Friday, April 23, 2010

Get Your Slow Blog Button Here!

   Slow Blogging is a term that has surfaced a few times on the internet - maybe you've even heard of it? You can read the original Manifesto by Todd Sieling here, which I find remarkably well stated. Similar to the Slow Food movement, the concept is that some things are improved upon by a slower, more thoughtful approach, and that the opposite mindset (i.e.; fast food) can inspire rather ill consequences for both bloggers and readers. Together, with all of these weekly, daily, and hourly posts, we are fueling a pace to life that feels beyond our control and often times void of true substance.

  Of course, Slow Blogging can hold very different definitions for all of us. We might each admire the idea for varying reasons and institute our own pace. Some Slow Bloggers post just a few times a year, others monthly, and some of us can't keep any sort of noteworthy regular schedule. You might feel that within your community, weekly and daily posts are considerably slower paced than your peers - feel free to define Slow however you like. In my mind, it is simply a rejection of any sort of expectation. You are a person, it is your life, and you should share what you like when you like without feeling obligated to anyone - even yourself
   My exploration of this topic has surfaced one constant theme: Slow Blogs have very few readers. This seems to be an unavoidable fact, and it may be enough to make some bloggers steer clear of the whole affair, especially if they are attempting to earn profits through advertising. Maybe in addition to re-thinking the pace of blogging, we could also be re-thinking our methods for gaining value from the blogs we write. Your blog may not earn you any monthly income, but it may eventually assist you in reaching other life and professional goals;  therefore, you might consider keeping it clean - void of fluff, junk, and anything else that reveals you to be a last-minute, I'll just throw something together individual. Just sayin'.
   Something else that I've noticed is that other than Todd Sieling's Manifesto and a NY Times article, there is not a lot of readily available information out there. Unless you search 'Slow Blog' you're unlikely to come across the concept. Although the idea has been discussed briefly here and there, it really hasn't been popularized to the level that I think it deserves. So, my solution has been to create a button that bloggers can publish on their sites, notifying readers that Slow Blogging is a concept the author subscribes to. Hopefully, it will spread from blog to blog (admittedly a pipe dream via my 32 readers) but wish me luck.
   If you would like to publish the Slow Blog button (illustration by Katya Andrievskaya) on your site, simply copy the html code below and paste it on your blog. I will compile specific instructions below the code for anyone who needs more direction. And feel free to share your stories and opinions! I will happily expand upon this post with your words - together we might build something beautiful.

<a href="" title="Artful Greens"><img src="" border="0" alt="Slow Blog Button" /></a>

To publish this button on Blogger, copy the code, and then 'add a gadget' under 'customize.' Select HTML/JavaScript, and paste the code in the box. It is not necessary to title the gadget. Save and view to see your new button.
I am not experienced in other blog publishers, but hopefully we can get the correct information up for anyone who might need help with Wordpress, etc...

A little Wordpress help from Piet, July 13, 2010:

I like the idea.... However the button is a JPEG and hence has no transparent background (surrounding) but white only. I made a GIF version with transparent background. The usage is the same in WorldPress.
Is it okay to use it in this way ?

P.s. The GIF is on my site and better for my performance. You can copy it from there if you want.
Thanks, Piet

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