Blogger Education?

Due to a number of factors, the end of last week I decided to close down the Co-op. I haven’t deleted it, just “disabled” it. The fact that no one noticed/spoke up reinforced the fact to me that it was time. My lovely husband, wanting to support me and the Co-op, found what appeared to be a really good alternative platform for the Co-op. It would allow me to move everything that we had and even transfer over memberships. It allowed for “mods” or plug-ins where phpbb didn’t, and even though it seemed to be sort of an answer, I had a couple simultaneous camel-back-breaking straws that made me decide to disable everything and give up on it for now. There was too much criticism and not enough help.

But the heart and soul of why I even bothered to start the project still remains and was reminded to me in reading Soren’s query on his blog last week: Sex bloggers should be banding together to share information. This point was also raised at a blogger get-together that Carol Queen and Tied Up Events hosted the evening before the NYC Sex Bloggers Calendar Party. Prior to starting the Co-op I used to get emails at least once a month from other bloggers asking for my advice on things like paid text links.

One criticism that had been raised was that the Co-op was private and it shouldn’t have been. The closed-doors of the Co-op was not meant to keep out bloggers or make life more difficult for members; it was so that we could safely and privately discuss things that a lot of us wouldn’t want to say publicly, such as frank discussions about affiliate programs, advertisers, etc. I don’t know where that’ll be discussed now but perhaps I’m the only one who wants the input of my peers.

So while there are still many topics that I wouldn’t have on the Blogger Education pages, there’s still a good bit of info that can and should be shared. For example: tutorials on taking on paid advertisers; signing up for affiliate programs and reviewing toys for the first time; useful Blogger & WordPress tips.

I would host this over at e[lust] and do it as a series of nested pages (like I have above here for my own stuff like the Sex Toys tab). I would also have comments open for questions and discussion, and I would welcome information pieces written by bloggers other than me. I know that Epiphora is in the works writing up a sex toy review guide (or was talking about it, right?) and I could even have more than one person write up pieces on that topic and others. Get in 2 or 3 points of view.

Bloggers, please weigh in. Even if it’s to say that you think this is a waste of everyone’s time. If you’d want to contribute a topic, let me know that, too.

Edit to say: Perhaps I should stop beating a dead horse….

10 Responses

  1. Kara_Sutra says:

    Personally I think it’s a fantastic idea! I had previously written 3 articles about getting into reviewing and found they helped quite a few people. It’s definitely something that’s needed and (I think)will go a long way in helping to make reviewing a reality for those that would like to get involved.

    So long as it doesn’t take away from your personal time and is something you feel is important, I say keep it up :)

    ~ Well yes, of course it’s going to take up personal time. All of my blogging project take up personal time. But I don’t mind when people actually appreciate and find useful.

  2. I noticed that you closed it because I was trying to find an old thread that had some info on a review program. I didn’t want to say anything because you seemed to be kinda frustrated with the co-op and lack of participation, and I thought I’d come across as whining.

  3. Riff Dog says:

    I think the co-op is a great idea because there certainly are issues where bloggers could use a private forum to share info about affiliates and whatnot. I saw that post last week, but didn’t have time to respond.

    One option that might be easier than having an actual BB type forum is to have a private blog on Blogger and have invited members all be able to write posts. I think Blogger lets you give posting privileges to up to 100 people. It’s not as slick as a true forum, but since anyone (who is a member) can also comment, it still gets the job done.

    You would still be sole administrator, but other than deleting posts (or people) who got out of hand, there would be no required maintenance or work on your part, other than sending out the invites. Hmmmm . . . now that I think about it, just dealing with invitation requests and stuff can be a PIA, but still, it’s a lot simpler than maintaining a traditional forum site.

    Just a thought.

    ~ Thanks, as I’d said in email though it would still lack the major “reminder” function but also not easy for me to transfer info. Would have to just start fresh.

  4. I’m going to miss the co-op. I understand and support your reasoning behind turning it off, but I’ll still miss it. I rarely posted because I didn’t usually know the answers to questions people asked, but I popped by on a at least once a week to read and look things up. I think moving it to an article page format is a great way of keeping the resources available. A big advantage that will have is that the information will be out there for people who aren’t bloggers/reviewers yet, but want to get started. If there’s anything I know that would be useful to the project, I’d be willing to write a few things for you.

    We’re a resourceful group, I’m sure we’ll find a place to “safely” sound off about affiliate/review programs and such. :P

  5. nitebyrd says:

    I’m sorry that the co-op is gone as I was a very new user. The information pages are a good idea.

    I did reach out to a friend that possibly could help with the board situation but she hasn’t gotten back to me yet. If she does, would you still like to know?

  6. Epiphora says:

    Well that sucks.

  7. Epiphora says:

    BTW the thing I’m writing is “how to write a sex toy review that doesn’t royally suck,” so it’s more about what NOT to do than what to do.

  8. hubman says:

    I’m going to miss the co-op, I learned a bit from my fellow bloggers and appreciated the feedback when I posed a question. You’ll have my support if it gets resurrected!

  9. Evey says:

    Oh wow, I didn’t even know this existed. Somehow I feel like I totally have missed out my last year and a half of blogging. I’ve luckily had the incredibly friendly advice of Essin’em, a RL friend, to keep me going. I would have absolutely loved to have been part of something like this, and still would. Sounds like it would have been a phenomenal resource. Bummer it’s gone.

  10. vanimp says:

    ‘sad face’ I’m disappointed it didn’t have more support from everyone and that I couldn’t personally contribute more but things have gone insanely busy. The information that was made available was awesome and it’s great to see people helping each other out. Privacy? I actually think that was a wise choice, if people are prepared to spend their time sharing information that has helped them over a long few hard months of working their butts off with their blog then so be it. Ning was easy to access and use, I think the issue here Lilly is more to do with the software and user experience. ;) xx