Sunday, March 7, 2010

The Sunday Salon: What Makes You Unsubscribe?

The Sunday

I know I am not the only one with an out-of-control Google Reader.  In fact, I think my Google Reader is not nearly so overwhelming as some other people's.  There is always talk about the possibility of imploding under hundreds- sometimes thousands!- of blog posts to read and catch up on and comment on and all the rest, and it can sometimes be exhausting.

So how do you cull the list?

Some people don't, I know.  Those people are more ambitious than me; I crack under the weight of a Google Reader that is above 100.  I lose the desire to read very many of those posts (especially the memes!!!).  And so inevitably, there will be a time when I think, "Should I really be subscribing to this blog?"

Unsubscription from a blog, for me, is fraught with tension.  It's like a break-up.  I consider it for a week or more, often.  Does this blog really give me what I want?  Do we have the same taste in books?  Have our reading paths diverged and I didn't notice it until just now?  What are the last five books that s/he has reviewed?  What are the last ten posts that have gone up?  Should I give this another go?  After all, a lot of my friends like this blog, and maybe it's me, not them?

I ask this because I have serious guilt over unsubscribing, and I wonder if this is universal.  I do eventually bite the bullet and unsubscribe from some, but it's not often that I will do this.  Everyone puts a lot of effort into their blogs, and obviously, if I became a subscriber, I must have liked something some time.  But with so many blogs and even more posts, sometimes it's hard to remember.

For me, there are various things that might serve as an impetus for reviewing whether I should stay subscribed to a blog or not.  The first is whether the blogger has even posted recently.  If I notice that a blog is inactive (which, frankly, in Google Reader I often do not notice at all), then I'll often unsubscribe.  To me, inactive is no new posts for about four months or so.  Sometimes I'll keep a blog on there if I really, really like the blogger, but often, I will unsubscribe to these blogs.  If that blogger becomes active again later, that's great!  But I won't know unless she tells me.

I also sometimes notice too many memes and not enough original content and unsubscribe from those blogs as well. 

And sometimes a blog will just review a lot of books that I have little interest in.  For example, if a blog reviews mostly romance or more contemporary chick lit or urban fantasy, I might unsubscribe because those are not genres I have much interest in.  And if that's all that is there, then it may not be worth me just going and "marking as read" in Google Reader.  That's not to say that I avoid blogs that review books outside my normal tastes or interests.  But if they review only books outside my general tastes, then I may unsubscribe.

I have never unsubscribed because a blog's reviews are too long.

What about you?  Is there anything that makes you unsubscribe from a blog's feed?


  1. Interesting - and food for thought.
    I've only been book blogging for four months so this isn't a huge issue but I can see how it could become one. My favourite time of the day is first thing in the morning - a cup of tea and google reader-but my count is only 100 at present.
    A few of those are from my previous blogworld and they will be going.
    I'm fairly cautious so haven't rushed into too many but there are one or two I'm having second thoughts about.
    I appreciate blogs that share my reading tastes, will challenge me to venture into new territory, are creative,original and inspire me .
    If I find myself skipping their posts then its goodbye!
    The book blogging world is so huge so I guess it's an ongoing process of discovery and then deciding to keep or discard.

    Great post! Thank you.

  2. I unsubscribe for basically the same reasons. I have re-subscribed to a couple of blogs that I re-found later and thought that they were a good fit again. Mostly, though, I unsubscribe if I find that I'm not excited to see a new post in my Reader from that blog. Too many memes is definitely a factor.

    My most recently unsubscribed blog was actually for a totally different reason though ... I read a review of a movie that I know well (they reviewed both movies and books) that made it obvious that they had not watched much of the film before writing about it. That one post made me doubt the honesty of any of their posts and so I unsubscribed immediately.

  3. I rarely use Google Reader, so it is not a factor. I like to go directly to the blog, it's part of the ambiance to see the work people put into their blogs.
    I do frequently edit my blog roll though. If I find that I am never commenting or not interested in the reviews b/c they aren't my type of books I take them off. But the only time I have unfollowed someone is when I felt that I could not respect the blogger for various reasons.
    The blogs I check out first are the ones who comment on my blog, I also try to comment on a lot of new blogs as I know how hard it is when you first get started.
    There are a couple of bloggers that review mostly books I don't read, but I LOVE their reviews.
    It can be overwhelming so if you consistently skip past someones blog posts, then its time to unsubscribe or unfollow.

