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7 Reasons to Press “Unsubscribe” February 7, 2011

Posted by nrhatch in Blogging, Humor, Writing & Writers.

In What Blogs Do You Read & Why?, we discussed why we read the blogs we follow ~ friendship, subject matter, quality writing, humor, honesty, and different perspectives all got high marks.

On a related note, have you ever unsubscribed to a blog after following it for a while?  If so, why?

I have unsubscribed from a few blogs over the past year, usually for one of these 7 reasons:

1.  Lack of Connection ~ The blog has gotten too big.  There are so many comments that the blogger no longer interacts in a meaningful way with his or her readers.  Readers share wonderful insights that sit, largely ignored, while the blogger is off doing something else entirely.

These bloggers are no longer “tending the store.” 

2.  Lack of Reciprocity ~ Unless I feel that a blog is so unique that I can’t get the same information anywhere else in the blogosphere (or in print publication), I get tired of reading, commenting, and supporting bloggers who don’t return the  favor by visiting SLTW . . . at least once in a while.

It’s like having a “friend” who only wants to talk about “me, me, me.” 

3.  Too much Ego ~ Bloggers who are busy promoting themselves and touting their self-proclaimed expertise, rather than sharing pertinent information with readers,  don’t hold my interest for long.  When I see a blogger  preening, primping, and parading in front of the cyber mirror, admiring past awards they’ve received, I find it distracting . . . and distressing.  Ack!

I am not willing to be witness to out of control narcissism. 

4.  Manipulation ~ When I see bloggers over-react to minor set-backs, while recounting them in excruciating detail, in order to gain sympathy and support from passers-by, I head straight for the exit sign.

If I want to watch Drama Queens in action, I’ll turn on Reality TV. 

250px-New_Orleans_City_of_Old_Romance_and_New_Opportunity_Crop_p_23_Moneybags5.  Entrance Fees ~ When a blogger  tells me that they are going to improve my life, if I press the “donate” button to the right or hire them for one-on-one consultations, I exit stage left.

I view blogging as a way to “give back”  and share what we’ve learned out of generosity and compassion.

If advertisers want to pay you to display their ads, fine by me.  If you want to sell your books and e-books from your site, go for it.  But if you ask me to PAY you for the “privilege” of reading your words, I’ll pass.

It’s a question of who is benefitting whom.

6.  Subject matter ~ I enjoy reading fresh, interesting perspectives presented in an engaging format.  Words that entertain me or make me laugh or teach me something new hold my attention.  Bloggers who insist on speaking when they have nothing to say cause me to lose interest.  Fast.  {{Yawn.}}  Been there.  Done that.

Don’t blog because you want to say something.  Blog because you have something to say. 

7.  Writing Quality ~ When the quality of the writing is poor, with ample evidence that the blogger is not bothering to proofread their words before posting, I seldom stick around . . . unless I adore the blogger’s personality.

An isolated typo is not a problem, but incomplete sentences and thoughts that bounce around from topic to topic like a kangaroo or pogo stick on steroids  cause me to {{BOING ~ BOING ~ BOING}} to the next blog on my reading list.

Reading blogs that make me dizzy gets tiring.

How about you?  What, if anything, causes you to press “Unsubscribe” or stop commenting on a blog?

Quote:  There is a great deal of difference between an eager man who wants to read a [blog] and a tired man who wants a [blog] to read. ~ G.K. Chesterton

No rules.  Just write!

Related posts:  Blogging: A Waggish Waste of Time? * 40 Bloggers to Watch in 2011Blogging: Making First Impressions (My Literary Quest) * The 2011 Sexiest Blog AwardDown The Blog Hole * I Can Name That Theme in 3 Notes * Managing the Bloghood  & What The Blog Am I Doing? (SoulDipper) *  Great Blogging Tips (WP Daily Post)


1. theonlycin - February 7, 2011

I will always read your blog because it adds value to my daily life.
I hope that you can visit mine when you have the time, because you were there at the start.
Here’s a little song 🙂

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

You will NEVER be able to chase me away, Cin! You post, I read. You share, I smile. You jest, I laugh.

