Just Quit and Leave

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Dolphin Tale Wave

How often do we see big dramatic ends to blogs, declarations of account deletions, mass unfollowings on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.?

I’m not sure what anyone gains out of these posts and statements other than attention.

Personally, I find a pie in the face works just as well!

All jokes aside, I know some folks enjoy the discussion, but I don’t. It’s a waste of my bandwidth, and in the case of social networks, these declarations seem to cause more drama than anything else.

People don’t need to justify pulling the plug on anything online. How anyone chooses to invest their time is a personal choice!

Like anyone who has been out here long enough, I think about ending my blog, cutting massive amounts of my Facebook following, etc., etc. I think about it every week. That’s the truth.

And you know what? If I do it, expect me to pull the plug and that will be that.

When I end this blog, I promise to post a picture of a dolphin with a headline that says, “So Long, and Thanks for All the Blog Fish.” If you get that, you’ll know what’s up. And if you don’t, oh well, you’ll figure it out sooner or later.

Point being is if you’re really done, then be done, and leave. Why bother with the drama?

Make no bones about it, I won’t waste anyone’s time with unnecessary melodrama. I’ll just quit or unfollow, and be done with it.

What do you think makes a good exit?

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  • http://www.suzemuse.com/ Susan Murphy

    What makes a good exit? A graceful one. Compare it to what you’d do in your in-person life. If you quit your job, you don’t walk in to the office one day and announce it to everyone. You talk to your boss, then perhaps tell a few key colleagues. The rest of the people find out by chance or through the grapevine. Some people might approach you about it, ask questions. Others that you don’t work closely with may not even notice.

    So, if you’re going to make an exit, make it swift, and make it quietly. Tell a few key people if you need to, but do it privately.

    And if I ever ditch my blog, I may just steal your “So Long and Thanks for All The Fish” idea. :)

    • cdogzilla

      A good exit is one, that when announced, is permanent. The dramatic exit followed by the “I’m back!” a couple weeks later is one of the lamest moves I’ve seen in the blogosphere.

  • http://www.howardgreenstein.com/blog Howard Greenstein

    Drops mic. Walks off.

  • http://www.margieclayman.com Marjorie Clayman

    There is one exception (although it was probably misconstrued at the time). After the deaths of Trey Pennington and Bruce Serven, I announced on my blog that I was going to be taking a break pretty much across the board. Social Media was broken for me, and frankly I still haven’t gotten back to my rosy view of social media I had before all of that stuff.

    I wanted to make clear to the people who had come to get used to my presence online that I was leaving for awhile because of all of the ugliness that had ensued in the wake of those events, not just the events themselves. I still probably didn’t need to say anything, but it felt important to me, at the time, to point out how ugly the online world had become when there had been a chance to really come together.

    Maybe people thought I was just after attention, and maybe some people do such things just to get attention. You never really know what’s going on with folks though. Maybe they just need to feel wanted because real life isn’t doing it for’em, ya know?

    • http://milaspage.com/ Mila Araujo

      Margie, you bring up a really good point. One that is quite contrary to my own answer, but made me think this through a little more.

      Firstly, I agree with Geoff, just leave if you are going to leave.

      Seriously, people don’t need to read other peoples personal hissy fits -

      this being said, what you are referring to above wasn’t quite a “hissy fit” – it was appropriate to the nature of your blog , the tone in which you normally write (genuine, with personal working into business) and the relationship you have with your readers. Your action was very appropriate and respected your readers.

      Only the individual writer will understand the level of interaction and the demands placed on them by their followers. Margie, I would bet that if you didn’t write for 3 or 4 days, and didn’t update Facebook etc, people would start bugging you and making sure you’re okay. In fact I am pretty sure, because of your high engagement, this might happen after half a day. So It makes sense that you would share your personal thoughts on why you are taking a break, and especially necessary in your case if you leave. Why? Because that’s the relationship you have cultivated.

