Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Poll Results Are In!

A huge Thank You to all 79 visitors who voted in my poll that asked everyone how they felt about blog awards. As usual, you had some interesting things to say!

12 people (15%) said that they love to receive blog awards and they love to pass them along as well.

15 people (18%) said that they wished they passed them along in a timely manner, which may have something to do with how many of the awards are set up.

The next four items I privately think of (in a good way) as Show Offs:

11 people (13%) said that they did not display any blog awards they'd won, and that they did not pass them along.

10 people (12%) said that they have a separate page for any awards they've been given.

9 people (11%) said that they'd really rather not receive blog awards.

5 people (6%) said that they display all their awards right on the front page of their blogs.

I wish I could give the 8 people (10%) who said that they just wished someone would give them an award a big ole hug. I remember how completely thrilled I was when I was given my first blog award. It's wonderful to be recognized for your hard work. However, the three choices that received the most votes show that the system, if not broken, has some serious cracks in it.

40 people (50%) said that they did appreciate the recognition, but...

35 people (44%) also said that they believed blog awards had lost their meaning somewhere along the way. I have to agree. All a person has to do is go through posts in their readers to see certain blog awards spreading like a virus through the blogosphere. When it seems as though everyone's getting one, I can understand the frustration of those 8 folks above who have yet to receive even one.

22 people (27%) said that they'd enjoy receiving blog awards more if there were fewer rules attached to them. Amen! There are so many awards that have rules stating that you have to link to this and link to that, show the award here, share a certain amount of personal information about yourself and then pass all this along to another batch of vic... recipients.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but... if the people you're passing an award to really deserve the award, why should they jump through several sets of flaming hoops to be "worthy"? If they deserve the award, shouldn't that be enough? And why do they have to link back to you? And why do they have to pass it along to a certain number of people? Why should awards have strings?

I think you can tell by my questions that I think the system is "broke", and I think that, to some extent, the votes in this poll agree with me. I went from being thrilled at receiving awards all the way to dreading them. I went from showing them off on the front page of my blog, to giving them their own tab on my header, to having them on my blog but not heralded in any way. (In other words, you're going to have to look for them.)

I didn't go into blogging with the express intent of winning awards, but I have done so, and there are some of which I'm proud. I think that, in an attempt to make everyone happy by spreading the wealth as much as possible, the award system as it is now causes more dissatisfaction than happiness. Now that the poll is over, tell me what you think of blog awards. Do you like them? Do they need to be changed? How would you change them? Do they drive you crazy?

Do tell!


  1. I admit I feel a bit churlish but I do not leap with joy when an award comes my way. At first I am very grateful for the recognition and the warm fuzzy feelings that ensue but about 30 seconds after that I am slowly encased with dread as I think of how the person who has given me the award will take it when I don't immediately (or ever in fact) follow all the rules, linking demands and revelations of information about myself (private or otherwise). Because the alternative to offending one person (the giver) is to offend and/or make miserable 7 (or 10 or some other random number) other poor souls who may have a similar reaction to me and I try to keep my offending down to a bare minimum these days.

    I wholeheartedly agree with you that an award should be without any rules or strings and that is how I pass them forward on the rare occasions I have done so - the concept of paying it forward or karma or whatever else you like to call it cannot, surely, be so prescriptive. If an award is given in good spirits good things will return to the giver without rules being given to recipients.

    Off my soap box now

  2. I have to agree with your feelings regarding awards, Cathy. I used to be excited about them, but now I almost dread them. I can understand why those 8 people are unhappy about awards, but they really are just a virus, and they mean very little besides, "I like your blog!" So I tend to say thank you on the post and leave it at that. I don't like favoritism and I don't like choosing 5-7 out of the 300 blogs I read. I'd honestly rather just not get awards - and I think my attitude about them has made me get less, which I'm happy about.

    Meghan @ Medieval Bookworm

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  4. I think the awards were a nice idea for a while, but like you said. I want to give those people who don't get any awards a big hug. How sad it is for bloggers who work so hard to produce daily, weekly posts and never get an award. I am grateful for all the awards that have been passed on, but I think we loose site of our content, when we focus on these icons of merit that are passed along the virtual grapevines. It was always difficult for me to choose who should receive an award that I passed on. I stopped participating in award presentations only because I couldn't make that choice. Everyone is hard working, friendly, cheerful, helpful and witty and soooooo dedicated. Three cheers to all th great book bloggers out there!

  5. I'm like you. I appreciate the awards, but don't want to pass them on to anyone because it places a burden on them.

  6. I was one of the people that voted that awards had lost their meaning along the way...it was a toss up of voting that way or that you had to jump through too many hoops to receive one.

