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So, with that being said, imagine a dramatic drumroll as I announce with a flourish (because there simply must be a flourish) that Authentic Blogger has moved its presence on Facebook from the original group format to a new Page format.
Why have we chosen to make this move? Good question. The answer is that Facebook, in its infinite wisdom, recently made the arbitrary decision to do away with the original Facebook group format. They created a new and improved group format a couple months ago and apparently have decided that the common response to that new format has been sufficient to put a kill on the old group format. Those of us who "own" groups in the old format have been advised to either upgrade to the new group format, or allow our group page to eventually be archived by Facebook. We gave it some thought - by "we", I mean that I and the wonderful people who help me at Authentic Blogger, Dave Roy and Anahid Boghosian - and decided to not upgrade to the new group format. We decided, instead, to switch to a Facebook Page format and we published that page to live status on Facebook today. Although many of our members like the new group format, we felt that changing over to a Page format will best serve the goals we have in place for the future of the Authentic Blogger concept.
So, a few things are important to impart. The most important one is that Authentic Blogger hasn't changed in any way except for our "physical" address on Facebook. We are still the same blogging concept that all our members have grown to know and love.
- We still advocate authentic interaction with fellow bloggers, suggesting that you take time to truly read content of blogs you follow, and take time to leave thoughtful comments on those posts.
- We strongly do NOT encourage the "if you follow me, I'll follow you" mentality that is rampant in the blogging world.
- We embrace building relationships with fellow bloggers.
- We pledge to continue to provide a community and forum to mentor, support and encourage all bloggers on a worldwide platform.
I'm nervous as all get out, if I'm honest. We founded Authentic Blogger in December of 2009, with big dreams and little idea of what we were doing. To our surprise and delight, the concept caught on and was embraced immediately, and our presence in the blogging world began to grow. We set goals for membership and continued to be thrilled when those goals were not only met, but exceeded regularly. We've gone through many growing pains and changes in the past two years, and we continue to learn as we grow. I recognize that we'll grow in a positive manner from this change also. My own biggest concern is that we don't backslide. At our highest point of membership, our original group page had grown to 793 members. Now we're back to starting from zero with membership of this new page, and that's the part I can't help but focus on. Yes, there's an element of ego involved, I admit this freely. I am justifiably proud of what we have achieved with the Authentic Blogger concept, and it is important to me that we continue to stay at that high level of success.
Should I predicate our success on a membership number? No, I shouldn't. Do I? Yes, to a degree. I can't deny that I loved, and still love, watching our membership increase. The thought of losing all that momentum with membership during this move was not something I was happy about. I can report that as of approximately 8pm, EST, May 7, 2011 when we published the new Authentic Blogger FB Page, our membership has been busily zipping along and increasing at a rapid pace. That response is wonderful to see, and I'm happy to recognize many familiar faces of fellow bloggers hitting our new Page wall. In the coming days, I'm sure we'll continue to grow. I hope we'll be back to, or close to, our middle 700 membership in a couple of weeks. I realize that if we're not, I shouldn't internalize that or take it personally, and I'll do my best to heed my own advice. We've already received a ton of encouragement from the Facebook blogging community at large and that's just heartwarming! I have always looked at all the other Facebook blogging groups as a collaborative effort. There are a few who choose to be exclusionary, but the majority of them are driven by other wonderful bloggers who embrace the concept of helping one another.
For those who are members of our original Facebook group page for Authentic Blogger, you will find when you visit that page in the coming weeks that you can no longer post links on our wall. We disabled that feature and have posted the new link to direct you to our new Facebook Page for Authentic Blogger. We plan to leave the old group page up and running for a couple more weeks so that people who may have missed all the alerts and posts about the move will be able to find us. We also sent out an email to all original Authentic Blogger group members with all the details, explanations and the new Page link to find us. We hope that this move will cause a minimum of fuss and confusion and that all our friends and followers will be able to easily find us, Like our Page and get back to the regular business of posting their links on our wall and interacting with fellow members of our community.
In closing, we hope this minor change will not be a hindrance to the growth of the Authentic Blogger community. We value each and every blogger who has joined us, as you are the people who have helped us continue to grow, learn and succeed. We hope everyone will help us to get the word out about our new Page location on Facebook by sharing the link on your Twitter and Facebook walls. To make that easier for you, our unique username on Facebook is www.facebook.com/AuthenticBlogger. Feel free to grab the link and share with your blogging friends! In the immortal words of Dorothy and Glenda, the Good Witch,
"...there's no place like home....there's no place like home..."
We look forward to welcoming you back to the new home of Authentic Blogger on Facebook. See you there!