October 17, 2008

  • Xanga: The Blogging Community | Step 2: “Blogrings”

    We’ve been bringing Xanga back to its roots as a blogging community. 
    As part of that, we asked a bunch of you for feedback about one of our
    earliest features: blogrings.
    The answer was clear; the vast majority of you use blogrings almost
    exclusively to find other xangans who share your interests. So we
    cleaned up the page a bit to focus on that, making the list of users
    higher up and more prominent on the page.  While we were at it, we also added a neat new feature (thanks to Justin!) which shows you related blogrings

    It’s pretty neat – say you’re in an awesome blogring like this one:

    i used to be gangster. i’m retired.If
    you were once a homie but retired your jersey, then this blogring is
    for you. When the game gets too deep, you just gotta get out before
    someone gets hurt. Nah mean player? Peace.

    Related blogrings looks at what blogrings other members of your
    blogring are in… and *shazam* – it recommends you check out equally
    dope blogrings like this one (see what I mean – I seriously used to be

    I check my hair in car windows & thats how I rollEverybody checks to see what they look like in a car window, just make sure no ones in the car first!

    Seriously though – if you’re checking out a digital photograph blogring, you can see other blogrings you might be interested in.  It doesn’t just match you to blogrings with similar titles – it actually uses math to find blogrings that have similar members.  It’s a pretty cool way to meet new Xangans.

    Basically, blogrings will focus on their OG and continued purpose: to
    help you find other Xangans who share your interests. Let us know what
    you think!

Comments (69)

  • You guys work waaaayy too hard.  Keep up the awesome work.

  • This is kinda “facebook: related groups” of you :-[
    I’d appreciate if more emphasis was placed on using blogrings, in general, as networking tools on Xanga. No one uses them, as far as I know — just “belongs.”

  • For some reason I’ve never gotten into blogrings… I belong to a few but not much has come of them (including the one’s I started myself, ha). I guess I should look into the new format and see what happens.

  • GUYS OK like if updates from Blogrings (which already pool on blogring site pages) showed up (in maybe their own tab) on the Universal Inbox page… that’d be SWEEEEEET

  • @RaVnR - Blogrings generate a surprising amount of traffic, and are one of our most popular features.  We’ve tried to add functionality to them, but for the most part people seem happy to use them most to find people with shared interests.

    I don’t know how similar this is to the feature you mentioned.  But hopefully it’s a pretty cool feature and will make the Xanga experience better!

  • Thanks, this sounds like a great idea.

  • OOo Super cool… you guys are super good…

  • Sounds good.

  • Hell yes. You guys get a big two thumbs up. :)

  • @RaVnR - Hmm, that’s a good idea. Those updates would work well in their own tab (since a really big blogring would produce way too many updates for one private page). I don’t send any of my posts to blogrings, probably because I figure it wouldn’t do any good.

    But adding them to the private page could only increase traffic. I like.

  • Neat!  Thanks, guys, for always working so hard.

  • i agree with RaVnR… it’s more of a “I belong to” tool over a “I use this” tool …

    however, props to the team for enhancing part of it — every little bit helps!

  • Can we finally invite friends to these blogrings? It’s been so long since we’ve been able to do that.

  • OG… Original Gangsta.

  • @AvenueToTheReal - u used to be gangster too?

  • @RaVnR - I think the UI needs to be simplified for noobs, actually. If Xanga adds another feed, it might end up being too cluttered. A few people I’ve talked to think the Xanga Homepage is already too cluttered.

  • @john - Actually, I would say that I still am pretty gangsta.

  • sounds sweet.

  • Great new addition!  Good job guys! Now, can we get that email inbox-like feedback log?  I’d love to be able to see “read” items and “unread” items and delete things from my feedback log that I’ve already read so that I can find things I haven’t read yet… or something like that.  I think it’ll help with keeping up.  Just a suggestion! 

  • @RaVnR - that’s a fab idea!

  • This is a great tool! I <3 you guys!

  • So that’s what changed. I went away for a month and it seems like almost everything got a facelift. Hopefully it’s for the better.

  • aw, i miss the ‘recent updates’ section.
    the blogring layout kinda seems as though its shouting at me >_> like the size of everything just totally blew up. yah it is more prominent though cause of that..

  • It be nice if there isn’t a limited amount of blogrings I can join or just a higher number.  =) 

  • it’s great that blogrings are up and doing their thing again.  when I first joined xanga 5 or 6 years ago, that’s how I found many of my friends!

    I do wish, though, that you guys require people to write actual text as titles.  that way we can actually find the blogrings we want to join. for example, something like: “$%@$^%^^^^^^^^BLOGRiiiNG^^^^^^^^#$#$@#$” just isn’t doing it for me.

