Thursday, June 3, 2010

Blog Classification

Larisa over at the Pink Pigtail Inn had an interesting discussion about what BRK said about mage blogs, and in it she identified herself as a mage blogger. That struck me, as I have never considered Pink Pigtail Inn to be a mage blog.  I think of it more as a very interesting and thought-provoking general WoW blog.

This led me into how I classify blogs, and after much pondering I came up with the following Venn diagram...
Now, this is a bit oversimplified just because I couldn't figure out how to draw anything more complex.

I classify blogs into 4 categories (with overlap between them)
General WoW blogs-> these are blogs that talk about many different things within WoW, from RP to leveling to PVP to personal accomplishments.  Obviously there are many subcategories within this group, but for the sake of simplicity we'll just ignore those for now.
Class blogs->Blogs that focus on a specific class or classes.
Raiding blogs->Blogs that focus on raiding
Gold blogs->Blogs that focus on making gold and the economic minigame inside WoW.

Does this make sense?  Well, maybe some examples will help...
Big Bear Butt is a class/general blog.  He talks frequently about druids but he also has good general info posts.  So I'd stick him in the overlap between the black and red circles.
Pig Pigtail Inn is a general blog. She doesn't talk much about classes or raiding or economics, and I'd be hard-pressed to simplify her blog content into a sentence without leaving quite a bit out. She's in the black circle.
Aspect of the Hare is another class/general blog. In fact there are very few class-only blogs.  Most class blogs also talk about raiding or personal accomplishments or rp or other stuff.  She's wandering around with Big Bear Butt.
Just my Two Copper is a gold blog. Great place to find tips and tricks on making gold, not so good if you're looking for anything else.  This one's right in the middle of the yellow circle.
World of Matticus is a raiding/class/general blog. Mostly raiding, but there's good stuff on guilds and classes in there as well. Matticus is hanging out in the overlap between the black, red, and pink circles.
Psynister's Notebook is a class/general blog. It's just an unusual one that doesn't focus on a particular class.  But he's one of my go-to places for info on leveling any class, hence my thinking of his blog as a class one.  A class blog does not have to be specific to one class, but if most of what you post is class-based I'm going to think of your blog as a class one.

Now this is as much an opinion system as anything else.  If I tend to associate a blog with a particular class or classes, I think of it as being at least partly a class blog.  The same goes for raiding and gold-making.

So what good is this?  Well, it allows you to not only classify your own blog but see how new readers might.  I'm going to use Aspect of the Hare as an example.  Go read the entries on the first page, or just skim the titles.  Does it look like a hunter blog?  I see one post on trees, several on wandering around the world, but no hunter-specific posts. Now, that's not bad, but you can see how a new reader might wander across that blog and not really associate it with hunters except for the huntery guides in the sidebar.
If you want to classify yourself as a class blog or a raiding blog or a gold blog, you need to check every so often and make sure that you are talking about a class or a raid or gold.  If you don't care how your readers might classify you, write about whatever you like.  You may lose some readers who are looking for specific topic blogs, but if you're an entertaining read I'll still keep up with you.

For the record, this is a general blog with the occasional (very occasional) class post.

And last but not least, Pike is back so go read Aspect of the Hare!  Yay Pike is back!


  1. Might add a "Diary" classification or something like that for blogs like Need More Rage. You read Ratters, right? :)

  2. A category you might want to add are the meta-level blogs that talk about game design independent of specific classes or raids; such as Player vs. Developer.

  3. It's a good point, and an interesting perspective. Grim has a good point about the Diary blogs, but that doesn't have any direct impact on the topic at hand.

    What's my blog about? Leveling. That being said, I'm a Mage too. I don't focus my blogging on being a Mage, but Mage is my primary class and so that's the community that I associate myself with. Am I a Mage Blogger? No, but I am a Blogging Mage.

  4. @Grimmtooth Actually, no, I'd never heard of it, but now I must go read. To me a Diary sort of blog fits under RP, which I stuck in general because I couldn't figure out how to draw it in overlapping properly with raiding and class and general. I think I'd have to go 3d to properly incorporate it, and well, my drawing skills are not up to the task.

  5. @Klepsacovic That's certainly a good catagory. Do you think it'd overlap with class, raids, and general or just class and raid? If the later I can certainly add it, but if it's the former I have no idea how to draw it in.

  6. @Psynister And that does infuse how you talk about content, I think. I certainly don't identify myself as a Priest or Hunter Blogger, but that does affect how I perceive the game and thus how I blog about it.

    It's interesting that the more I think about this, and about the categories I created, well those are the areas I pay the most attention to. I raid so I tend to like to read raiding blogs, I have a bunch of different classes so I read class blogs, I kinda fail at AH playing so I read gold blogs, and everything else gets lumped under General not because it's not deserving of a separate category, but because it's not something I pay as much attention to.

    I think almost everyone would end up adding or subtracting categories to fit what they pay attention to and consider important. Some would add RP blogs, some metablogs, some art blogs, some ui blogs, some pvp blogs, or whatever else depending on what they focus on in game and what blogs they tend to read.
    But what it comes down to, really, is blog identity, blogger identity, how we classify ourselves, and how our readers classify ourselves.

  7. Definitely class and raids. Perhaps general as well. In the example of PvDeveloper the high-level game design affects day to day play. A purely general blog might say "I hate this daily but I have to do it" while a design blog with overlap might say "I hate this daily, here's why, and here's a potentially better reward structure."

  8. I think I do write a LOT about raiding. Only from a different perspective (my personal). The difference to a raiding blog is that I don't give out any advice or information about how-to-raid. I write more about how-it-is-to-raid if you see the difference.

    I also wrote quite a lot of community/blogosphere commentary, a sort of meta-blogging I suppose. I don't know if that deserves a special category, maybe it does. Anyway in the end I suppose that I can't easily be put into anything perticular, so I'm fine with the "general" label. I always wanted to write about what comes to my mind without limiting myself to some bondaries I've set up for myself. The only limit I have is that it's wow/MMO-related. In a broad aspect. No pure RL-posts. This works fine for me.

    I think your classification is interesting, but yeah, keep up the good work and refine it a bit more! :)