If you’re reading this, there’s a healthy chance that you’ve either written for a blog network or managed one — you’ve done both. Blog networks are the magazine publishing companies of the Internet and though there obvious advantages to having your publication purely on the Internet, there are still some organizational pitfalls that blog networks encounter. I’ve thought about this on occasion and though the list can go on and on, writer dissatisfaction and communication problems actually stem forth from three behaviors. Here’s one.
The Disappearing Act
The joys of the Internet allows us to establish a “global frequency” of sorts around the world. if you’ve managed a blog network before you’ll be amazed with your newfound reach. But the same convenience comes with a price and that is .. all of a sudden your writer — or worse yet, your “tech ninja” disappears. No responses to emails. Nothing on Skype or IM. More than half the time, the reasons are justified and understandable. A loss in the family (knock on wood), a big residential move hence the lack of Internet, a storm or something tragic in that side of the world (I used to get emails of genuine concern from my Internet colleagues when they saw CNN reporting armored tanks storming into the business district of the Philippines a few years back).
As a network manager, you’d need to exercise judgment on how to deal with these situations. You’ve never met them in person, but there still should be some form of empathy. Now in other pejorative cases where your writers never respond (they continue to update their Facebook and personal blogs but not yours!) then actions should definitely be taken. Let me ask you. How long should you wait? One week? One month? No reply on the third email?
nota bene: Obviously we’re professional enough to understand that by writing this post I mean no specific reference to anyone I’ve dealt with in the past. These are general problems that many network owners and editors have experienced before and are experiencing today.
I’d love to hear about your experiences on how to remedy situations like this as it does help the industry become better 🙂