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Sounds like such a great meeting. Would have loved to have been there!

This was a meeting I did want to attend, but could not get away from work, etc. Thanks for this introduction. I look forward to reading more.

Thanks, Dave! Looking forward to reading more from you about this.

And as long as I'm talking about blogs, I'll point out a couple of changes here at DMI. I switched back to Trebuchet font. I shipped my "General Books" list over to Dave's Sideblog and started a new "General Books 2006" list. I also shipped a couple of underperforming blogrolls over to the sideblog. Just a little housekeeping. I just don't have it in me at the moment to do much more.

Um...there are other blogs that are a part of the bloggernacle besides the ones you listed. A LOT more. So it might be more valid to have labeled this as a "semi-tour rather than a Bloggernacle Tour.

Well, I didn't call it a comprehensive tour. Newcomers will stumble onto the Archipelago aggregator site (identified and linked to in the first paragraph) as a gateway to most other B'nacle blogs, including OT.

Actually, I wasn't only referring to Our Thoughts. I generally hesitate to even touch on this subject because I am sure people will think I am only talking about Our Thoughts. But we don't need the publicity, we are getting a lot of traffic from MA and other links. But there are a lot of great blogs out there, and it seems that some people have a tendency to only promote their favourites. I am not only referring to you. But a lot of other good blogs get missed because the "big blogs" only put a word in for certain ones. It would be nice to see some others supported too.

Mary, you might notice that MA is now highlighting some of the newer blogs down in a "Nascent Islands" box (I guess it would be Box 7).

Well, I am also not just referring to newer blogs. There are some older blogs that bear some recognisance too.

http://mormoninquiry.typepad.com/sidenotes/is gone, and "I also shipped a couple of underperforming blogrolls over to the sideblog." makes those that were at the prior sideblog (and who are now not to be found) editorially excerpted.

Though, everything has values, implicit or restrained. Our Thoughts for some, SnarkerNacle for others, mormon no more for the rest.

If Dave doesn't limit his lists, he just becomes a site aggregator. People will eventually poke around and find where they fit, or don't.

Stephen, my sideblog lives on in a new incarnation. When blogs started, lists of links were mostly what sidebars were for, but now there are so many things to do with them that links are less important. Notice that that the New Green Thang blog has entirely dispensed with traditional link lists on its sidebars.

BTW, I am curious, how many books do you sell with your blog? I've always wondered if it was really worth the effort and time of coding.

I've been trying to decide whether to update my link to the sidebar or just drop it.

Appreciate your pointing out that bcc has dropped all the links it used to have. I'll be dropping my link to by common consent in return. Though it is pretty in the new green incarnation, you do make the good point that more and more, blogs are not about sharing links and traffic, but in becoming final destinations.

That is a normal evolutionary point in on-line cliques and groupings.

That is a good point that should have been made at Miller-Eccles, that at some point most on-line communities become, in part, about directing the on-line community into themselves and not concerned about building mass, but in shedding it, as they no longer need connections or support from others to sustain themselves.

Which, of course, irritates those who are excluded and seems perfectly justified by those who are excluding.

As my Dad once pointed out, a tree is healthier if pruned, but the parts that get pruned off often feel a bit discarded.

I wasn't referring to Our Thoughts! At least not entirely. yeesh. See this is why I don't say anything. We don't need Mormon Inquiry's or anyone's push, we're doing quite well. I was just saying why promote the same old same old when there are lots of other great blogs to put a plug in for? That's all. Oi.

oops, sorry, i misunderstood. that's what i get for reading quickly while getting breakfast for my children. i should concentrate on one task at a time.

Stephen wrote:

"Appreciate your pointing out that bcc has dropped all the links it used to have. I'll be dropping my link to by common consent in return. Though it is pretty in the new green incarnation, you do make the good point that more and more, blogs are not about sharing links and traffic, but in becoming final destinations"

Stephen--I'm curious why you feel this way? I link to several blogs which do not link to me. I link because I like and read those blogs, and I want easy access from my own site, and also to let people know which blogs I enjoy reading. What difference does it really make if some blogs do not reciprocate a link? With the MA portal and LDSelect, most of the participating blogs have exposure, much greater than they would on any given blog with a reciprocating link.

