I recently read a post by another respected blogger that there is an unwritten rule that bloggers must list a blog in their blogroll if that blog has done the same for them. Well, I would say there is a reason this rule is unwritten…because it makes no sense. Imagine if Darren at Problogger.net tried to follow this rule. The popular blogs would have to list Bubba’s Bait Blog in their blogroll just because Bubba’s smart enough to list the top blogs in his blogroll.
So the answer to the question is NO. You are not obligated to put anyone in your blogroll just because they have done the same. Well, unless you agreed to exchange these links beforehand. So if you’re not obligated to put their link in your blogroll, what should you do when listed in someone’s blogroll?
Of course, the first thing you want to do is visit the blog. When you find out that you are linked in someone’s blogroll, visit the site and read some of the content. If you like what you read, then you might consider putting the blog on your blogroll. It’s not an obligation, but there is no reason to not consider adding a blog you really like.
Then, send the blog owner an email (or at least a comment) thanking them for adding you to their blogroll. If there was an unwritten rule, this should be it. Always thank those that link to your blog.
I strongly believe that blogrolls should reflect the blogs that you read and consider among the best. If I like a blog, I will often check out their blogroll in hopes of finding additional blogging gems. So put your favorites in your blogroll as a treat for your readers.