Sunday, November 29, 2009
Sunday Salon: Random Thoughts
It is the Thanksgiving weekend here in the US, so I can see why I'm a bit slow and not as much on the computer. Hopefully I'll be back on track with everything soon. I am excited to do my joint review of Fingersmith with Kelly soon! Fingersmith is the first book on my reading list for the Women Unbound challenge, so I'm glad to have gotten cracking on that one. I'm a little (ok, a lot) worried that I have signed up to lead two challenges, and may not actually complete either of them. That's why I'm sort of not signing up officially for many challenges at all, because I usually shoot myself in the foot by signing up for them and then losing all interest in reading the books I put on my list. So my idea now is to just kind of read along with other people and see what happens as the year continues. For example, Fingersmith would also qualify for the GLBT challenge... but I am not officially signed up for that challenge.
I am currently reading and will hopefully review in a couple of days The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind. It's a story about a teenager in Malawi who tries to bring electricity to his impoverished village by building windmills. I'm more than halfway through the book, however, and he has yet to mention anything about windmills, so I'm not sure exactly when that will pick up. Hopefully, I find out soon!
A random question I have for those who participate in or host book giveaways on their blogs, just for interest. I have only run a few giveaways, so I am by no means an expert. For a couple of them, I gave extra points to people who followed me, but I never gave extra points for tweets or for reposts or anything because I felt a little uncomfortable doing so. I would post about the giveaways myself on sites and such, but I never really feel comfortable asking other people to do that for me. And then I even got rid of the extra points for followers thing because that seemed a lot like bribery to me.
However, seeing all the contests and giveaways hosted on other people's blogs, I feel that I'm overthinking or being some sort of stick in the mud. I no longer enter any giveaways in which people get extra entries for following or tweeting, etc., because, I admit, I don't really like to make the extra effort. Also, I'm not really sure how people are able to track all that stuff! Is it an honor system? Do you actually check? How can you be sure that you are giving people the exact correct number of points and entries? It makes me nervous.
And, the part that annoys me more, is that it really artifically boosts up your follower numbers. I have before, and I doubt I'm the only one, just started following a blog in hopes of getting an extra entry in a drawing for a book I wanted. I would rarely return to the site again. But I'm still listed as a follower (at least, unless I clear our my Google Reader some time soon). And if people host several contests and keep giving points for followers, either on the blog or on Twitter or wherever... then there is the potential for a lot of blogs to have a really high number of followers but not that many people who actually read them. Isn't that a bit misleading? I don't think it's very honest.
Granted, saying this, I'm not really sure how someone else's follower numbers really impact me. So I should, perhaps, mind my own business. But it does bother me. And I'd just like to know- what are others' thoughts on this subject? I hope I did not offend anyone with my comments above; I just really want to know if it's just me that feels this way.