Friday, 12 February 2010

A Blogger's Dilemma.

I'm in a Blogger's Dilemma today.

Let us assume that this blog has non-knitting readers as well as knitting readers (I think that's still the case, if I haven't chased off the non-knitters by now). Let me state for the non-knitters that there is a well-known online knitting magazine, that also happens to be free of charge (which is named, ever so fittingly, Knitty). In said online knitting magazine there are regular issues and, in between these dates, "surprises" - extra patterns coming up.

Now, Knitty is a good, professional magazine that pays their pattern-makers money (not too much, but they do pay a honorarium) and generates traffic for their sites (quite a lot). They also have a newsletter that will inform subscribers about the new issues and the surprises. They are, in addition, so well known and liked that forums like Ravelry will, of course, have threads mentioning their patterns - both regular issue and surprise patterns. So you can probably assume that most knitters who are active online have at least heard of Knitty.

Now for the dilemma. If, say, there is an absolutely delightfully weird and skewed sock pattern in a surprise issue of Knitty, should a blogger with an audience of both knitters and non-knitters mention the totally delightful weirdness of that sock pattern? The breathtaking hotness of the heels? The wonderfully biased stripings of the variegated yarn? The fun fact of a sock toe starting at the big toe instead of somewhere in the middle of the foot where there's actually no toe sticking forth to fill the very tip of the sock? Even devote a whole blog post to that single sock?

Will the knitters be bored because they, of course, have already looked at the pattern and admired the shrewd cleverness of the pattern designer? Will they turn away and say "uh, another lame blog entry about things long known"? There are at this moment already 40 projects of this sock on Ravelry, after all (rav links only accessible to members, sorry).
Meanwhile, will the non-knitters cringe with boredom, or will they rather scratch their heads and say "uh, she's gone completely over the brink now, let's go look for another blog to read regularly instead - one with no weird and/or boring knitting content", because they might not understand how a sock construction can be totally exciting?

Please tell me. I'm all curious.


Anonymous said...

As a knitter I can only say whow. I read your blog before I saw my mail, so you beat Knitty in showing this one, but I'm hooked. This is my next project. I'm allmost sorry that I have a weaveguild meeting this afternoon, so I can't start now.


Jonathan Jarrett said...

As a non-knitter, I would confess that I'd skip such a post. But as long as there's something medieval on the front page I'm still watching it!

Arachne said...

As a general fibre freak, technique geek and sock lover, I'm just happy for the heads-up! I do check out Knitty now and then, and Ravelry, but not regularly so without your post I wouldn't have known about this pattern for yet another week or two. Which would have been a shame, since it looks fabulous and I have just the yarn for it in my stash. Now I just need to finish your spirally hat (which may take a little while yet since I'm doing it on 1 mm needles)...

cathyr19355 said...

Here's what I think.

This is *your blog*. You are entitled to write about whatever interests *you*. Though it's great that you want to please the readership you have gathered, it's not as though you have moral obligation to us!

That being said, I'm not a knitter, but I have no problem with your writing about knitting and new patterns you've devised (particularly if you include nifty color pictures). Continued good luck with your knitting projects.

Nathan Beal said...

I as neither a knitter nor a medievalist yet a craftsman interested in reading about things in both fields would say that if you were to post about such a pattern as is your wont it would have no effect on my likelyhood to continue to read your blog.

Front Range Stitcher said...

Non-knitter here, but as the mother of a potential new knitter, I was delighted to find your blog and the mention of Knitty, of which I would not have otherwise known. What drew me in? The words blog and dilemma all in the same sentence-I hear you.