Daniel “Dahie” Senff has come up with several exciting ideas for new community web projects that could make the sim racing community a nicer and more productive place. Daniel is not just part of CTDP, he’s been active in our community for over ten years, enjoying the Grand Prix series and rFactor.
The ideas presented in this series of articles are free to picked up by everyone who feels like it, you´re very much welcome to leave your opinion and discuss the ideas in the comments area as well. Below is part 2 of his series, make sure to check out the first one as well if you haven’t yet.
By: Daniel Senff
The other Planets
We discussed, that there is room for more blogs reporting about community news. Setting up a blog and starting to write is not hard, however finding your audience is. This community has already many big sites and getting your blog known is tough, especially as it is probably easily misinterpreted as wrong competition.
Let’s say the first idea was successful and we have several docent new blogs commenting on many different aspects of SimRacing. Not everybody will write frequently, they are spread all around the interweb, it becomes a lot of work to visit each and everyone, just to see what’s new. And lastly it’s hard to find new reads.
There are two possibilities. We have to read up and see how atom/rss feeds work, to collect all blogs in your feed reader. Or we need a website, that combines blogs, updates itself and gives you a stream of blog posts.
Many communities have a Planet, that is fed by many different blogs, of different aspects and different opinions. It’s a place that gives the otherwise splintered blog scene a central hub. A place to find new reads and get other opinions on current topics.
What is important is, that this Planet only redistributes posts. It doesn’t alter, remove or add to the original blog postings. It’s supposed to be neutral and only serves as a convenience to find blogs and aggregate trends. This doesn’t mean it should not be moderated. It needs balance. Blogs writing many posts have a bigger presence in the system and so mechanism need to be find to avoid drowning smaller blogs in posts by large blogs. Personally I’d advocate for a Planet that combines only blogs that don’t post on a daily basis. For them this service is of bigger value, than for large news blogs.
Still you could ask, why should there be more blogs?
I think there are many bright and smart people in the community, who write very interesting comments in forums and blogs. However when you write a comment, you only relate to the topic at hand and address it to the original author or to other people reading your comment. When you write in your own blog, you have a bigger audience and your writing style changes. You have a different platform of expressing ideas and more possibilities to digress.
Still all the technical aspects, blogs and theory doesn’t help, if you write nonsense. However I think this will sort itself out naturally. Bad blogs won’t live long and good blogs will spread.
In my next article, we tackle another new idea that is not related to blogs. Instead it poses the question why asking questions doesn’t hurt and why there is more than one right answer.