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Interview with:

Ciobanu Nicolae [cby] 

What is your blog address? What subjects do you deal with?
agenda-mea.blogspot.com It's just a personal online diary.
What was it that made you create your blog? On what date did you start it?
I created my blog because I was curious about blogging. When I choosed the name (url) of the blog I had in mind the ideea of personal diary. This is what it becomed.
What blogging system have you adopted and why?
Blogger / Blogspot. Why? That is the question my online friends are asking me. Come to Wordpress self hosted they said. I still stay here because it is more friendly, more opened platform than wordpress.com. That's why. I will not embark on buying hosting and domain for a *personal* blog that has under 500 unique visitors weekly.
How many visits a day do you get? What type of comments do you receive?
Maximum 500 per week (you do the math for a day). Comments are rara avis on my blog. 111 comments for 340 posts.
How has 'having a blog' contributed to your life?
I must say it has a big enough contribution. I participated at conferences, blogger and twitterers meetings, at various offline events started and published online.
Have you created relationships with other bloggers or readers of your blog?
Yes, I have no more than 10 readers on rss feed, more directly on the blog, almost 500 followers on twitter and 88 friends on facebook. These persons often are the same on 2 or more networks. And of course I met a part of them in real life.
How often do you post? Does regular posting of your blog require a lot of effort on your part?
From once a week or even less, to 2 posts daily. Yes it would require an effort: time is the essence. Sometime I may spend 2-3 hours for a well made post. Of course I can also post a short article in just minutes.
Does blogging bring in income for you? Can one make a living from posting?
I tryed AdSense and also Profitshare but is useless, the traffic on my blog is very low. But I'm ok with that. One can, but surely I cannot.
How do you promote your blog?
Yes, I promote my blog on twitter, facebook and mybloglog.
How would you define your readers? Have you got a faithful audience?
Definitely my readers are of all ages, of all social categories, I welcome them all. I don't know really. Faithfull... I hope so. My rss readers are steadily remaining at 10. I know it is a very small figure. But I know they are many visiting my blog directly.
Have you ever received gifts for blogging about your opinion of products or services? What do you think of bloggers who do that?
No. I am not (yet) enlisted to such programs. But I may apply to a such site, where I can choose a subject (products/services) and write about it. It is called sponsored post if i am not wrong. I feel it is natural to write about a product and give your opinion on it. Paid or not.
How do you see your blog evolving in the future?
It will grow slowly but accumulating quality content (one can hope). I do not see changes in the near future: no self hosting, no changing platforms, no theme/template change, maybe -- maybe a .ro domain, but not right now.
What advice would you give to someone who wishes to begin a blog?
I do not think I am blogworthy enough to give know-it-all advices. Still: 1 Try to write better every time, to improve the quality of the content which is paramount. 2 The CMS (platform) is not that important (still if you think your blog more as niche/business way, then start on Wordpress and invest on domain and hosting later). 3. Find the theme/template that defines you, but keep in mind to have a good contrast in the text area.

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Ciobanu Nicolae
Bucharest, Romania

[cby] Ciobanu Nicolae
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