Thursday, October 21, 2010

Is There a Blogger Hotline?

Can we talk about comments?

I adore comments. Every blogger does. Because 90.3% of us are narcissistic, needy, and neurotic about our writing. At least slightly. We kinda like the idea that we are not throwing our voices/opinions/recipes/photos/confessions of murder into a black hole.

Why is she asking for help when
she clearly
has it all together?
But what do you do about comments? What is the blogging protocol? I need an Emily Post of the blogging world, y'all. Because I used to respond to every. single. one. Then I got worried that no one was really reading my responses, so why make them? Or should you  do it on the commenter's blog? Do you not respond at all unless it's a direct question? WHAT IS THE CONSENSUS?

I love those Wordpress widgets that let you reply to each comment individually. Genius. But newsflash: I don't have Wordpress. Shock, I know. Is there a Blogger widget that does this?

ALSO. Can we talk about anonymous commenters? I currently have anonymous users disabled because anonymous trolls are the equivalent of Beatrix the Bully kicking my shins on the playground and taking my lunch money.

-----No one in elementary school actually took my lunch money. They were probably afraid that I'd bite them and give them rabies. Which, in retrospect, was a completely valid fear. -----

So. What do YOU do about anonymous commenters? Am I really excluding that much of my readership? Do you make everything submitted for approval? If I do that, then I'll still actually have to read the anonymous comments. That kinda gives me hives. 

Consensus, dear reader-bloggers?  Imagine me flickering before you in a Star Wars-esque hologram.  White dress and everything. You must see this droid safely to Alderaan success. Help me, Obi-Wan Blogobi, you're my only hope.


  1. I dont have anonymous commenters either. The way I saw it in the beginning, I didnt have a lot of followers so i wanted to know who they were and kind of 'get to know them' through their comments. Which was (and still is) a great way to do just that.

    But now that I have some people following I may enable anonymous comments just to see what happens. If my feelings get hurt I can always disable them again.. haha!

    By the way, I see you got lei'd!


  2. Mine is wide open for whomever wants to run their mouth. I don't get a lot of (or any, actually) spam, but I do get the occasional hate mail (hate comment???) due to the fact that I holler, cuss and rant a lot - and I pretty much lay it all out there - and I am queer - AND I have AIDS - seems to bother a lot of people. But I just leave it open - I don't even have word verification on mine - and deal with it as it comes. I figure if whatever I have said hits a nerve enough to warrant a reply, they deserve the option to do so. Besides, I always still have the almighty Power of Delete.

    I used to try really hard to respond to every single one, but as my readership has grown, that is often difficult. My comments come to my email, and I prefer to email the commenter back if they have that option on - if they do not, they usually do not receive a comment back from me. I will occasionally comment on the post itself, but not often.

    I really don't know what is right and what's wrong. I like that Blogger has implemented the new moderation feature for the comments so it makes it easier to weed through them (and weed out the crap) now, and I have heard tale that they will - in fact - soon be implementing the reply feature with the next set of updates. Until then, just keep on keepin' on. I think you're doing great.

    If you really want that reply to feature, there are some alternative commenting platforms out there that you can implement into bloggger - Disqus, I think is one of them - but when I had it on mine, it was more trouble than it was worth.

  3. My belief is that blogging is a social media so I need to try to be social. I have my comments open but require a word verification. That keeps the spam away. I have very few anonymous commenters. Like Rabbit I try to answer back via email and since I never get more than 20 comments a day it is not that tough. I'd like to say I have a firm policy about this sort of thing but I don't.

  4. That's why I got Disqus. I use Blogger and I wanted a way to respond directly to comments. It's easy to install and it's free, you should do it!

    If you have any questions about it, give me a holler. I'm happy to help.

  5. Came across this blog through Rabbit...good stuff. Now to answer your question. Do you remember that kid in your class who was always raising his hand and was labeled a suck up because he was always talking and volunteering? Yea, that's me.

    I'm the type of person that if I want to say something, I say it. At the same time though, I love hearing what other people think. I love debates. So whether it's anonymous posters or someone who follows me, I usually hear them out and answer. Because there's no notification system set up that lets us know when someone has commented, I opt to email the people.

  6. Like you, I used to respond in my own comments section. Then, again, like you, I thought what if no one comes back or has further comments flagged?

    So I usually go to their individual blogs and comment on their comment there. It seems the neighborly thing to do. Someone loans me a cup of sugar, I don't have a cup sitting by the door in case they return.

