Iris Draak rote a hub about the Demon of Banality. Her hubs and the comments it received, got me thinking about whether or not HubPages is appropriate for a discussion of serious issues or if that the road to oblivion.
Recipes, crafts, and humorous essay appear to do very well. Can a writer be successful on HubPages with hubs about serious, and even controversial, issues? I have done both light and serious hubs. My serious hubs are done with as much objectivity as I can muster and with respect for opposing views. I think HubPages can be a platform to inform and persuade on important issues.
What do you think? Have you tackled issues? If so, what was your experience?
I've only ever written two. One I deleted, because after the first few weeks it didn't get any traffic. The other gets very little traffic. If I feel strongly about an issue, I'd still write it.
@CatherineGiordano, I really do not have any way of knowing for sure how to answer your question on HubPages, but I recently read "The DEATH PENALTY: aka "Capital Punishment": by fpherj48. Something is turning in my spirit since, that perhaps I need to dig down and get a lot more serious about researching a controversial topic of interest on HP.
* See: http://fpherj48.hubpages.com/hub/The-DE … Punishment
I have two hubs that del with the death penalty. Thou Shall Not Kill and The Hangman's Plea. It is part of what prompted my question. I'm so pleased that the hub got you thinking. Perhaps my hubs will get you to think more. I think we have a death penalty because people don't think about it very much.
Unfortunately, no. A web article on a serious subject will most likely get close to no traffic; with a few exceptions, of course, but that's hit or miss. it's not Hubpages fault, it has to do with what people look for on the Web. Unfortunately, the population on the planet is generally not serious. Writing for the Web is a game of finding out what people are looking for; if you want traffic and earnings, anyway. I do, because otherwise I'm wasting time. I can keep a journal at my desk if I just want to write for the so-called "love" of it.
If your primary reason to write about social issues, injustices, or other important topics is to earn a lot of money it's extremely unlikely you'll see monetary success. It might also decrease your chances of having any other kind of success with such articles or editorials unless you are spectacular at emulating passion.
I had zero intention of earning any money off my assortment of articles and editorials on serious issues. I chose only such serious issues as I'm actually personally involved with and passionate about and I wrote them as a way to give that passion substance, to help people, and to change minds. I've made thousands of dollars off them.
Two pieces I have on HP have made about $4,000 between them since I created them on Squidoo. I consider neither of them my most successful pieces on those issues. My most successful pieces in real terms are my pieces on homelessness that have resulted in charitable giving, new charities starting up, children having access to them in schoolwork, individuals feeling confident enough to act on social issues, and people using them to better their own situations. They, on average, have earned a few hundred dollars each. I wrote them expecting they'd get maybe a few dozen views each, ever, and that was plenty to make the effort feel worthwhile.
A piece on something important to you can have enough success to make it worthwhile if it so much as influences one person to be a little more kind even if just in their thoughts.
You can always write other stuff for money to support your world-changing habit.
Kylyssa, I admire your thinking about the meaning of success. Your words inspire me. I saw a comment on somebody else's hub about the death penalty where the person said, "You've made me see this differently." There can be no success better than that.
You nailed it in just a few sentences. A single comment like that one makes it obviously worthwhile. I see their like all over on Hubs.
I seem to lose my ability to crank out the writing I need to to earn a living unless I remind myself how powerful writing can be and how much I love having a voice every once in a while by writing my passions.
Were you addressing me with this reply/comment?
How are you defining/qualifying the words "successful" and "serious?"
Serious means controversial subject or weighty discussion of a social issue, for instance, homelessness, hunger, death penalty. Successful means getting an average number of views or higher based on the writer's own stats.
The majority of my views come from my pieces on homelessness except on "crafting holidays" when my related craft hubs take off.
Good answer Catherine, I like how you gauge success..not on the amount of money you make but by comparison of views to your norm.
This would depend on what your hub is about. I appreciate hubs that are on medical issues and give education to the reader. Then there are hubs about political issues, things happening in the news. If the hub is written in an informative way and not to complain then why not? I would however research these type of hubs to make sure the facts are correct. Hubs that are of serious issues require serious research and facts. This is just my opinion.
Recipes and humorous essays do not do well on HubPages. They will get traffic from other Hubbers, but our community is small so that's not "doing well".
Whta does well on HubPages is anything which people are searching for online, which isn't well catered for elsewhere. That's why "how to" articles tend to do well, because people are often searching for how to do things. It's why recipes tend NOT to do well, because there are so many huge recipe sites already in existence.
Hubs take time to rank in the search engines, so Hubs about current news items are usually a waste of time - by the time they get ranked, the news is over. However Hubs about serious long-standing issues can do well, if it's the kind of thing people are likely to search for.
HubPages is what one makes of it. For some, it is a blog where they can express their ideas and/or just gab about the everyday commonalities. For others, it is an apprenticeship of sorts where they hone their writing skills before progressing to other writing ventures whether it is book, a magazine, or a screenplay. For a few, it is a place where complex issues are discussed, delineated, and solutions suggested. HubPages is a wonderful writing experience but one has to be serious about his/her writing craft!
Me personally, I enjoy serious hubs just as much as the useful ones. I thinkt hat it's important that serious issues are discussed and meditated upon. I also think it's important that differing opinions are met with respect as well.
As far as traffic goes - I can't say either way.
While I didn't originally tackle serious issues on HubPages, I did so on Squidoo and the result has become that I have such content on HubPages.
I think I will continue to put content of its type up on HP because, while the views dropped with the transfer after the initial temporary boost, they've been slowly but steadily increasing. They are following a similar pattern of growth to that which followed their original publication as lenses.
