Over the last few months I have participated in several swaps. As a general rule, all have been pleasant experiences. I love the idea of "stalking" someone and trying to figure out what would make them happy. Finding new friends and discovering new blogs are all a part of the fun. That is why I do swaps and why I will continue to swap.
By nature I am a rule follower. Lay out the guidelines and I will follow them to a T, breaking them only to exceed. Tell me I have to have an active blog, I do it. Post to a special blog? Check! Reply to my upstream partner and let them know how much I love their gifts? Got it! Send nice goodies to my downstream pal in a timely fashion? Yup! Brag publicly on my blog and a group blog about goodies I've received? Roger!
How do I feel about people who don't follow the basic rules? Mean. Grumpy. Unwilling to acknowledge subsequent contact due to an inability to be nice while feeling not so nice.
My feelings about Angels? Love them! I've volunteered to be one in the past but had to be Angeled myself in two recent swaps. I promise to volunteer to Angel in future swaps. No one should feel unappreciated because their partner bailed on them.
Both upstream and downstream partners have responsibilities and should fill them so that all parts of a swap feel appreciated. If you don't like your gifts? Fake it! Sometimes you take a chance and it is all a part of the fun of the exercise.
My thanks to all my wonderful partners and Angels. You guys are all great!