Internet, A Techy Person Needs Your Insight

Y’all are going to think that this is the most random post ever, and that’s probably because YES. RANDOM. But a friend of mine who does computer-y / programming-y stuff needs some insight into how people navigate their way through blogs.

So. A couple of hypothetical situations.

Let’s say you’re clicking around on the interweb and you run across a blog you really enjoy. You know once you’ve read the first post or the first page that you want to read more.

Or maybe there’s a blog you haven’t visited in a while, and once you read a post or two, you decide that you want to spend some time catching up on old posts.

As a general rule, would you:

A) Scroll down to the bottom of the page and click on the link that says “older entries” or “next post” or “next page” (if such a link is available).

B) Use the categories listed in the sidebar and read through old posts category by category.

C) Use the archives and read through old posts month by month.

D) Some other method (and it would be great if you could specify what that method is, oh thank you).

And if you answer B, C or D, do you ever use the “older entries” / “next page” links at the bottom of blog pages? I mean, I do, but I may be the weirdest bloggy weirdo in all of bloggy weirdville.

Thanks in advance for your help!

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  1. I’m a major blog lurker. I usually use the “next post” or “older entry” button on the bottom. If I don’t use that, then I look for the archives and read through by month. I only occasionally search by topic – typically when I’m looking for something specific.

  2. A – I always start from the beginning of the blog by hitting the older posts button.

  3. It really depends on the blog. If it’s a good old fashioned “mommy blogger” blog I almost always do A. If it’s a different kind of blog like a food or crafty blog then I tend to select the B method and browse by category. I do use the next page/older page option if I’m really interested in that category.

  4. I use the “next post” or “older entry button.”

  5. I’m a major lurker too, and I use “C.” Yes, sometimes I use the “older/next” thing, but that can get really confusing about which direction you want to go! I like it best when a whole month’s worth of entries loads at once.

  6. I’m with Bethany. I use the older posts to go back a little bit, but if I like a blog enough to read it, I want to start at the beginning and I like to see a whole month at a time to cut down on load time too.

  7. One more thing – I don’t have one on my blog (shame on me) but I love the blogs that have “learn more about me” or such section that is longer than a couple of sentences. Especially if it is a blog with an ongoing story such as an illness or a loss of a child. That way I can get caught up without spending hours and hours reading entries.

  8. My answer is A.

  9. A unless I’m just there to read about a certain topic.

  10. A. Final Answer ;)

  11. I never do. I’ll read the first and if I like it I’ll read a few more on that page. If I still like it then I’ll add the blog to my Google Reader. But I never go back and read older posts.

  12. I use A almost every time.

  13. A most of the time, and occasionally C.

  14. I click on older or previous if I only want to go back a little bit. If I decide that I truly love a blog and want to read it all, I will use the archives and read month-by-month. I search by topic only when I am looking for something specific.

    The only exception is when I am reading a food or craft blog. Then I almost always search by topic.

  15. TallyMichelle says:

    Hmm….usually do the month by month thing. But I really appreciate a decent ‘about me’ when there is a big story to catch up on.

  16. Depends. If I found the blog because of a topic (i.e. Deployment) and I find a military wife blog but she talks about kids, art, and deployment my childless self will read by topic only on what brought me there – deployment.

    If however I simply like the way the person writes, like when I found, then I read every single word she ever wrote, starting oldest to newest. I prefer “monthly archives” so that I can limit how many months I let me read in one setting!

  17. Definitely C) Use the archives and read through old posts month by month.

    I sometimes use the older entries / next page link – but not always.

  18. A, pretty much as a rule. I only use B or C if I’m looking for something specific. Unless it’s a specific category blog (blogging, finance, etc,) then I MIGHT use categories but in that case a “search this blog” box is mighty helpful.

  19. I generally use option A. BUT I must say that it drives me nuts that in order to catch up and read in chronological order, I have to read from the bottom up. Not sure if your computer-y guy can do something about that!