    I usually don't pass the award on...or I say that all my followers deserve it...because I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings by leaving them out of the loop. I enjoy all the blogs I follow and don't want to alienate anyone.

  7. I went though the same set of feelings as you. I started off desperate to receive an award, but once I received quite a few I began to get annoyed by the hoops attached to them. I still like the thought that someone has enjoyed my blog enough to give me an award, but don't display them any more. It would be much better if less of them flewaround the blogosphere. It seems as though everyone gets each award in the end!

  8. Bernadette-- I enjoyed your soapbox. I think the two main reasons why I don't receive the number of awards that I did in the past are (1) I don't follow the rules when I accept them, and I make no bones about it, and (2) none of the awards are prominently displayed.

    Meghan-- I agree with you. Attitude can be everything, and I'm happier not receiving the usual awards that float around the blogosphere. Do I "look down" on anyone who covets them? No. Not at all. We all approach blogging in different ways. None of them are wrong.

    Wisteria-- Your comment about losing sight of our content made me nod my head enthusiastically. There was a period when several awards were spreading like virii, and it occurred at the same time that I was bursting with things that I wanted to say on my blog. I used to be completely anal about following award rules to the letter, and I really began to resent all the time these things were taking away from the content on my blog!

    Kathy-- The rules of several of these awards seem to have been written by someone with no life-outside-blog!

    Kara-- I think it's impossible not to alienate someone in some way. I'm probably doing it with this post. But in the back of my mind when I'm given an award, I'm thinking about all those who have yet to receive one.

    Jackie-- I was never desperate to receive one... I never thought I would. So that first one was a shock! LOL When you see so very many blogs with the same awards, you have to wonder if the awards have any real meaning other than "I like you and want to give you a warm fuzzy today." There's nothing intrinsically wrong with that, but I think it would mean more just to leave a comment on the person's blog telling them how you feel.

  9. I always feel so honored that someone would choose to give me an award. With all the blogs out there, it can be difficult to limit a list to just a small few, so when I'm mentioned, I really appreciate it.

    I used to post the awards I received, sometimes giving the award out to others, sometimes not. In recent months I haven't acknowledged any awards on my blog other than to thank the person who gave them to me in the comment section of the giver's blog.

    I fall into that 50% who think the awards have lost their meaning and who think there are too many rules attached. They are just another form of a meme, a virus of sorts. And while I appreciate the gesture of the giver and know they mean well, I am tired of playing along. I suppose that makes me a bit of a crumudgeon, doesn't it? LOL

  10. I'm a bit curmudgeonly about them too. I remember the first one I got, I was so excited and thrilled! I wondered who'd voted for me! Then I started seeing them on every single blog I visited, and they completely lost any meaning and became a pain in the neck to deal with.

    I think blogs with a bunch of "awards" just look junky. I'm in favor of a clean blog look with just the nuts and bolts - I don't want to see a ton of widgets and animations and ads and whistles and bells. Especially on artsy blogs, like photo blogs, why would you want to detract from your art so much??? Makes no sense.

  11. Terri-- I used to have two other blogs that featured a lot of my photos. Although dark backgrounds are frowned upon when the primary focus of a blog is the written word, I used a black background because there were few words and the black really made my photos pop. Same thing with the bells and whistles. Didn't use many at all because they detracted from the photos.

  12. I like getting awards because -- of course -- it feels great! But I hate giving them because I'm always sure I've hurt someone's feelings (a person who didn't get an award) or I'm sure that I've burdened someone with having to blog about it... Dilemma.

  13. I used to get awards but almost never nowadays. Maybe that's because I didn't want them and tried to explain that to the people who gave them to me. My reason for not wanting them was that I didn't want to (a) blog about them and (b) pass them on to some other person who would then have the dilemma. Not wanting to blog about them came because I felt my blog audience came to read about children's literacy and literature, not about memes and awards.

    Your poll made me finally realize that my blog really isn't part of the bookblogosphere or even the kidlitosphere any more. So strange that I hadn't realized that. I guess i have always been on the periphery of those communities, but I am almost in danger of falling off the edge!

  14. Beth-- Yes, it *is* a dilemma, and one that I'd rather avoid.

    Susan-- You've carved a very special niche for yourself, and there's nothing wrong with that. You are still a part of the book blogosphere simply because it's a vast place that can hold all sorts of treasures. I've come across many book blogs that hold no truck with memes and awards. They probably call themselves "lit blogs".


Thank you for taking the time to make a comment. I really appreciate it!