    Twitter is hard b/c most people find out who stopped following and that can be awkward!

  4. I'll unsubscribe for mainly the same reasons as you, although I don't mind memes if in between there are good review or other more substantive posts.

    Mostly, I will unsubscribe if the books the blogger reviews are consistently ones I'm not interested in.

  5. Nope - not yet anyway! I feel awfully guilty, and find less guilt in just marking all as read. \like you said, if I subscribed to the blog, there must've been something about it, to begin with.

  6. I rarely unsubscribe to blogs. I tend to put them in my fourth folder....

    I have my google reader arranged into 4 folders a)favourites b)enjoyable blogs c)the rest d)blogs I should probably unsubscribe too!

    My GR rarely gets on top of me because I always find time for my favourites and normally my enjoyable blogs too. I have no problem with marking all posts in the other two folders as all read.

    Most of the blogs in my fourth folder cover genress I'm not interested in. I tend to ignore all reviews (always ignore memes in all folders) in this folder and am just on the look out for interesting discussions + helpful tips. I find prioritsing my blog reading into order of enjoyment very helpful. I recommend it!

  7. What do I do...well if there is a person who never ever commented on my blog. They did once, I followed cos it looked nice but then no more. And I did not comment either. So that just seems like a waste on my reader.

    But yes it is so hard, I should make a cut again

  8. Oh my gosh, YES - I feel awfully guilty whenever I unsubscribe from a blog too. It just seems Like Jackie, I do the folders thing, but then I also feel guilty whenever I "downgrade" someone. Which is just silly, I know :P

    This doesn't tend to happen with book blogs at all, but if I subscribe to a blog and they turn out to post multiple times a day, every day - way more often than I could ever hope to keep up with - then I'm likely to just give up on even trying and unsubscribe.

  9. What a great post. I saw this on my Reader and went click! :)

    I don't even know how many blogs I subscribe to--I think I refuse to know, as it'll only scare me. I've unsubscribed to several blogs, mostly for the reasons you pointed out. Too many memes, "lazy" reviews. Too different book tastes--although there are bloggers who write about books I'm not interested in, but I love how they write about it, so I hang on.

    Most times, I don't think about it. If I unsubscribe, and the blogger ends up posting some awesome stuff I'm into, well, I rely on the Universe bring us back together. :)

    I've had a few people email me, though, about the range of my reading. That is, that they "admire" me for posting about this book, but find it "uncomfortable" that I can talk about erotic romance right after a post on, say, Chekhov. And I'm like, Wah?

    And THANK YOU for not un-subscribing because post are "too long." That's the most eye-rolling thing to tell me. There was a thread in a forum a while back about how these book bloggers stop reading a blog because the posts were too long. There's a difference between pointless babbling and, well, point-ful babbling, haha.

  10. I tend to unsubscribe mainly because a blogger isn't active any more, but it is kind of pointless because if they aren't posting any more then they aren't contributing to my seriously out of control blog account!

    I have a few different folders. They are loosely divided into Aussie bloggers, must read book bloggers, other book bloggers, new feeds and other types of blogs. If I think I will like a blog but it is new to me I will put it into the new blogs folder to see if they post more that I like.

    Recently I was about 6 weeks behind in my blog reading, but in the end that was a good thing, because then for every blog I had 6 weeks worth of blog posts to go through and see if we were really a good fit. Some times you can't tell if you can only see one post.

    Usually the main reason for not keeping them would be different reading tastes, although it is hard when you like the blogger. I had to be tough last time and say that even though I like the blogger if they aren't posting then I am going to remove them. Still feel guilty about a couple of those.

  11. I rarely unsubscribe because I tend to have plenty of time to read blogs (am so hoping this changes soon though). And I only read posts that interest me in there, and only click out for comments, so it doesn't take all that long to get through a couple hundred posts. I wouldn't unsubscribe because a blog had longer posts, either - I am interested in what these people have to say, after all!

    I do unsubscribe if I notice I absolutely never comment on a particular blog, or if the blogger becomes inactive (which as Marg says is kind of pointless, but keeps things neat!). I think I'll have to reconsider just how many blogs I follow when I do find a job, and I know that's going to be a hard choice.

  12. I rarely unsubscribe because, like Jackie and Nymeth, I have a folder system, and one folder is just for scanning. I scroll through quickly and read if something catches my eye, but mostly nothing does.

    But then I wonder, why do I keep them in my reader at all? Mostly because I like the people, even if our reading tastes don't overlap, or because they sometimes have their fingers on the pulse of blogging events and ideas that I find interesting. It takes less than a minute to scan the folder, so it's not hurting me to keep them there. I do need to go through a reorganize who's in which folder though. I have a few scannable blogs in my "reading" folder and vice versa.

    A blog pretty much has to actively annoy me to get removed altogether.

  13. Feel no guilt in unsubscribing is what I say.

  14. I've never felt guilt over unsubscribing to a blog. The big reasons I'll unsubscribe are memes and only memes, reviews that are no longer in my interest area, or when the blogger slips over the line from "edgy" to "downright offensive" (haven't had this with book bloggers yet, thank goodness!). I have also been known to subscribe and then unsubscribe immediately if the feed is set up to only give me a teaser in Google Reader. I know there's all sorts of reasons to want to drive people directly to your website, but you'd better have absolutely *awesome* content to get me to take the time to click away from Reader to your website.

    I have to admit, one unsubscribe trend I don't get is the 'never update' reason. I've been known to unsubscribe if someone hasn't updated in a year or more, but how does having an inactive blog in your reader really affect you (generic you in this case, Aarti)? I suppose if your reader has a cap on the number of blogs you can subscribe to it makes sense, but I tend to leave even inactive blogs in my reader so that I'll know exactly when they come back.

  15. I hear ya, my reasons for un-subscribing from a blog are similar--inactivity, doing only or heavy on product reviews(that are not books!), contests and/or memes with very little 'extra' in there.

    I love my reader in order to easily see what's what--I do click over to the actual blogs often, especially when the posts are catching. That person usually will have a blog design that's coolie and/or other things on the blog I find fun.

    Google reader has folders?!? I must learn about this...

    Great post--I enjoy your blog!


  16. I'd consider unsubscribing for all the reasons you mentioned, but also for another reason - if I don't enjoy reading the posts. Even if the blog is well written or about interesting books, if I don't feel that we 'click' somehow then I might not want to keep the subscription. Life is too short!

  17. Commenting again to add that I like your header--googled the artist and enjoyed reading about him as well as seeing other paintings...thanks!


  18. My reasons for unsubscribing are exactly the same as yours. :)

  19. Great post!

    I have 275 blogs in my reader (all but about 20 are book blogs). I do unsubscribe from time to time, and have had people leave me as well ~~ I can understand that sometimes it just gets overwhelming and it's time to get things under control, or that we may no longer have the same interests. Since I don't read: SF, romance, chick lit, and rarely fantasy or YA, if that is all someone reads and reviews, then I might unsubscribe.

    I do have to consider the folder system that a few who commented mentioned, as that seems to work well for them.

    I love the blogging community and it has been such a great way to meet other book lovers and to find more books for my favorite pass time --reading.

    Thanks to all of you who share my passion.

  20. Wow lots of comments here already!

    Let's see. First, I have my folders in GR set into 4 groups: favorites, mid-level, lower level, and new book blogs. When I add a new blog, I keep it in the "new" folder until I recognize the sort of posts that blogger puts up. It's easy for me to unsubscribe from any of these because I've never had a chance to get engaged with the blogger. As I get to know the blogs, I either drop them or move them to one of the other folders.

    Blogs move up and down based on 1) the content and 2) my interaction with the blogger.

    1) First, if the blogger does all memes, it's an automatic drop. Second, if they post regularly more than once a day, it's an almost automatic drop. Third, if we have completely dissimilar tastes and they don't fall into the 2nd category, it's a painful but likely drop.

    2) If a blogger doesn't post just memes and doesn't post many time a day, then I will keep them around if we frequently interact with each other. Taste doesn't matter so much then. If we talk on twitter all the time or are constantly commenting on each other's blogs, then it's just fun to be friends. For example, even though you and are read mostly completely different books, you exist in my favorites folder because we interact all the time and i love hearing what you have to say.

    The times I feel most guilty is when I don't subscribe to people who comment often on my blog. I try to subscribe to all my frequent commentors, but sometimes they fall into the meme-or-multipost category and then I just can't take it. I feel guilty about it, but I simply don't have time to mark all the memes as read every day. I don't have time to sift through multiple posts. I just don't.

    Okay I think this comment is probably too long already...

