How To Annoy The Entire Blogosphere

1. Ask a blogger for a favor, especially if you have no intention of reading their blog.

  • Bonus points for starting your request like-a-so: "Hi, I don't read your blog, but would you mind..."
2. Use messaging on social networking sites (StumbleUpon, MyBlogLog) to ask people to visit your site.
  • Bonus points for not visiting the sites of those you ask.
3. Sport the dollar signs in your eyes with pride. Whether it be links, traffic or money, we're all here to serve you. Demonstrate your dedication to self-enrichment with every comment, email and post.

4. Avoid writing comments that resemble actual conversation. Comments that begin and end with "Great post!", "I agree!", or "Ditto!" are best.
  • Bonus points for fawning.
5. Copy another blogger's content.
  • Bonus points for not linking to their original post. They love that.
  • Gold star for submitting your copy to Digg.
6. Borrow heavily from another blogger's post, or repeat their news. Perform no hat-tip. After all, noone wears hats suitable for tipping anymore.

7. Write sponsored reviews without disclosure. People need mystery; fill that need.
  • Bonus points for reviews that are irrelevant to your readers. People need variety, too.
8. Have a unique perspective on spam: if it isn't Viagra or a Nigerian scam, assume everyone wants to hear about whatever it is you're selling. This frees you to:
  • Promote your link with every comment
  • Send cut-and-paste messages on social networking sites
  • Use a blogger's contact form to promote your site/blog/product
  • Et cetera
9. Focus on memes, contests, link-lists and any other masturbatory link-building scheme you can find. Bask in the ensuing irritation from every visitor not involved in the link-mania.
  • Bonus points for regularly featuring link-building posts devoid of actual content
  • Gold star for having more links than visitors.
10. Do everything on this list while fundamentally agreeing with the Golden Rule. Now that is annoying.

Kind thanks to all who contributed to this post via the "What Frustrates You The Most About Blogging?" thread: Liz, Steven, Jonathan, TK, Lora, Matt, and everyone.

Need more Bad Advice?


ME Strauss said...

I love this post so much I want to kiss my computer screen. You brilliant, you slacker king. I love how you made it, how you wrote it, everything about it. It is excellence!!

Can I order 1000 copies as an automatic email response? Triggered only when I want?

John said...

Slacker king! That is about the coolest title I have ever heard. Oh, I am going to be using that. Thank you, thank you, thank you. >:D

And yes you may mail this post all you like. If anyone gives you trouble about it, send them to me for an earful.

Gath said...

Hi John,

This post captured my mood exactly today.

A guy just spammed my blog for his contest & then got all upset when I called him on it.

Hopefully he reads your post as well.


BillyWarhol said...


i read this at Randy's IBT4IM

Funny points I certainly have the $$$ signs in my eyes but I had to Laff when I realized that even if I got TechCrunch-like Traffic or even MySpace Traffic - I've got nothing for sale on my Blog that anybody would bother clicking on anyways!!

oh yoy*


Garrett Albright said...

What's up with the picture with the cartoon characters? Seems a bit non-sequitor…

John said...

Yo Gath,

That sounds like no fun. Of course, you're not the only one... this is how people Annoy The Entire Blogosphere. o O

John said...

Hi Billy,

$_$ isn't necessarily bad (just look at the title of this blog); it all depends on when they come out. But you clearly understand that. :)

John said...

Garret good sir,

A. I thought the pic was suitably analogous to an annoyed blogosphere

B. I like that cartoon. >:)


Ms. Q said...

Oooch! I've done #9!! Ok, it's not my focus but I've done a couple of those "tagged" memes.

I like those "tell me more about yourself" memes. I find them fun and a good way to learn more about another blogger (and maybe introduce a new blogger to my readers).

You mean people find it annoying? Eeek!

John: I did think of tagging you with my "obsessive thoughts" meme. Good thing I didn't!

John said...