  20. I always use the “Older Entries” option. But it is nice to start from the beginning, if it is easy to find.

  21. 99% of the time I do method A. The other 1% of the time (when it is a new blog that I have stumbled across), I search by method C so I can start from the beginning.

    Good luck tomorrow! I will be rooting for your Dawgs!

  22. Stephanie says:

    I use the older entries link. I never search by topic. I occasionally use the archives, but that is definitely the last choice ….

  23. Uh, yeah, who would do anything other than A?!? Call me anal – er, analytical – but, I like to read things in order. . .even if it is reverse order!!

  24. I always use the older posts/next page option … or MAYBE I go to the months, but rarely do I know where I left off or where I want to start so selecting any given month is difficult.

    I never use the categories unless I’m looking for something specific and then, usually, that’s on Ree’s cooking section or photography section because I remember something I wanted to try. :)

  25. I most often use the next/older buttons, but if there’s clearly a story that has unfolded on the blog I might go through the monthly archives.

  26. I am an A and B type of person.

  27. If I’m not too far behind, I will use the Older Posts link at the bottom of the page until I get back to the last one I read. Then I will read back to the beginning so that I’m reading the posts in the order they were published. If I read the blog regularly, I will still click on Older Posts to make sure I didn’t miss anything. I very rarely click on the categories or archives.

  28. I usually start by clicking “older entries” & then if I’m still wanting more, I start at the beginning by using the month by month through the archives.

  29. I start with “A” and go from there if I want to look for a specific topic.

  30. A,usually. If it’s a new to me blog and I want to read all the way from the beginning, I’ll sometimes choose to let an entire month load at once.

  31. “Older entries,” sometimes for a hour or more, then if I deem it worthy (like yours!) it gets added to my google reader so that I don’t miss a thing!

  32. “A” all the way baby!!!

    However, if I’m searching for an old post on someone’s blog, then I’ll either search it, or go to the side bar and look through the month I think it was posted in.

  33. I always click “older entries” or “next.”

  34. I usually use the “older entries” button!

  35. I’m usually a “B” kinda reader.

  36. I do A everytime!

  37. A… Always!

  38. A. Almost always.

  39. A and C

  40. I almost always do the “older entries”/”next page” thing. Only exception is if the person has been doing some kind of series or blogs about a certain topic a lot; then I might use the tags or categories option.

  41. Either A or C.

  42. Usually the “older entries/next page” thing, unless I’m REALLY interested and then I’ll use the archive and start at the first month and read in order. Yeah, I’m stalky like that. I have never used categories for this (though I have used them on blogs I already read, but never to “catch up” on a newfound one). Is that Weirdo McStalkerton enough for ya??

  43. Well, I’m either the odd ball, or the silent majority. I’m a topic/category searcher. If I come across a blog it’s because of something specific and I use the category list to stay on topic. If that interests me then I browse other topics.

  44. I mainly use the categories option with just Pioneer Woman’s – because of the way her blog is set up.
    love her recipes and photography sections!!
    so the categories style is handy for skimming through those.

    I never really use the older entries option I guess… if I’m wanting to catch up on anything or just discovering a blog I like, I’ll go to the month by month and usually start from the beginning for a few entries, then skip through randomly from there to the more current.

    But then again, I only read a handful of blogs. I wish I had the time to click on all of them and read and read and read because I just love to read and this is so much easier than picking up and investing in a long book… but real life beckons and I can’t sit here all day on the computer.

    hope this was helpful.

  45. If I really start liking a blog, I want to read it from the beginning, assuming that’s not like reading Tolstoy’s War and Peace because, hey, I have a life to live, people.

  46. Oh, so I would use the “older posts” button thingy and read from Blog 1.

  47. I use older posts thingy at the bottom of the page and the archives. Occasionally I will use categories, but usually only if I’m looking for a particular post that I remember.