      At the end of the day, in writing, in engaging , in anything you do online, if you have an image, or are a certain way, even when you leave – you must be polite & continue proper form. Be appropriate to your circumstance.

      For most people who don’t invest the time to cultivate relationships and consistent daily interaction at high (personal) levels, then I don’t believe it is appropriate to spew all kinds of junk on your blog or negative information. Its not what your readers wanted…why would you do that?

      In a nutshell, it would seem to me people who get all nasty and critical and leave the online space in a huff are clearly doing so because they don’t feel support or they don’t feel they are getting value out of the work they put in. Maybe that’s the core of the problem. If you’re online and not getting support or value, maybe that’s what you need to think about – are you really doing your part in the first place?

      Are you writing to desperately try and get something out of it, or are you writing because you want to share, because you love what you do, because you appreciate the dialogue or feedback?

      Maybe it’s the disgruntled blogger whose own behavior created the nasty environment they want to run from in the first place…

      If people ask too much of us, we have to draw our boundaries and say no. If people harass us, we kind of need to ignore them, and move on, and curate our audiences, and if we are about to have a fit online, well maybe we step back and take a little break. Then decide what to do –

      I believe if you’re the kind of blogger to pitch fits online – this probably isn’t “new” to you, so you’ve probably curated an audience who eats that up.

      To each his own I guess. I for one prefer to be professional and respectful. If I closed my blog – I would likely leave with a thank you, because that’s what I think anyone who supports me (**at the very least*** deserves).

      Thank you for the thought provoking post Geoff and your very thought provoking comment Margie.

      Here’s to a New Year ahead full of though provoking articles, good friends, inspiration, innovation and success!

      :)

      Mila

  • http://twitter.com/KDillabough Kaarina Dillabough

    Exiting stage left. That.is.all. Cheers! Kaarina

  • http://twitter.com/hessiejones Hessie Jones

    I often wonder what leads me back to my blog, my twitter or Facebook. Sometimes I just don’t have the energy or even desire to hang out. There was a time when I needed the “love” and validation just as @MargieClayman:disqus pointed out. But I get a lot of that regardless IRL. Maybe it’s the connections I’ve made and the need to stay in touch. But I’d be hardpressed to believe that you can never really quit 100%. Where one door closes, another opens.

  • http://twitter.com/joewaters Joe Waters

    I don’t write for others. I write for myself. Blogging allows me to write without editors or publishers and without permission.

  • http://twitter.com/allenmireles Allen Mireles

    What makes a good exit? That’s probably different for everyone. For me, being courteous is important since you never know what’s (or who) waiting for you around the corner.

    The drama queen grand ultimatum doesn’t work for me and I am underwhelmed each and every time I see it. And then the abrupt departure from all things social without giving the folks you’ve been hanging out with a head’s up? (as some of us have just experienced in a certain Facebook group) Causes concern on the part of the people left behind. Or can.

    But in the end, it’s a personal choice, IMHO.

  • http://twitter.com/belllindsay Lindsay Bell

    LEAVE THE INTERWEBS….!?!? ;)

  • http://twitter.com/JonMikelBailey Jon-Mikel Bailey

    Playing in a band, my favorite way to end was to play to longest, loudest song we had, end, and walk off stage. No words, just done. I agree, when you’re done, you’re done. Be done and get the hell off the stage.

  • http://www.jasonkonopinski.com/ Jason Konopinski

    You’ve hit the nail squarely on the head: online activity (or inactivity) is a personal choice. When I choose to end the blog or podcast (which won’t happen for a very long time, believe me), it’ll be on my terms. I’ll announce it, give my reasons if appropriate, and move on.

  • http://www.redesign2.com/blog.html Paul Biedermann

    Ha! Well said, Jeff. We’ve seen this so many times now it’s laughable.

    It’s downright hysterical when some of these same people then come back and do it all over again. Or write a book, where interest is fueled by the drama of their own making as they promote some other new, latest, greatest thing. And they think we don’t notice. Funny stuff indeed.