    No, I go over personally and give them back their sugar. It works for me. Have a great time blogging. Roland

  7. This is SUCH a great question! And i will continue to check it frequently for the good advice.

    I allow anons & haven't been attacked yet. Unless someone cleverly disguised an insult & I didn't get it. Most of my anons are people I know IRL who don't know how to follow.

    I like to reply to comments, but can't reply to every sngle one all the time (but I do love your comments - you are becoming one of my cyberbffs. Didn't mean that in a stalkerish way)

    I have one neighbor who is a widow, caring for her elderly mom & very lonely. I think I am her only girlfriend, and that is the saddest thing ever.

    The problem is. . .she drives me up a tree. She corrects me if I swear, she waits for me in my driveway to discuss one of my posts and she thinks she is my mom. Except my mom is no way as interfering as this woman.

    I finally had to ask her to "respect my voice". It was the nicest way I could think of to say Back the fuckoff.

    I'm checking back for more advice~!

  8. honesty, once I read someone's blog and put in a comment a rarely if ever go back and read it again. I think if you really want to reply, you could always go to the other person's page...

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  9. Honestly, I just keep my comment forum open to anyone that wants to comment. My readership is not extensive enough that I get any anonymous comments. Not yet, anyway. I'll probably get five of them tomorrow just because I said that...

    Anyway, that setting may change if it becomes necessary. We'll just have to see what happens there...

  10. I'm probably obsessive. Because I feel compelled to comment on each and every one. Despite my keen awareness that they are not returning to read them. I think I'd feel weird commenting on their comment on their post, though. Like, I know your post is about your mother's death, but remember when you said lkad%L&**jf on my blog? Hahahaha!

    As for anonymous, I keep hearing all of these horror stories. And I think, why am I not edgy enough that they want to bash my blog? I mean, seriously. I'm relevant...


  11. I think most people leave comments to encourage others to go to their site and comment - you scratch my comment section, and I'll scratch yours, as it were. Slowly you will build a list of regulars who like to read you, and you them. That's nice.

  12. In my humble opinion, the only people who would be upset about not being able to leave comments anonymously are trolls who like to leave garbage and rot. So I think it makes sense to protect yourself and your readers who comment from being attacked by trolls who have nothing better to do with their time.

    Anyone else who wanted to leave a comment would either resign themselves to being able to read without commenting, or would get an account just to be able to participate in the blog. That's actually how I wound up on Blogger.

  13. Excellent post. I was *just* wondering these things myself.

    I try to reply to all comments left within 48 hours or so of my post. I usually reply in my comment section on the strength of my belief that commenters return to see if bloggers have responded to them. I know I revisit posts on blogs where I've left a comment.

    I allow anon comments; no trolls, yet. I do have a few friends that have commented using the anon comment option, but have signed their names in the comment itself. I like to allow all comers. I can always delete comments later, right?

    I also require word verification. Not sure that's necessary, but I do it.

    And, to end this novella, I try to respond to comments in the comments section because it's in context. If I surf over to a commenter's blog, I'll comment there only on that blog's content. Again, a context thing, I figure.

    Is that protocol? Bloggy manners? Who the hell knows, it's just how I roll, baby.

  14. I wish I could be of some help here, but I hate rules.

    That, and I'm pretty sure Emily Post was really REALLY bad in bed.

    I reply to comments when I can and not when I can't. I figure people read and comment because I'm brilliant (obv), and not because I'm replying to their comments. Also I don't want them to go getting all above their respective stations by my responding to thm ALL the time...

    Then again, I'm cocky and not a little bit of a bitch.

    - B x

  15. Hahaha I loved this, I am totally the same way, I have no clue what to expect or what to do. At first I started blogging not caring who read it, just for the sake of writing it. But then I started getting comments and it made my world confusing.

    If I feel the need to respond to someone's comment, I usually post it on their blog, since I'm always afraid they'll never see it if I post it on mine. They don't get a little notification like on facebook haha. And also, I have my blog set so anyone can comment. I've never had a truly anonymous comment, just friends who don't have an account and need to use the anonymous, but then sign their name in the comment. But anywho, I'm pretty much clueless also, so this probably didn't help at all. woot. ;)

  16. As soon as I get an anonymous comment... soon as I get ANY type of comment, I'll let you know what I think.

  17. True grit is making a decision and standing by it,doing what must be done.

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