  48. A.
    But one thing I would think was “Darlin’ Plus” would be a search bar. Sometimes I’ll want to re-read an old post or show it to someone and would love to search for it. Then I wouldn’t have to keep reading all of the posts backwards to find it. (You know I’ve just been dying to use that new catch phrase. tee hee.)

  49. Mostly C and sometimes A.

  50. D.If there is a search I use it, if not A.

  51. A then C

  52. Definitely C for me most of the time. I look through the archives and select by the month usually.
    But I do use the “A” older entries/next page button sometimes if I think I’m just going to read a couple of posts.

  53. It depends on the type of blog. I like the way that blogspot does it (at least on many friends I follow), because you can click on a month and look back at all the entries for that month and pick and choose the ones you want to read (they show up in outline kinda form). I’m sure blogspot isn’t the only one who does this. I do like the search function and/or tags in limited circumstances, like if I’m looking for a tutorial or recipe. I’m less likely to ‘catch up’ if my only option is the previous/next button.

  54. I do A, because it would only be right to read posts chronologically, except that you’d be reading them in reverse-chronological order, but somehow that makes more sense to me than reading everything about one topic, then everything about another topic, etc.

  55. I would most likely click on “older posts” down at the bottom if I wanted to read more. I might click on “Categories” if something I read made me want to see what else the person had to say on that subject. I would be least likely to just read through a person archives month by month. About the only time I would do that is if, say, a regular blogger I read posted a recipe or a particularly poignant post, say last August or December and they don’t have their categories listed. I try to bookmark those things as they catch my interest so I don’t have to go searching for them, but sometimes I forget.

  56. I use A a lot when I’m catching up, but I read the posts in order instead of backwards. (It takes a lot of clicking and scrolling and confusion, and it’s very inconvenient.)

    If it’s a blog that I want to read from the beginning, then I C.

    So far, I have never B’ed.

    And twice I have D’ed. (Which was on Big Mama’s blog and another “friend” of mine because their archives were so long.) My D consisted of printing each individual post onto real paper and taking the novels to bed with me to be read over time.

    Oh, I do hope your techy friend will invent an easy way to A! (and install it on my blog for free!) ;-)

  57. I’m an A!

  58. C, and yes, I do use the button, but I prefer to have them all load so I don’t have to scroll through.

  59. I always look for an “About” page first. If I really want to read from the beginning, I’ll go through the archives. I rarely use the categories. If I just want to get a good feel for the blog, I’ll use the older entries link.

  60. I am usually an A unless I find one I really love. I have been know for the blogs I LOVE to go back from the beginning and read it all. For example, this blog :

    I had been listening to David Platt’s sermons. Our world has been rocked!! My cousin, who just started inner city ministry told me about this lady who lives in the hood of Dallas who went to Baylor. My brother in law and her husband were roommates at Baylor and I was so curious what all God was doing with them so I started at the totally beginning of their blog and read everything on their. I wanted to get the full story. It was great.

    By the way, my husband and I are coming your way for secret church soon. We are staying for a few days to meet with the staff and staying with the Watkin’s. Hopefully, I will see you at secret church.

    I have been reading your blog for a long time and love it!

  61. I do use “older posts” at the bottom but I also like to go back to the first couple of posts on the blog to see why they started blogging and get a little background.

  62. older posts

  63. I always go into the archives and skip around. I NEVER use the older posts button at the bottom. It’s like reading backwards.

  64. A all the way. Never B, C or D.
    If you’re a weirdo, I’m in trouble.

  65. I use the older entries button. If it’s a blog that has been around a lot longer than I’ve been reading, I’ll use the archive to get some sense of chronology. But mostly…”A”.

  66. I may not be the best person to answer this because I’m easily confused. Or maybe that makes me the best… Anyhoo, I always use A. Always, although I do wish there was some way to reverse the order so you could read the older entries first.

  67. First I go to the blog’s Home page so that I can see several posts at once. Next I read the author’s About Me section to get a feel for the blog. If I want to revisit, I usually then subscribe to the blog in Google Reader for future reading. Finally, I then look to see if there is a category grouping so I can read similar topics at once. Whew!

