Multiple Sources Are A Good Thing!   27 comments

One of the things that I love about the WoW blogosphere is the diversity of the community. We have all kinds of different people from different backgrounds blogging, and I happen to think that it’s fantastic. Everyone has something unique to offer, if for no other reason than they have different life experiences that give them a differing view on something. I love the fact that I can read five different posts on the same topic, and gain something different from each one of them.

Um…do you have a point here, Beru? Or is this just going to be one of your rambly, long winded, where’s the point posts?

I do have a point, and I happen to think it’s one that needs to be said. Lately, there have been a few things in the blogging community and more specifically in the resto druid community (and perhaps elsewhere too – I just tend to follow more resto druid blogs than others!), that have been bothering me. I have tried very hard not to rock the boat, or stir up trouble, because I happen to love the community. But time after time something is said or done that has bugged me. And itch that I’ve been trying not to scratch. Well it’s now at the point that I’m spending more effort trying not to scratch that itch than I think I should, and I’m not often one to mince words or bite my tongue, even though I often should.

Having Multiple Resources Is A Great Thing For The Community!

So, here I am scratching that itch.

Lately when someone in the community does a great thing for the community, such as posting a guide or strategy, we see a great number of thankful people that are thrilled at the new resource and think that it’s a great thing. And rightfully so! But then there are a handful of people, who seem, well, disappointed that someone may have, in their eyes, rained on their parade. And instead of offering congratulations on a job well done, offering acknowledgement of the effort and time put in – they instead point out how they just haven’t had time to get to theirs, or how theirs can’t be done as well because of xyz.

And you know what? This just isn’t OK. And it isn’t how members of the community should function.

Great resources are great for everyone, no matter where they come from or how many other people may have tackled the challenge of putting a resource together. And really, the more thoughts, opinions and resources that are available, the more diverse and well educated the community will become. I mean, think about it – when you do a research paper you your citation list can’t only contain one source. At least not if you expect to get good marks on it. Your professors expect you to go out and look at the different thoughts offered by many “experts” in the field and then consider each of them before offering your own opinions and making your own conclusions on the topic.

I will admit that when I see that someone has spent a good deal of time on something, and is excited to share their hard work with the community, and then someone else comes in behind them and doesn’t even bother to give them a “great job!” and only comments on how they are going to do something different or better, I find that I am disappointed.

One Person Does Not Have A Monopoly on Topics

Something that I’m having a really hard time understanding, I guess, is why one person thinks that they should be the only resource available on certain topics. Honestly, one person cannot expect to be the only person offering advice or providing guides to the community as a whole. Blogging doesn’t work that way. I think that it’s fantastic that multiple people offer a resource on the same thing, because no two people will have the same ideas. And that’s fine! Not only that – but sometimes when people write out things like guides and strategies, it’s to help them walk through their own thoughts on the topic. I know that I certainly find it helpful to write out my thoughts when I’m trying to figure something out and those thoughts frequently turn into blog posts.

I love the fact that I can get Jar’s, Moonra’s, or Keeva’s* thoughts on the new resto druid changes – and each is unique and each one has different points on differing topics. Even though they are all talking about the same thing. I love the fact that when someone in my guild asks me for resto druid advice I have multiple sources that I can provide them.

Not everyone will learn the same way or connect the same way with different bloggers. For some having visuals really helps them understand better, while for others they’d rather just have it written out for them. And I think that it’s fantastic there are so many different options available to the community. The bottom line is that just because someone else has posted on something, doesn’t lock another blogger out from sharing their opinions or thoughts on the topic. The more people that share, the richer the wealth of information provided becomes.

I guess what is chapping my hide a little bit is that I am seeing some folks failing to recognize that it’s a good thing to have multiple ideas and resources on a single topic. And it really eats at me when I don’t see someone in the community have their efforts positively acknowledged by their peers in the community.

One of the Greatest Things About Being Part of a Community, is Sharing in Each Other’s Success and Failures.

One of the things that I love best about being part of the WoW blogging community is that I get the opportunity to share really great things with people that will appreciate it, or share really difficult things with people who will empathize with my struggles. This goes whether it’s with guild issues, raiding, leveling or taking hours/weeks/days to put together a great resource to share with the community.

It doesn’t matter if your blog gets 10 hits a day or 10,000 hits a day – you are still part of the community and you still deserve acknowledgement and support from other members of the community. Even if I disagree with something someone has said in a post – I still acknowledge the effort put forth and then respectfully state my dissent on a certain thing.

