Monday, February 26, 2007

Your Blog as a Police State

Your blog or website is your space. You run the joint, you pay for it and so you need to protect it. Even at free sites you pay with your time and reputation. Your reputation is all you have in this virtual world ~ and I daresay this is also my philosophy in the 'real' world, as your reputation is (nearly) the only thing you carry into the next world as well. But this is not a spiritual blog, so I'll move along. Simply put: your site = you.

I view my places on the Internet as my own little queendoms. I am responsible for happens in each one, and feel responsible for the citizens who visit each one as well. Under this belief, I actively police my sites.

At Sex-Kitten.Net, I walk the hallways of the message boards and turn the hose on anyone who is not expressing tolerance and respect. Even as The Queen I cannot command love or even kindness, but I have site policies regarding respect and I enforce them with my hose (and have another columnist armed with an old iron frying pan too). I rarely have to turn on the hose, she the fryin' pan, but we have and do as needed. And I remind folks that the rules, the hose & pan, do exist. I do this so everyone from the meek readers to the loudest confessors need not worry of attack.

Policing takes time. But the results are that my queendoms are places that I enjoy ~ not just tolerate, but enjoy. If you're going to spend any time at/with your sites, you should be able to enjoy the hell out of them. I do believe this makes for places others enjoy and that's rather the point, isn't it.

Blog comments are very much like message boards or forums, so I police them as well. Is the comment maker a spammer going for the link and traffic at my blog? If so, I delete faster than you can say 'delete that shit' (swearing is optional, but I talk like a sailor to relieve stress) to rid myself of spam. I've also called spammers at their businesses to express my displeasure. You need not be so aggressive with policing, but I do recommend policing in an assertive manner; policing as an action not a passive state.

I police my sites, my forums & comments, link swaps, anything and everything I can, just like my stats; which is to say I don't merely read or note the numbers. Along with making more enjoyable sites, policing actually gives you information you can use. Emails, visitor stats, blog comments, and even external 'toys' like Technorati & Alexa rankings all provide opportunities.

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