  68. It depends on the type of content and just how interested I was.

    If I was really interested and wanted to read everything, I’d go to the archives and start with the oldest posts and read forward. Ditto if there’s a situation being discussed and I can’t figure out the details, such as a child with a serious illness or something, I’ll go back to the beginning to find out what happened.

    If it’s a blog that I just think, “Oh, this is pretty good,” I’ll just read back a few pages, and yes, will use “next page” until I get tired of reading, then I add the site to google reader and just read forward from there on out and never go back to the old stuff at all.

    I never use categories unless it’s a blog I already follow and I’m looking for something I remember reading awhile back, i.e., “A few months ago, so and so wrote about this…” and I try to find it using categories or tags if they exist. I would never just browse a new blog by categories though.

  69. I will often go to the archives and read their first few posts, or to the “more about me” section. Otherwise yes I do use the older posts button too. What I am most likely to do is put it on my google reader and then I can easily start from the beginning or the most recent and hit “j” or “k” to navigate through posts from there.

  70. Option A

  71. I’m with the others who start with “next page” and then if I am really enjoying it and want/need to start at the beginning, I go by month. I especially do this if the person is referencing an event that you need to have background knowledge on (pregnancy issues, a move, a new job, etc.).

    Thanks for asking!

  72. I use the next post/older entries link at the bottom of the page. :-)

  73. I fall into category A.

    You’re welcome. :)

  74. I use the Older Posts/Next Post link at the bottom of the page.

  75. A. Always A. I like a timeline feeling when I read blogs. They are stories, after all, right?

  76. I follow your blog via Google Reader.

  77. A, only.

  78. Well, if it’s a new to me blog, I ususally just keep reading backwards in chronological order, so yes, I do hit older posts when I get to the bottom of the page. Rarely do I go by categories…but that’s just me. I like to read chronologically….so the Bible really messes me up since it’s really not in that order. I guess it’s good I’ve been reading it long enough to know that! ;)


  79. Archives!

  80. B or C. And if the blog tells a story or situation, I use the bottom of the page button, too. :)

  81. A if I just like the content. B if it’s a craft or food blog.

  82. I almost always do A, unless I notice a particular category that looks interesting.

  83. I use the ‘older posts’ option, unless I see a category that looks interesting. Sometimes I do both!


  84. I use option C. And I do not use the “next” or “older” links at the bottom (as a rule).

  85. I use “A” if it’s a current blog I read and “C” when I come upon a new one I like.

  86. A, almost always. If I get through 3 pages, am interested in most of the posts, and am still feeling like I want to click further, I know the content is pretty consistently good. Then I subscribe.

  87. J. Johnson says:

    Always A – the only time I searched by category on Ree Drummond’s blog and I wanted to read her story with Marlboro Man.

  88. Mostly A, sometimes B.

  89. I usually go to “older entries”, but with Ree’s blog I search by category.

  90. Always A. If it’s not available, then C.

  91. If I want to catch up on a blog, I’ll do A: use the “older entries” thing. If I’m getting to know a new blog, I usually do B: click a label on the sidebar for a topic I’m interested in.

  92. A: I go to the bottom and keep going back and back and back to read the older blogs if it is one I love. Like this one. Ahem.

  93. I almost never use the topical search (unless I’m looking for a particular recipe or something.) Most all the time I scroll through the current posts and then click “older posts.”

  94. Usually A. Sometimes I might do C.

  95. I like to do things the hard way … it’s way too easy to check the sidebar for an archives to click on … nope, not me … I almost always scroll allllllll they way down to the bottom and click “older posts”

  96. (A) unless they reference something that I’m clueless about and it happens to have its own category.

  97. A all the way

  98. B. definately by category

  99. Mostly A, sometimes C

  100. Usually just the older posts link unless I want to search for a certain event to explain something.