Personally, I keep blogging because I find it a very rewarding experience. I blog on the topics that I feel the need to express myself on, or need to wrap my head around, and sometimes because I think others might find the information helpful and maybe learn from my experiences and often my mistakes. But first and foremost, I blog for me. And you know what? I love that the community has largely accepted that. I love that I can write a post about how I wanted to (metaphorically) jump out of my window as a result of frustration with my struggles on HM LK – and that I had a wave of people come and pull me away from that window with their kind words, support and advice. And then when I saw success, those same people came and shared in that with me.

And you know what else? If I had found another blogger posting the exact same thing, I wouldn’t have been disappointed that they posted on the topic before/at the same time I did, I would have happily commiserated with them and tried to do what others had done for me. I would have shared in his successes and failures. Because ultimately that is really what the Blogging community is about, isn’t it? Sharing all kinds of information and celebrating success and working through failures?

I Guess What I’m Trying to Say Here

I know sometimes I ramble, and sometimes the point I’m trying to make gets lost in my train of thought trying to leave the station. But what I’d really like to convey is that I think that everyone in the blogging community has something unique to share. I am glad that there are some things that are so important that many members of the community pick up the torch and share the weight and burden of responsibility when it comes to providing information. I don’t think that I’m alone in this.

The point that I’m trying to make is that I really hope that I see more people express excitement and share the lime light a little bit when another member of the community has done a good thing, instead of expressing disappointment that you didn’t get to it first or that they perhaps didn’t it differently than you did.

I really love the community – but this little bee has been in my bonnet for some time and has been bringing me down. I think that everyone in the community is great and has the potential to offer fantastic contributions! And for those out there a bit bummed that someone did the same thing you were planning on doing – my advice is to do it anyhow! I know that I love reading different takes on something, and I know I’m not the only one! I would even be as bold as to suggest including a “Other thoughts on this can be found here” blurb. Instead of being disappointed, view it as an ever flowing fountain of knowledge and share the wealth of information that is out there!

I know I’m not alone! How many of you out there enjoy having multiple resources for information?

*Please note that I’m not purposefully leaving anyone out, so please don’t be offended if you weren’t listed – there are just too many great druid bloggers to name them all in a small example! I just went with the first three that popped into my head at the time of writing.

Posted October 6, 2010 by Beruthiel in /rant, Community

27 responses to “Multiple Sources Are A Good Thing!

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  1. This is so true. If you have 3 different guides on the same topic, maybe one will resonate with me and make total sense, but a guildmate of mine might prefer a different approach. We all write the way that makes sense to us and how we would want to be taught.

  2. Four words: HELL TO THE YEAH.

    Well, you already knew that I agreed with you 1000% on this, but it was awesome to read those thoughts is such a well written, coherent, and reasonable post!
    <3

    • Well, as you know, it’s really been bothering me for awhile. I decided it was time to say something about it, because I know that I wasn’t the only one in the community feeling this way.

  3. “Not everyone will learn the same way or connect the same way with different bloggers.”

    This is a proven fact, as there are three major learning styles: auditory, visual and kinesthetic. Admittedly there aren’t a lot of “hands on” blogs out there, but the fact is some people cannot just watch a video and understand something, maybe that person can ONLY understand it through reading or by doing.

    The more the merrier!

    • You are right! It’s why educators use multiple mediums when teaching a lesson. And just like when we were back learning our multiplication tables, having information presented to us in different ways is a good thing!

  4. I know that sometimes I’m afraid I may step on some toes if I write something that may be too similar to someone else out there. (Even though it’s pretty likely that they could care less)

    But yeah it’s always nice to have multiple sources to look at. Each person has their own unique perspective that will add to the topic.

    • Honestly, if it’s good information, post it up! You can never have too many resources available. As for stepping on anyone’s toes – it isn’t a competition! There aren’t toes to step on, just more useful knowledge to be put out there :)

  5. I couldn’t agree more.

    The whole point of a community is to get multiple views on a subject. No one blogger can hope to say everything, and no one can say it in a way that will work for every reader, so we need multiple blogs and guides to get the information out there as effectively as possible.

    For example, I know full well that I don’t do images very well, I’m more of a textual person. A flowchart on the other hand, while not including as much raw information, is a lot more accessible. Only by reading multiple posts can you get the full picture.

