Sometimes I feel like my posting is too positive (this is supposed to be cynical blog according to tagline) and bit of ranting should be added to the mix. I am not that arrogant to claim universal truth on what makes tech blogs unreadable but I have clear personal opinion formed. So I will share my list and then we shall compare notes , ok? :)
In no particular order.
1. Dark background and tiny font
It looks geek and if design is good one I might like it. It will give me that warm pleasant feeling of seeing something beautiful and after that I will close it and never return. It's obviously not intended to be read and I won't cheapen my impression by visiting repeatedly.
2. No/bad screenshots
It may be generalization but if something looks like crap it most probably is. I'd better get that valuable information from post rather than wasting my time downloading, installing and then seeing it.
Know what I think about Apple? I don't think about Apple. Because:
- I live half globe far from only country where its products sell well;
- and it doesn't produce anything I am remotely interested in.
So if over 30% of blog is about Apple all the time it should've saved world bunch of time by getting Apple-something.us domain.
4. All fluff, no value
There are two types of tech posts:
I know latter do really well for social traffic. If blog has only those I won't interfere on that intimate relationship with Digg and will go look for useful ones elsewhere.
Information that gmail got skins for interface may be incredibly useful for someone who hadn't seen that valuable stuff fifty times already. Sin of reposting hype can be softened with adding personal opinion. Unfortunately blogs that rely on hype don't have personal opinions.
6. Vacations (marriages, work issues, etc)
I completely understand that blog wasn't updated for three months because of very important issues. And sincerely thankful that I was reminded to unsubscribe.
7. Bad choice of RSS form
- Cryptic title without content is not something I will click.
- Twenty titles with hundred images and dozen videos on top is the other extreme case.
8. Bad comment policy
If my perfectly valid comment poofs because of crappy antispam setup - I am out. I don't believe that tech blog failing to get antispam right can produce valuable qualified posts.
By the way If I leave fifty words comment I expect an answer. Hundred words without answer and I will make that disinterest mutual.
9. Too intrusive ads
Giant flash ad that is coded poorly enough to make my CPU load spike is not monetizing. It's reader repellent.
10. Following the formula
Doing what all A-listers do. Hiring a team, producing average number of daily posts on average topics with average design and below average attention to readers. A-listers are better at that so I’ll just read them instead.
I feel that my cynical balance is restored. Have hate to add? :)
Chain reaction 10 more annoying aspects of tech blogs at gHacks