  • Where is “Recent updates”? I can’t find it in new blogring pages

  • i’ve never fully understood the use of blogrings, other than belonging to a group. well, i’ll try to utilise it more from now on. 

  • Nice,  hope this works well.

  • I hope this will improve the benefit of blogring…I agree with those who think even you update your blog into blogring it wouldn’t make it any noticeable since there are soooo many update and the post mostly run out like a flood so we still don’t get to know the interesting in the same interst post :)

    keep up good work!!!  

  • My traffic reports and statistic analysis show photo pool and weblog pool (share to public) are much more useful than blogrings!

    Actually a lot of people have not join/check any blogrings so they do not pay attentions other members, also they do not/will want join blogrings as not applicable – for example she is not a model she will not join some models related blogrings, or a blogrings that are popular with X,XXX members and attractive – but that are Hong Kong base, they do not want to join if they are in U.S.

    Also there are unlimited ”meanlingless” blogrings that one established but cannot control (cannot deleted) / no one control – and only 1 to 3 members only – that decrease the interest on blogrings

    The current idea OK, but it seem better still keep the photo pool and weblog pool, at least they can show the most recent “real updates” from Xangans.

    Now just show other Xangans names, we need to click each to check if they “real update” or not?!?!

    Like the previous weblogs updates list are much more better  – can show the first few sentenses so we can have a quick glance and decide click in to see or not! (with or without friend lock)

  • i’d subscribe to more blogrings if they wouldn’t show up on my public page…i’m picky about info on my layout.

  • Oh, god… what’s up with the HUGE blocky layout?? I don’t think it was necessary to make such extensive changes to the size of the layout. I mean, are you guys trying to pull a Facebook? Ugh. :(

  • I’m not in a single blogring, never have been. Maybe now I might change that!

  • I been using blogrings since I joined Xanga even though I have left the first ones I signed up too,   I have found some other ones to joined.

    Keep up the fantastic work

  • This is great, as usual :)

  • I can’t wait to see what blogrings are related to my favorite blogring ”I <3 Paris Hilton.”

  • Hey, so I know this is a little off topic but I really need an old xanga of mine deleted.. it has a whole bunch of stuff on it that I don’t want anyone to see or whatever. I can’t remember my email address or password or anything, so if you could get back to me on what to do that would be great. Sorry to write on here, I don’t know any other way to get ahold of the Xanga team.

    Thank you so much! Myranda.

  • i hate the new blogring.  what happened to the blogs? it doesnt even show the blogs anymore it just shows peoples pictures and i thought xanga was about blogging but guess not. 

  • and how is it a “blogging community” when you dont even show the blogs/blog title.

  • i can’t even think of any other way to use blogrings..lol!  keep up the great work!

    (and p.s…. any way we can get a “select all” button when we’re choosing which blog rings to submit a posting to?)

  • hmm… i just commented with enthusiasm on the updating of blogring pages.  then i went to look at them.  where is the box that lists the most recently submitted blogs?  not only do i use those blurbs to tell me whether or not i want to visit their blogs, i conciously consider the first few lines of my own blogs solely because i know they will appear in those boxes.  please bring that back.

  • that’s cool!

    buuut, when is the audio uploader &stuff going to be back up? been waiting for an hour now, but still not working. >

  • that’s pretty cool

  • Excellent move. Well done.

    I understand why a lot of things at Xanga work as they do, but my day dream is…

    1.) Import a Flickr feed (I know this will never happen)
    2.) Facebook integration to change FB status based on the most recent Xanga Pulse. (this should happen)

  • not for nothing, but i spent my credits to plug my site and it’s not being plugged? i know my topics arent popular with everyone but be fair.

    if i’m wrong, i’m sorry but i don’t see my plug.

  • Huge props on the added features to the blog rings guys…

    Just one thing though…I’m running on Firefox with AdBlock Plus with it’s Filterset.G Updater to block out those annoying animated banners (nothing personal if that’s your thing)…

    I’m not much of a technical guy…but these add-ons might have maybe sorta kinda interfered with the original side panel that showed the new blogs and blogs posted to the specific blogring…

    Currently…I’m not seeing this panel (though I do see the related blogrings feature)…

    With the exception of removing my add-ons…so don’t take it the wrong way that I don’t like ads…is there a way for you guys to fix this issue?

  • Sounds like this could be fun

  • You guys raped the blogrings system by taking away the recently added posts, the recommended posts, the photo pool, and the weblog pool… they have become totally pointless lists of members.  Seriously, this is the worst change I’ve ever seen xanga make in the years I’ve been here, and I’ve been waiting to hear some actual information on the change so that I can understand why it was done in the first place, but it is still unexplained.  Change it back so that you can actually interact with the members of your rings.  The number of things I read has been more than halved since I can’t see what people post in my favorite rings. 