Links do figure into Google calculations. Thus, for instance, my blog which many link to gets probably a higher Google ranking for many searches than it deserves. I don't particularly care if anyone links to me. And I provide links primarily to blogs I head to regularly. It's just coincidence that others like it. I prefer that to having a bunch of bookmarks on my browser - especially for when I'm away from my machine.

Thanks Clark . . . I suppose if the Google rankings are important, then links would be important as well.

Links are important in that they create a sense of community. To be linked to is to be a part of the community, to not be linked to is to be excluded.

Now admittedly, there are good reasons why people have different tastes and approaches and links. I link to Compassionate Friends, you would not have a reason to do that (and they do not link to me).

Mormoninquiry links to Mormon No More, I think I'd skip them even if they gave me a link back. I don't find them a place I'd visit regularly. But then I visit Trap No Trap because it is written by a father who lost a child, and that touches on my blog's core topic.

Blogs and links are many things, but they have, in their early stages, a clear role in providing boundaries, markers and contact and definition. They provide a line of who is inside and who is outside.

As those lines shift, more and more blogs drop most or all of their links (while retaining links to them), defining themselves as an inner ring ( http://www.geocities.com/bigcslewisfan/ ) and that is a natural progression.

I'm not being critical, just noting what is happening, and attempting to, in return, create my own sense of community.

When I'm at a site that has:


I'm a
Slithering Reptile
in the
TTLB Ecosystem

I know that links are important to them. When they cut others off, I know that the act has meaning, elevating their status, reducing the status of others.

It is an interesting process to watch. Especially as I need to spend less time browsing or being interested in such things, and more writing posts that relate to my core (which will actually prune back my readership) and doing things outside of blogging.

My reflections.

Dave, Great to meet you at MESG. I promise to protect your secret identity by refering to your blog from now on as D---'s Mormon Inquiry. You should have been on the panel, and I'm afraid it was an innocent oversight on MESG's part that you weren't included. Spilt milk now...

You may be surprised to hear this from me, but I don't have an opinion on whether or not to link.

I pretty much have a skeewampus approach to blogging and I sometimes remember to save a link and sometimes I don't.

There's really so many that it's hard to keep track. At first I found T & S, then accidentally another, and now I realize there are tons.

I can understand where Mary is coming from, though. I think I miss a lot by my approach and newcomers should know there is sheer volume.

Are African American allowed to join the Mormon curch, If not why

African Americans are not only "allowed" to join the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, they are actively solicited and welcome to join.

Wow, thanks. Not being an academic, I often feel 'not good enough' for the 'nacle. My site's apparently been called 'shallow' and much of it considered 'fluff,' but it's nice to see that someone gets it. I'm not into playing the 'he who logs off with the most obscure cite wins' game. It's juts my voice, my interpretation of my life experience; it's the place where I literally 'make sense of it all' for myself. Thanks for noticing, and for framing it so sweetly.

To address the issues raised in the comments:

Mary, it seems only logical that people would plug their favorite sites. Blogs are a reflections o ftheir writers, thus their tastes are bound to come through. Sure there's a ton of lesser-known really great sites, and the people who like those will link to those. If you have a handful that you feel are underrepresented, the make a post at OT about it. Or, if that doesn't fir the format there, feel free to shoot me a guest post on "Mary's picks for lesser-known awesome 'nacle blogs" (only with a better title than that :) ), and I'll gladly put it up on A Prayer of Faith (my new group blog). I'm always up for another good read, albeit I often don't have as much time as I'd like for getting to the ones I already frequent. Alas, kiddos have needs and needs take time to meet, y'know?

Stephen, et al, in regard to links:
It's not just google where linkage counts. I'm a bit of a technorati junkie, myself. I tend to consider it only polite to return a link when one's been given. If it's not someone I actually read or necessarily 'endorse' then I toss it in under a heading 'tagbacks'.

I do, though, link to sites who do not necessarily link me back. It's simply a way of further expressing a part of myself. Kind of a "this is what I like to fill my head with."

Stephen,
BCC did not drop its links for snobbish reasons. Our links were a disaster and utterly out of date. The MA and LDSelect do a much better job in highlighting the community than our links did, hence their prominent logos on our site. We heart the 'nacle community.

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