  21. Interesting post. I try to visit all the blogs that are on my blogroll, but now with the baby, it's a bit hard to find the time to do it all. But I try my best to post and to comment as often as I can. Everyone puts a lot of effort in his or her blog. And I don't mind if someone hasn't the exact taste in books. I like to discover new interesting books and I will often add books to my wish list that I would normally not read! And I haven't posted for 3 months because I had a baby, so if someone has a good reason for not posting, then I will still visit their blog. Life is unpredictable and you never know what might happen to a fellow blogger.

  22. I think I would unsubscribe for some of the reasons you mentioned...mostly when there's not much going on, or the blogger's tastes in books are so different from mine that I rarely relate to the posts.

    I tend to add people who visit and comment on my blogs, and whose content is fun to read.

    My Salon:

  23. I really like this folder idea. I'm going to try this out, because right now, my GR has been overwhelming. Over the summer and during breaks from school, I feel like I don't have enough blogs to read so I subscribe to a bunch. Then come around now, when I'm not reading GR as often, I get really overwhelmed. The folder idea would really help with that.

  24. Since my GR is relatively new I haven't unsubscribed to that many yet. What I have done is re-organised my folders fairly recently. I have a folder for new-to-me blogs (THANK YOU to who ever suggested that first...honestly can't remember who it was). Then I have a folder called "Everyday" and I do try and read that folder everyday. In there I have bloggers who's opinions I value and who have similar or interesting tastes in books. Basically people who I have conversations with. Then I have a bunch of folders with book bloggers sorted alphabetically and I try to go through them at least once per week. Here I tend to scroll through the memes I'm not interested in.

    I am thinking of setting up a "probation" folder and moving blogs that I feel I have little in common with to that one to keep a better eye on the fit for me. Right now blogs I might not fit with get a little bit lost. That said, I'm an anxious person and I do feel that unsubscribing is a bit like breaking up and that is hard to do :D even when I never comment on the blog :D

    You did remind me that it is time to look at the stats and see if there is anyone who hasn't updated in a while and see if it is someone I should unsubscribe to.

  25. I am always afraid that if I unsubscribe I will miss out on something really good :-) The ones I do unsubscribe from are ones that don't post often enough or if I never want to read the posts.

  26. Anonymous3/07/2010

    I feel the same way. 100 blogs is about my limit. Once I'm over that number it all seems to spiral out of control. And I unsubscribe for similar reasons...if I find I haven't left a comment there in awhile, that's another good indicator. Although it can also be an indicator that I'm behind in commenting.

  27. Oh yes, I totally get swamped. My problem is a little quirk of personality that can't handle having unread feeds, so I can't do the low-priority folders thing -- I have to read everything. So I do have to unsubscribe, or I will spend too many hours a day on the reader. The key for me is to notice whether or not it's a blog I scroll past regularly, one that never seems to grab my attention. I will occasionally unsubscribe if someone writes something, or many things, that I find offensive or very obnoxious. But that doesn't happen too often.

    I do keep a wide variety of people who read genres I don't because I find that very useful for reader's advisory at the library -- I might have not read the book, but I can suggest it based on a review I've read. Usually with the caveat "I haven't read this, but I read a review recently..." and if it's the right kind of patron, and if I remember where the review came from, I'll point them to the blog in question for more suggestions on what to read.

  28. I tend to make the decision to unsubscribe from a blog if I find myself not interested time and time again in what the blogger is writing about.

  29. I struggle with this too. Interesting discussion!

  30. WOW, thank you all so much for the comments! I think I am going to have to try this Google Reader folder thing, even if that involves a dreaded amount of organization and preparation. It seems like it might be a successful way to go about things.

    I unsubscribe from inactive blogs just for cleanliness reasons- I like to be streamlined!

    And yes, I agree with Amanda- sometimes if I like a blogger, even if we read different books, I will stay subscribed.

  31. I use folders -- similar to Jackie's system but I also have folders for blogs that aren't about books.

    I have a folder that I rarely read, but I usually scroll through it just in case. I have no problem marking that folder "read" at the end of the week. If I find I'm not reading a blog as much as I used to, I move it to the fourth folder, but I don't unsubscribe.

  32. I rarely unsubscribe unless a blog has a partial feed, that will have me running to unsub unless I *really* love the blog. Like some other people mentioned, I use a folder system. I probably don't hit any book blog folders except my 'favorites' more than once a week (although occasionally I'll just look at my most recent items). Once I do get to those folders, I go blog by blog, read what interests me, and mark the rest of that blog as read. I guess if they have 30 posts and none of them interest me I might consider unsubscribing, but sometimes I want to keep them because I know they occasionally have content I like, and skimming their post titles every couple weeks doesn't really take that much time.

