TPAB’s Top Ten: Things I Learned From Six Years of Blogging and Reviewing (Part 5 of 10)

I’m done with the things I learned as a blogger, so now I’m moving to the reviewer side of things. Ok, this one is kinda in between but you decide for yourselves. The rest are very review minded, since, shocker, I’m a reviewer. 

So, yeah, this one sounds a bit condescending and I apologize in advance. It also sounds a bit delusional on my end. I don’t do a lot of posts like this, but I’m an honest guy. This is something I did learn this year, and this is just my point-of-view, my opinion, on the matter. I assure you, it’s a weird stance on such a trivial thing. I know that myself as I re-read it, but I’m sharing it nonetheless. Thank you for understanding. 

5. MAL Synopsis

One thing I noticed when I browse other reviews here in WP is that they would copy-paste the synopsis of the show from MAL. In fact, it’s actually a really popular thing to do, for some reason. Now, this is a small pet peeve of mine and I’m sorry if you do this. This is just my personal opinion, so please just take it with a grain of sort. I really hate it when people copy-paste the synopsis from MAL. Why are you even doing this? Can you not come up with a synopsis of your own? When I read a review, and I read the opening paragraph and then a long synopsis taken from MAL, I stop reading. Sometimes, the synopsis from MAL is longer than the review. Seriously, what are you doing? Are you not confident enough to write your own synopsis of the show you experienced for yourself? I personally don’t like this because it comes off as a bit robotic. Some reviews would start by listing the studio, number of episodes and the genre. That’s fine, because that’s an undisputed fact. The MAL synopsis isn’t, so please stop it.

A review, a blog post, is about the blogger sharing their ideas and thoughts about the anime. I love reading people’s interpretation of a show, and I love it when they do their best to really express themselves. Their point-of-view can be very interesting. By not giving your own synopsis, you’re basically telling me that you’re too lazy to give us an idea of the show or you don’t have the confidence to truly describe the show. What you don’t understand is that this kind of obstacle, having a hard time to describe a show, is part of a blogger or a reviewer’s growth. Some shows are hard to describe or give a basic gist, but that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try. That does not mean you should just copy-paste the synopsis from MAL. I guarantee you that whatever description you have of the show is better than the ones in MAL. That site shouldn’t be held in that high of a regard, because trust me, they don’t know what the hell they’re doing.

Did you know that MAL didn’t used to put the show’s season airing in its description? Once upon a time, some idiot would go “this anime is part of the Fall 2012 lineup”, and he’d make a list of the shows airing with links to his review of each show. Now, I am not saying I personally had a hand in influencing MAL, since seasonal lineups has always been a thing. Back when you had to hear a dial-up get murdered before logging into the internet, some dedicated people would release a list of the shows that others can look forward to in each season. MAL never really cared for seasonal listings though, until very recently. I’d like to think its MAL giving me a nice courtesy by helping me look up a show better, but the bunch of us that put emphasis on the seasonal listings influenced MAL greatly.

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Dude, random bloggers on the internet, with very little presence, made MAL care. They even personally reached out to me to write posts for them a long time ago. I’m telling you this because MAL is run by people and these people also reads your blog. I never thought of working for MAL, but they knew I exist. They read my blog, and I’m pretty sure they’ll be happy to read yours too if you put enough passion in your post. Start by not following their damn lead. A small description from the blogger is a huge thing, because passion is something that can influence others, even a big deal site like MAL.

I also just notice that they added the original source of the anime, for some reason. It’s like there’s a reviewer out there that puts emphasis on an anime’s original source. Again, I’m claiming nothing, but if MAL does read my posts, maybe comment from time to time, maybe.

Full List

1. The Diversity of the Anime Tag
2. The Blogger Dilemma
3. Collabs are fun
4. Friendly yet Reclusive
5. MAL Synopsis
6. Episodic Review is a Hard yet Interesting Adjustment
7. Dramatical Murder and Yosuga no Sora
8. The Special Secret Relationship of the Fans of the Original Source and the Anime Staff
9. The Faithful Adaptation of a Bad Anime Paradox
10. Hurdles and Setbacks Makes Life More Interesting

29 thoughts on “TPAB’s Top Ten: Things I Learned From Six Years of Blogging and Reviewing (Part 5 of 10)

