Thursday, January 6, 2011

What if...?

For us spanking enthusiasts, clearing browser history is just one of the many precautions we have to take if we are worried about people finding out what blogs and related sites we visit.

But what would happen if you suddenly became unable to continue your blogging activities, either temporarily or permanently? We have all come across blogs that are suddenly abandoned. People stop blogging for a variety of reasons: loss of interest, no inspiration or motivation to keep blogging, lack of time and energy, or the loss of a computer or internet access. Today I am thinking of sudden and unexpected events like illness, injury or death.

How would we know what had happened to you if you are suddenly unable to blog any longer? If you are a blogger with any number of faithful readers, you will know that we DO want to know if something has happened to you.

Here are some suggestions:

If you co-author a blog, then that's easy. Your co-author can tell readers where the other half of the partnership went.

If you are a solo blogger, but have a partner or significant other who knows about your blogging activities and is comfortable with the idea of writing a post, then give that person some elementary blogging lessons. A simple post of one or two lines that say something like "Hermione is in hospital but she will be back soon" will pass along the news. Be sure to give your partner the logon and password (or activate the automatic feature available in some browsers). Don't forget to tell the potential writer what his or her blogging pseudonym is so a real name is not revealed.

Give your significant other or a trusted friend the email address of a good blogging friend who can then pass along a brief message on his or her own blog. Instructions can be left in a sealed envelope, to be opened in the event of unfortunate circumstances.

As an alternative to email, your SO can be given instructions to leave a comment on a blog you visit regularly, saying you are unable to blog.

Create an "emergency post" with a generic message, post-date it, and arrange for it to be published at a future date. Blogger has the Scheduler option that works very well; perhaps Wordpress and other blogging sites have a similar feature. Just don't forget to change the date on a regular basis, so that the post doesn't inadvertently get published.

There is a good example of an emergency post on SpankedHortic's blog. Prefectdt created a series of holiday posts in advance, and one was automatically published each day while he was away. He also created an emergency post in case he didn't return on time from his Christmas vacation. As it happened, he was delayed, and his emergency post appeared.

I hope you find these ideas helpful, and if you can suggest others, I will  gladly add them to this post.

From Hermione's Heart


PK said...

This is an excellent idea. I can't tell you how many people I've worried about. If they just wanted to stop that's one things, but it does leave those that reading worrying that something is really wrong.

For me I am still in daily contact with Eva from Nothing Random. Should anything happen here Nick would certainly let her know and she has full access to my site. She'd put something up for me.

Hope others will take your suggestions.


abby said...

Great idea! I also have worried when bloggers seem to suddenly disappear! Thanks for the post.

Our Bottoms Burn said...

Great ideas. To think that I might be missed swells my head.

ronnie said...

Excellent advice Hermione. I always worry when someone just disappears. I'm, lucky, I know P would put up a post for me.

Thanks Hermione.


Anonymous said...

I've often wondered the same thing, Hermione. There have been a few bloggers who have unfortunately passed and it took awhile for news to hit their readers.

A sealed envelope is a wonderful idea. I think I'll give one to D this weekend, in the unlikely event that something bad happens.

Great suggestions!

Anonymous said...

Oh dear!

That was a gloomy entry, but it's good to think things like that beforehand :-D



I had never thought of a cover all emergency post. It is a good idea but it will take some thought about what to put in it to take all eventualities into consideration.


Daisychain said...

Hi, Hermione!
I think you have tackled a sensitive issue very well! I have worried about Andrades girl for a very long time.
It seems odd that any blogger, having made good friends, albeit cyber, would just stop posting... and not leave even the briefest of explanations to the friends they have made through their blog!
Davey would post on my behalf if necessary. xxxxxxxxxx

A. Lurker said...

Hi Hermione,
What a thoughtful post. I don't blog but I ejoy reading a few blogs regularly (like yours!) and would be disappointed if they passed into oblivion without any explaination.

Anonymous said...

great idea... but still hoping for another option my friend
Loved the idea of making up extra posts in advance and scheduling them to be posted while away...thus,nobody knows you are gone..HMMMMM

Hermione said...

PK - I'm glad you have a plan in place.

Abby - My pleasure. I hope it helps.

Bogie - You and Bacall would be very much missed.

Ronnie - It's really good to know P would post.

Pink - The bloggers I know of who passed had friends who informed us on their blogs. And a sealed envelope is one of the things I am going to do too.

Maria - It is, although it's not something we like to think about.

Prefectdt - I'm sure you can do it. You led the way here.

Daisy - It's very odd when they just disappear. Glad Davey would post if necessary.

A Lurker - Many people would feel that way about blogs they enjoy.

Red - Preparing in advance takes a bit of work and planning, but then nobody knows you're away.


Michael said...

Excellent post, Hermione. More a much needed public service announcement. Thanks.

And congratulations on it being Chrossed. :)

Anonymous said...

Hermione, I've thought about this on occasion. I appreciate your suggestions.

Rich Spankman said...

Very good advice. Thank you.


Hermione said...

Michael - Thank you. I never imagined this post would be Chrossed!

Mick - I hope they might be helpful to you.

Rich - My pleasure.