  33. I'm like you - I feel great guilt when I unsubscribe from a blog, so I rarely do it. I know there are some in my reader now that I really need to let go of, but haven't been able to yet. I've tried the folder system, but it doesn't work that well for me.

  34. I've been thinking about this a lot lately, since I've seen a pretty big reduction in the amount of time I can devote to blogging. I feel terrible about unsubscribing, but since these days it's taking me ages to visit even my favourite blogs... well, something's gotta give.

    For the most part, I've unsubscribed from meme-heavy blogs, blogs that post little except news stories they've pulled from other sources (often with commentary on said stories, granted, but I prefer reviews-heavy blogs), and blogs that mostly post about books and genres that don't grab my interest. And I've felt terrible about each and every unsubscription, since I'm sure all these people work very hard on their blogs. :(

  35. Anonymous3/07/2010

    I recently have gone from over 200 blogs in my reader to about 120, mostly by using Google Reader's "Trends" where I can see which blogs are inactive. Like you, I unsubscribe from blogs that are "meme-heavy." Unlike you, though, I would unsubscribe if a blog's reviews were too long, or if the blog posts were too long. For me, blog posts are meant to be on the short side, or if longer, split up into a series of posts.

    Today I did subscribe to one more group of blogs, with The Sunday Salon, meaning I might not subscribe to those blogs individually, but I will attempt to read, and comment when the mood strikes -- like here, to those blogs.

  36. >>I have never unsubscribed because a blog's reviews are too long.

    Me neither! In fact, I'm more likely to be less interested in a blog because the reviews are too short. lol I don't worry about unsubscribing as much as you (I'd worry more if people could SEE me unsubscribing, lol). Sometimes I unsubscribe, because after a two-week trial run the blog isn't doing it for me. Or if one starts doing a billion memes. Or if they're only reviewing the books that are flooding the blogosphere. Or if they do a snarky post that rubs me the wrong way (more about blogging & book bloggers than about authors...although, if they snark on Jane, they're probably not a good fit for me!).

    I'm picky about what goes in my Google Reader, though, so unless a blog changes dramatically, I rarely have to cull. I do a pretty thorough check-out of the blog before I decide to subscribe, and if it makes it past the trial period, I'm probably a fan! :)

    Also, you think of the best topics for Sunday Salon. :p

  37. Great question! My Google reader is always over 1000, but I read the book blogs every day or two. The blogs I can't keep up with as much as I wish (Jezebel, Gawker, NY Mag, etc.) post 100 times a day each. Who has the time?

    I am annoyed by too many memes, and I dislike the week and month wrap-up posts, but mostly I scroll right past them or mark as read rather than unsubscribe.

    I typically unsubscribe when I realize how divergent our reading tastes are. I get frustrated with bloggers who aren't good writers. We all have typos and errors, but bloggers who don't have good sentence structure aren't pleasurable for me to read.

    Honestly, I rarely unsubscribe, but I fully confess to skimming as many blogs as I actually read.

  38. I'm with you (and Eva) on never unsubbing because of long reviews. Heck, I write long reviews, so that would be hypocritical AND counterproductive.

    It's all about quality of content for me. If a blog is 90% memes, I'm out, and I won't feel guilty about it. If the reviews and other content-driven posts are good and outweigh the fluff, I'm willing to deal with memes, but I'll freely admit that I almost always just skip right past those. Sure, they're good for building community (sometimes), but I honestly don't care which books got delivered to a person's house that week, and I don't have time to read a hundred posts about it.

  39. Another great question from you! So far the only reason I've unsubscribed is inactivity. Like you said, if they've been inactive for more than a few months - I assume they aren't coming back!

  40. Wow - you sparked quite a discussion!! I haven't felt overwhelmed - yet. There are some posts I skip over or skim through but so far, I haven't unsubscribed from any. I think the main reason that would cause me to do so would be inactivity unless the person said they would be away for a while (sometimes life just gets in the way of blogging) and I wouldn't want to miss when they come back! I think I've become a little more selective in which blogs I choose to follow now than I used to.

  41. I use the trends tab in Google Reader to make these decisions for me. I unsubscribe to any blog that hasn't posted on a month and any blog that I've read less than 10% of their posts.