Thanks for the musical interlude ~ I love Chicago and this song always reminds me of being a heart-broken teen! Which reminds me that I am in a much better place now. {{clink}}

2. Tim Rueb - February 7, 2011

Great post. I usually don’t care if a person subscribes to me if I subscribe to them. I tend to only use subscriptions as a form of notification anyways.

I do appreciate visitors who comment when they stop by. I think that is more then acceptable and a proper sign of respect, even if the person doesn’t agree with the point I’m making.

Good Hunting.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

Good points, Tim.

I agree about subscriptions. I need to rely on them ~ poor memory and all that. Others may not need to subscribe. They just swing by periodically and toss their $0.10 into the ring. That’s cool with me.

When I comment on EVERY post X writes, and X never bothers to leave his hallowed halls to swing by here, I no longer care to support X’s writing efforts. I would have to have some other reason to keep reading. Unless X is really giving me something of “value,” other blogs start taking priority until, one day, X no longer has me as a reader.

Of course, at that point, X usually drops by SLTW to entice me back with an insincere compliment. Spotting the X’s of the world is fun.

It’s a bit like The Sixth Sense, “I see insincere narcissists.” 😀

3. postadaychallenge2011 - February 7, 2011

I agree with Tim Rueb…and out of respect I like to comment, support, hit Like, and subscribe. I do read a lot and love it so I never hit unsubscribe unless:
1. Vulgar language of any sort even in good fun
2. Topic changes or I am not interested, at all
3. Too many video’s because mine is so slow Christmas in 2012 will be here before I can play it. LOL
Other than that, I love to hear what others write.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

I felt the same way when I first started to subscribe to other blogs.

But now I’m subscribed to so many blogs that reading them all is very time consuming. So, I’ve been thinking about ways to weed some out.

Vulgar language doesn’t bother me, especially when used in humor. General vulgarity gets to me after a bit ~ I’m not a fan of jokes about bodily emissions, etc.

Eclectic topics are cool ~ always something new and different. That can be fun.

Like you, I enjoy seeing all the different topics that people choose to write about ~ but I want to see them stretching their writing muscles by writing clear, crisp sentences that get their point across without unnecessary distraction.

Thanks for swinging by! 🙂

4. Piglet in Portugal - February 7, 2011

Great post!

I think we are very much on the same page…:)

However, regarding comments, I know when my blog was “Freshly Pressed” I was unable to respond to everyone as I was on holiday at the time! Great timing…not 😦 I did make sure my “regulars” all had replies/emails as they were so pleased for me. Supporting and encouraging each other through good times and bad is important.


nrhatch - February 7, 2011

Freshly Pressed can be quite a challenge (as well as tons of fun). Sometimes those comments come in so fast and furious that no one can keep up.

But I’m talking about on an average day, when I swing by and comment on a popular blog, subscribe to the comment thread, and see great comments coming in from readers and NO RESPONSES from the blogger. If they don’t want to respond to comments, they should close the comment box ~ not just accept the “gift” of comments without reciprocating.

The interactive nature of blogging is perfect for a “give and take” relationship between bloggers and readers. And that’s what I look for in the blogs I read. Bloggers sharing amusing anecdotes or valuable tidbits and readers supporting those efforts with comments.

5. kateshrewsday - February 7, 2011

Blog turnoffs? I’ve only ever unsubscribed to one and thats because I think he valued his privacy and I wanted to leave him alone. Most people are interesting, some way or another. Even ego is interesting to observe.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

That’s true. Sometimes Egos are quite amusing to watch . . . from a safe distance, of course.

I may not always unsubscribe, but I stop tossing peanuts to the Egos I see. I don’t want them to get even more inflated on my account. 🙂

Paula Tohline Calhoun - February 8, 2011

“What chu talkin’ bout Nancy (Willis)?” I sure do miss my peanuts. . .however, I am supposed to lose another 15 pounds, so. . .

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

If you want to remain the Sexiest Blog in the great big blogosphere, you’ll have to ration those peanuts.