MsQ my friend;

No, I don't find memes annoying.:) And the kind you're talking about, like the "why do you blog" and 'goals' ones, I think are great. I would do any meme I thought would be valuable to FTM readers.

Jonathan tagged me for that latest 'gotta get goals' meme, and I meant to do it, but I had a bad case of slack and didn't get around to it.

Really though, it doesn't matter what a blogger writes about as long as they're writing for their readers, as opposed to writing for links. Maybe that wasn't clear enough.

Anyway, I'll consider myself tagged on the 'obsessive thoughts' thing. I'll check it out. :)

Ms. Q said...

Oh, I also like "Slacker King!"

Thanks for the clarification on how you feel about memes.

Funny how much royalty is going around. Mr. Gary Lee calls me the "Queen of Musings" (I had never thought of the "Q" to mean "Queen") and I think of HMTKSteve of HMTK to mean His Majesty The King.

If I didn't think of this mnemonic, I'd misspell his name (HTML comes to mind first).

Hail the Slacker King!

Lisa Gates said...

John John John, Slacker King:

You have to do a separate post about memes. I just don't understand how anybody is interested in my blogging goals or what my favorite thing to write is, or any other self-aggrandized varations thereof.

Every time I've received a tag to meme, I have tried to (ignore, not very well) turn it on its head so it has some possible relevance to people other than me and the originator.

That said, what about memes that could actually solve problems? Like: Tag, you're it...who are you going to help today for no reason? or If there is one thing I could help you with on your blog, what would that be?

Probably just stuck my foot in my mouth, but you get the picture.

If I wore a hat, I might not want to tip it in order to keep all the spare change I've been collecting.


Avinash said...

Brilliant post, John! :)

I started laughing after reading a few points. I've faced the trouble of #1, #2, #4, #8. And such people piss me off, thank God, music is always with me!

#9 is my favorite point. Such tagging, linking, etc ideas sound like low class behavior. In February 2007, I saw 1000s of bloggers writing posts like "5 Things You Didn't Know About Me".

If you search in Google for this exact phrase, you'll find more than 53,000 results. :eek:

Being afraid of this, I put this line on my about page as the 1st fact about me:

"I hate tech memes. So, please, never tag me!"

Still, many people included my blog link in some link memes but I didn't return the favor because that's a plain spamming technique IMO.

- Avi

Two Knives said...

OK, I now have the confidence to come right out and say, yes, write something about the memes, because I don't get it either. I want to play by the rules but 99% of the memes bore me to death. I don't read them. And don't want to write them.

ME Strauss said...

Dear Brilliant Slacker King aka BS King . . . I think we have a challenge here to invent the Outstandingly Unique Meme about Memes. One reason why you don't want to read about me . . . me . . . me.

Anything I write about myself has to be skewed in some way doesn't it?

There you go. Your turn. :)

Think I should post this on my blog, your slacking, magnificence? (I mean that in the most respectful way. [she says as she backs out bowing or was that a curstey -- never can tell, but don't EVER say she throws like a girl, and I really, really mean that.]

ME Strauss said...

When I'm rich I'm going hire a proofread named Alexander to follow me around and fix my typographical errors.


Ms. Q said...

Lisa Gates: "I just don't understand how anybody is interested in my blogging goals or what my favorite thing to write is, or any other self-aggrandized varations"

I don't think that writing about yourself is always about self-aggrandizement, especially if people are asking. People are curious about others - or at least, those who aren't ego-centric are! I'm curious about what motivates a person to do something I enjoy doing (like writing).

Another reason people want to know things about others is to have some "definition" of you - a way to label. It's human nature. Like knowing that John thinks of himself as a "slacker". I am sure he's more than that which is why I want to know about his "obsessions."

People also want to know "where you're coming from." When I first began my blog, I was much more reserved - I didn't allow much of who I am become known.

As I became more comfortable with writing and blogging, I began to write about my personal experiences as opposed to being in some objective 3rd person (although I'm known to refer to myself in the 3rd person!).