    It's not a perfect system by any means, but I am currently following over 600 blogs. Since I discover many new blogs every week, the number would be over 1000 if I didn't unsubscribe from blogs that aren't active or only post content I don't have lots of interest in.

    I always feel bad because I know how upsetting it can be to see your follower numbers drop.

  42. Great topic here!

    Unsubscribing is a necessary evil, indeed. I try to keep by subscriptions around 110 or so, but they continually creep up. Even at just around 100, I have such trouble keeping up, much less commenting as I should. My top reasons for unsubscribing are too many memes and too little reading interests in common.

  43. Great fodder for discussion! I'll admit that I do not unsubscribe often, and that is due mostly out of guilt. I find it is easier for me to hit "Mark All as Read" and keep myself subscribed versus going through the pain of unsubscribing. Yes, as I type that I realize how silly it sounds.

    In those rare times I have unsubscribed, I have done so because the blogger had not posted anything in quite some time. Like Jen, I dislike partial feeds and probably could cull some from the list that way. Other reasons I would use include too many memes and not enough original content, and too many reviews of books I would never consider reading. The latter reason is more because it indicates a lack of similar tastes. Granted, I would reconsider this idea if we were Twitter friends. In general, it seems as if we all have very similar ideas about unsubscribing!

  44. Anonymous3/07/2010

    I don't feel tooo guilty about unsubscribing because a lot of times I'm mostly a lurker and the person probably doesn't even know I subscribed in the first place. People who visit my blog regularly and comment, however, I almost always stay subscribed too even if I don't love their content because I do try to visit those who visit me. Typically if a blog is mostly memes I will unsubscribe, unless I really like the person. I don't care if your reviews are too long or too short, I just care that there is some content there for me to read! :)

  45. I unsubscribe for the same reasons you do, but I have to admit, it is not that often. Like Teresa said, it does not take long for me to scan through a post to see if the topic interests me. And sometimes I can really be pleasantly surprised by a blog I don't often read.

  46. Good question! I'm in the process of trimming down by blog list right now, actually. I have a whole folder of new book blogs that I've been experimenting with reading. For about a week, I've just been clicking on post for those blogs that seem interesting to me, not every single one. After about another week I'm going to look at them individually and see if I've read posts from that blog in the last week. If not, I'll probably unsubscribe. The rest will get moved into my other blog folders for regular reading.

    But I totally agree. It's fraught with guilt and feeling bad about not reading blogs that read me, etc.

    One thing that will make me more inclined to unsubscribe almost immediately is if the blog is a partial feed. Those I loose patience for.

  47. Great post!
    I've subscribed to about 160+ blogs and already I feel I couldn't catch up on them even though if I read them via Google Reader every weekdays (I tend to take a break from the internet during weekends to spend more time with my family and so forth).

    It's so hard to unsubscribe; I love reading what everyone's doing and reading. Still, if the blog is inactive for a long time, and if the blogger's taste in books is so different from mine, I'd have to do so even though it always make me feel bad.

  48. I was never an unsubscriber until Bloggiesta, then well, I just didn't want to be crushed under my reader. I have 3 folders in my reader. One for favorites, one for author blogs and the final folder is for all the other book bloggers. I should probably make more folders, but meh.

    Anyways, I unsubscribe from people who never post, who post more memes than reviews. Honestly, I don't mind memes much, just I like some strong reviews in between.

    Also, if a review is like a goodreads summary and one sentence that's a waste of my time. I prefer blogs with longer reviews, can't help it.

    Oh and if a blog is obnoxious, with a bajillion blinkie images and gifs, I just, I can't handle it, so click unsubscribe. Same with the partial feeds. They are annoying!

    Fabulous post, definitely has me thinking!

  49. Memes! I like them occassionally, but not every day. I never used to stop following until I put everyone into my bloglines account, eventually I'd get around to going back to everyone but now I see the 00000s of posts and I feel the pressure :)

    I'm glad you've never unsubscribed because something is too long. I sometimes unsubscribe because reviews are too short (if they're just a plot summary and 'I liked it, it was cool').

