The new black in blogging – comments turned off, no response to comments

Copyblogger shocked a lot of people when they turned off comments a while back. The post they wrote explaining why was reasonable and let’s face it, Copyblogger is one of the biggest blogs around. Their business model has probably changed twenty times since they started and well progress, right?

But it got me thinking and maybe wondering if they just weren’t acknowledging a trend or perhaps even predicting one. When I started blogging there weren’t many rules but there were a few common practices, among them, responding to comments.

It made sense. You write a post, someone comments on the post and you respond, if only to say thank you. You started a dialogue and sometimes that dialogue grew into a connection. Maybe you visited their blog and commented, or added them to your blog roll, introduced them to other blogger buds, linked to their posts. It was nice. Cozy. Friendly. I made a lot friends that way.

These days though it seems that perhaps a “like” is supposed to suffice for a comment. An electronic ‘atta girl’ if you will, that at least lets you know somebody’s reading. And given the many types of feed readers there are out there, getting someone to even visit your blog can be feat.

Too big to respond or interact?

In the case of Copyblogger, perhaps they are too big to respond or even allow comments. I imagine they had hundreds of comments daily. And realistically, they’d have to hire someone to answer the comments. Probably….

And of course this may be an issue for many of the popular blogs that get a lot of comments. And I’ve certainly noticed that some of the blogs I read follow this business model. Funny though, I tend not to comment on those blogs anymore – even though I do read them somewhat regularly. On the other hand, there are some very popular blogs that still seem to not only manage to respond to their comments but do so with warmth and and good humor.

So maybe it boils down to preference on the part of the blogger.

Old school or new school?

Personally, I’m old school. I feel that If somebody makes the effort to come to my blog and make a comment it seems only right that I acknowledge that comment with a response. Nobody likes talking to themselves, do they? I know I don’t. And really don’t we blog to start a conversation and exchange views? Or is it just a one-way street where we’re all supposed to just be talking at people instead of to them? Are we so wise and such experts that we don’t need to respond?

If you listen to any of the experts they all say you must give value with your content – wouldn’t a response to a thoughtful comment be valuable to the commenter? Anyway, I think I believe it would be. So, if you comment, rest assured, I shall respond

What do you think? When you make a comment on a blog, do you expect a response? Do you go back and check to see if you received a response? If there is none, do you feel disappointed? Are you less likely to make a comment in the future on that blog?

I’d really like to know what people think about this.

Writer Chick

copyright 2015

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20 thoughts on “The new black in blogging – comments turned off, no response to comments

  1. To me it depends on the blog/company. There’s some blogs where interaction on the subject matter is a good thing and should be encouraged. It keeps it relevant. But then others that doesn’t really need (for lack of a better word) it as much. For me, this spells the turning tide, where people generally on their social networks are ‘closing ranks’ more. Less ‘friends’, and striving for authentic connections. Not having a ‘comments’ also factors out trolls and negativity. I think the blogger/company needs to evaluate their audience first before they take such a step. As an author I tend to lean more towards interaction but not on all my social networks. There are times when I simple ‘like’ is enough 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You make some very good points. And I think perhaps in Copy Blogger’s case it was a good decision. Also too, I don’t they’ve been a blog in a very long time and had outgrown that moniker.

      I agree too on the closing ranks aspects. I feel myself doing that as well. There are certain social media channels where I don’t want a bazillion friends or followers – I just want to hang with my pals and family and have a little fun, right?

      In terms of the negativity and trolls, that is a problem on the Internet and it seems inescapable if you have any kind of Internet presence – it’s kind of like email – if you have an email address you will get spam. No matter what you do, spam will find you. Same with the trolls and flamers.

      And like you, as an author, I like/want the interaction. We’re thinkers right, so we like that dialogue and to hear what others think, observe, feel about things – I think that’s just hard-wired into us, don’t you?

      Thanks for your thoughtful comments.
      WC 😀

      Like

  2. Well after reading this I couldn’t just press “like” and walk away..haha. I’m pretty new to this blogging world, and I like the personal back and forth..the connection. I mean if we’re not connecting, what’s the point?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m not sure I’m exactly following you. I’ve had self-hosted blogs and have used the WP software but it’s a lot more work. You have to select and install the plugins yourself and figure a million little things that the free format does for you. Which can definitely be a pain. However, you do have more freedom and definitely can customize to your heart’s content. In terms of the liking issue, it may just be the theme you’ve chosen. Not all of them have that option, I don’t think. In fact, I just found it on this theme myself not long ago – in settings somewhere.

      Blogging, what an adventure, right?
      WC 😀

      Like

  3. I’ve been thinking about this topic lately. This sort of thing happens in the Face Book world as well. Granted, it’s a little more formal on a blog. Personally, I find a connection between the lack of communication between people online and face to face due to this overtly technological world we live in. And possibly this “ADD” culture we have as well
    .

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Glenn,
      Yeah, I see it on Facebook too – and it always makes me scratch my head – because otherwise what are we doing on social media, right?

      And technology definitely is a big part of how we function in the world these days. Hopefully, face to face interaction won’t become completely obsolete. But then, you never know. For all we know, we’re in the Matrix and have no flipping idea. 😉

      WC

      Like

    1. Hi Krista,
      Thank you so much. I look forward to seeing you around the neighborhood.

      I agree, smiles, laughter, encouraging words are the best medicine for the human condition. I mean who doesn’t love to laugh, be acknowledged or treated kindly?

      Have a lovely day.
      WC 😀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I don’t usually expect anyone to reply back when I comment, but I do like to reply or “Like” the post and maybe get some acknowledgement that my comment was read (a “like” or something like that if available). I can never say that I am disappointed if I don’t get a response either. I think I would still reply to an article of theirs again if it was interest to me though.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Fair enough. And in some cases I don’t either. Maybe it depends on the nature of the post or topic? But yeah, it is nice to know if they at least read your comments, right?

      Thanks,
      WC

      Like

  5. I like to comment, and responses to my comments let me know my comment was noticed. I sometimes really want to comment but comments are not open and that leaves me frustrated. I understand, though, why larger publications and websites do that. When trolls take over and nothing worthwhile is being added to the conversation — comments should be closed. If you can’t or won’t control of the situation, don’t have open comments. Personally I love getting comments on my blog and try to respond to all of them. On rare occasions, I’ll not respond to comments because I’ve already had my say on the subject and just want to leave the floor open to my readers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I know what you mean about comments not being open – especially if the topic is compelling. Or the other thing where you have to register to make a comment drives me a bit bats too.

      Yes, agreed the really large blogs probably restricting or closing comments saves them headaches. But the blogs I referred to in this post were primarily author blogs (not james patterson) that are popular. Anyway…I look good in black so there you have it? 😀

      Like

      1. Well, I do insist that anyone who comments on my blog must have a previously approved comment. That means they have to register the first time, but only the first time.

        Liked by 1 person

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