David Winer's Scripting News has a post called "Chris Nolan says I'm stingy." Evidently Chris was complaining that David did not link to him often enough. I don't know their history so I can't explain how one person has the gall to make such a complaint! But I was taken by this part of David's response:
You didn't even point to me when you called me a name. At least then I would have seen you in my referrer log. And I'm like everyone else, I like flow and I like new readers. I have pointed to you Chris, many times. How many times have you pointed to me? You may be surprised that there are people whose sites I helped build by sending readers to them, who have never pointed back to me.
One of the first things we newbies discover is the hierarchical nature of the blogging "ecosystem" (as TTLB puts it) - descriptions like insignificant microbe make those on the lowly end feel it might be presumptuous to link to the greater beings.
As a properly humble person, having learned what a big macher David Winer is when I went to the NC BlogCon and saw the genuflections, I would have kept my head down and scurried away... it would not have seemed likely he'd appreciate recognition from the likes of me.
Well it appears that at least some of the greater ones like to be appreciated and like to see new URLs in their referrer logs. So let's remember to be mutual. Has somebody been generous with you? Have you thanked them? Link to those above you as well as those below! Otherwise they may start to feel like the rich guys who are always expected to pick up the tab at lunch.
I liked two other points David made in this post:
- If you call people names and expect them to link to you, well, don't. Didn't your mother teach you that when you were a kid? Don't stare and don't call the other kids names.
- If you've written something you want to be read by Scripting News readers, send me an email with a link. That's what I do when I want to be read by the readers of someone else's blog. I'm polite about it, I don't come out and ask for the link, I say something like "Thought you'd find this interesting" or "FYI" and leave it at that. If I don't get the pointer, no big deal. And I try not to do it too often, so it's seen as a welcome source of a link to the person I send it to, rather than some kind of obligation.
By the way, David's blog is generous, amiable, generous, informative, well written, and really easy on the eyes.
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