I noticed that people want to connect and my sharing bits and pieces about myself gave them something to connect to.

A person's goals and interests give us a peek into who they are. I know I'm interested in knowing those things if I'm interested in that person.

I do understand how you could be dumbfounded by this phenomenon. I feel similarly about reality TV and self-induced public humiliation (being a guest on certain talk shows). But I digress...

Kumiko said...

I agree!

I don't read your site, but come visit mine and help me make money!

Haha! Just kidding, although I may just copy and past it on to my site (whoops..I mean link to it) because it's the....BEST POST ABOUT BLOGGING EVER!!!

Seriously - that's art. It even uses 'bold' and 'italic' beautifully!


John said...

Hi Lisa,

About memes, I know how you feel. Memes don't always lack merit per se, but bloggers often fail to do what you do, which is to think of their readers.

Since most memes are made to be as 'viral' as possible (read: vanilla - read: boring), turning them into something of value to your readers while keeping them recognizable as memes can be a challenge (to say the least).

If you can do it, though, I think the conversation and link potential is well-deserved.

More often though, I just accept the fact that FTM is a place where memes come to die.

John said...

Yo Av,

Memes do kinda resemble a meat market at times, eh? I tend to avoid memes just as I tend to avoid meat markets, but just as there's a classy club here and there (even in LA), there are some memes worth considering, I've found.

John said...

Hi TK,

I might write something about memes. The vernacular is misleading, because we're actually surrounded by memes. Liz's SOB badge, for instance, is a meme of sorts (and a damn fine one). A meme is really just an idea that gains viral traction.

What we're responding negatively to, I suspect, are ideas that that replace interest (the driving force behind an actual meme) with self-interest.

Jingles and songs can be memes, too. What if there was some tangible benefit to humming them? People would be humming all kinds of lame tunes... well, lamer than the ones we already hum.

John said...


"BS King"... while more true, it's less appealing. :(

Okay, Why You Don't Want To Read About Me, Me, Me:

All you need to know about me is in what I write for you. If that fails to satisfy, there's a Contact form gathering dust over there.

Yes Liz, we need this kind of meme. :)
-j (HRH)

John said...

Hey MsQ,

I agree, if we like or admire someone we do want to know about them, or see how they'd answer a question.

At the same time, when someone comes from Google because FTM (unsurprisingly) ranks decently on searches involving the word 'slacker' coupled with promotion or money-related keywords, they generally couldn't care less about who I am.

So, if the first thing they see is a meme, it had better be relevant to them or that reader is likely lost forever. That's where the real challenge comes in, because building relationships with other bloggers is important, too.

John said...


Does this mean I get to be John-Sama now? >:D

Or John-Kun. :(


John said...

Hey everybody, I just had a thought about the intrinsic nature of blogging 'memes', so-called.

What would happen if we changed the name from:




Think people would catch the clue train?


Lisa said...

Yes, you just blew my mind.


Blogging conversations are such amazing triggers for ideas and solutions if we just stay with it, in it.

So, what's your first youyou?


Maki :: Dosh Dosh said...

I like Naruto too.. didn't know you were a fan, John! I'm tired of waiting for Sasuke and his Sharingan to show up though..

More anime next to blog posts, please. =)

This reminds me of the other post you did. Great copy for both. :)

Markk said...

You have got it spot on. The bane of a blogging community clearly exposed. One of the best posts I've ever come across. Looking forward to more from you. Just subscribed to your blog.

ME Strauss said...

Dear Slacker King, John, The o O Only, I most certainly want to read about you. I thought the meme would only be about why people don't want to read about mememe.

Meanwhile, could you add the SON of Annoying Sequel "How do I do? questions people keep asking via email when the answer is the title of a featured page in the sidebar of my blog?

You ever grateful servant.

Angela said...

