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The Do’s And Don’ts of Blog Commenting

The Do’s And Don’ts of Blog Commenting

The blogosphere is a great place with many community minded people and commenting on each others blogs is accepted practice, in fact doing so can really help you build a circle of supportive readers and sharers!

But commenting on blogs can also be a bit daunting … Particularly as spamming the comments section of a blog has sadly become common practice amongst many unethical search engine optimisers!

This has lead to most blogs using plugins like Akismet to stop spam comments being published, I know I’m really glad I do as I get about 20 spam comments a day and going through all those manually would be both time consuming and soul destroying!

what to say in a blog comment, what not to say in a blog comment

So what should you say in a comment?

I’d love to answer that with a simple ‘whatever you like – freedom of speech reigns yay!’ but in reality, it is a little more complex than that!

But here are some do’s and don’ts to help you get the most out of commenting.

Don’t be rude!
You will come across blogs that get you a little heated sometimes, and you may feel like giving the person that wrote it a piece of your mind! But don’t be rude. Being rude just lessens you.

Do ask Questions
If there is something in the post your not clear on or want more detail about then ask away! This shows the post has got you thinking and it’s appreciated. It might also help the blogger think of a new topic they can write a post on! (I get a lot of ideas for posts this way!)

Don’t forget your grammar!
Before you press publish have a quick proofread of your comment, make sure there are no spelling mistakes or grammatical errors. You want leave the impression that you are worth liking, respecting, and, if you are a blogger yourself, reading!

Do add your experiences
Have you ever tried to do whatever the blog is about? Did it work for you? Leave a comment about what happened when you did!

Don’t be pompous!
Is the blogger mis-informed? Have they made a mistake in their post? If so point it out kindly, don’t embarrass them.

Personally I would normally choose to do this privately by email rather than in the comments section but if it is just as small thing I might comment. If you have to do this see if you can balance the correction with a commendation on another part of the post.

Do add more knowledge!
Is there an area that the blogger hasn’t covered? There often is! In one of my posts recently I deliberately left out a couple of big chunks of information as the post was already getting too long so I thought I’d leave them for another post!

But there are also times I don’t talk about every aspect because I don’t know every last little thing! Blogging for me is also a way of clarifying my thoughts and learning more about my industry so I’m happy to be pointed in the direction of a new gizmo or website! Although I spend a lot of time keeping up with new developments in the social sphere, there are so many developments that I’m bound to miss some!

Don’t worry if you don’t have anything to add!
There is a school of thought that says your comment should be better than the blog post, and that leaving comments like ‘great post, thank you’ is wrong and lazy … I love hearing ‘great post, thank you’!! It makes it all worthwhile!

However, a lot of spammers use various forms of that comment so if you can add a little more it will help make sure your comment doesn’t end up in the spam bin! Also it’s a good idea NOT to attach a link back to your website if that’s all you’ve put!

Do make sure you’ve read the post properly!
You don’t want to make a comment that says ‘you’re wrong about such and such’ when in fact you just misread the post … that won’t help you get more readers!

Don’t miss an opportunity to create your own blog post!
Sometimes you will simply have more to say than a comment – so why not write your own post on the subject? If you do this I recommend linking back to the original post and then putting a link to your new post in the comment section of the post that inspired it. Do write a brief explanation of your response post, posting just a link will look like spam!

Do add a little social proof to your comment
If you think it’s a good post, if you’ve found it useful in any way, share it! Click on the tweet this button or give it +1! And let the blogger know you are doing this, they will appreciate it!

Don’t be too worried by all the Do’s & Dont’s!
At the end of the day commenting is about communicating, so say something! All of the above are guidelines from my experiences not rules and regulations! So don’t be nervous, join in the conversation! Who knows what it might lead to!

What do you think? What worries you about commenting on blogs? Or if you are a blog owner what kind of comments do you like getting?

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5 Comments

  1. Ryan Hanley

    Gemma,

    Great list! Another two “Do’s” I would add is more technical but use your full name so you get credit for comment in the mind of the author and other visitors. If you have something to say that is worthwhile people should know who you are…

    Second, make sure you fill in the Website line so you get a link back to your site and anyone who enjoys your comment can follow you home.

    Thanks!!

    Ryan H.

  2. Jason "J-Ryze" Fonceca

    Haha! I love it — I’m super-passionate about blog-commenting.

    To me, they’re a digital parallel to offline conversation, and I think we all like good ones :D

    Your tips are awesome, and I shared a story and an in-depth commenting system that I think you’ll like (keep in mind when it comes down to it, there are no rules, and like you said …”great post” CAN qualify :D )

    http://www.logallot.com/holy-grail-praise-worthy-comments-1/

  3. Rana

    Blog commenting is a conversation and one should follow all the basics that you normally do in your day to day conversations with others.

    It will become so easy to participate in online conversations when you take it as normal offline conversations. We generally care about most of the points you mentioned in the post in our offline conversations and we should do the same when having a conversation online. :-)

  4. Peter Sandeen

    Hi Gemma,

    Very nice list. I can’t think of anything you’ve missed :)

    I think comments like “Great post” are fine when the owner of the blog already knows you. If I get a comment like that from someone I don’t know, I get suspicious and wonder if it’s spam or a legitimate appraisal…

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