Confidence is sexy. Unbridled egoism is not.

Hey, I’ve got an idea. Let’s race to see who can shed 15 pounds first.

Ready, Set . . . um, wait. I’ll start after lunch. 🙂

6. Amy @ Soul Dipper - February 7, 2011

When I first started blogging, I naively subscribed to comments. Yike – in no time, I was inundated with emails. The benefit to that experience was that I was soon diligent about subscribing to new blogs. Therefore, I have only unsubscribed to a few and that was because their material was not what I thought it would be.

Seeing blogs grow is grand – especially when it means the success of my blog buddies. When there is a ton of comments, I may speed read comments. (Who knew speed reading courses from the corporate world would be so handy in a new tech world?) I often come in late on blogs so anything I thought I would like to say has already been said. With my ‘beginner’ blog friends, however, I like them to know I continue my support.

Bloggers emailed me about the unsubscribing issue rather than comment on my blog when I addressed a similar subject. It’s a sensitive issue and many indicated they preferred to be cautious in offering their help to me.

New turf. It’s exciting.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

In some ways, that’s what it boils down to “their material was not what I thought it would be.”

Instead of writing tips, one blog became a stage for the writer to feed his ever expanding ego ~ talking about how many subscribers he has, how many daily visits he has, and what an expert he’s become, etc. Another blog became a dumping ground for half-baked thoughts thrown at readers in no particular order ~ rather than a carefully crafted blog filled with thought provoking ideas.

I subscribe to comment threads, and it does often fill up my mail box. But it also alerts me to blogs with real interchange between bloggers and readers. Those tend to be the most fun to follow. Instead of opening up all the e-mails (way too time consuming), I delete the e-mails and just swing back to the blog to read through recent comments.

I’m not sure what you meant in your penultimate paragraph. What’s a sensitive issue? And what do you mean “they preferred to be cautious in offering their help to me”?

Do you mean people don’t want to talk about why they unsubscribe from certain blogs? If so, I guess I’m not surprised. We are so used to protecting each others egos, that being honest about what we like (and dislike) can be difficult ~ pushing us outside our comfort zone.

Last, I agree. This world of contemporaneous communication is, indeed, an exciting world.

7. duke1959 - February 7, 2011

Profanity and not blogging often.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

Profanity is a big issue for some people. I guess it depends on the context for me.

Robin Williams uses a ton of foul language in his routines, but I still find him hysterically funny.

Lenny Bruce used profanity as a wake up call and call to arms. His observations were spot on, so the profanity didn’t bother me.

In contrast, other comedians seem to use bad language out of sheer laziness. They can’t think of a better word, so they toss about words beginning with F, S, and A with great regularity. It gets old fast.

Thanks, Duke!

8. Pseu - February 7, 2011

I don’t subscribe to all that many, but have a number on my blogrole and visit rather intermittently. Please don’t put me in your little black book….

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

You are in my little black book . . . filled with bloggers with whom I enjoy interacting! 🙂

How could I not love a blogger who uses the word BOING? It’s a great and underused word!

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

Plus, every time you call me “nuthatch” you make me smile. 😀

Pseu - February 8, 2011


nrhatch - February 8, 2011

Pseu says Phew! 8)

9. barb19 - February 7, 2011

Blogging is all about inter-action and if I am following someone, leaving comments, etc., and that person never leaves comments on my posts, then I have to wonder why I am supporting them. Like you say, it’s a case of “having a friend who only wants to talk about “me, me, me”. Even if they visited me only every now and again, at least it would be something.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

Thanks, Barb.

There are exceptions to every “rule,” but the more blogs I follow, the more I need to trim the list from time to time.

I’m not going to cut out blogs that I enjoy written by bloggers I adore, but the less “give and take” there is, the more likely that I will focus my attention elsewhere.

That said, I’m getting wonderful comments from “new faces” today which means my blogging queue is apt to grow rather than shrink.

Life . . . ever the paradox. 🙂

10. nancycurteman - February 7, 2011

Low interest and lack of reciprocity are high on my reasons for unsubscribing to blogs. Lack of time is my greatest reason for not maintaining a large number of blog pals.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

When time is limited, we must mindfully choose which blogs to follow, and which to release into the blogosphere.