    I can understand twinges of disappointment when something I write doesn’t get as much attention as a similar post from someone else, or I feel that someone did a better job of it than I did, but the beauty of the blogosphere is that you can link to that post and still provide a service to your readership. You could even help build on it through comments on the other blog or a commentary post on your own. And you can absolutely take some lessons from other bloggers to improve your own future posts.

    So yeah, +1 from me. The more the merrier in the community, as far as I’m concerned.

    • I can’t agree more! Communities are only as strong as those active in the community. There can never be too much information floating around out there. I also know that it can be a little demoralizing to visit someone else’s blog and see they just posted on something you had been working on – but I think people should still post those things :)

  6. To be honest with you I don’t recognize the situation you’re talking about. Maybe I’m blind, maybe it’s something that is specific for druid blogs and I just don’t read the ones where this has appeared. Or I don’t read them carefully enough. My interest for druid blogs has increased at the same rate as my love for my resto druid alt has developped. And I look hungrily around me for super-easy-newbie-guides for me to devour. I don’t notice if something is a double or not, I don’t notice if there’s some sort of competition. It’s irrelevant to me. If I see a guide that clicks with my way of learning, that is set up in a way that I easily can access the information, I’ll happily use it and not think any further about that. Sometimes I wonder if we, as bloggers, get a little bit trapped in our own world, losing perspective, thinking readers notice way more than they actually do?

    • I think it may be somewhat specific to the resto druid community, and it’s not always obvious but frequently done subtlety, or in a back handed fashion. When you visit, if you are only going to the “guides” or “sources” and maybe only skimming over some of the articles and their comments, I could easily see how it’s missed. But, unfortunately, I do think that it is there :( It is a little disheartening.

      You may have a point as well – maybe I am making more of it than it is. Perhaps day to day readers aren’t picking up on the same undertones that I am, or maybe I am just being sensitive to it because I love the druid community. I’m not entirely certain. I can only offer my commentary on how I feel as both a reader and a blogger in the community.

  7. i totally agree that having multiple resources is a great thing, and i enjoy having multiple resources to read.

    as a reader, having multiple resources is great because it allows me to think about the different viewpoints presented on the same topic, and if i a have a question on a particular problem, i can find a post that is relevant to my problem.

    • I think having differing viewpoints is fantastic. Everyone will have unique experiences that will color their thoughts and suggestions. Being able to pool from all of those experiences is wonderful!

  8. the newest version of my healing guide that I’m releasing today has links to other people’s healing guides on my table of contents page. I didn’t even hide the links at the end of the guide. Instead, the community sharing smacks people in the face in my very first post. ;)

    Keeva & I have even been doing some sharing just to help make eachothers’ guides better (by proof-reading, etc).

    I’ve always encouraged new druids to write guides even if they feel it’s redundant.

    • Lissanna – At the risk of offending you and possibly alienating myself here, I am going to go ahead and be frank here and offer you, what I hope is, some constructive criticism. Please note that it is meant in the best possible way, and truly accept it as the friendly advice that it is intended to be. That being said…

      Sometimes I think you detract quite a bit from what you have to offer the community by constantly “pimping” yourself out and constantly providing us with your resume, as it were. Let me offer some examples as some clarification for what I mean:

      * We all know that you are a PhD candidate in psychology. We know – because you tell us about it all the time, which is certainly your right to do so, I mean it’s your blog after all and it is most certainly hard work that should be acknowledged by your academic colleagues! But sometimes when you point your accomplishments out on your blog/twitter it’s not always in a positive way, even if your intentions are well meaning. The feeling that I frequently get from it is that you feel, well, superior to others because you are a PhD candidate.

      Did you know that I’m an attorney, with a JD? Maybe – if you read my “about” section. I absolutely worked hard at my education, graduated in the top of my class, passed the bar in one sitting and feel that I’m a fairly intelligent individual. But it’s not something that I constantly advertise, or feel makes me a superior blogger. It’s just part of who I am outside of the game. That being said, I am sometimes offended (and perhaps it’s just my own insecurities that cause me to be offended), because I do feel that the frequency in which you mention your PhD work, and the manner in which it’s done, is sometimes done to make others feel inferior. Even if that is not your intent, it is sometimes the feeling that it is giving to at least one of your readers, and I would be surprised if I am the only one feeling this way. I think it’s fantastic that you are an articulate and highly educated woman – but I also don’t think that we need the constant reminder; we already know this about you from your writing :)

      * We all know that you have worked hard with the druid community and on the official forums. We know that you have two forum stickies that you maintain. I’m fairly confident that anyone reading your blog, or other bloggers where you leave comments don’t need frequent reminders about the hard work you’ve done there. Don’t hang your hat on the fact that you’ve been recognized on the official forums as a resource for druids with a sticky – keep us engaged and intrigued with the information that you can provide in the new venue you’ve chosen to share your insights with us: Your Blog!

