Friday, 16 January 2015

Blogging 101: 8 tips for good commenting etiquette

Although I am not an expert, after 8+ years of being involved in the blog-osphere I have picked up a few things.  When I consulted people about what they wanted to read on Computergirl's Musings, I had a few replied that requested more tech and blogging content.  So here you are; the Blogging 101 series!  Today I am going to be chatting about the etiquette of blog commenting.

Thank you. Small words, big meaning.

1) Say 'Thank You'!  If you read a post and enjoy a picture, learn something new, find something to research, become inspired then, before you leave please say 'Thank you'.  It is a small word, and so often forgotten.  I always smile when someone says thank you, and I don't think I am alone in that one.  I also try to reply to any comments.

2) Use Social Platforms.  Make sure you're signed in with Google+, blogger dashboard, Disqus, Facebook etc!  When you comment, these platforms (if set up correctly) will notify you of follow up comments AND link back to your blogging profile.  If you are a blogger, then it is an easy way for people to find you.  Sometimes the blog doesn't allow these platforms, but has a space for your blog URL when you comment.

Pay It Forward.

3) Don't be selfish.  There is an old saying that 'people only get in touch when they want something'.  Well this is the blogger equivalent!  It is amazing how many people never leave comments, but suddenly come out the woodwork when the word 'giveaway' is mentioned! ;) If you are going to prey on a blogger's generosity, then spend a few minutes reading the blog, seeing what it is about.  Leave them a few other words of support on their blog.  Give them something back and pay it forward.  It will brighten their day, and maybe give you a few ideas of things to write in your competition entry.

4) Spam linking.  No I'm not talking about the badly written, nonsensical comments with links to 'magic pills', long lost relatives, or informing you of your lottery wins (in exchange for your bank account details).  I am talking about bloggers who leave thinly veiled comments with their URLS plastered in them.  If you have something to say, great, but if you are attempting to hide our homepage link in a comment then generally people will see through this.  Your commenting profile will normally link to your blog anyway (see point 2).  Now, if you are linking to a specific post, because you have read the post and think that it might help that blogger (or other readers) then linking a specific post is ok- it's not spamming, it is being helpful.  That is my take anyway, others might feel differently.

5) Re-read.  If you are unsure about spellings then Google is your friend.  If you are commenting in a foreign language, Google Translate is your friend.  If you are commenting on a phone or tablet, auto-correct is generally not your friend!  Auto-correct can be useful but make sure you reread it (especially on instagram where edit is not an option!)  I'm not perfect, so this is something I'm definitely working on!

6) For the love of blogging, please turn off the verification word things!  They are so annoying and completely put people off commenting.  You write a comment, click publish, it then asked for you to write a word off a tiny picture (which is really fuzzy and you can't read).  At the 20th attempt it accepts it, but your comment has been lost so you have to write it out again (but by this time you have forgotten what you said....).  Either set your comments to stay unpublished until moderated, or use the new 'I am not a robot' tick box system.  Say NO to word verification!

No.  Just ...... No!

7) Make it easy.  Lots of people ready blogs on the go using their phone or tablet, and subsequently can't comment easily without being signed in.  Even if they are signed in (and battle through auto-correct) then the comments can refuse to publish.  Make sure your blog has other ways they can show their appreciation.  Facebook has likes, Twitter has favourite... blogs can have tick boxes, or an easy rating system.  Just an easy way for you to gauge feedback without cutting out those who cant comment.

8) If you can't think of anything nice to say..... hold fire.  It's not tough is it?!  Seriously, I think all of us have nice- and helpful- things to say and whether it is on blogs, youtube, twitter, instagram.. anywhere on the internet, then a nice comment is appreciated.  You can be constructive, that is totally allowed.  However nasty troll comments are not.*  More to the point, these comments do not go away.  Ever.  Computers don't forget (and humans don't always have thick skin).  Either way, nasty comments are not clever.  If you really can't think of anything nice to say then maybe reread point 1, click the box and type!
Love and Light.

What are your tips for commenting etiquette?  What platforms do you use?  As always, I love to read your comments and thoughts!

P.s. Don't forget my giveaway closes this weekend.


  1. Great tips - I hate those word verification things (mostly because I can never actually read what the scrambled word is!) x

  2. Thank you. I am glad you found them useful- and that I am not the only one who hates word verification! x

  3. I really like tip #8, so true. If someone can't say something constructive without being nasty, they shouldn't say it at all. I also don't mind people leaving their link underneath their name in a comment as long as what they say is substantial. Just saying "Great post" and then leaving a link is so obviously advertising I wish they wouldn't bother.

    That being said, truly great post :)

  4. Some great tips here. I hate word verification too. Often I won't bother commenting if I see it as it's so tedious. X


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