Since my “return” to WordPress.com and creation of this blog, the features I keep coming back to are the social ones: following other WordPress.com bloggers, and reblogging and liking their blog posts.
I like being able to do “social” things but not have to be in another system — Twitter, Facebook or Google Plus — to do it.
WordPress.com has always had a community feel. It’s always been easy to discover the work of other bloggers on the system and have them discover yours. But with the ability to interact with the social tools we’ve become accustomed to over the past few years, this connectness enhances the blogging experience.
I like being able to easily reblog or like a post and have that become part of my own blog. I feel a sense of “ownership” of my expression that I don’t get in Twitter, Facebook or G+. You can see all of my social activity right here in my blog timeline along with the rest of my blog posts.
The WordPress.com Reader is also a factor. The recent, planned demise of Google Reader doesn’t affect me because I don’t use it to organize RSS feeds. I do have Liferea set up in Debian, but I rarely use it. However, now that I’m in WordPress.com more often, I find myself using its Reader application to follow not only other WP.com blogs but also a bunch of sites that I tended to go to directly in the web browser — chiefly the Planet blogs for Debian, Ubuntu, Fedora and GNOME, (themselves aggregators of multiple blogs) with OMG! Ubuntu. I’ll add more as I go.
From what I know of Tumblr, social — liking and reblogging — is baked in, and it’s nice to see the same thing available at WordPress.com. Reader is just a nice convenience that gives me another reason to be logged in to WP.com.