Wordpress

What Bores Me? Reading Freshly Pressed on WordPress

WordPress Blogging

(Photo Credit: Freelance Folder)

WordPress showcases a number of blogs each day on Freshly Pressed, but there is a conspicuous lack of diversity in the bloggers featured.  When one examines the bloggers that WordPress staff members elect to feature on Freshly Pressed, those bloggers are overwhelmingly White.  One hardly ever finds a Black or other racial and ethnic minority blogger being featured on Freshly Pressed, and this is quite unfortunate, considering numerous minority bloggers using WordPress deserve to be featured.  One of the fundamental reasons why many minority bloggers aren’t being featured on Freshly Pressed is WordPress has a staff deficient in diversity, especially when it comes to staff members who curate Freshly Pressed.

If one reads Freshly Pressed, he or she may come away with the idea that most of the really good or great bloggers using WordPress are White.  This couldn’t be further from the truth.

Since I’m penning this piece about the dearth of racial diversity in those featured on Freshly Pressed, WordPress staff members will never select me.  If WordPress staff members never elect to feature me, I will be fine with their decision.  I have a highly successful blog and a large readership.  I will survive.  Unfortunately, many minority bloggers, especially Black bloggers, using WordPress need to and deserve to be showcased on Freshly Pressed.  A number of successful Black bloggers use WordPress and have been nominated and/or won awards for their blogs, but WordPress continues to ignore the success of their blogs.

One has to wonder if WordPress really even cares about Black bloggers, their blogs, and the issues that matter to them.

Freshly Pressed is becoming increasingly boring to read.  While WordPress staff members can assert that there are multifarious topics curated on Freshly Pressed, they cannot point to a significant number of those sundry topics being composed by minority bloggers.

As a means of demonstrating that they’re not biased to minority bloggers, I would recommend that WordPress staff members put me on its staff as a Curator.  I don’t need or desire to be paid.  I certainly have the qualifications to be a successful Curator and have an academic and professional record, which includes being extensively published, that would offer some much needed diversity to the WordPress staff.

While I very much love WordPress and posit that it’s the best blogging platform available, the way in which blogs are being curated for Freshly Pressed is unfair and unappealing to many minority bloggers.  It’s my hope that WordPress will begin to feature a tremendous number of minority bloggers on Freshly Pressed.

Many minority bloggers simply see Freshly Pressed as a boring showcase of blogs.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

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Revolutionary Paideia’s Third Blogoversary

Blogoversary

It’s my blogoversary!  I have officially been blogging for three years now.  Since I began blogging on February 14, 2010, it’s easy for me to remember the anniversary of Revolutionary Paideia—it’s on Valentine’s Day.  Revolutionary Paideia has been tremendously successful in its three years of existence.  I’ve been able to amass an unbelievable number of readers.  Even early on in this blog’s history, WordPress named it “One of the Fastest Growing Blogs.”  WordPress only gives this distinction to the top blogs that are attracting the most readers.  I’m thankful to my readers for making the success of Revolutionary Paideia possible.  If it was not for you, Revolutionary Paideia would be just one of the numerous blogs that has no readers or very few readers.

This blog has added to my success and has enabled me to create valuable new friendships and alliances.

For those who are unfamiliar with this blog, it’s a cultural commentary blog offering frequently published pieces on many diverse topics, including education, sports, literature, film, music, black culture, popular culture, self-help, and etc.  I post pieces 4 to 5 times a week.  For some of the other online publications I write for, take a look at my “Portfolio” page.

I want to thank one of my best friends, Santresa L. Glass, the person who gave me passionate pushes to go ahead and begin blogging.  I had expressed to her my desire to start blogging, but I was striving for everything to be perfect before I would begin.  Santresa would not settle for this.  She persistently insisted I begin immediately.  After getting tired of listening to her nag me about going ahead and launch my blog, I went ahead and launched it.  Thanks for your constant nagging, Santresa!

I look forward to many more years of blogging.  Revolutionary Paideia will bring you many exciting things this year and I don’t want you to miss any of them.  I will continue to maintain my commitment to “unsettling, unnerving, and unhousing” you.

Again, I thank all of my readers for helping to develop Revolutionary Paideia into the great success it is today!  Happy Blogoversary to Revolutionary Paideia!

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison

Let Your Blog Be What You Want It to Be

 

Black Man Writing

While there’s certainly nothing wrong with seeking and taking the advice of individuals about blogging, don’t let anyone place restrictive limitations on how you blog.  When you listen to advice given by successful bloggers, don’t take that advice as being a law.  You need to make sure the advice offered is appropriate to what you want to accomplish.  When you hear bloggers telling you that you have to limit your blog to a highly specialized niche, you don’t have to do this if you don’t want to do it.

I have read in various places that people have a problem with individuals who are willing to cover any topic on their blogs.  They argue that readers will not be able to define what type of blog one has when he or she writes about any topic of choice.  Additionally, they contend that search engines will not find the posts on the blogs of those individuals who write about a diverse range of topics instead of topics in a highly specialized niche.  Revolutionary Paideia proves them to be wrong.  Revolutionary Paideia is a cultural commentary blog providing articles on a constellation of sundry topics.  This blog does not simply focus on politics, relationships, sports, education, music, or etc.—it covers diverse topics on all those categories and many more.

Revolutionary Paideia was featured by WordPress as the second fastest growing blog.  For those successful bloggers who say not having a highly specialized niche will cause your posts to not be picked up well by search engines, my recent post “Open Letter to Todd Akin”  was picked up so well by the search engines that it reached Rebecca Hamilton of the Oklahoma state House of Representatives.  She also blogs and “liked” the aforementioned post on Revolutionary Paideia.

I mention those things about Revolutionary Paideia because it’s one of those blogs that’s not in a highly specialized niche.  In two and a half years of existence, Revolutionary Paideia has amassed well over 250,000 readers.  Therefore, the search engines are picking up the posts quite fine without a highly specialized niche.

Don’t let someone force you to create a relationships, politics, education, sports, music or news blog if that’s not what you want to do.  Never be afraid to go against the recommendations of successful bloggers.  They don’t have all of the answers.  If you have your own innovative ideas, they’re probably going to be best served by not following all of the suggestions of successful bloggers.  Instead of concentrating on a highly specialized niche, produce great content.  Great content will bring readers to your blog.

Some successful bloggers will try to persuade you into writing pieces that fit only into a highly specialized niche because they’re not talented enough write about a range of diverse topics.  Their recommendations for you to not pen pieces on a range of diverse topics emerge from their belief that “some people try to do too much on their blogs.”  Just because people are writing about diverse topics on their blogs does not mean they “try to do too much on their blogs.”

For many of these bloggers who attack people because they’re not able to simply define what type of blog people who write about a variety of topics have, I could attack them for not writing pieces that reflect the use of good grammar and punctuation and careful editing and proofreading.  However, I choose not to do it at this point.

If you’re going to be a blogger who has real value, then let your blog be a blog that reflects who you truly are and what you truly want to accomplish.

Antonio Maurice Daniels

University of Wisconsin-Madison