Tuesday, March 22, 2011

I Am So Grateful -- But . . .

Is it me (or are there others of you who agree with me)?  I only listed my blog with Geneabloggers about four months ago -- and it's been nothing but wonderful. In October 2010, there were 341 page views -- mainly from my immediate family (and undoubtedly me) since I haven't changed the settings to exclude my own page views.  In the past month, I've had nearly 3000 page views.  What a difference becoming part of Geneabloggers has made for me.

When I initially joined Geneabloggers, I was jealous of the people who had had their blog acknowledged with an "Ancestor Approved" designation.  I wondered if anyone would ever think my blog was worthy of such an award. I was absolutely thrilled when Jenn of Roots and Stones  recognized my blog in early January with the Ancestor Approved Award.  Part of your obligation when you accept this award is that you must then pass on the award to 10 additional blogs.  For me, this was a very rewarding task because it forced me to look at numerous blogs.  I started "following" several of my awardees and have corresponded with many of them.  In many cases I admire their creativity and writing style.  They are part of my "Dashboard" and "Google Reader" and my life has been enriched though this process.

Fast forward two months.  On March 14th, Margel of 2338 W. Washington Blvd. awarded me the "One Lovely Blog Award."  I am a total fan of Margel's blog and have cited her blog in the past.  I was thrilled -- but -- after my experience with "Ancestor Approved", I did not know if I could accept it.  Unlike three months ago, I probably "follow" more than 30 blogs and my google reader is loaded every day.  I started searching for other candidates for this award and discovered that many already had this award.  Since I'm a former math teacher, I wondered how long it would take everyone in Geneabloggers to receive this award.

Here's my hypothetical situation.  I receive the award.  I award it to 15 bloggers.  They each award it to 15 more.  Theoretically, in just a couple of days, the math could work out like this:
1 blogger awards the designation to 15 additional bloggers -- total 16
The second group of 15 award it to 15 additional bloggers -- 225 + 16
Those 225 bloggers identify 15 blogs each to receive  the award -- 225 X 15 = 3375

So if I'm doing my math correctly, in just three cycles, 3616 blogs would receive the award.  What's really scary is to realize that if 3375 bloggers award 15 bloggers each with the award, that's an additional 50,625 recipients.  I think you get the idea.  (Besides, there are only about 1700 bloggers listed in Geneabloggers.  This results in the same blogs necessarily being recognized repeatedly). 

By the way, before I could even decide how I was going to handle this latest award, I was notified by Leslie Ann of Ancestors Live Here that she, too, had selected me to be a recipient of the "One Lovely Blog Award." As much as I was complimented and thrilled that Leslie Ann felt that Family Matters was worthy of this award, I'm afraid I am going to have to decline all future awards of this type. Instead, I'm making a resolution to recognize those blogs that have had special significance for me. I love this community that I've joined, the people who have chosen to "follow" me, and what I've learned from so many of you. But I want to get back to the reason for this blog in the first place -- namely, that the JONES FAMILY MATTERS.

I'd love to hear your thoughts.



  1. Yeah, it's a bit crazy. My thoughts exactly.

  2. That's what you get for having such a great blog.

  3. When I received my very first award over a year ago, I was thrilled, but declined, and it was hard to explain why. Many times since, I've been awarded and continue to decline. Good for you for doing the same thing, now I'm not alone.

  4. I accept each award with gratitude. If it is early in the game, I pass it on. When it happens a bit later, I still accept it happily, but I might elect to respond with a brief post - sometimes humorous, sometimes more in a musing vein - I guess you could say that I use it as a prompt. If a lot of awards are going around, I wait until I have a few to post. So in the end I don't feel as though I have spent my time to no purpose - we shared some friendly thoughts and I did think of something to write!

  5. Greta,
    Point taken. After all -- the latest round of awards prompted this post. And I hope it did not appear as if I was ungrateful (because that is definitely not the case).

  6. I did the math as well, and agree that I am always flattered and pleased that others like my blog, but the exponential nature of these awards makes it almost impossible to pass on. I acknowledge and thank the giver, but it takes literally hours to find send it on. Thank you to all who have thought of my blog, but I can't always continue the honoring. I try to get to others blogs and make personal comments on the post at hand as a way of showing my respect and appreciation.

  7. I remember thinking the same thing after the 2nd award I received. My choice was to "save" the award for a few months until I found some newer bloggers and then pass it on. (There are always at least a dozen new blogs joining Geneabloggers, announced every Saturday.) I often think the awards would be better if they were passed on to 2 to 5 other bloggers instead of 10 or 15. It would make the award more special and it would be less demanding to accept the award. Congratulations on your two awards! You DO have a great blog!

  8. Agreed. With all of it, your words and the comments. It does get overwhelming at points. But perhaps because we recognize the effort involved in the research and blogging (and perhaps because in our daily lives SO many eyes glaze over when we become enthused) I want to pass the awards on.

    My own choice is to wait a bit, find some new bloggers I enjoy and share with them.

  9. I only started my blog on 14 Feb and have received 4 Lovely Blog awards already! I do appreciate the awards, however how do I find 60 blogs that don't already have this award? I have so far declined to accept the awards but have posted a big thank you to each of the people who took time to find my blog and offer the award. I think a nice comment on a post is award enough! Great post Kathy, it has prompted a good balanced discussion.

  10. It became funny when I was trying to find someone who didn't have the award to pass it on to, finally found someone only to see that they had just recived the award in the comment before I would have passed it on. And funny at those times, just came through one, where multiple awards come flooding in. I do appreciate the thought behind it but it's too time consuming for me to find people to pass it on too. I would rather comment and visit lovely blogs with or without an award.

  11. Lately I've been accepting graciously and declining on "passing the gift". I truly think that these awards should go to new bloggers, as several people mentioned above. I have many wonderful readers and recieve plenty of nice comments. I don't count my page views anymore, I just enjoy writing, which was why I started in the first place.

  12. It's always nice to be recognized and acknowledge these awards. I think for the most part that bloggers are sincere in their desire to pass these awards on and I'm grateful for the ones I've received. I no longer pass on awards just because the "award rules" say I must. That said I have been lax in spreading some link love lately, shame on me!

    Perhaps it will help to understand the why and how of the beginnings of these awards.

    Awards that "require" recipients to pass on the award usually get started as a way for a blogger to gain pagerank through link-backs. The One Lovely Blog Award has been around for years and I don't believe it started with genealogy blogs, I know it made the rounds of foody and garden bloggers. So if you award it to 15 bloggers and they all acknowledge you, you get 15 quick links back, which is good. (The first time I received it you were supposed to pass it on to 7 others.) But 7 or 15 links will not move your pagerank, so how and why do these things get started?

    As your numbers show you can gain a huge number of link-backs in a few days if you are the one who starts an award and you include in the rules that everyone include a link to you as the creator of the award. In a few days you have gained 2,000+ links and links will continue to grow exponentially - for awhile. Sooner or later that part of the rules gets left off as the award gets passed on but you still got your thousands of links. And the award continues to circulate forever, with the rules changed repeatedly as it gets passed along.


Join the conversation. Comments are appreciated and keep me motivated.