  • MrTonyDowling

    The answer you are looking for is 42

    • http://gearboxmagazine.com/ Brian Driggs

      The answer to life, the universe, and everything. Class. Act.

      When life hands you lemons, put them in your hat.

  • http://b2bdigital.net/ Eric Wittlake

    Geoff, I agree it is a personal choice, but when people feel they have developed some type of relationship with you and that your action is essentially severing that relationship, a statement can be appropriate.

    I won’t reference the ones I didn’t like (and there have been a few big-headed, ego-filled ones), but one I did really like was Amber Naslund’s recent post. It provided insight into some other ways to view and manage Twitter that I found useful. Her post is here: http://www.brasstackthinking.com/2012/12/how-twitter-works-todayand-how-im-using-it-now/

    How should you leave? However is appropriate for you, the presence you have created and the message you want to spend.

    Cheers to the dolphins!

    • http://milaspage.com/ Mila Araujo

      well said! :)

  • http://www.thejackb.com/ The JackB

    Sometimes I think about posting a picture of a typewriter and nothing else, kind of similar to the way wrestlers leave their shoes on the mat.

  • http://releasingmetoday.com/ Deone Higgs

    I’m with Kaarina on this one, Geoff… To the left, to the left. :)

  • http://pegfitzpatrick.com/ Peg Fitzpatrick

    Always right on the money, Geoff.

    The “drama” folk always return to Facebook, Klout, their blog or whatever it was they were leaving forever.

  • http://twitter.com/ExtremelyAvg Brian D. Meeks

    I love Douglas Adams. I have “So Long And Thanks for All the Fish” Theme song on my iPhone. I’ve been blogging for three years, with very few followers and I’ve never once thought about quitting.

    • http://www.gold-boat.com/ Ellen Girardeau Kempler

      “I love deadlines. I love the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.” Douglas Adams

  • http://womeninbusinessradio.com Michele Price

    Fascinating reading everyone’s take. It does boil down to what works for you. If you have a relationship with me, you will know why I stop. It does not need to be announced. If we are only lightly connected via online then you might wonder. ( that or you are clueless ;)

  • http://alphaefficiency.com Bojan Djordjevic

    Drama used as a marketing tool.

  • http://richardrbecker.com/ Rich Becker

    It kind of depends on circumstance. I know one of my favorite communication bloggers just pulled the plug and left. He didn’t even leave the blog up. He took it done and that was that. I didn’t even know until he told me in person. But, if I were going to do it, I think I would just leave it all up, write one last great post (but not about why I was leaving), and that would be that. Most of the time when people say they are going to leave any space, it’s only to see if people will beg them to stay. You’re right. It’s kind of boring.

  • http://brianvickery.com/ Brian Vickery

    Hmm, now you have me thinking about cool exits…and I wasn’t even planning on leaving!

    I wouldn’t go off in a huff, but I would probably give folks a clue that I was shutting down. Maybe have a logo with “RSS” and a big stage hook w/my blog name being ripped off the RSS Reader stage?

  • Marc Zazeela

    Geoff,

    Almost like one last, feeble attempt at gaining attention that they thought they deserved.

    If you post on my blog “THIS IS THE LAST TIME I WILL COMMENT ON THIS CRAPPY BLOG” or “THIS PLACE SUCKS AND I’M OUTTA HERE”, do you think anyone really cares? Maybe your mother might, but even that’s doubtful.

    Cheers,
    Marc

    BTW – this is NOT my last comment on your blog. :-)

  • http://twitter.com/BeckyGaylord Becky Gaylord

    I love this post. And, the thoughtful, diverse comments it attracted (a great signal of a strong, compelling blog post!)

  • http://nickkellet.com/ Nick Kellet

    Big exits feel too much like hard work. And they don’t leave you much room for a change of heart. We often get mad in the moment, but reflecting can change our conclusions.

    I’d sleep on it. See how it feels the next day. I still don’t think leaving anything is that interesting, unless you a first. Being the first to leave, that feels more newsworthy.

    Be the meme, don’t follow.

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