      * You frequently have a habit of, well, advertising yourself in your commentary to other blogger’s post (as you did in the comment you left here, for example!) and it is, for lack of a better term, often tacky. Sometimes even if you think you are being subtle, it’s still very obvious to those reading. I think that it’s really great that you want to get information about what you’ve been working on out there – but promoting yourself via comments maybe isn’t the best way to do this. Especially when you do this in a comment for something, such as a guide, where it seems to the average reader, like me, you basically are saying “hey! Over here! Look at mine too!” while flailing your arms in a Hermione Granger-esque fashion. I’d honestly much rather see you be supportive in the community and offer constructive advice, or congratulations, for the hard work that was done without putting up a big neon arrow pointing to “my guides”. Let your information stand on its own – don’t take the spotlight off of someone else that has just done something wonderful just to advertise your own content!

      All in all, I do truly believe that you have a lot to offer to the community, but I also think that a lot of the things that mentioned above ultimately detract from what you are offering. You don’t need to give everyone constant reminders of who you are, or keep providing your resume – as it were, to stay relevant, you just need to continue making quality content available that people want to read.

      Anyhow, this was just my two cents, in what I hope was some constructive feedback for you. I know I am just one reader, so take it for what it’s worth, but I can’t imagine that I’m alone in feeling some of the things I do :)

  9. I completely agree!

    At Blog Azeroth, we often see new bloggers who want to write about a certain topic, but are discouraged when it’s been done before. What we keep trying to make everyone understand is that each person had a different way of looking at the same thing, and as long as they’re not plagiarizing, they’re still bringing new elements to the table.

    • I definitely think that it’s the most challenging right as you first start. You want to make your mark, offer something fresh and are really worried about just regurgitating what those before you have done. I’m very glad to see that you are encouraging people to post what they feel strongly and passionately about, or that they feel would be useful – even if it has been said before. Kudos to you!

  10. Absolutely. I love to see plenty of information out there! At times I’ve thought “maybe I shouldn’t write about this, too many others have”, but then I realised that the more info out there, the easier it is to find. Linking to other bloggers shares all that information out. Big group tree hug, everyone! <3

    • I love posts that share other blogger’s information. “Community Spotlight” posts are so wonderful because it has the potential to introduce people to someone they may have not been aware of previously! I also love posts that are “I started to write this as a comment, and it just got too long”. I think it’s great that the community can have a conversation like that! I agree – give me more!

  11. Most of the time, I’ll compile my guide or commentary on something, and then just to double-check myself, I’ll go read other people to make sure I didn’t leave something cool out or I didn’t get anything wrong. That’s when I find out that I wrote pretty much the exact same things as someone more awesome / bigger than I, except I used way more words.

    That when I feel bad and scrap my guide, because clearly you could get your info better from that other source than from me. =|

    • Don’t second guess your value to others! Just because you feel that someone else maybe did it better doesn’t mean that someone else would feel the same way! I can’t say it enough, the more information that is available, the richer the community becomes :)

  12. I never really ran into this issue yet, I totally agree there’s only so many topics you can write on anyway and while people are bound to write about the same stuff sometimes, it’s always different and worth reading from several sources.
    for me blogging is also not just about the ‘informational part’ to be honest, if thats all I wanted I could stick with official pages and networks like mmo champ – to me all the blogs are also about the author and everyone’s unique outlook and writing style. =) I love creative bloggers that have something to say and say it in a special way, funny, witty or brutally honest, it’s interesting to read diverse blogs and to interact with people via comments!
    /support!

    • You have an excellent point! I sometimes find that I read blogs where I may have little to no interest in the content – except that the blogger who presented it is absolutely amazing. They quite literally make me interested in the content that they are writing about. I think each person has something unique to add to the blogosphere, and each voice only makes the choir more powerful.

  13. Poneria – you should post the guide/commentary anyway. After seeing you write a guild application (that was the most awesome color-coded app ever!), I’m pretty sure any guide you write would be awesome.

  14. Pingback: For Your Fel Intel « Fel Concentration

  15. This post has taken on new life for me since I realised it works best if I imagine you on the wrong end seven beers and a couple of bourbon chasers and waving a stick at the audience.

    A fine rant, in other words. :-)

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