Let’s talk about Feeds and Flickr!

Here at SL Blogger Support we always try to come up with tips and advice to support the blogger community of Second Life. Instead of writing another article, or wall of text if you will, with a list of ‘things a blogger needs to know/do/no do’, I would like to ask YOU, the bloggers of Second Life, to help eachother.

There are a few questions that seem to return on a regular basis, in groupchat and on other platforms (e.g. Facebook, Plurk, Twitter and Flickr), mainly regarding the fashion-blogs: 1) the amount of views/favs/followers some designers require when one wants to apply for a brand and 2) the number of SL Feeds a blog needs to be syndicated in.

Some, not all, creators/designers, only want bloggers who have – let’s say, a minimum of 1000 views per picture on Flickr and their blog needs to be in ‘several’ feeds.

I am not going to beat around the bush, but the requirement of having 1000 views (it is an example, don’t pin me down on it) is what makes people ‘re-post’ their images on Flickr several times a week/day, in some cases even every couple of hours. Desperate to get the required views. The downside of this is: followers get annoyed by seeing the same picture over and over again and the risk is that one loses followers, rather than gaining some.

Then there is the thing about Feeds. 
Feeds were the bomb, till 3 or 4 years ago. A wonderful way to follow and keep up to date with several blogs in one read, simple and easy. But face it, by now feeds are somewhat…not of this time anymore. Social Media took over, we can follow all kinds of other platforms to keep ourselves informed. Times and the way we get our information has changed.

I am not at all thinking I know it all, just because I personally get annoyed by re-posted pics on Flickr, or the fact that *I* do not follow any feeds anymore, doesn’t mean this is the blog-law!


So I have some polls and invite you to answer, just to see – and perhaps get a nice discussion – what bloggers (and thus creators) may need to make blogs work for all.

Feel free to give your view in the comments, keeping it nice!, and in a few weeks I will make a round-up from the polls and the discussions :). I am not going to make a full report on this, the polls are merely to get some discussion started and sharing of experiences, and hopefully this will lead to some insights and great ideas for us all to benefit from.
Of course you can skip polls if they do not apply to you!

Note:  the polls are completely anonymous, nobody will know who answers what – no really, we cannot not see that! – , so no need to be scared or cautious!

(The polls/questions are indeed catered to bloggers and not creators, I will keep that for another article, no worry! Also, this is by no means to judge requirements and applications from creators/blogger managers!)

















22 Comments on “Let’s talk about Feeds and Flickr!

  1. Thanks for posting this, Caty. The re-posting thing is one of my pet peeves; yes, I do un-follow people who do it repeatedly. It is even more annoying now that Flickr has changed the layout of the feed page, there are fewer photos (without clicking “more”, which I usually don’t have the patience for – although I do like the clean layout in terms of viewing those that are on the page). My preferred way of viewing photos now is through some of my favourite Flickr groups, which happily eliminates the reposting issue).

    While the minimum views requirement has kept me from even considering applying for some of my favourite designers, I won’t play the re-post game. My views are organic, through my followers’ Flickr feed and groups. I love when people post which group they saw a photo in; it helps to find the groups that are working, in terms of activity.

    As long as there is competition for blogger spots, I fear there will always be those who insist on gaming the rules. Personally, I would rather have a true measure of views and likes than to rort the system to achieve bloated stats – and piss off my followers in the process.

  2. Edit: In terms of feeds where I get quite a bit of traffic to my blog, the main one is I Heart SL. The others only drive a very small amount of traffic. The other source – while not a feed – is Scoop It! I really appreciate Romyka Mars (who frequently scoops my posts) taking the time to create a collection of posts across the blogosphere that fit into specific categories.

  3. When going through my feeds list many months ago I found that most all were “gone” (who knows why) and the one that was remaining had less traffic (their comments) than I did — so THAT is not good. Hence I have removed all feeds from my blog sidebar.

    IMHO the idea from creators that more views and more followers is a good Flickr thing — is well, let’s say naive. Anyone who consistently sees horrible photos with 99+ likes knows something is up. A brief search of Google explains how this happens and how easy it is to cheat.

    I only post on Flickr when I have something notable to share. I follow NO ONE (how anti-social) and I don’t apply to blogger corrals these days. Folks find me on their own or send me things. I blog daily and happily after eight years or so don’t need to worry about more designers to feature.

    For the new kids on the block, I advise NOT playing the games, enjoy your blog — do a good job and be true to yourself.

  4. Magick Thoughts by AmandaMagick (photographer, artist, blogger, PMC team)

    Ok I get almost no views from the blog syndicates. I do however get tons of views from Facebook followers. But the trick is …. to keep posting blogs and sharing them to social media. Also another trick is to view and follow other blogs. If you follow them they will follow you. So on WP I will put in a tag search Second Life and scroll through all the SL Blogs…. I click the “like” button and “Follow” button and they do the same for me… it works!