I love your posts about travel, and writing mystery novels. Each time I read your tips, it makes me want to try my hand at crafting a Whodunnit.

Thanks, NC

nancycurteman - February 7, 2011

You just made my day. 🙂

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

Yay! I love when people leave here with a smile. 😀

11. Brown Eyed Mystic - February 7, 2011

Brilliant post! I would walk away especially if I don’t see anything of value and the writing quality is not on par. But yes, a blogger’s unique personality might keep me staying for longer.

I am especially drawn to blogs which are offering values in a spiritual sense. And of course, a writer’s blog too.


nrhatch - February 7, 2011

I agree. I like it when I feel BETTER when leaving a blog than I did when I arrived ~ because they made me laugh, shared an inspiration quote, gave me something interesting to ponder, etc.

If they spend the entire post telling readers how wonderful, smart, talented, sophisticated, and knowledgeable they are, I may be laughing as I leave, but I don’t rush to hurry back. 🙂

Show me how talented you are . . . don’t tell me.

And I like spiritual offerings ~ things that remind me to remain mindful. Right here, right now.

Thanks, BrownEyed!

12. oldancestor - February 7, 2011

Like Tim said above, it’s easier to get some back and forth going if people leave comments. I try to comment on most blogs I read, just so the writer knows those clicks are a real person.

I think I get about 1 comment for every 50 views, which is a little frustrating, because I want to know who those people are. I’ve found out third hand that people I know have read every post I’ve ever done without leaving a single comment. Part of it is the nature of the blog, I guess, since it’s not particularly interactive.

I’ve digressed. I haven’t unsubscribed to any blogs because I don’t subscribe to many. I don’t like all the emails. I know who I like to read, including, of course, SLTW.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

I’ve never checked the ratio of viewers to commentators because I’m sure that many behind-the-scene readers are just that . . . readers, not writers.

They don’t have a presence in the blogosphere to promote and prefer to keep their thoughts to themselves. I’m cool with that ~ although I love it when they do feel compelled by the subject matter to add something to the discussion.

When people visit SLTW regularly, it’s awesome. Thank you, Readers! We love you!

But (IMHO) bloggers who accept comments (while working to expand their platform) should both respond to those comments and reciprocate by visiting other blogs, at least sometimes ~ if for no other reason then to help their Spirits grow and their Egos shrink. 🙂

Thanks, OA. BTW: Loved your contribution to PTC’s contest with your scary cloud muse. I had to sleep with one eye open last night, cowering under the covers.

13. clarbojahn - February 7, 2011

I’m so new my green is showing. In the few recent months that I’ve been in the blogosphere I’ve unsubscribed to one blog and that was for the fact discussed of never commenting about the comments and not visiting my blog. Also the content was poorly developed and the writing bad.

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

Sounds like a bad blog all the way around. 🙂

Thanks, Clar

14. Carol Ann Hoel - February 7, 2011

I unsubscribe when I cannot keep up with all my subscriptions. I let go of the ones that I find myself skipping when I am pressed to hurry. I probably would not unsubscribe at all if time were not an issue. Blessings to you, Nancy…

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

That’s a good way of doing it, Carol Ann.

More and more often, I’m reading my favorites first and reading others as time permits.

15. Julie - February 7, 2011

I am pretty bad at unsubscribing. In a way, I like to have a few on my reader that I automatically delete so that I feel like I’m making progress.

Pretty whacked, I know…

nrhatch - February 7, 2011

That is so funny! I am laughing my *** off. I might try that myself.

Maybe I would feel more productive.

16. jannatwrites - February 8, 2011

I don’t like to subscribe to blogs because I dont want the stress of emails in my box. I also don’t like the pressure of someone expecting me to subscribe to them because they subscribed to me. I thought visiting and commenting was still reciprocation….
I do stop visiting blogs for several reasons. Not responding to my comments is a biggie. It’s like saying “good morning” to someone and they just ignore you. If I wanted that, I’d go back to high school. I’m not real fond of the ego thing either. As my grandma would’ve said, “they got too big for their britches.”

