Earlier this year, I updated my blogroll page by adding a section to identify Dormant Blogs. These are blogs that are no longer being updated because the blogger lost interest or decided to take a break from blogging.
That update was done in response to a reader who shared his frustration about blogrolls that contained links to inactive blogs, or worse, stale links that no longer link to blogs at all. While stale links should most definitely be removed, I don't think removing links to dormant blogs is a good idea.
A blog may become dormant due to unavoidable circumstances, or just because a blogger wants to take a break. Unless the blogger announces his or her intent to stop blogging, either temporarily or permanently, how would I know to remove the link from my blogroll or to move it to the dormant section?
My answer is that I consider blogs to become dormant if the last post is more than 2 months old. If I'm made aware of that, I'll move the link to the dormant section. Conversely, if the owner of a dormant blog resumes blogging, then the blog is no longer dormant and I'll reinstate the block in one the active sections on my blogroll page.
I added more sections to my blogroll page. To distinguish between new blogs and established blogs, I separate links by date of first post. I classify blogs that are less than one year old as New Blogs. While it takes commitment to continue blogging even for a year, we're talking about topics such dividend growth investing, passive income generation, and working towards financial freedom or early retirement. These are not single year endeavors.
Another distinction I like to make is based on the frequency of posts. Blogs that have at least 50 posts in the past year are Active Blogs. By this measure, readers can expect a new post every week or so, on average. While not the greatest measure of activity (and certainly not of quality), I feel it is important to distinguish between the occasional blogger and those that are really committed to blogging frequently. Blogs that have fewer than 50 posts in the past year are Steady Blogs.
I also added a section to my blogroll page to identify blogs with subscription-based or member-only access to material, called Subscription Blogs. While these blogs offer free access to some material, the greatest benefit is obtainable only by paying a fee. Fee-based material include e-books, courses, stock analyses, stock recommendations, or portfolio access.
I've updated the criteria I use for Honor Roll Blogs. These are blogs that have been active for several years and contain high quality or inspirational articles. As explained earlier, active means weekly posts, on average. High quality and inspirational are subjective criteria, of course. The blogs in the Honor Roll are well-known and popular blogs and the owners frequently motivate other bloggers through posts and comments.
Finally, I still highly value blogs that include a public portfolio. I mark blogs with public portfolios with ¶, which links directly to the public portfolio. Seeing the stocks in a public portfolio gives a quick overview of the blogger's investment philosophy, even if no other details are provided.
Of course, I prefer to see details! In my view, full disclosure is best because it is most helpful for learning. My portfolio page shows an up-to-date status of my portfolio, including the market value, dividend details, and annualized profit/loss for individual holdings. It is a little painful to see evidence of the mistakes I've made earlier, but that just enhances my learning. Mistakes are great if you learn from them!
I can appreciate that other bloggers may not be comfortable to divulge detailed information, such as the market size of individual holdings or detailed profit/loss data. In such cases, it would be useful to know the relative size of individual holdings. Though much less informative than full disclosure, at least readers can determine if some holdings are deemed to be more important than others.
My interest in public portfolios stems partly from some research I did on the stock holdings of other DGI bloggers. I published two articles on my findings.
In February 2014, I compiled a spreadsheet combining the holdings of 20 public portfolios and revealed the 31 most popular dividend growth stocks held by these bloggers.
In October 2014, I expanded the spreadsheet to the combined holdings of 61 DGI bloggers and compiled a portfolio of 52 stocks, called The Blogger's Dividend Growth Portfolio. At the time, McDonald's (NYSE:MCD), Coca-Cola (NYSE:KO), and AT&T (NYSE:T) topped the list of most popular dividend growth stocks held by DGI bloggers on my blogroll.
I'm busy updating the spreadsheet and preparing to write a new article on The Blogger's Dividend Growth Portfolio. Based on initial results, a new number one stock tops the list of most popular dividend growth stocks! I'm looking forward to sharing the results!
Finally, I don't actively look for new blogs to include on my blogroll page. If you read this and you have a blog that is not listed, please nominate it for inclusion. You can do this by providing information (such as a link to your blog) in a comment below this post, or on my blogroll page.
Feel free to nominate other blogs, too!
Full Disclosure: Long KO, MCD, T
Thanks for reading! Do you have a public portfolio on your blog? Do you share detailed information? Why or why not? Please comment below!