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digitaldame

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#1 digitaldame
Member since 2006 • 5401 Posts
So you wanna be an Awesome User Blogger?

You've seen them on the Gamespot frontpage, so I bet you're wondering how to get your blog content some extra attention from Gamespot visitors.

Here are three ways to get your blog considered for the special Awesome User Blogs feature section!

Chalk

1. Participate in Chalk Talk!

Chalk Talk is the Gamespot community's way of tackling topical and discussion-worthy concepts. Whether it's a reaction to a big news story or simply a casual discussion of something special in a game, Chalk Talk is a great way to share your views on the world of video games. Chalk Talk is updated with discussion topic assignments regularly. If you're up to offer your perspective, remember that all Chalk Talk submissions must be at least 500 words long, must abide by basic formatting procedures (that means straightforward and simple paragraph formatting and no altered text fonts or colors), and require at least one 400x400 image as a cover shot. Remember that you can also get your blog evaluated and critiqued on the Writers Round Table forum in each Chalk Talk assignment's respective topic.

Spot 

2. Get frequently selected for the Gamespotting Editorial Feature!

The Gamespot staff is always hard at work keeping the site in ship shape, but they also love seeing fresh ideas and discussions in your blogs! Hence, there's GameSpotting, a special section where Gamespot staff members select their favorite blogs and feature them! Hand-picked by the staff, GameSpotting is a showcase of new talent and exciting discussions on gaming. Wanna be up for GameSpotting feature status? PM a link to your blog to our wonderful Community Manager @Synthia or email community@gamespot.com. As with Chalk Talk, you can also have your blog peer reviewed on the Writers Round Table forum. Just post a link to your blog in a topic there!

Ranger 

3. Get noticed and/or recommended by a Gamespot Ranger, Moderator, Justicar, or Staff Member!

Repeated participation in the blogging community is sure to gather some attention from everyone. If your blog catches the eye of one of the Gamespot community elite, you can be up for Awesome User Blog consideration too. The Rangers and Moderators populate Gamespot, keeping the content in line for everyone's enjoyment. Check out The Moderator Collective union to see who could be watching your blog for top-grade content, as well as The Ranger Ravine for potential watching in the Ranger world!

As for the Justicars, I'm sure you know who they are. They take care of the Writers Round Table union! If you're up for learning more about these titans of the Table, check out the Meet The Justicars page here.

If you still are looking for an audience, remember that the Gamespot staff are watching out for quality work as well!

The Gamespot community is one of the pillars of the Gamespot site, so your content is immensely valuable! Got something interesting to say? Write up a blog. Have fun, and who knows? You might see your blog on the front page before you know it!

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ShadowofSonic

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#2 ShadowofSonic
Member since 2009 • 24616 Posts

Eh, I guess I'll finally break down and do some chalk talks. >__>

I slave away to only write the finest blogs, but alas, I'm ignored like a pebble of little stone...

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BLaverock

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#3 BLaverock
Member since 2013 • 71 Posts
Thanks for the info, Synthia!
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experience_fade

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#4 experience_fade
Member since 2012 • 347 Posts

This is great thread, with great advice.

I really feel like I've been putting out some quality blogs over the past month. I'm on #17!   

To be honest, I feel like I've been blacklisted. Like, my name is on the list of people who won't get featured, no matter what. 

If this is the case, it doesn't anger me, and I'm not trying to sound confrontational...I'd just like to know why. I'm always lacking input on this whole process!

 

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ShadowofSonic

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#5 ShadowofSonic
Member since 2009 • 24616 Posts

If this is the case, it doesn't anger me, and I'm not trying to sound confrontational...I'd just like to know why. I'm always lacking input on this whole process!

 

experience_fade

^This.

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zyxe

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#6 zyxe  Moderator
Member since 2005 • 5340 Posts

Now, at present, I don't have a say in who receives the Soapbox Emblem and thus who can choose which of their blogs may be featured in the AUB; however, I am unaware of anyone being blacklisted and wholeheartedly doubt that is the case. 

It can take years of blogging to receive the emblem. In addition, you have to do what Synthia mentions below. There are thousands of GS members, many of which write blogs and I an only imagine how difficult it must be to notice any particular blogger except by following Synthia's advice. 

Personally, and no offense, but a month of writing is not that long, and even if you are prolific during that month, I would guess that there is more to achieving the emblem than that. The Soapbox Emblem gives the user a lot of power, and I have to think that people bestowing these to bloggers understand the longer-term implications that the emblem holds since, once obtained, you may post to the AUB at your own discretion (which may or may not be a good thing, but that's how it currently is). I also wonder how long it takes for the powers that be to review blogs, who knows, perhaps they only review submissions every so often and you may not even be considered for a month or so.

One other thing I'd like to note is that writing to simply be featured is one thing, but writing because you enjoy it is another, and people can often tell the difference, even if only subconsciously. I write because I enjoy it, and it's awesome to have the emblem, but I would still be writing even without it. 

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-Saigo-

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#7 -Saigo-
Member since 2006 • 301 Posts

This is great thread, with great advice.

I really feel like I've been putting out some quality blogs over the past month. I'm on #17!   

To be honest, I feel like I've been blacklisted. Like, my name is on the list of people who won't get featured, no matter what. 