  5. I have never reposted a Flickr Pic, I readd bloggers wanted adverts but that’s, personally I don’t like to see 10 pics of hte same post appearing any more but I used to do it and saw the error of my ways reasliing that the best pic works better on its own than 10 of hte same blog – that’s just my opinion of course!

  6. Pingback: Let’s talk about Feeds and Flickr! ~Second Life~ | Magick Thoughts

  7. I post my blog on feeds because I believe in promoting my blog. There are not many places to promote it where SL residents will actually read. I get most of my feed views also from iheartsl too – they have been around for a long time, so I think many who like reading feeds know about it.

    One of the reason why I believe people read feeds in the past was because they were looking for the latest items. You would be able to find items bloggers were wearing, and think, “Where did she/he get that from?” Bloggers were able to provide that information. Nowadays everyone knows where everyone has their items because there are fewer stores to “discover”. There are fewer in store releases. If the store is releasing at an event, then either Seraphim has blogged it, or the store brand has promoted it to Flickr or Facebook. People use FB for RL, and it’s easy to flip through photos on a Flickr app.

    I do think that we need to stop abusing Flickr. One day Flickr will just say, “You know what? No more photos from Second Life”, and then everyone will have to find another platform. This was not an issue 3 years ago, so what changed? And I don’t think anyone should complain about bloggers Flickr photo bumping – not while supporting the brands that require it. I know in real life, brands look at social media numbers. But we are talking about thousands of views a week, even over a hundred thousand views, which are harder to manipulate. Also, the majority of RL brands have an established marketing team, so their approach to bloggers is different to how SL brands approach and regard bloggers.

    Bloggers should make an effort to promote their content to as many viable places as they are able, and find store brands that support their choices. If there are practices that have the potential to encourage promotional abuse, then we should address it, for it affects all of us.

  8. I never understood why I kept seeing the same photos over and over again. Thanks for explaining! Hell, I use Flickr to store my snaps and catalogue my styles. I still read IHeartSL and really enjoy seeing styles from blogs that I didn’t know about.

    TBH, the entire blogging world is so different than when I was first blogging. I blog for fun and my own enjoyment. I really don’t worry about anything else. I can’t stand the whole “gamification” culture that makes everything feel like a curated competition. /shrug

  9. Pingback: Let’s talk about Feeds and Flickr! | Kawaii Feed

  10. Reblogged this on Colleens SLife In Pixels and commented:
    Are you a second life blogger? Do you follow SL Blogger Support? We are talking about some interesting things and taking some polls on the site. You do not have to be a member to chat back. Come join the discussions! This is a great resource for ALL bloggers.

  11. I’m outside the cluster here. I blog to talk about Second Life, basically things I find funny or upsetting, or now and then, advice for other SLers. Sometimes I list the parts of my outftit, sometimes I don’t. So not all of this lines up with what others have to say here. I hope it helps, anyway.

    My Flickr issue was more my misunderstanding of how Flickr statistics work. It’s great to get a lot of views, because many people see you work. But I pay attention to the number of the folks who casually viewed my work who bother to fave it. Obviously, if someone faves you, they like your work. But it’s not always a referendum on your work if 300 people browse it and five fave it.

    I used to submit my work to a number of Flickr groups aimed at photos which are faved a certain percentage of times that they’ve viewed (1%, 5%, 10%, ad confundiam). That statistic is valuable, but as a former statistical programmer, I know about “confounding factors” which can lessen that value in specific cases.

    For example, people would fave my work who later cancelled their Flickr accounts – and their faves went away. This was happening just enough to cause my work to fall out of some of those percentage brackets long after I’d posted it.

    I was getting so much Flickr mail about that (“Dear Patty, are you aware that photos in “These Photos Were Faved 5% of the Time” group have to be faved five percent of the time? Please don’t submit work that doesn’t meet this guideline. Thanks!”) I pulled all my work out of groups like that to save them and me work. Their admins are nice people, and as in the groups I admin or moderate, they have to enforce their rules. I get that, and I want to save us all work. In my groups, I enforce content restrictions, always. Photos don’t suddenly show naughty bits the week after I approve them for posting, or stop being about fantasy and science fiction. My job as an admin is happier and more fun than the groups that count fave percentages are for their admins.

    In any case, I’m here to have fun and help others have fun! Percentage of faves per number of views doesn’t measure that, so I ignore it now.

    I’m grateful to every single person who faves my work. I hope sincerely it’s because I’m improving as an artist. And as other posters here have said, my faves would mean less if I canvassed for them. I like things I happen to like. I expect no more or less from others, my friends or people who aren’t my friends yet.

  12. This is probably obvious to everyone else in this discussion, but didn’t really occur to me – if you’re so emotionally invested in your photos you like high percentages of faves/views, it’s better to post to as few groups as you can manage.

    But the first thing I noticed reading this blog is that 1,000 views is a “magic number” if you blog. One more reason my blog doesn’t actively promote stuff (apart from, “If I like it, I’ll have good things to say about it to my small, loyal band of followers”).