Great post! ha ha just kidding. I get lots of spam in my stumbleupon mailbox and on MyBlogLog. I can't stand it! It's really shameless.

Although, I think on personal blogs, memes are alright in moderation because personal blogs are all about the blogger after all, right?

Two Knives said...

I'm not so sure I'm bothered that much by the self-interest of memes. Maybe it's just that any blog post that starts out "I've just been tagged by So and So . . . ." doesn't draw me in. Maybe people could write about the exact same stuff in a regular post and I'd love it. I don't know.

Some topics, like "why do you write," are interesting. But deos anyone really want to read a list of 100 things about you?

Funny thing is, I just got tagged.

John said...

Yo Maki,

After like a year+ of filler I really don't care how much they drag the episodes out. :)

John said...

Hi Markk,

Glad to see you here, sir. Stay tuned, I always think of something else. Except when I don't, at which point I slack.

John said...

Liz, I could advise people not to ask questions when the answer is screaming at them from the sidebar, but you know that would be an exercise in futility.

o O indeed.

John said...

Hi Angela,

I don't think blogs have to do anything in moderation - memes or otherwise - they just have to be interesting. :) If they want readers, that is.

John said...

TK, that's kinda what I mean. We tend to list what interested us in the meme, ie., "Sparky tagged me for this", instead of something that would interest others.

Beside the other issues we're talking about, that's just breaking the rules of copywriting.
o O The purpose of a headline is to interest people in the first sentence; the purpose of the first sentence is to interest people in reading the second sentence, and so on.

So, in effect, we replace what makes a meme viral - being interesting - with a more contrived kind of self-interest - links. Not very interesting to readers who didn't get tagged.

Two Knives said...

John, yep, you said it. That's exactly it. Thanks. I feel like I figured something out.

Tisha said...

I actually do like some of the meme's myself, but you really nailed the rest of it. I can't stand the "spam" blogging and delete any message immediately that even permeates of "spam".

sexy mom said...

Great post! and may i ask a favor, please...well, one of your NO NOs for a start.

but hey, i did enjoy reading each of the "How To..."

John said...

TK: Me too. Glad we talked about it. P&L

Tisha: I still enjoy deleting spam... guess I'm not getting enough of it. :)

Sexy: Anybody who read an FTM series can feel free to ask favors. But beware of the Slack. >:)

kahealani said...

ha ha ha!! This is classic! I laugh because I am guilty of the meaningless posts. I use to do that when I first started out.

Thanks for the laugh.

Dave said...

I know I'm kinda late to this post but I just found it. Liz was boasting about the slacker king so I just had to check it out.

Maybe you could retitle this post as the initial draft of a blogger's code of misconduct. It certainly fits.

Have to admit though, as a new blogger, it's actually nice to find a post that says: don't do this. Starting out it's too easy to jump on whatever someone says will help you get traffic.

James said...

Do the MyBlogLog spammers realize that you can tell they did not go to the blog they say is so nice?

Basketer said...

Awesome [:)] I thought of making this comment an ideal example of you porst with all links to collect every golden star but i let it pass.

:) love the funda of adding bonus points to each post.

Basketer said...

Also, what is with the naruto pic...I couldnt relate it to the post

John said...

Yo Basketer,

Yeah, the Naruto pic is throwing some people for a loop. Live and learn. o O

John said...

Hi James,

Most probably do know that people can tell when they haven't visited, but sadly it still 'works'. :/

John said...

Hi Dave,

Liz is bragging about me? How did I miss this... >:)

There's a lot of blogging advice out there, way too much of which really isn't doing much to raise the level. We must change this. :)

John said...

Hi kahealani,

I've got this kind of weakness where if there isn't a laugh every paragraph or so I feel like I'm doing something wrong.

Thanks for laughing. :D

Lord Matt said...

"Great Post!"

Ditto. ;)

John said...

Exactly, Matt. :)

Jesse Somer said...

