Wednesday, 6 April 2011

Blogging and commenting and stuffs

I really can't manage to post doom and gloom endlessly so here is something rather more banal. Although not to the blogging community. Friend B posted on facebook about people who read and comment, and specifically about those who regularly read and don't comment. Ages ago, I would regularly read my statistics. Invariably the dog blog got the most hits. And, the hits on the other blogs often came via the dog blog and it was often easy to work out who the readers probably were because of the correlation with the general location and the ISP (partly dependent on whether or not it was dynamic). Some left comments on my personal blogs and others didn't. The Land Rover blog is an exception as that gets loads of hits through search engines. So we'll ignore that one for the purpose of this post. Now, I appreciate the comments from my dog blogging friends both on here and on Itchy Feet, and rarely read the stats any more. Some had/have personal blogs of their own and others didn't. And, although they didn't comment on every post, and some commented infrequently, their comments were invariably sensible and thoughtful. As, for example, have been some of the recent ones on my 'party' and 'funeral' posts. For those of you not in the FB loop, the discussion looked at the etiquette of blogs, commenting, following, adding to blogrolls etc. You all know the sort of thing. But always worth a repeat and a discussion because things move on. And so does technology and so does etiquette - although probably not as fast as technology. So for what it's worth, here are my views on blogs and commenting and following and blogrolling and all the rest of it. I appreciate all comments on my blogs apart from abusive, manipulative and offensive ones. A discussion is ok, scoring points is not. My blog, remember that? If you don't like what I write, don't read it. I also realise that some people are not happy commenting on blogs, don't know what to say, don't have enough time, or quite simply, can't comment if they are at work. I totally admire the ones who not only blog every day or every other day, but get round a zillion other blogs and comment too, and it is not the same comment they leave on each blog. I can't do that. I like it when those of you who don't comment - at all, or very often - at least write and tell me that you do read my posts and find them interesting. Thank you. Someone did that this week, and I appreciated it. Now, why don't I comment on other people's blogs? Well, like everyone, I may read, intend to do it and then forget or get distracted. Or I have nothing to say. Classic examples here are boring posts about your kids going to school (sorry, just alieniated all my parental readership) or mindless photos. Photoblogs invariably have a load of comments on the lines of 'What a wonderful image dahling.' My comment would add no value. Even if I could recognise a wonderful image, dahling. So it's a good image. So what? Better off posting on a camera forum and having a discussion. Or, and this is an interesting one - it may feel too cliquey. I have seen blogs with hundreds of thousands of comments (OK hundreds anyway) where people are fighting to comment to get in with the in-crowd. Dear, dear me. I know most of my regular commenters from other places, our comments may well sound cliquey on each others' blogs. When I have visited other peoples' blogs and everyone seems to be partying on together I am loathe to leave a comment. Which leads me onto the next aspect. Making new contacts - and either a) you forget to get back to them or b) you make a comment on theirs and they don't comment on yours, or don't add you to their blogroll. Or whatever. Followers. One of Blogger's worst ideas. Sounds like sheep or lemmings. I am neither. I will still add people to my list, because truth is, I find it easier to scroll down someone else's list looking for a good read than looking at a crappy follower link. Thank you to those who follow me and/or add me to your blogroll. Blogrolls. As you will have guessed, this suits me more. I obviously don't do new-fangled stuff so I am stuck with blogrolling friends. If and when they want. But I don't chuck people off if they don't add me, and I don't delete them if they stop commenting. While there is some mutuality in blogging, I add - or don't add - what I choose, to my blog. That's probably avoided the crux of the etiquette question. Do unto those etc. Well honestly there isn't time. Not in my life anyway, which is why I admire the ones I mentioned above who find time to blog and comment regularly while still in work and running homes. I don't think there is a need to reply to every comment on my blogs. But sometimes, I like to thank people for their comments on a sensitive post, or reply to questions or points. I have no idea how many people come back to see if there is a reply to their comment. Equally it seems a bit tat to go back to someone else's blog and derail their subject by answering over there - but it so depends on the subject, and how well you 'know' the blogger. A couple of thoughts to leave you with. Thanks again to those who comment regularly or infrequently, or let me know elsewhere that you read my blog. One small reason for liking comments on the blog is that it keeps the discussion - when there is one - in the same place. Having it split between facebook and blogs is difficult. I'm probably the only one who sees all of it. Not everyone who reads my blogs is a facebook friend. I have probably not caught up with some people and I am sorry for that. Actually I know I haven't. And the most important one is, that if you blog, or even comment on blogs, you do what you feel comfortable with without feeling pressurised while at the same time respecting fellow bloggers. And that means to people who do regularly read either this or any other blog, without ever commenting, it would be nice to occasionally say why you are reading. There endeth the homily for today. Except to say, to anyone who is interested, that the person from the UK who found my post so interesting that they clicked on the email linky thingy never did comment. But did I expect them to? Just thought you may all want to know. Blog life huh?


Letty - A Little Girl With A Curl said...

I agree entirely with your words on this thorny subject. And it is thorny, because I used to wonder why people used to spend time reading and never comment. Or did they just perhaps leave their computer lurking on my blog, forget they had done this; and go off and do something more perhaps more interesting to them - and then return and realise they have been lurking, for a long time.

I also believe nowadays, there are just soooooo many blogs out there, it is nearly impossible to either read them properly, or comment, as much as I used to do.

I seem to have narrowed my blog reading and commenting down to a favourite few, for it is all I can manage.

Having said all this, for some bizarre reason, possibly because it has happened to me in the past, my heart goes out to someone who has obviously written a carefully worded and well written post, to see no comments have been left. So I then, invariably, feel sorry for them, and make an effort to comment!

Blog life is very strange sometimes.


Bren said...

I so agree with you as you know ...
I actually write my blog for myself, my children and my partner if anyone else relates to it or enjoys well of course I am pleased. My questions about lurkers on blogs was to flush someone out...