If this is the case, it doesn't anger me, and I'm not trying to sound confrontational...I'd just like to know why. I'm always lacking input on this whole process!

 

experience_fade

Personally, I wrote for over a year without getting a comment. Either way, if you continue to post here we'd be more than happy to help you along the way as long as you're willing to take positive criticism. Earning a Soapbox emblem is not an easy task, but being featured can be earned with a single, albeit brilliant, blog.  

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-Saigo-

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#8 -Saigo-
Member since 2006 • 301 Posts
[QUOTE="experience_fade"]

If this is the case, it doesn't anger me, and I'm not trying to sound confrontational...I'd just like to know why. I'm always lacking input on this whole process!

 

ShadowofSonic

^This.

Post some of your work sir, I'd be more than happy to take a look and get you into the limelight. 

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experience_fade

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#9 experience_fade
Member since 2012 • 347 Posts

I completely understand the points you raise, zyxe, and I sincerely appreciate your feedback.

I think what Sonic and I are wondering revolves around those that are currently featured. There are many, many great featured users who post amazing blogs; that much is clear. But there are also a few (that are featured) who aren't really writing about anything gaming related. Is that okay? If it is, that's completely fine, but that's where our confusion comes from in the first place--AUB hopefuls have almost no information about the entire featured process.

When we're trying to win Pulitzers with every released editorial, it's tough to understand why we're not getting any feedback (from staff, rangers, justicars or otherwise), especially when another person has a featured blog (that's grammatically inaccurate and all of maybe 300 words) discussing the ins and outs of Despicable Me 2.

I absolutely loved Synthia's post, and if I'm gleaning everything I can from it, I'd wager that posting about movies or music isn't really what being featured on the home page of a gaming website is all about. After all, Chalk Talk topics never relate to anything that isn't about gaming, right?

Based on my observations, I've come to the conclusion that the featuring process is done in "waves." Occasionally, maybe once every month or so (depending on how busy the powers that be are with other, understandably more important things), a group of people are given the Soapbox Emblem. I'm not sure if anyone has had their Emblem revoked within the past few months, but this whole process is something that I've come up with only because I don't have much information.

I just wish that there was someone I could talk to who is actually involved with handing out the Soapbox Emblem. I've talked with you before (I think), Synthia, Jody back when she worked here, and a few others, and everyone essentially said, "I'm not involved in the selection process." So who is?

Before I hit submit, I just want to reiterate that I'm not trying to come across as irate. I harbor no ill feelings, I'm just trying to explain my position regarding featured user blogs.

Having more information would be absolutely incredible. 

 

Edit: Saigo, I'll PM you one of the blogs I'm most proud of, if you don't mind. 

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zyxe

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#10 zyxe  Moderator
Member since 2005 • 5340 Posts
This may answer some questions. I searched for "Soapbox Emblem" on GS' search function and it popped up pretty quickly.
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AK_the_Twilight

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#11 AK_the_Twilight
Member since 2008 • 286 Posts
Glad to help, Synthia. ;)
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ShadowofSonic

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#12 ShadowofSonic
Member since 2009 • 24616 Posts
[QUOTE="ShadowofSonic"][QUOTE="experience_fade"]

If this is the case, it doesn't anger me, and I'm not trying to sound confrontational...I'd just like to know why. I'm always lacking input on this whole process!

 

-Saigo-

^This.

Post some of your work sir, I'd be more than happy to take a look and get you into the limelight. 

Here's a random one.

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rigbybot127

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#13 rigbybot127
Member since 2011 • 269 Posts
Thanks for the suggestions, Synthia! I have been writing more complex, professional articles/reviews (including my Top Ten Greatest Damn Video Games of All-Time list, which has continued to get at least a 100 views every day since May 30th of this year) for about 3 months now, coincidentally around the time when I started working for Leet Gamers Asia. Writing is a well-revered past time of mine, and something I enjoy doing almost as much (or possibly more) as gaming. This'll be paramount in allowing for more people to experience (and possibly enjoy) my pieces, which I paste to my GS blog around a day or two after I post it on Leet Gamers Asia.
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zyxe

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#14 zyxe  Moderator
Member since 2005 • 5340 Posts
I think it's best to start posting our submissions in separate threads so that they can be reviewed and not distract from the discussion at hand :P
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Jakeykins

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#15 Jakeykins
Member since 2013 • 25 Posts
Great article Synthia, I suppose just getting your voice out there, to as many people as possible, is what it's all about! ^^
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#16 zyxe  Moderator
Member since 2005 • 5340 Posts
Except now the AUB is hidden and we have the ridiculously moldy GameSpotting feature that hasn't been updated in over 60 days. Why didn't the editors simply find some fresh articles for the feature before posting it on the front page (and with a completely wrong link to finding the details about this "new" feature, nonetheless)?
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WTA2k5

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#17 WTA2k5
Member since 2005 • 3999 Posts

Except now the AUB is hidden and we have the ridiculously moldy GameSpotting feature that hasn't been updated in over 60 days. Why didn't the editors simply find some fresh articles for the feature before posting it on the front page (and with a completely wrong link to finding the details about this "new" feature, nonetheless)?zyxe

Yeah I was wondering about all that. I just wrote an article a couple days ago that I was hoping could be considered for featuring but now I'm really not sure how the whole system is supposed to work.