Tuesday, November 28, 2006

To Comment or Not, That is the Question

I admit it. The reason I post/blog is to see comments. To see if I’m the lonely voice out there in the woods, or if there are others traveling on my path.

Knowing I long for comments, that I scan my site counter (maybe even obsessively?) it’s amazing how many times I don’t comment when I read posts from friends or other writers I admire.

Why don’t I comment? Don’t good manners indicate if you enjoy something, you let your host(ess) know? I think there are several reasons for my lack of commenting.

  • Too many people have commented before me and I feel I have nothing original to add

  • All the witty things were said by other people

  • I don’t want to give ‘ass’vice where it’s not requested

  • The topic is over my head – and I don’t want to appear to be lost

  • I have no opinion

  • I don’t believe my opinion would be welcome

  • I have to think about it before I can say something … and maybe three weeks later is too late?

  • I am supposed to be working; not commenting, how mundane is that?

  • What was written is so trite it’s not worth my time to comment (and I won’t be back anyway, so why bother?)

If someone graces me with a comment, what’s the proper response?

  • I’m (almost) always happy to see a comment

  • Many times I feel bound to respond

  • If I think many people will enjoy my response, I’ll post with the original post

  • In one forum I comment in fun exchanges occur with the respondents – I always like to jump in

  • Other times I think a private response via e-mail is more appropriate

  • Sometimes I get distracted with:

    1. life

    2. work

    3. Scotch

    4. music

    5. Hello! Procrastination!

  • Once in a rare instance a troll will show up. I think it’s best to just ignore them.

Bottom line? You keep commenting – and I’ll get better at responding!


Joe said...

I think re-commenting when folks leave comments is a nice thing to do: it lets them know their comments have been read, which I think means they're more likely to come back and comment again. IMO, anyway. I have a friend who saves up her replies and posts one big one after 3 or 10 or however many people have commented on her posts, which works fine too. She'll still follow up on further comments if appropriate.

OTOH, I don't think one should feel obligated to comment, re-comment, or whatever: that would take the fun out of it for me. And commenting has to stop sometime, right? Or maybe not....

lee said...

I'm not sure why, but I feel compelled to post a comment...I can't think of anything pithy! So I'll ask a question. What is NABLOPOMO? And why should I fear it?

Woodstock said...

Comments are the bread of a blogger's life, it's true but I certainly won't sell myself for them. Weeks, months even, go by when I don't get any comments. Yes, it is demoralizing, it's true, and makes me wonder if anyone is even reading, but then I fall back on the fact that I would write even if there were no blogs, and after all, who is going to read my journals but me?

Yes, it's nice to get your comment acknowledged, and mostly I do that by e-mail it's true. Only when I have something to add to the comment do I post my own follow-up. But that's just me. You do what you do and we'll follow along.

Anonymous said...

When you don't get comments, have you reviewed your own list of reasons not to comment- yes? No?

Next question - do you only want good comments, or good critical comments ?

It's been fun and interesting reading your journal of blogs -so keep up the good work!

Mit_Moi said...

I am trying (and not doing a very good job) of learning how to handle "good critical" comments. It seems to me what one person might think is "good" is "not so good" to the receiver of the comment.

Yes - I do review my list of reasons why people don't comment. And understand completely why they may not! Besides relying on comments, I go to my site counter to see how many people - and what part of the country has stopped by to read Moi, - so even if they don't leave a comment I know "they've" been by. I may not always know who "they" are but it makes it better, knowing I'm not just shouting into thin air.

Ps – if this is you “Talla-Paula”, I’m glad you’ve learned how to comment!