    • ‘Yes, sir.’ was the first thing that came into my mind after reading this entry.
      Natamaan ako bruh. XD Guilty ako. I do this all the time and I admit, it is kinda lazy. Di pa kasi aku ganun ka confident when it comes to synopsis.
      Good timing though. With my newly regained confidence (thanks to all of u), I have plans on changing up my style in writing my entries. 😄😄😄😄

      • peace.
        paxenxa n ah, opinyon ko lng nmn to eh. pero I never noticed you do it, lol. Ibang tao inisip ko.
        at wala nmn masam tlga if you do it, because POV ko lng tlga. a personal pet peeve

        • I understand bruh 🙂
          May plano naman talaga aku magchange ng format sa reviews ko…so in a way, u reminded me about that plan lol. Heheheheh XD

  1. Guilty as charged I am, Pantless 😛
    That wasn’t a thing I had even considered to be honest. Now that you’ve said it, it certainly makes a lot more sense to write our own synopses to properly and wholly be called ‘my/our review’.
    Oh, or maybe it would work to review the synopsis itself too! (:D)
    *
    Thanks for sharing!!

      • I believe in the principle that you are trying to bring across though – It may help a reader/viewer understand a show’s premise better, especially when the synopsis is vague or not very informative.
        So yeap, gracias~ for the enlightenment 🙂

  2. Thank you! When I do synopses, I talk about it with my own words instead of copying and pasting from other sites to describe the plots. Seriously, people need to be more creative when they explain what they’re reviewing.

  3. I’ll admit if I’m creating a watchlist, or preview list, of the shows that I want to watch for the upcoming simulcast season, I will copy synopsis from whatever sources have a cohesive one. But that’s usually because I don’t really know enough to create my own. But for reviews or first impressions, etc., I feel it makes the review even more personal to have your own unique synopsis. For me that sometimes is the most creatively challenging part, especially if the show is supremely multi-dimensional or has a convoluted premise. But once I have a synopsis I am happy with, it makes it much easier to write the rest of the review because it helps me get my thoughts and shit together regarding what I wanna say.

    • exactly my point. I’m glad you try to make synopsis for the challenging ones, because I know how tough it is to really start it and make the synopsis interesting.

  4. I try to keep my synopsis short and very stilted to just the first chapter. I want to explain the story in my review and then point out the good and bad. Like you said, if you have a long overview of the story, why am I going to read the review? I already know a bunch about it, especially if it’s something I can read elsewhere.

    • I totally agree. You know the story and the anime, so it’s not hard to control info flow for your review
      but this is really just a minor complaint from me.

  5. I always thought copy-pasting MAL synopses was lazy, so I don’t know why WordPress reviewers tend to rely on them so much aside from it being a matter of convenience. Considering my area of blogging expertise isn’t reviews though, I probably won’t need to worry because I don’t think MAL will be paying attention to me any time soon…

  6. I could not agree more. One expects that people who blog love to write from their own perspective, so why copy and paste a review from another site? It can be very tempting when you have little to say about an anime yourself. In those cases, I would still rather just write a one sentence review of “It was fun” or “I liked it for some nebulous reason” than copy and paste someone else’s review.

  7. Guilty as everyone else lol 😂😂 Honestly it is me being super lazy because I tend to write them last minute as a way of procrastination so I don’t want to put a lot of thought into them. I know, terrible of me which is why I haven’t written a series review in a while now. I want to put more effort into them so I’m waiting for when I have more time to write ones that I’m actually happy with and have put a decent amount of thought into.

  8. Pingback: Anime Thoughts: Youkoso Jitsuryoku Shijou Shugi no Kyoushitsu e | _LIFEisAniMovie_

  9. I get where you come from. It seems like cutting corners, true.
    But I’d like to give a different perspective to our too. Say if your post was about discussing a characters traits and analysis from a series that isn’t really popular, but you want others to start the series after hearing about the said character? Then a synopsis is essential for the readers not to be confused but at the same time, the synopsis isn’t the highlight of the post. At the time, a screen shot of the synopsis from MAL or any other site would give the required background without wasting the reader’s time because they’re expected to skim through it.
    Well not like I’m one to talk. If you see my OWLS post on Kiss and Never Cry, my synopsis ran a lot longer than I’d have liked, but I couldn’t copy paste because I didn’t want to haha.

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