  • I have a major question for you, Xanga Team, and I apologize if the answer to this is simpler than I think due to my ignorance, but I doubt I’m the only one pondering this:

    How DOES one access the “recently” updated blogs in a larger list than what is on the front page?

    I recall that back when the organized list of Featured and Updated blogs existed, one could freely switch between the two. However, each time I have clicked “view more updated blogs” on the front page, it proceeds to take me to a page that ONLY has the Featured weblogs in their “rank listing”, with no button in sight to click for a comprehensive list of updated blogs.

    This is slightly disheartening, as I enjoyed having first grabs at recently posted blogs and making connections with people I hadn’t met before, something that is now EXTREMELY limited because I can only see 6 entries at a time on the front page.

    Any help or answer to this question would be GREATLY appreciated, and thanks so much for your time!

  • A suggestion that seem most suitable and easy
    Go back to previous design and add the new “Related Blogrings”

    That must include:
    1) Updated lists (show 10-15)
    2) Weblog pool (show 3-5)
    3) Photo pool (show 12-16 photos)
    4) Video pool (show 8 videos)

    5) Related Blogrings

    More perfect is the members list also show the new updated blog title and date/time!


  • keep rockin it. thanks!

  • I don’t care if this is like FaceBook or not. Xanga can and SHOULD take the best from other sites and apply those to this site. I applaud Xanga for originality, but I also encourage them to seek out the best that the other sites have to offer and bring them home for us. JL

  • I would like to profile some entries so that it can only be read by particular blogrings. Is that possible?

  • im too virgin for this community people’ it s my first time to do such thing as this. but one thing certain here guys’ on this site i feel good! OH YEAH’ BABY YEAH!

  • sorry for being such a little bitch in with the last comment!

  • Excellent. Thank you.

  • Hey,

    Thanks for the comment. I don’t need tons of feedback, but I do like some here and there.

  • I really like this idea but I noticed it only shows the ones with the most members. And I guess that’s because it does “math” as to how many people joined this group and are also in another group.

    I just feel like that’s giving a lot of representation to the already well grown groups out there. What about the smaller ones? Could it rotate or randomly pick which groups are shown out of that percent?

    I hope that makes sense.. lol

  • Hi,

    I’m with the others who said, hey, thanks for your effort to tweak the blogrings, but I think that point doesn’t address the reasons people use blogrings in the first place.

    You said most people are more into blogrings to help them find other people — because they want to interact with those people.

    I joined a few blogrings when I started at Xanga, but once I realized that they do absolutely nothing to expand the ways I can communicate with other bloggers, I left them. Whatever I can do with a blogring, I can do the same thing and more by just putting my interests into Xanga Search and subscribing to / friending people with similar interests who have interesting things to say.

    Facebook Groups work as a way for people to broadcast their opinions/funny comments/whatever because Facebook provides plenty of other ways for people to interact with each other.

    my point: Cosmetic changes to Xanga’s UI don’t necessarily make it more effective. I think you could do a better job of encouraging organic communication and getting people to stick around if you added features like threaded comments, functional blogrings (that actually led to a page where people could do something), and a feature like OpenID that would allow people from other sites like MySpace or LiveJournal to communicate with their friends here.

    …along the same lines, I think in some ways the homepage better served you (and us) when Recently Updated bit was front and center. Sure, Datingish and the handful of others that are always Featured get a lot of pageviews, but I think the way you’ve sqeezed everything else into below-the-scroll-line sidebars detracts from the real fun of stumbling across random new people and ideas.

    It also re-figures the Xanga “identity” as almost exclusively made up of teen christians and people with babies. Maybe that’s true, but it’s a little alienating for the rest of us. Maybe you can develop something (new search tool? new central box on the homepage?) that would prioritize the featured posts that had anything to do with our interests and all that other largely un-utilized information from our profiles.

    thanks for your time, & best of luck. ;)

  • Hello,

    I’m the leader of the “Creation/Evolution debate” blogring. 

    So that’s what happened to the weblogpool!

    That thing used to be awesome.  It was much better than sorting by last update, because the last update often enough was not related to the blogring.

    Please give the leaders of the blogrings the option of having a weblog-pool.  It was very befitting for our group.

  • But now we can’t see the “recent” stuff other users post. And there is no longer a point of posting to the Blogrings because it no longer offers the ability to do so.

  • i kinda liked that we were able to submit our posts that were related to the blogring and that they would show up on the right side of the blogring page. because clicking on a member’s page brings you to their blog, but they might not have blogged anything related to the blogring recently.

  • Nice informative blog.full of knowledge & useful.success of Digital Marketing is guided
    through Vision and smart communication engineering, like a business
    architect:-Didier Grossemy

  • What happened to the feature in which you could post to your member blogrings.  This feature has disappeared and I am very dissappointed!


Post a Comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *