It’s a small world!

72:365 – In Our Hands


Over the weekend, I was trying to clean out my Google Reader and Twitter list. I know it’s a necessary evil for everyone sooner or later, but especially for people like me, who tend to hit the follow button faster than your brain can register what your hand is doing.

What can I say? I love blogs, I love to meet new people. People, who live a few miles from me or halfway across the world.  I am intrigued by reading about their lives, their ups and downs, their hopes, and dreams. I figure, I can always “delete”  them again later.

So, this weekend I spent a lot of time clicking on links in my reader of people/blog names that I added at some point, but hardly remembered, having this “a-ha moment” when I re-recognized the bloggers blog layout and remember why I started following the blog in the first place. It’s really a funny thing, those subconscious factors that make you go back to a blog or not.

Sometimes I would spent quite a while on someone’s blog, browsing the archives, trying to justify to keep it in my reader or delete it. I realized, sometimes one single post can totally intrigue you and you start to follow, but than the rest of the blog doesn’t live up to this first initial post that you read. It made me wonder, if sometimes I equally dismiss someone’s blog that I visit for the first time because the first post that I read doesn’t draw me in and I miss out on an otherwise awesome person and potential friend. I mean, not every blog posts can be a master piece, right?

I also ended up clicking on links and then on more links and then more links from there and ended up in places that I thought nobody had ever ventured before. But there were those really cool blogs with hundreds of followers, people I had no idea existed. (Ok, confession here: I have a really hard time wrapping my head around numbers bigger than let’s say 200 people and the sheer volume of potential blogs is quite overwhelming).  It made me think about how many parallel blogospheres must be out there. You know what I mean, right?

Doesn’t it seem like a lot of the bloggers you read know each other as well? It’s like a IRL community where a lot of people know a lot of the same people. I personally think that’s the fun of the blogosphere…. there are “groups of friends” that don’t live anywhere remotely near each other (only sometimes they do, and those people are lucky!) and still know what the other members of the group are up to on a daily basis. Amazing stuff.  But, considering the vast amount of blogs, there must be a parallel blogosphere with a completely different community of people, right? And I wonder how do these two (or multiple) communities overlap?
I only read a handful of German blogs, for example. I think the whole ” blogging thing” is a fairly new thing in Germany (I personally don’t know any IRL friends – besides Kim, who I although met online though – who blog). But by now, I think there is a whole German blogging community out there; a parallel blogosphere, so to speak.

It’s mind-boggling to think how many people are out there (that you don’t know about!) chronicling their lives on the Internet, who make friends and build communities beyond the circle of online friends that we’re personally aware of. But with a click of a finger we can tap into these communities, become part of them and make friends in far away places.

It’s a small world after all!



  1. Yes! I’ve always thought this was so interesting. Specifically when you start reading a “new” blog, and then you read through the comments, and realize a bunch of your own blogging friends also read the blog. I remember thinking this when I first started reading you. Like All my other blogging friends read you too! How did I not read you before, etc.

  2. I tend to read blogs of people who all know each other. I find the cohesion comforting online, since this is part of my social network (I work at home, alone, so it helps to have an online group of people as well). However, I have definitely discovered new bloggers through comments, and then realized that many of the bloggers I read also read this one person. So that’s fun. It’s like meeting “a friend of a friend” and having them become their friend!

    I’m part of 2 communities: twentysomethings and diabetes. There is a huge volume of bloggers in both, so I don’t read all the blogs in both communities. There are definitely tons of blogging communities: healthy living and fitness, personal finance, DIY, fashion, design, tech, etc. Tons. I used to pitch bloggers when I worked in PR and you could just keep going forever…

  3. I think about this often. Who am I missing out on? There are so many other blogs out there, connected to people I don’t know & have never heard of or read. HOW DO I FIND THEM? And when will my head explode at the sheer volume of posts waiting in my Google Reader?

  4. Oh man. I TOTALLY agree with this post. & all of the comments.

    I went through my google reader not tooooo long ago, and deleted a lot of blogs. And then found more, ha! A lot of them I didn’t even remember why I subscribed… and I totally do that sometimes, read ONE good blog post & the rest of the blog is just… eh. Whenever I stumble upon a new blog, I make sure to go back a page or two to see if maybe it IS worth reading (I tend to just skim those blogs that post instagram photos in EVER post. Maybe it’s just iPhone envy? ;)) or not.

    And when I find a new blog (to me) and it already has hundreds or thousands of readers I just seem so shocked that I haven’t found it yet!

  5. I couldn’t agree with you more! But you are better than me as I never seem to “clean out” I just keep adding. I should go through the hundreds and hundreds of blogs I have in my RSS but I am afraid I might delete someone who might then have a post that would pique my interest – that is a very bad habit and probably a bad approach to take! I have little blogging circles too, it is almost like American high school but without the politics!

  6. I always love stumbling upon different blog “communities” – although they never seem to be so foreign as I assume at first glance. Oh well, sometimes the search is half the fun.

  7. It’s so true what you said about parallel blog universes. I bet there are countless groups of bloggers who are friends through their blogs and various social media, but I’ve never “met” them or read any of their blogs.

    I love the community I’m a part of and the friendships I’ve developed online. It’s even better when they move to the IRL realm.

    Great post!

  8. it really is true how small the world can be sometimes. it’s always crazy when internet and real life collide or when online friends are friends too. i love it.

  9. “parallel blogosphere” = brilliant.

  10. You said it perfectly. Very often I’m reading through my favorite blogs and then I’ll click on one little picture that looks fun to me and minutes later I have 20 tabs open! Then I never know where to go because I just open more and more. I have a habit of clicking follow before I do anything else but I feel like it helps me get a variety. If I haven’t went to that blog for a long while or if every time I go to it it doesn’t interest me, then I’ll unfollow. I can only imagine the blogs that I don’t know about! I wish there was like… a list that had ALL blogs on it. Gosh, it’d be long! But some people don’t even know blogging exists. When I tell people I blog they’re like ‘uh… what?’

  11. For me, the blogosphere keeps getting smaller and smaller instead of bigger and bigger. Meaning that more and more, everyone I know knows everyone else I know! So I have definitely considered the idea of a parallel blogosphere.

  12. It really is a small world, and it’s interesting how we end up meeting the people we meet and how interconnected we all are! I have tried to explain this all to my dad and he still says, ‘what how did you FIND each other’. Which is a good question. It’s all chance, I suppose, but it’s just interesting as many of the people I’ve met have become close friends, some are even what I would consider best friends.

  13. It’s definitely a small world! Now with the internet space AND the in person space. :)

  14. It really is a small world and the blogging world makes it feel so much smaller. True story: A few years ago, I somehow started reading a blogger in my city. Turns out we had a mutual blogging friend who was going to be visiting town, so we all decided to meet. After speaking more with this local blogger, I learned that her undergrad degree is the same field as what my father teaches and some of her favorite professors are my dad’s best friends. We’ve been good friends ever since!

  15. I think about this a lot, too! It’s kind of exhausting to think about all the different types of blogging universes out there! Allison did an awesome job listing all the different ones. It can be crazy to think about it all!

  16. It is such a small world, especially with blogging. I’m always amazed to find someone new to follow on twitter or to find a great new blog and scroll through and realize a good friend of mine follows them or often comments on their blog. And what I’ve found too is that a lot of times my real life overlaps with my internet life and I’ve found internet friends who are friends with people I went to high school with or who know my friends through some crazy online/offline overlapping continuum. It’s amazing, really.

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