  50. Wow! did you ever get a lot of comments! I don't subscribe. I don't follow. I just have my blog list, and I love what bookmagic wrote:
    'I like to go directly to the blog, it's part of the ambiance to see the work people put into their blogs.'
    This expresses my feelings exactly. I know I spend a fair bit of time on my own, and I imagine others do too, trying to make it beautiful to me.
    I think it may be a bit easier when a blogger has (mostly) one focus, in both writing her own blog and in interest in other blogs. As for me, I write about various things and a garden blogger might not care when I write about a book. Or a book blogger may not care a bit when I post pictures of the farm. I guess that mostly my blog is my life, and if someone is interested, she will stop by when she has a minute. It is the same for me with visiting. I've tried to separate out my blog lists into 'bookish' 'mostly gardens' and then geographically. It helps me keep them straight. I get to know who is where and who they are. Someone should write about how one's memory improves when blogging - I 'know' so many people, where they are, and what they mostly write about! It keeps the 'little grey cells' of Hercule Poirot in good shape. :<)

  51. It's been a really long time since I have cleaned out my reader, but I guess there are probably a few I should weed out. I don't unsubscribe if the blog posts are long because I love long reviews and feel that they give me a better idea if the book is a good fit for me. I don't like excessive meme's and get tired of them rather quickly. I also don't like it when the reviews are too short to get a real feel for the book and I don't like snarky bloggers either. Most of the blogs I read are ones I have been reading for a long time, and I have kind of formed an attachment to them. I like to get to know the bloggers and interact with them over time, so sometimes I will keep reading a blog that doesn't have reviews that fit into my favorite genres. I have tried to investigate new blogs, but if I feel like the content is not to my interest I will not add them to my reader. I also will not read a blog that adds too many posts in one day. I usually spend some time every weekday going through posts, but often I feel like there are some great blogs out there that I am missing out on. This is a great topic, and has seriously made me think about investigating the folder concept!!

  52. I am with you on unsubscription guilt! It takes me forever to unsubscribe, but when I do, I do it like it's going out of fashion. I hem-and-haw for a while about one then once I decide, about five others go with it!

    My biggest determinate are whether they review solely romance novels (not too into them) and if they post five or six times a day-- I just can't keep up and it frustrates me!

    Good Salon!

  53. Wow -
    Popular post Aarti as well as some great feed back in the comments.
    Especially from the only guy that has commented here. :)
    I think I will go and clean out my reader. I am totally swamped!

  54. I am with you in all that you wrote. I am right now cleaning up my reader (Spring cleaning!) and I know I have once subscribed to blogs that review books of a genre I don't "love". But I am more careful of my subscription behavior nowadays. Plus, I enjoy blogs that do a lot of book reviews and write good meaty reviews, than mix in a bunch of superficial words (I know that's rude stating it, but I've seen such blogs too). I'm fine with the review count, heck, I know I can't do more than 2 reviews a week, since grad school keeps me busy.

    As for memes, I only really enjoy the Monday-reading list and Friday Finds memes, plus any meme that invites reviewing (like books from the past or A-to-Z wednesdays). Anything that brings more books to you AND adds a good personal touch to their posts.

  55. I see subscribing as a way to build community and support each other. There's not enough time in the day, however, for me to read each post. I scan quickly in Google Reader and find topics most interesting to me. So far I haven't unsubscribed to anyone. I love the organizing tips shared here for Google Reader.

  56. I have 72 subscriptions in my GR. Before I put a blog in there I look over the past month of posts on the blog. If not enough peeks my interest, then I don't add. I have not deleted any blog yet, but so far I am not overwhelmed. I use my phone to read through the posts, and star ones that I want to respond to. Then later on my laptop, I visit the stars and comment. Memes don't bother me too much. Some are great for book ideas, and I have learned of a few wonderful titles. Memes that I don't like, I just mark as read.

  57. Anonymous3/21/2010

    I've recently cut out a bunch of sites from my Google reader and intend to cut out more. Mainly if someone's site does not provide me with new info or the past five posts are nothing I'm interested in or as many have said if the person doesn't like the same book genres or film genres as me.

  58. I unsubscribe for many of the reasons you mention. On the flip side in addition to unsubscribing to blogs that haven't posted in awhile I will sometimes unsubscribe if a blog posts too often. Between work, my daughter, being pregnant, etc. I have really limited amount of time to read blogs and I do subscribe to almost 200 blogs. So if a blog posts 2 or 3 times every day I just find it overwhelming to see 20-30 unread posts from them every week.

    As for memes, there are certain ones I really enjoy like the In my mailbox and waiting on wednesday but if they participate in too many memes then I start marking all as read and eventually unsubscribe if there isn't enough other content to balance it out.


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