<   Prior Home         Share Blog Bloke     Share Blog Bloke Tips       Share to Twitter       Share to Facebook       Share to Twitter       Share to Google Plus       Share to LinkedIn       Pin this       Get Updates            
        Next   >  

What’s in a Name? The Blog Post vs Articles Confab

Are Your Posts Superficial? Jakob Nielsen Thinks So

You say apples and I say oranges. Mr. Usability (Jakob Nielsen) has started another uproar in the blogosphere. Some are saying that he is full of sh__, while others say maybe he has a point.

This is what Jakob said:

“Blog postings will always be commodity content: there’s a limit to the value you can provide with a short comment on somebody else’s work. Such postings are good for generating controversy and short-term traffic, and they’re definitely easy to write. But they don’t build sustainable value. Think of how disappointing it feels when you’re searching for something and get directed to short postings in the middle of a debate that occurred years before, and is thus irrelevant.”

Jakob goes on to say that bloggers should focus on writing more detailed and original “articles” instead of shorter, superficial posts:

I’ve heard some say that posts shouldn’t be longer than 500 words. (Maybe because they think that all blogger’s suffer from ADHD). Heck, I know of some a-listers that rarely write beyond two sentences (is Scoble listening… twit, twit :). Whereas, some lawyer bloggers that I’ve read couldn’t describe the weather with anything less than a 5000 word essay.

Speaking of lawyers, I have many a fond memory of verbose attorneys droning on and on in court. I remember a judge once looking over at me in despair. I just shrugged my shoulders and the judge concurred, immediately interrupting Mr. run-off-at-the-mouth. It’s no wonder I won most of my cases because even though I was thorough I always cut to the chase, and the judges loved me for it because it meant that they got out to the golf course earlier.

I attended a pre-trial conference when the judge said (before even sitting down) “I’m busy so I want to hear your case in five minutes or less”. Thank goodness I was prepared (like I always was) and I think I finished my summation in about three minutes. That was no easy feat considering that the file was thick enough to choke a horse. Needless to say I was on the judge’s good side after that.

What does the Bloke think about the articles vs. posts nonsense? Obviously I’m a firm believer of getting to the point. You won’t find a lot of fluff in my posts. Even my longish tutorials are chock full of meat with little (or no) pablum. (And speaking of tutorials, if it is getting too long in the tooth then why not split it into a series of two or more posts.)

Less noise and more signal is my motto.

As far as originality goes I’m all for that, and in fact is one of my pet peeves. Don’t worry, I won’t go off on a tangent except to say you should read this post entitled “So You’re a Successful Blogger” to see where I stand on that.

So it doesn’t really matter what name you want to call it or how many words your post article post is (to a point of course). Just make sure that your content is up to snuff without any of the fluff. And if you are going to link bait with catchy titles like Copyblogger will tell you (or if you use SEO tricks), please make certain that your readers won’t be disappointed when they click on your link.

Because one pissed off reader will become one less repeat visitor or subscriber. For sure.

Search Tags: , , ,

Written July 13th, 2007 by | 11 Comments | Filed under: Blog Tips, MythBusters, SEO Tips ,

Thanks for Sharing     Share - enable java in your browser Share to Twitter            

Did you enjoy this article? Keep up to date with Blog Bloke Tips the moment it's published by email. Your Privacy is Guaranteed and will not be shared with anyone.


Keep it real with Blog Bloke Thanks for reading the original Blog Bloke. You can read more about me here. Contact me if you have any questions, tip requests or if you would like to be a guest blogger. Keep it real every day and subscribe to the newsfeed, share with friends or follow me.

    Subscribe to the Newsfeed     Share to Twitter     Share to Facebook     Share to Google Plus     Pin this     Share to LinkedIn


Got an opinion? Let's be real and start a conversation:

It's your turn to tell Blog Bloke what you think, ask a question or suggest another blog tip. Don't forget the comments policy and I'm looking forward to reading what you have to say.

There are 11 Comments so far to “What’s in a Name? The Blog Post vs Articles Confab”

  1. Agreed. I try to vary the length of my posts too.

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  2. Now that’s what I call getting to the point ;-)

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  3. I think for the most part people would rather read a shorter, to the point article. The computer is just not the most comfortable place to read. If I want to read a novel, I’ll buy one and curl up on the couch. I don’t want to read one in the form of a blog post on my glowing computer screen. :)

    Great post BTW!

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  4. Thanks Christy. Actually I’m one of the few that prefers to read at the computer (I have a comfy chair which helps :) I’m a whiplash sufferer and holding a book in my hand quickly gives me a neck ache.

    Thanks for the great comments.

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  5. I’m partially agree with you. It depends on what topic you talking about. Lengthy articles does not means it is good if the points is simple but you’re overly describe it. I prefer articles with points that clearly described and understandable

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  6. The quality of a post has absolutely nothing to do with it’s length or how many words there are. But longer posts should make use of shorter paragraphs, headings, images, lists, bullets, bold or italics to break up the monotony of the document and make it more comprehensible and interesting to read. These methods also help the writer to condense his or her thoughts and to get rid of the useless fluff.

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  7. I prefer an essay approach.

    For me blogging is about the writing.

    If I only post a link and two sentences on what I think of the site, the whole point would be defeated.

    As for length, I had a high school teacher who put it best.

    Your essay should be like a fine lace skirt. Long enough to cover the topic but short enough to be interesting.

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  8. Hi Liz. That’s good advice.

    Generally I will start with point form, perhaps because at my age if I don’t get the idea down quickly enough I’ve lost it (must be that alzheimer’s thing :) Then later I will flesh it out to make it readable.

    BTW, I was so disappointed when I visited your blog today and tried to leave a comment. Apparently it’s only for team members.

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  9. Thanks for pointing that out!
    I’ll fix it.

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  10. Wow another great post. Now a days articles are rewritten and published. What is the use of that unless we use our own thoughts and references.

      Reply   ·   Share Share Blog Bloke Tips  

  11. […] posts on our blogs. That rumour of course was started by none other than Mr. Usability — Jakob Nielsen. (You can read my response to his post by clicking on the […]

Share     Share this article with your friends

Subscribe to Better Blog Tips Newsfeed   SUBSCRIBE to Bloke Bloke's Articles (Newsfeed)

Subscribe to Better Blog Tips Newsfeed   Subscribe to only Comments for this Article | TrackBack URL

You can also use these html tags: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>