Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I Can Help Monetize Your Blog!

The few of you who come back and read old updates looking for the elusive third or fourth joke in them might have noticed that a Facebook "Like" button has been added to the ends of every article. Much like the Twitter, Google Reader, Facebook Fan Page and RSS feed links, this is another feature designed to sate a grubbing lust for attention or small pecuniary compensation for untold hours wasted on making fun of shitty pundits, racists, conservatives (where not already covered by items #1 or #2) and Tim McCarver.

I had heard about the new Facebook blog feature, but I figured it was an inane development-for-development's-sake item until two different people (one a stranger, one not) sincerely campaigned for it. One of these people works in the marketing division of a large online company and told me that I would be "an idiot" for not adding the feature. I figure if a person who makes a gross amount of money learning how to get attention for stuff online tells me to do something, maybe I should just go with it. The Facebook "Like" button is here, probably to stay, until it gets modified with a better version.

Because I thought it would be unfair to use strangers as guinea pigs for privacy issues, I tested it out with some friends — whose trust and kindness deserve to be abused, like guinea pigs. Although clicking on it will show you that you like an article, it will not display your name to strangers if you have any privacy settings up. Only your Facebook friends will be able to see your name listed at the end of the article as having "Liked" it. You won't display your interests to anyone you don't know.

"Liking" any article posts a demure one-line notice on your Facebook wall, e.g., "Bort J. Snrub likes a page on Et tu, Mr. Destructo?" I'd love to say I chose the less "salesy" one-line notification feature out of modesty, but the code that enables the full notice — with a paragraph you can post, a picture and the lede — makes everything else look like dogshit, airing out copy and setting the comment box about 200 pixels down the page. No thanks. Those who like posting full-notice links but don't like going to the effort can get around the hassle by becoming a fan on the Facebook fan page and hitting the "SHARE" button on new posts, which copies the teaser paragraph, the pic and the lede text and then posts it on your wall as "via Et tu, Mr. Destructo?"

Now, I know what you're going to say: "You haven't posted anything new in a week. You went on vacation and didn't even write a goddamn paragraph, and now you expect readers to do more clicky-click to promote your vain and lazy ass to strangers to bring you more life-giving attention. How can you think you can get away with that? How can you do it?" And to that, I have a one-word answer: "Volume."

3 comments:

  1. anonymous marketing whoreJune 4, 2010 at 3:58 AM

    i don't recall calling you an idiot. that said, you'd be an idiot not to make it easier for readers to 'share on facebook/twitter/web2.0' at the beginning and/or end of every post, since it's a pain in the ass to copy/paste the URL or hope that your manual broadcasts show in my unpredictable FB/twitter/whatever feeds.

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  2. Well, AMW, I finally found some SHARE button code that didn't completely bork the formatting on every other part of the blog. The ones that I was looking at before had substantial problems that aired out the text in the labels and comment sections and made things look terrible. As it is, this SHARE button screws up the formatting in the lede graf of every post and narrows the text, making it look faintly pyramidal, but it is the least obtrusive of all of them.

    Finally, as to my manually updating things, if you're really that concerned about missing new articles, you can put this site into Google reader, a browser's RSS and mail RSS readers. And then there are Google alerts. If you're fan enough to be upset at missing these things, though, I don't know why you wouldn't just periodically load the site to see if anything had been published. I do that all the time with people whose writing I like. The more I like something, the less likely I am to put it into a reader or rely on Facebook updates, because I like it enough to remember to find it myself.

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  3. Speaking of monetizing your blog, check your PMs, I sent you one a few days ago about making a donation.

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Et tu, Mr. Destructo? is a politics, sports and media blog whose purpose is to tell jokes or be really right about things. All of us have real jobs and don't need the hassle that telling jokes here might occasion, which is why some contributors find it more tasteful to pretend to be dead mass murderers.