Last week, Mary looked at 5 ways to keep your blogging buddies happy. Some of the comments and discussion that surrounded this topic was fascinating. I’ll be looking forward to adding some more work around areas of this place to make it more interesting to be here.
The one thing that I think deserves highlighting is that blogs are as much a social medium as an informational one. On more than one occasion I’ve learned something new through the comments that I have read to a post that I’ve written. I’ve also benefited from the discussion surrounding more controversial topics that I’ve covered. I think that blogging and comments let you say what you’re thinking and feeling and get reaction in ways that forums and other media do not allow.
So, with all that being said, here are my 5 reasons not to leave a comment on a blog:
1. You don’t want to the blog writer to know you are there.
Bloggers write because it’s fun to write, right? I mean, we aren’t out here writing, for the most part, because it’s making us great sums of money (though I’m sure it is for some). We’re not out here because we have to do it as part of class work. We like to write. So, you shouldn’t assume that the blogger cares if you’re reading– the point is that he’s put something out there and someone might read it.
All kidding aside, if there is some reason that you do not want the blogger to know that you’re there, you’d better check your heart and ask yourself why you are there. Is there something wrong with the blog that you’re reading? Is there a security or sin issue hiding there? The internet is great because of its anonymity but it also allows us to go places that we shouldn’t and then pretend that we didn’t.
Bottom line, unless there’s a security issue you should comment at least once to let the blogger know that you’re there– even if it’s the dreaded “nice post!”
2. You can’t think of anything good to say.
We all don’t have something to say on every topic– and we shouldn’t have to go do research in order to be intelligent enough to put something in a blog post. That being said, it’s good to have comments that are to the point, speak well of yourself and that and phrased correctly. It also doesn’t hurt if you make sure to link to the thing that you read that you referenced, that you use block quotes if quoting something, and that you make sure you have a good idea where the discussion is going so that you’re on topic.
If you can’t think of anything to say– you can always say you agree, or come back when there’s something that you do feel passionately about.
3. You’re short on time.
Here’s something that was brought up in Mary’s post– some of us have other things to do– if you can believe that. Some of us have families, jobs, etc, and we don’t have time to get into the comment war, pick up a heavy conversation, etc. If you find yourself in this situation, comment on those things that you are passionate about and find some way to keep up– and just follow that line. The occasional “Good post” is appropriate if you’ve read the entire article– I mean, how much time do you think it took them to write that article only for you to read it and not even say anything! You wouldn’t do that for someone reading poetry or a story to you– you’d at least give some applause!
So, don’t feel like you have to comment every time– but if you have the time to make it through the article at least let the author know you were there.
4. Your keyboard is broken.
Well, then, time to get a new one?
5. Your parents told you not to write on blogs.
Well, there’s a very good reason– and I hope that you either don’t or that you get your parents to sit down and surf with you so that you can.