  13. A big thanks for everyone commenting and contributing! I will get back with some re-caps on all of your recommendations and suggestions, after my rl-vacation, next week!

  14. Well, about feeds my personal opinion is that they are not working anymore the way they used too. Because now mostly of them are just gone, dead, finito, no one takes care of them and I’m not sure if designers realize that. Do they make a small check before asking for feeds? 90% of the feeds are dead, if you’re lucky, if YOU’RE LUCKY you get in 3 maybe 4 feeds but that’s soooooooo hard. I barely got mine (and no, not because of the rules) but because no one got back to me on my application. I applied and waited and waited and nothing came back, it wasn’t because they had a lot of things to do, but because the feeds were abandoned. I put a lot of pressure on social media, for me social media is what keeps me updated, flickr, wordpress, plurk, google+, twitter they’re a major change into a blogger’s life.
    About Flickr Bumping, what I’ve read on the other blog and what I saw on others and thinking more clearly, I do not think that 1 bumping once in a while is a BAD thing, because it’s like when you reposted/re-shared something on facebook or plurk, to remind people you did that (that one thing you really liked and/or remind them about your art or you), but when they over do it, that’s just NOT NICE !Because you push down other people’s work, and we can’t see it. Once in a while won’t harm someone, but…… keeping on going it’s just rude.

  15. I wrote before as a blogger and now I am going to write as a content creator :D.

    Sooooooo — What do I look for in prospective group members? Good photos certainly. I like blogs that actually BLOG (OMG that is so out of style) and of course the brands needs to be mentioned as well as the venue where it is appearing AND A LINK.

    I also (and I am not alone in this as we creators chatter a bit) appreciate photos that actually SHOW my items rather than a giant group H and G photo with so much stuff in there someone interested could never figure out who made what.

    Fashion along with H and G? Certainly. Oftentimes works well; I personally like seeing that part of the time. If there is a story that’s even better.

    Do I CARE about Flickr numbers? (nope as I know they can be faked easily).
    Do I CARE about “favs”? No to that too for the same reason.

    Do I CARE ****put this is red and underlined*** if someone bothers to let me know they featured my products and tags the photos?

    ********* YOU BETCHA! **********

  16. My problem with the flicker issue is that the views will reach that amount with time and without re-posting, i hate that btw.
    But the requirement of having a certain amount for favs a.k.a stars is impossible, especially when you see who the people are that do reach over 100 stars/favs and wonder how?

    This lead to many creators not accepting you as a blogger because the average favs/ stars don’t equal some of the popular bloggers and this is really discouraging.

    To me, favs/stars are similar to likes in a blog post.
    Not every single post is every person’s cup of tea and this lead to mainly the same bloggers/store owners who has also a group of followers based on products they created, reach the stars/favs requirements quicker.

    And on the other side, a regular john who just do blogs would a lot of times not even receive a thank you for applying note but no.

    And yeah it’s all about the advertisement right?

  17. Ooh btw, feeds are so 2007, lol the new feed is trying to be featured in popular Facebook Pages and if you do not have a second life regular facebook account you will be seeing your numbers drop drastically.

    I experienced this after I really got tired of Facebook closing my Second life FB account and requesting my RL name which I refused to do because I do own a RL Facebook account already for work and family and I don’t want to mix.

    but right there is where I saw how the followers and views became less and less as a result on my Flickr pictures also.

  18. I have to repeat and also agree with what amyalka said. I’ve also recently applied/paid to be on two SL feeds and heard nothing back from the owners. There’s absolutely a pressure from designers to have bloggers featured on such feeds, but not only does it seem nearly impossible when the site owners aren’t active, I just really don’t think it’s worth it. It’s unfair to newer bloggers who apply to blog for stores, because half the time they’re overlooked because they’re not syndicated on a dead feed.

    In terms of Flickr bumping, I think it’s fine to give your photo a bump once or twice after some time has passed, but no more. After that stage, it’s likely that a large potion of your active followers have already seen it. It’s true that a lot of the stores we blog for requires a certain number of views/favs, so if a bump helps people to get to the numbers they need, I don’t see the harm and they shouldn’t be shamed for it. I do appreciate when others occasionally do it because I sometimes miss a picture from a user that I like, and if you’re someone who likes to fave and comment on work you appreciate like me, then I don’t mind it at all.

  19. This is an interesting read, and very enlightening, so thank you for that. I was not syndicated at all (still not sure what’s the point on that), but one store I’m dying to blog for requires that a blogger be syndicated, so I signed on to bloglovin’, and then I paid someone $500L for another feed (and haven’t heard back from them). In all honesty, when it comes to feeds, I’m kind of clueless. I just blog for a small handful of people, do the occasional charity blogging, and call it a day. While I want to do the best I can for my designers, and get them the exposure they deserve, I’m not so gung ho about it that I’d be willing to alienate others by posting excessively.

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