Things that make you go, “Hmmm…”

I’d say that I’m sure we all remember the C & C Music Factory song, “Things That Make You Go Hmmm.”

Then, I remember the guy in my office who is less than a decade younger than I am, but who wouldn’t remember the song. So that analogy is out.

Anyway, having been on the web almost as long as the web has been publicly available (serious about this–I remember the days before Netscape and even Mosaic, though I’m guessing I’ve now lost, like, everyone), I never have stopped being amazed by how easy the internet makes due diligence, and how little it still happens.

I’m speaking, of course, about links and follows on blogs like this one.

Recently, one of the posts on this blog (I won’t say which) was linked to by someone (I won’t say who) who I’m 100% positive would not share the ideas expressed in that post. I’m really, really sure about this; you’ll just have to take my word for it.

How did this happen? I think some of the authoring tools that WordPress makes so conveniently accessible are the culprits here. Specifically, as you author a post, you get lots of related content that comes up underneath the editor for your posts. It bases its suggestions on the content of your post. (If you write a WordPress blog, you know what I mean, unless you’ve never used anything other than the iPad/iPhone app to do this. I won’t even go into how abysmal I find that whole thing.) (Also, it’s suggesting right now that I add some links to blogs about monetary policy, because one of them recently talked about the Federal Reserve using a reference to the same song I talked about at the beginning of this post. Which shows how the whole click-without-linking thing can happen.)

So, I think the person in question here was writing a post that addressed a similar topic, was adding links, and clicked the selection for one of my posts.

But I can’t imagine this person would have linked to my post had said individual actually read what I wrote; I’m inferring this from the content of the linking post and the other links the individual selected, all of which were in the same vein as the linking post. And none of those were in the same vein as my post. My post was running the other way from those posts and links, with its hair on fire, zombies following in its wake, and using parkour to surmount obstacles. (Well, not really–humanist here, no zombies, and the closest I’ve ever come to parkour is watching Schmidt on “The New Girl,” but you get the picture.)

Anyway, as a favor to your readers, it’s probably a pretty good idea to look before you leap–because many readers won’t do that themselves, and might not come back if you provide a link that is…unexpected. I promise my readers that I will (and have, and do) practice what I preach on that point.

In any case, it’s bath time in these parts for a certain kiddo, so here I am, signing off. Have a good week!


3 thoughts on “Things that make you go, “Hmmm…”

  1. Even if the actual content isn’t a shared POV, other posts can still add to the post that is opposite of the linked post. Or perhaps you’re right. Lol, I know I read posts before I direct my readers there. Different POVs add a lot to a post. 🙂

    • Oh, definitely. And I have to admit to being, by both training and vocation, heavily involved in fields that are quite persnickety about citation and explaining its use. And I certainly link to things I don’t agree with. But that “other things” set of links at the bottom is kind of dangerous if the author doesn’t look (and warn?) before letting others leap!

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