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What Can We Learn From the Fall of Bubblews?

Bubblews is Dead

where-does-bubblews-fit-in-a-writers-world

On Bubblews, Every Voice Was Supposed to Be Important

This post is now historical, since Bubblews shut down its site in mid-November, 2015. We could just heave a sigh of relief that the months of agony of waiting for it to die are now over. Or we can reflect on what we might have observed earlier that might have prevented the loss of data and money earned that many experienced when the site closed.

I was a very active member of the site from February, 2013, until it showed signs of its approaching failure in December, 2014. I thought of just deleting this hub when I heard that the site had closed. But it seems better to let you see how it looked to me during my Bubblews experience. I have left some sections in the present tense as I first wrote them. Consider that an eye witness account of why many of us joined and stayed as long as we did. As you read, consider whether you would have stayed as long as some of us did. Which signs of the failure to come were visible months before the site died? What mistakes did many make that resulted in much wasted time and effort and the loss of their posts.

It's not all just water under the bridge now. We can take some of the lessons to be learned with us as we evaluated where we will continue to spend our time.

Are You a Bubbler Yet?

Update: MyLot is Back

MyLot is now back and paying its members again. You can connect with me as bagarad there. They no longer have an affiliate program. Those who left to join Bubblews are now coming back and they are bringing new friends from Bubblews with them. MyLot was good enough to leave all the content of members like me who had not closed their accounts intact. It was really easy to come back and be active again without skipping a beat. Payment is low, but better than other social networking sites, most of which don't pay anything. It is now one of the best places to connect with friends from many closed content writing sites.

My Journey to Bubblews

I heard about Bubblews from a friend at Gather. I suppose Gather is another site considered inferior by many writers, though a lot of real writers were hanging out there. It was a social networking site for those who liked to write. Just as on Bubblews, the quality of the posts varied. I was there because some Squidoo friends had mentioned it. While there, I made many new friends.

One or more of those friends mentioned a site called myLot, so I decided to check it out. It was a pay to post site and I guess there was more attached to it than its forum, but I never checked out the other parts of the site. It was a site that paid pennies for posting and commenting, and I enjoyed it more than Facebook because conversations tended to have more substance. It was also filled with people from places like the Philippines who desperately needed the pennies myLot was paying them.

I didn’t visit myLot much after I had attained the highest commenter score and also had posted enough to have all the privileges possible. But I had formed relationships and went there now and then to socialize. I discovered that many people I knew at myLot were also on Gather, even though the names were different.

It was about this time that Squidoo started making drastic changes that brought me back to it almost fulltime to try to prevent having any lenses locked. As it turned out, I never even had them flagged, but I was so busy editing and backing up lenses, just in case, that I neglected all other sites. I had stopped in at Gather for some conversation and a break when a friend mentioned Bubblews. Shortly after that, Gather seemed to go off line almost without notice.

Those who were also at myLot started spending more time there. But it seemed within days that myLot announced they were coming out with a revised and better interface for the site, and they were down for a bit. They also then announced they would no longer pay for participation. This started a furor, especially from those who really needed that $10 a week or so they worked so hard to earn. There was suddenly a mass exodus of refugees from Gather and myLot to Bubblews.

Why Bubblews? As one person put it, the money is good while it lasts. None of the writers I knew expected it to last. But my own earnings at Squidoo and HubPages were down to almost nothing. I decided to check Bubblews out. I was not expecting the next best writing site. I really had no expectations except a new adventure and staying in touch with friends I had already made at other sites. The money to be made seemed too good to be true, but I confess to wanting my share of it while it lasted. Gradually, disillusioned Squids whose lenses had been locked and Hubbers who had too many sleeping hubs began to appear.


The Bubblews Bubble has Finally Burst

where-does-bubblews-fit-in-a-writers-world

Bubblews as a Social Network

Note: This section was left as I wrote it when Bubblews was still active and it remains in the present tense, along with most of the next sections.

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Most of the people I know who have migrated to Bubblews from other sites, came for social networking and blogging instead of to publish articles. Judging from the words of the CEO, the real purpose of the site is to be a global voice, reflecting the mood, spirit, and thoughts of those from all over the world. From that perspective, maybe posts on what happened on the way to work or what people had for dinner, are not as unworthy as some writers think they are.

As far as I can tell, Bubblews is not another content site as such. It is a vast social network for anyone who can write in English and wants to be read. So if you are a writer expecting a site on which to publish your content, you might be disappointed that your work is appearing next to work you consider quite inferior to your own. If you compare the quality of work you see on Bubblews to that on HubPages, Wizzley, or some of the freelance sites, you will be disappointed. I suggest you compare it, instead, to Facebook or Google+.