obviously take an active role in deciding whether or not you are deemed fit enough to belong in their group. Hmmm. is this elitism? Quality control? Is this fair? Do they alone judge you, or is it the whole group? The ‘Spontaneous Writer’ group (303 people) creator says, ‘For the people whose xangas are of short stories, poems, articles, theories… I’m filtering applicants/members who do not belong in this blogring so if your xanga is mostly about your day, I will NOT accept you. If you actually write, but of silly love poems about why this boy does not love you or that you’re “just another girl”… Please. But other than that, I’m open to all applicants, so don’t feel intimidated, really!’ Are you intimidated?
I liked the sound of the Blogring called, ‘Writing reality’ (761 members). Their motto is, ‘We weave reality into words through our writing of it. If you love the art of writing in any way, shape, or form… you’re home.’ After reading a few blogs I decided to sign up to see what else the Blogring construct can offer. Well, they ask you for your Instant Messenger and email addresses so I assume that you can communicate directly with people in your Blogring, which is an automatic plus for those of you who’ve been writing but haven’t had many comments or interactions with other people.
I also found that there are some safety measures put into place, as I was unable to view some of the blogs. They were ‘locked’. I expect this is because some bloggers don’t want just any person on the Internet to read their content, possibly saving it solely for their friends or the members of their Blogring.
So, if you’re into blogging about animal rights, building model cars, small businesses, or marital relationships, it might be time to join a group of your fellow humans who are ready and willing to share and learn from one another.
Jesse S. Somer wonders if there could be a ‘Lord of the Blogrings’, and if so, are they short and hairy, spending much of their time blogging about sitting out in the fields peacefully smoking a pipe and drinking an ale?