I’ll hang onto a blog for a long time, but if it goes too long without a post that moves me to want to comment, I’ll visit less frequently until I’m not going at all.

Sorry for the long comment. If only I put this much into writing my novel 😉

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

Excellent analogy. It is like saying “good morning” to someone and having them ignore you. I’m not keeping a score sheet, but I do want to feel some connection. When comments aren’t acknowledged, and visits aren’t reciprocated, it just feels lopsided, causing me to lose interest in reading for any reason other than the subject matter.

If that’s stellar, I may stick around. If it’s not, I’ll drift away.

Thanks, Janna

17. SuziCate - February 8, 2011

Entrance fees, for real?! I’ve never seen that; I am floored. I had a blogger who generously bestowed awards, and I could not keep up. I felt guilty if I did not acknowledge them and then felt fake when I did…my solution was to delete the awards page and not accept or give any. And I like blogs like yours that keep me thinking.

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

Thanks, Suzicate. I’m the same, I want to be amused, educated, entertained, or encouraged to think.

I received a few awards from bloggers I admire, but they started cluttering up the sidebar ~ looking decidedly ego-driven, rather than spiritual.

So I hid them in the cyber closet. 🙂

Entrance fees is probably not quite right ~ more like passing the “collection basket” with a plea for donations “to keep the blog in circulation.”

Hmm . . . if it’s on a FREE server, how much money is required to maintain it? Oh, wait, I get it. You want me to PAY you to keep writing? Um, no. Write, or do not write. Makes no difference to me.

18. Maggie - February 8, 2011

#3 and #7 are my biggest pet peeves. Nothing turns me away from a blog faster.

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

Writers who dot i’s and cross t’s are one of the reasons that I enjoy the blogosphere so much. Well crafted essays on eclectic subjects ~ from writing to travel to food to safaris. What a way to spend time. 🙂

In contrast, ego-driven bloggers who just toss a bunch of words onto the cyber screen while screaming, “Look at me!,” cause me to make a bee line for the exit sign.

Thanks, Maggie.

19. crazygoangirl - February 8, 2011

Those are good reasons. I am very careful about which blogs I subscribe to, coz I’m a little nervous about hitting the unsubscribe button. But there are a few blogs with which I do feel a disconnect, which is quite normal I guess since we are all evolving, as bloggers and readers. I think I should be brave and make a break because I hardly ever read them any way!

Another though-provoking post 🙂
Cheers, H.

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

Baby steps toward the exit sign are fine, H.

Just remember that it’s your “free” time and that time is not free. It’s a limited commodity. It pays dividends when we spend it wisely.

20. Paula Tohline Calhoun - February 8, 2011

Judging by the number of comments on this post, this is indeed a popular subject, and one of interest to many – including me! Your tips and reasoning are excellent and so well thought out! I really appreciate this post!

On the humorous side, I spent most of the time in my first read-through trying to figure out in which points you were referring to me! Of course I know by now that I MUST be one of you favorites because I clutter up your comment area with inane comments that scare your regular readers away. That’s why your readership has dropped off since I fist started reading it.

OK, now, I’m done making comments that force you to reply!

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

I’ve been waiting for you to ask whether any (or all) of these apply to your reflections. 😉

They don’t.

You are one of my favorites. Why else would I have bestowed the Sexiest Blog Award on thee?

And replying to you is never a chore . . . it’s always a joy.

Paula Tohline Calhoun - February 8, 2011

Wow! Thank you, Nancy. . .I didn’t do much fishing for those wonderful comments, did I? (NOT!!!!) 😀

Seriously, I know you well enough by now to know that you definitely would not have said anything you didn’t really mean – therefore your compliments mean a great deak to me!

Granny Sweet Cheeks, author of
“The World’s Sexiest Blog”

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

True dat!