Hi John,

Sorry I haven't commented in a while, I've actually had a bout with the flu. I'm on the mend.:-)

Now, for your interesting post...First of all, we do have to remember that it can get very lonely in the Blogosphere if nobody visits your blog or communicates meaningfully about your topics of interest. However, we've all got to know that irritating others is not the key to making friends! Just like at a party where you get tired of the person who only goes as deep as small talk, or who only talks about themselves, the same applies in blogging interaction. Real bloggers want to relate. We can smell when someone simply wants to sell themselves, or get noticed. When will these people learn that showing their true selves is imperative to making real connections?

Let's find a way to bust these purveyors of plagiarism. If you haven't got an original idea in your head, you shouldn't be speaking. Remember the scene in Pulp Fiction where John Travolta and Samuel Jackson are driving down the road with a guy in the back seat? They ask him if he has an opinion about their topic of conversation. He says he hasn't got an opinion. Then, the gun accidentally goes off and the guy's killed. You've got to have a mind of your own in this world, in this day and age. There's no use talking to you otherwise.

Bloggers who don't really want to blog are annoying. Or, could it be that they just don't know hotw to properly relate with their fellow species? Could blogging for some be too detached from social structures that many have grown accustomed to/been brought up with? Maybe they don't know how to relate with a screen, a personal bio, and someone's writing? Could a large percentage of humanity be too 'natural'-only able or even willing to create real meaning in face-to-face environs?

ME Strauss said...

Oh Slacker King,
I have sent many to curry your favor and asked them to bow at the altar of this post. I my own way I paid homage by writing a post about memes that puts light to the fact that those noisy taggy things are anything but a mutation of what the word was coined to mean. HA! mwshahaaaa Oh soryy. o O

Now the crowd is asking for a post to find a new name for those chain letter things.

John said...

Hey Liz,

Thank you, I noticed. :) Your post is right on, though I don't know if there's any better euphemism for those chain letter things. o O I'm glad you picked up that conversation; let's see what we can figure out.

Shirlene said...

Great post (only kidding)! I love the first one "I don't read your post...". I do actually get a few people with similar comments (although I tend not to publish them - I should I guess - they'd be quite funny in hindsight).


Two Knives said...

Where has our John gone?
Fifty comments, no new posts --
Here's hoping he's well.

John said...

TK my friend,

Slacking extreme. >:) Sometimes I like to just be quiet and listen. No hurry, no worries. Thanks for thinking of me. :)

Kumiko said...

Yeah, it's really annoying when you don't update often! Haha! :)


John said...

Hey Kumiko,

It's a good way to lose readers, at any rate. >:)

Paula Neal Mooney said...

Are you alive?

Did you stop blogging?

Did I miss a comment?

John said...

Hey Paula,

Just slacking. I do that at times. >:)

Jonathan-C. Phillips said...

Slacker king! :)

John said...

You know it. >:)

Avinash said...

Hey John! I hope all is well. Waiting for your next post since ages!!!

- Avi

Kumiko said... so slack! Great way to increase the amount of comments for a post!


John said...

Kumiko: I'm not that calculating. :D Although I'm glad I decided to start slacking after a decent post...

Av: Thank you, good sir. Stay tuned. >:)

Mary Hale said...

Really good suggestions on what NOT to do in blogging! Great advice. I have included a link to your post on my blog as well.

Kumiko said...

I wrote a post for you John! I hope it inspires you to start blogging again!

10 Signs You're A Lazy Blogger


Avinash said...

Sir John! I'm still tuned! :>

Jonathan-C. Phillips said...

hey howz the slacker King doing? :)

Jesse Somer said...

Alright Mr. Money,

It's time to get off of that 'slacker' ass of yours and put some more (obviously) well-appreciated and well-thought-out effort back into sharing your mind with the wider community! Human beings are social creatures...being a hermit crab doesn't help the world one little bit. You've made a name for yourself, and made some good connections/relationships...