Anyway, the point of all that is that the reception of the material by the web audience appears to be the same as it was when the same material was hosted by Squidoo. Their performance on Squidoo was extremely gratifying. People have started charities claiming to have taken inspiration from one piece and another was picked up to go into a children's social issues textbook. That's not me; that's the awesomeness of the audience. The audience for such sites seems to run heavy on people who enjoy being reminded of how kind they are and how powerful that is.
I highly recommend writing on the topics you are seriously passionate about, especially those which may appeal to people striving to be more kind and thoughtful. We have one of the smartest, most connected, most empathetic audiences in history any time we write on the web. And people love to share what they feel passionate about. If you write about it, they can share their passion with your words.
Thank you Kylyssa. You are very encouraging. I did a hub about atheism (positive content titled (Good without God) and after that I felt like other hubbers were not reading/commenting as much in the past. I felt like perhaps I made people angry even tho I did not say anything bad about religion and just tried to explain the atheists' viewpoint. Maybe it was just co-incidence.
I actually don't plan on adding much content about atheism to HubPages except what I've already got written. Hub commenters just aren't as civil in comments as folks who commented on Squidoo and I'm not willing to take personal attacks on HP for atheism. I'll take them for the homelessness issues hubs and I'll keep making new ones because encouraging the kind and humane treatment of poor people is well worth taking abuse for.
There's no point in stirring up the intolerance brigade. I haven't had a death threat as a result of a post about atheism anywhere online in about a month and I'd like to keep it that way.
I have written one article at hubpages on serious issues. That is about hazards of smoking my first article. But I didn't receive much audience. I would like to write much about such things. On my website also I blog about social issues mostly, in spite of low audience. I would like people to write on serious issues of society and do some good for betterment of our life on earth.
The post title has a lot to do with traffic. Are you using keywords in the body of the hub as well?
No. I do not use any key words at hubpages. And exactly, I even do not know how to do that. On my other website, I copy and paste some search words from the browser into my articles. I think that is the way of using keyword.
But, hubpages format itself is so good that I do not expect using keywords.
Craft hubs do OK; humorous articles, not so much. Most of my articles are serious, in that I am sincere about what I am saying, and they are things that matter to me.
I don't write about politics, because there is plenty of that around, by more articulate people than I. Also, I don't enjoy the hostility that it engenders.
I don't write about religion, because I don't like to read such things, and I don't care whether or not people believe the same things I do.
So, I guess it depends on what you mean by "serious."
Most of my hubs are on serious issues even though some are disguised as humour or poetry. I found those avenues are the best way to get a message across without sounding like you are preaching. Whether they attract traffic, well among Hub Pages they do, outside maybe not so much however my main aim is to wright about things I am passionate about and want to raise awareness of more than making money from them. I believe Hub Pages is an excellent place for that.
I think it's important for us as people to have an avenue where we can say what we want to about issues. I've used some hubs to talk about some issues that are dear to my heart. I tend to agree with Jodah's comment above. I don't really want to write about anything that I don't have a passion for.
I also realize that not everyone shares that passion and that's OK as long as they enjoy what they do read of my writing.
I also agree with Jodah. HubPages is an excellent platform for articles on the serious issues in life. One example is on saving Earth, being kind to Nature - both Jodah and I (and others) have articles on being aware of the importance of the care and respect for planet Earth.
Including personal experiences and opinions on subjects is a good idea, for it gives our readers assurance that we know what we are writing about - as long as the whole hub is not about one's self.
Recipes, crafts, how to's, are always good hubs, but there is more to life than that. Creative stories, poetry, historical events, spirituality, and so much more is what makes HubPages a great place to write for and to come to for tons of information on just about any subject.
Thank you Jodah and Phyliss. I feel the same. Everyone now and then (maybe 10% of my hubs), I write something on a serious issue. Thank you for encouraging me to write about issues I care about.
I was wondering about this very topic as I signed up for Hubpages. A lot of the initial advice centered on finding a "niche", which I found to go against my personal type of subject matter, which could be described as "scattershot." My interests tend to cover almost everything, so a "niche" wasn't really my thing. Insofar as "serious" articles go, I have one social style article about illiteracy that is sitting about 4th in comparison to my other articles. I just started and have only around three weeks or so ago and have only posted twenty articles or so, so it is difficult to judge. Personally, I tend to read other Hubbers more thoughtful or serious articles as opposed to the requisite "Top Ten Lists." I don't think I will allow visitor numbers to sway what articles I write about. I write topics that interest me in such a way as to hopefully make others interested in them, so that is my goal.
I am of a similar mindset JTRyder. I refuse to be confined to a niche and I write about whatever interests me or inspires me at the time. I don't write to please the Google Gods. I feel if a subject interests me, there must be others out there who it will interest as well. Write whatever gives you passion.
I've written quite a few hubs on 'serious' topics, mostly designed to educate people about the mis-handling of funds, and poor business practices of large corporations, namely public utilities, insurance, cable broadcasting, and the like.
They have gotten virtually no traffic, and few comments.
People don't seem to want to become educated anymore; they only want to be entertained.
It makes me fear for the future of this country!
You are right. Most of them don't like others teach them morals and honesty. They feel belittled and annoyed if somebody talks on such matters.
I have 33 hubs. My most widely read two hubs are about battered men, and husbands/boy friends and the Caste System in the Philippines. This would indicate, there are a lot of hub readers that read serious issues here on Hub pages. Good Day
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