I love your new sign off! GSC ~ AOTWSB! 8)

21. Booksphotographsandartwork - February 8, 2011

A few weeks ago I felt the need to unsubscribe to a blog. This person was a most interesting writer but seemed to have a huge chip on their shoulder. I just felt the need to let it go.

nrhatch - February 8, 2011

That’s a good point, Linda.

I don’t mind bloggers reaching out for support when times get tough. But if I feel that they are carrying around a lot of yesterday’s “junk,” while expecting me to empathize with them for failing to empty their wheelbarrow of woe, I tend to disappear.

I like folks who are architects of their future, not prisoners of their past. Holding onto anger long after it has served its useful purpose is not a good use of our time and energy.

Thanks for the great insight!

22. Tilly Bud - September 22, 2011

Okay, I’m scared now…

nrhatch - September 22, 2011

No worries, mon! You be da LAUGHING housewive . . . 😉

23. pienbiscuits - December 27, 2011

My turn-off are:

1. Bloggers who don’t update. If the last entry was six months ago, it’s probably time for me to unsubscribe, unless the writing and/or subject matter is really good, then I’m willing to wait until the blog has been resumed. I’ve been guilty of leaving my blog unattended in the past due to life getting in the way. The longest time was a month, but mostly I manage to put up 6-8 posts a month.

2. Bloggers who don’t respond to the comments you make on their blog. Why put yourself out there, if you have no intention of interacting? I do my best to respond to every person who leaves a comment, including trolls. When I get a troll, which is thankfully rare, I find that gently holding a mirror to them guarantees they will not return!

I found you on the Daily Post today. I may not comment here often, but if I feel the urge to, I will!

nrhatch - December 27, 2011

Good points, pie. I expect that I’m subscribed to a few “unattended” blogs at the moment . . . and have a few listed on my blog roll as well.

At least inactive blogs don’t send out e-mail notifications that they haven’t posted anything new. That really would be “cyber clutter.” 😆

24. 3rd Culture Children - December 27, 2011

I like reading other bloggers posts, and i subscribe to a few of them… What i have no patience, whatsoever, is the excessive language, when describing a place, trip or even an event, making it (or trying to) look more than it actually was/is… sometimes, the simple true, honest description, is interesting, and would hold the reader, keeping him/her around… maybe because I’m not a big fan of “tales”… :o) I like to search/”surf” other blogs, looking for similar interests (TCKs, travel, expat life, life challenges…), and it amazes me the broad spectrum out there… so much so, that sometimes, I lose track, and simply go back, leaving blogs that would offer/open too many doors… At the end, simple is good. Keeping it clean, simple, honest, in my opinion, is the best way to have readers/subscribers sticking around… Thanks for the opportunity, great success in 2012 – greetings from sunny Recife, Brazil!

nrhatch - December 27, 2011

Thanks for some great thoughts. I agree . . . I like people to “get to the point” without “beating around the bush.” 😉

25. ceceliafutch - December 28, 2011

This is a great post. I have always been reluctant to unsubscribe, but since my subscription list has gotten quite unwieldy, I’ve begun to “clean” it up. First to go have been those who have not posted for the last six months or more. Second to come off my list are those who do not respond to comments or who do not reciprocate by visiting my blog. Third on the list are those that really hold no interest for me, or who have become too egocentric/sloppily written/whiney “poor me” exercises in self-pity. Reading the comments here has been quite interesting and affirming as I take the axe to some of the blogs I no longer want to subscribe to. 🙂 ummm . . . maybe the imagery is a bit strong here, but you know what I mean.

nrhatch - December 28, 2011

Good for you, Cecelia. It we don’t exercise control over our “free” time . . . it slips through our fingers, leaving nothing in its wake. When we invest time in an activity, we should get a positive return on that investiment.

And I agree with you . . . listening to “Eeyores” who throw “pity parties” for themselves is NOT a good use of our limited resources and time.

26. cy3a - December 16, 2012

Great post. Thanx. I quote your sentence “Don’t blog because you want to say something. Blog because you have something to say. ” because i also think that posts in someones blog should say something to me (or anyone who stops by).

nrhatch - December 16, 2012

Thanks, Suzana. I like reading blogs best when they have “something to say.”

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