Forget the money, find the part of yourself that wants to be part of an evolving society/consciousness. Don't waste your talents-laziness is no excuse-procrastination is one of the worst paths to enlightenment. As you sit and stagnate, your spirit waits patiently for you to once again move forward.

I won't ask you again...Join in, or drop out mate.

A Week In The Life of A Redhead said...

Great post. Can you link with me? KIDDING!

I don't get that upset with what people do on or with their blogs. Some are single parents trying to feed their kids. If the site doesn't work for me I don't go back. I imagine people do the same with me.

To me the Blogsphere is like a giant magazine stand where people choose from what appeals to them. Some magazines (like Vogue) are filled with almost nothing but ads. Women have been buying Vogue magazine for decades, beecause the photos and ad content appeal to them. Whereas I prefer Sunset magazine for different reasons.

But then, I am a redhead, so what do I know ;-)

Catherine, the redhead

Rose said...

Hi John, I found your page via stumbleupon and I just want to thank you for this excellent post. Now should I go piss off the blogosphere? lol Na I better not.

zawadi said...


Two Write Hands said...

You're like Dave Barry for bloggers. I heart this post.

MS said...

Brilliant. You hit each of the major annoyances I've encountered, and you do it both with wit and economy of words.

MightyMorgan said...

Great post!
I agree!
Oooohh wait I don't want to annoy you ...
Funniest thing I've seen in a while.. :)

John said...

Yo all,

Awesome comments. I'm alive, well and still slackin'. When I have something else cool/sassy/smartassy to say you'll be the first to know. (:<

A lil humor won't kill you said...

I agree! :-)

Kai Santorino said...

I love this post! very helpful. I hope a lot of people have read it...

ME Strauss said...

Still missing you!

Brisbane SEO Consultant said...

Best how-to-guide on blogging yet !

steve said...

Cool! really what a writing style.. Yes I want more bad advice from you..

Credit Restoration Bureau said...

I do my best to leave solid comments that are relevant but can't help to become annoyed when others don't. It truly annoys me when I'm forced to sift through the junk and usually causes me to leave the blog permanently. It's too bad!

BLOGBloke said...

LOL! Love #5 & 6. Can I ever relate. One of my pet peeves.

John said...

@BLOGBloke: Yes indeed, sir. I'd be kinda cool with people stealing this post, though.

Lisa - the Multitasking Momma said...

Thanks for your insights about the NOT to-dos. I am guilty of #1 asking for a review of a blogger for a service in their field! Thanks for doubling as a confessional! On to better commenting practices...

John said...

No stones will be thrown from this direction, Lisa.

Liz said...


And if that's the end of my comment, does that mean I've violated rule #4?

John said...

Yes Liz, you narrowly avoided annoying the entire blogosphere. Can I take credit?

Liz said...

Yes, you may :-)

Although theoretical question -- presumably people leave comments like "great post" because they want to show you some form of appreciation, but don't actually have anything to add to what you said. In such a situation, do you prefer no comment at all?

John said...

Me? I'd take a "..." over nothing, but the real point of that one is how it looks to other readers.

John Sullivan said...

Excelllent man Hope we can keep in touch :)
Thanks for stopping by
I thought this post was awesome Thanks :)

John said...

Whoa, missed your comment -- sorry about that, sir. Thanks for leaving it~ ^_^ Your blog's fun to read, seeya there.

Rob said...

Ha ha...

great post...

So, I don't read your blog, but would you mind... Oh wait!

Forget that... :)

John said...

Hey Rob, thanks. Where is your blog, sir ~

Real Blogging Advice said...

You are a NARUTO FAN right? I am too. But anyway, thanks for the article.

John said...

I am a Naruto fan indeed, sir. A lot of bloggers are like Naruto now that I think about it -- they want the village to acknowledge them. ^_^

sydney seo said...

Great post and looking at amount of comments people agree with me!:)

Anonymous said...

i like what john said...

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