Diaries by Authors Who Have Small Follings

wayneonly's Avatar


21 Jun, 2020 09:20 PM


I recently published this diary on DKos. I thought it was an important diary (as most diarists do) with some incite about where we go beyond reforming police brutality towards improving racial equality in America. Because I don't often publish diaries, I don't have a huge following. I don't care about getting reccs. because when I do publish, I am just trying to get information I think is important to other readers. I do comment on other diaries daily, and have been asked to expand on some of my comments in a diary, but when I do expand on them, I get little notice and (thus little feedback).

I have noticed that the same thing happens to other diarists who have smaller followings. I have often found important information in diaries by others who get little recognization, and this information gets "lost in the chatter" from popular diarists (with huge follings) who are posting on the news of the day that is posted on by other diarists on the same subject. Myself and other low folower diarists "get lost in the shuffle" of what seems to be "the most popular theme of the day".

Diaries (done right) sometimes take a lot of research and are time consuming, and it can be dissappointing when a diarist spends 4-5 hrs. to produce a diary, only to find that it gets only 3-5 reccs and 1-2 comments. This tells the diarist that he/she has gotten few "eyes" on a diary he/she feels is important and has spent a lot of time making relevant. With few "eyes" on their diaries, they get little feeback or encouragement to continue posting diaries, and they have trouble building followings that encourage posting diaries.

Under your present format, the diarists who get the most reccs. are always at the top of the list. To find any other diarists, you have to go to the community label and hit more stories and then search down through all the highly recced. diaries to find any others. This is time consuming and has to be done over and over every time you go to read an obscure diary. Most readers don't have the time or the inclination to do this, so the lesser known diaries get little ot no notice.

I would like to make a suggestion that you find some way to rotate diaries that will give the little known diarists more attention. This could be done by giving the diary list a upward rotation regaurdless of how many reccs. they get. Or maybe you could have a staff member look at diaries that have gotten less notice, and rotate them to the top of the list for a period of time to give them more exposure. This would encourage more diarists to post diaries, especially diaries with more diverse ideas.

I know that many diarists like to post on the prominent new items of that day, but reading 4-5 diaries on the same subject "gets old" when there is so much going on and so many similar views to the same subject. But there are so many other subjects that one diarist wants to bring to others attention, but can't get "eyes" on because they have not built a huge following and can't get through the 4-5 posting of the "news of the day". I take the time to look at "obscure"diaries, but I know not everybody does. Knowlege is expanded by diversity and different voices. Can we try to make this work better?

  1. 1 Posted by skohayes on 21 Jun, 2020 10:38 PM

    skohayes's Avatar

    My suggestion is to find open threads (where people can post just about anything) and post a link to your diary with a short summary and an invitation to go read. Abbreviated Pundit Roundup is posted every morning on the front page and we use that as an open thread. Please come and join us and share your diaries and thoughts.

  2. Support Staff 2 Posted by Daily Kos Staff on 23 Jun, 2020 07:36 PM

    Daily Kos Staff's Avatar

    Hello, and thanks for your query here.

    The reply made here by skohayes includes a strategy worth trying. Any Open Thread (identified as such either by the story headline or by some announcement in the story body) will accept comments from posters interested in promoting stories they think merit more attention. Such promotion is acceptable to do for one's own sake as well as for stories by others.

    It's true that there are site favorites who do attract a lot of attention no matter their topic. But it's also true that such a base of support gets cultivated over time, and is often developed reciprocally. The more that you as a user take part on a regular basis via commenting in some of the stories posted by some of the more specialized communities, the more that others will get to know you and start watching for other commentary by you. The Abbreviated Pundit Roundup is one such community but there are several others available every day.

    Meanwhile, there is also the Community Spotlight, which is a section featuring posts that the group's editors have deemed worthy of more attention. Stories reposted to that blog do get more notice, and writers can over time help grow their following if their posts are featured there.

    Similarly, it is possible to get involved in one of the topical Groups, depending on your interests. Requesting an invitation to join a group that appeals to you is perfectly acceptable. Within groups, users can get to know each other's work better and help promote each other's work, inside and outside of a particular group.

    Thanks for asking, and thanks for persevering. The great majority of posters here are not rec-list regulars, but they do wind up finding a circle of associates who notice and appreciate their work. I hope the same will be the case for you.

  3. Daily Kos Staff closed this discussion on 23 Jun, 2020 07:36 PM.

  4. wayneonly re-opened this discussion on 23 Jun, 2020 10:36 PM

  5. 3 Posted by wayneonly on 23 Jun, 2020 10:36 PM

    wayneonly's Avatar

    I thank you for responding to my questions and will explore some of your suggestions to see if I can develop more contacts to get "eyes on" future diaries.

    I do have another questio or two. First, did you happen to look at my diary in the file? Do you think that it had merit and was well written?

    Second, another problem that I encountered was that I posted the diary at 7am CDT. I was able to find it at 9am CDT, but it seemed to have completely dissappeared by 11am CDT. I serched for it at 11am through 5pm, but the only way I could fing it was by going to my profile and looking up my diaries. Why did it dissappear?

  6. 4 Posted by Ahianne on 25 Jun, 2020 08:06 AM

    Ahianne's Avatar

    It disappeared because other people were also writing diaries. Diaries appear sequentially on the Recent list, with the newest at the top. As newer diaries are written, older ones slide downpage. Only a finite number are displayed. Do you expect yours to somehow be privileged, and not drop off the bottom of the list like everyone else's?

  7. Support Staff 5 Posted by Daily Kos Staff on 25 Jun, 2020 03:27 PM

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    Hello again.

    I can't comment at length on posts. Partly that's because it's a complicated matter, and partly because it's a matter of personal preference. Blogging is a specialized genre of writing with its own conventions, not necessarily like conventional journalism or long-form essays and also not like academic argumentation. I can encourage you to read both the Recommended (Trending) List stories and the Community Spotlight stories for models of what grabs people's attention. But it remains true that fine posts may still sink without much notice. Here's a resource that offers some suggestions related to "knowing your audience" at the site.

    Your strategy of being active in the comment sections is a good one. I see that one of your comments recently made it onto the Top Comments post of June 20--did you notice? Top Comments is a daily post (an open thread, by the way) which includes the 30 comments with the most recommends from the day before.

    As a relatively new poster, you may not be aware of the scrolling nature of the Recent Stories list in the sidebar. A story's "hang time" on that list is completely dependent on the number of stories that site members post, because they all start out there. The total number of stories for that display is capped.at 50.

  8. Daily Kos Staff closed this discussion on 25 Jun, 2020 03:27 PM.

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