What is cooperative blogging?

I am about to share with you a secret that successful bloggers all instinctively know but few understand – cooperative blogging.

What is cooperative blogging?

Cooperative blogging is when two or more bloggers conspire to cover the same topic. Usually, they do so from different perspectives and acknowledge the contributions of each other such that their readers are exposed to a wider discussion. This almost always leaves each blogger with more readers and creates a wider sense of community.

Rather than trying to write the definitive blog post, a blogger may open up the discussion and end with questions. Other blogs pick up on the post and write their own posts discussing the issue further. The first blogger can, then, revisit the original topic a little later and reference the work of others.

Much like with a trending hashtag, the wider community can enjoy many different perspectives, opinions, and views on the topic. Moreover, readers can join in by posting comments which might go on to become the subject of later posts.

In its simplest form cooperative blogging can simply be an interesting back and forth between two fascinating pundits.

Vroomfondel and Majikthise

Back in 2009, I dubbed this “the dance of Vroomfondel and Majikthise“. That itself comes from a quote from The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams. It is a quote from the world’s smartest computer.

“Yes,” declaimed Deep Thought, “I said I’d have to think about it, didn’t I? And it occurs to me that running a programme like this is bound to create an enormous amount of popular publicity for the whole area of philosophy in general. Everyone’s going to have their own theories about what answer I’m eventually to come up with, and who better to capitalize on that media market than you yourself? So long as you can keep disagreeing with each other violently enough and slagging each other off in the popular press, you can keep yourself on the gravy train for life. How does that sound?”

The idea is that a really sizzling debate that you and at least one other are enthusiastically engaged in can be very entertaining.

Of course, cooperative blogging does not have to be about disagreement. A friendly debate can be just as much about the agreement and perspective of new ideas, and respectfully referencing the work of others. The point is that when handled well, everyone wins. (Especially the readers).

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