Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Comments

The mysterious comment section, it's mysterious to me (how redundant is that?). This is something that I'm curious about. How do you utilize the comments in your blog?

For me, I know that it's a great opportunity to have a conversation with your readers. But, I have to be honest, sometimes I feel funny commenting thinking I might bias the conversation. Or, in the course of my day, I may not have the time to comment as much as I would want.

When I look at some blogs, I see the person respond to each and every comment that is made. I think that's nice and courteous. But, in all honesty, it makes me feel kind of guilty. I'm thinking, "Should I be doing that, too?" Am I a slug for staying out of my own comment section?

Help me out here. I need some advice. What's your philosophy on the comment section? My name is Dr. A, and I'm a blogaholic....

59 comments:

QualicumRN said...

Morning Doc.....

Let me start off by saying I am a blogaholic.....Now with regards to "comment section"....funny u should mention that....I was on Cathy's site last night and she mentioned that she has been leaving comments on this individual's site for five years and the person has never responded to her comments. I think that is just rude that they haven't taken the time to respond even with a thank you for visiting my site....I think if someone takes the time to leave a comment on your blog then as the host of the blog you should respond. Now with that being said....if the topic at the time illicits great response and dialogue....I think responding to the comments in general on you own blog is appropriate. I wonder what what Miss Manners would say..I for one believe that if someone gives you a gift(and I think comments are gifts)then an acknowlegement of that gift would be appropriate. That's my thoughts on the topic anyhow....have a grand day Dr. Hey...I get to be the first one to post on this topic....lucky me

Lea said...

I second Mary Anne.

I also think that the courtesy of visiting the site of a fellow blogger who posted a comment is appropriate.

One more thought. It is OK to be biased...it is your blog and your opinion.

ripple of hope (difficultpt) said...

I don't think you have to respond to everything all the time--sometimes there isn't anything to say or enough time to say it. It's nice to comment in your own comments section when you can, and visit the blogs of the folks who comment. That's how we build blog friendships :o)

I tend to do more "blog visiting" than commenting in my own blog, but that is my preference. People may not return to your comments section.

Fat Doctor said...

I usually don't comment on comments, but every now and then someone will misunderstand what I was trying to say, and I feel compelled to explain myself. Just once in a blue moon.

Mother Jones RN said...

Hello there, Doc....

I don't think many people have time to respond to every comment they receive on their blog, so if someone doesn't respond to one of my comments, I don't get upset. I like to acknowledge my guests when I have time. I like talking to my blogger buddies. When writing becomes a drag, I'll stop blogging.

Mother Jones RN

Cathy said...

I also don't think it is necessary to respond to every comment and I don't expect everyone to respond to all comments. I usually do, because Dr. A. I have all the time in the world to respond. I also LOVE LOVE LOVE the comments. In addition I worry I will offend someone by not responding, but that is just me.

Like Mary Anne says there is one particular site that I have visited regularly for 6 years. I have read every word she has ever written and left little comments many many times. She has not ever responded even once. The good thing about that is that she also has not ever responded to anyone else. So, I really don't take it personally. It is just how she is but, I have to admit I think she is extremely rude!

I'm so happy that someone finds what I say worthy of leaving a comment that I just don't have it in me to ignore it.
The ones that bug me are the ones where all of a sudden the owner of the blog stops responding to you. For no reason that you can fathom they just stop responding. Maybe 5 or 6 people will leave her/him a comment and all of a sudden everyone gets a response except you. Those I take personally and usually stop leaving comments. Not really because I don't want to leave one but because I think they are sick of me and most likely don't want me commenting. Just like real life Dr. A. You go and leave comments where you feel you are wanted.

Waiter rant is a great example of someone who CANT respond. Because it is not unheard of for him to get 300-500 comments per post. His writting is excellent. You can't really ever expect a comment from someone getting those numbers. So he answers noone which is probably a good policy for him.

These are just my ideas Dr. A.

thethinker said...

I respond to comments on my blog just to let the people commenting know that I'm paying attention.

Dreaming again said...

I tend to comment back sporadically. I wish I did better than I do.

What I have noticed is that the blogs who have high readership (Dr. Deb, Dr. Charles ..especially in the beginning) are the ones who comment to EACH commentor.

Granted, as you get farther and farther along and you start to get too many comments, that gets to be too much ...

Occassionally, you'll have a compelling blog like yours or MammaDocs that manage to get quite a few readers/commentors because you have compelling blogs (how's that for redundancy?)

Moof said...

Although I enjoy interacting with everyone by responding to comments, I don't expect everyone else to do the same thing.

I comment on a lot of blogs that never give any feed back. I think it depends on the subject matter ... and the tone of the post.

There are a few recent posts which I made that I didn't want to comment on myself ... because they weren't "social" posts. I was fishing for information.

I like to comment when my friends come over and "sit and chat," though. But I don't feel that it's a necessary thing to do. Lots of people are far too busy to do that on an ongoing basis.

About biasing the conversation ... we visit your blog to see you ... not to hold a political debate. (at least, not yet! ;o)

You wrote the post we're commenting on, for heaven's sake! How can you possibly "bias" the conversation by joining in?!

{{{ blog hugs! }}}

Hoping4more said...

well, with as many comments as you receive, I hardly think it realistic to respond to all of them, and also, with as many comments as you receive, it's NO WONDER you like to hang out in your own comment section and not comment as much on others...

you're only one person, right? I guess my vote is you comment on what you want to comment, and what you feel compelled to respond to, and other than that it is all fair in love and blogging! ha.

everyone likes comments, so if you have a particular interest or feel like commenting for any reason, of course it is nice for the recipient. but not mandatory; you have other things to do. it's just nice once in a while!

Hoping4more said...

agree with Moof on the bias thing; what is that?? but then, you have the right to present it as you want on your blog if unbiased on an issue is how you'd prefer to present yourself...just that, one would think on one's own blog they would choose the liberty of self-expression (with bias as desired) over worrying if your bias may deter more open debate... though it does encourage more points of view and sense of openness about any angle a commenter would like to take!

most of your readers would probably be interested to know more about where you personally would stand on given issues, because that is what most of us do! take a stance somewhere and hash it out a bit, and for you not to be included may seem strange though for sure you are busy and have enough to do; that part is understood.

My question is this: don't you WANT to be a part of hashing out a given issue, with your personal bias allowed to be expressed? Wouldn't that be nice to be a part of "letting your hair down", so to speak, and being a part of it and not just facilitating it for others? if you really do not necessarily care to join, well that is one thing, but to resist even if you DID, that I would be curious to understand better. :)

oh btw i made a boo boo in my previous comment: i read a part of your post quickly and misunderstood. scratch that second part of the first paragraph, whoops.

have a great day! :)

NeoNurseChic said...

I also tend to respond to almost every comment on my blog. There are a few times when I don't get around to it, especially if I'm having a particularly busy time or don't feel all that well. But in all honesty, I try...sometimes with just one big general, "Thanks for all the comments, etc..." I also worry like Cathy and others above that people will get offended if I don't respond to them. And like Lea, I try to check out the blogs of everyone that comments, but I don't always have a lot of time. I also feel incredibly guilty for not updating my blogroll, but I haven't had time!

Now...we each expect individualized responses to each of the comments here! Hurry up and get to it!! (Just kidding...seriously!) :)

the granola said...

I am not very good at replying to comments, though I love my commenters. I try to reply every once in a while, especially if it adds to the discussion.

So for those of us who a) love our commenters who are the visual part of the audience we are craving but b) am not sure how to return the favor...

What should we do?

wolfbaby said...

hmmm well i don't have a tremdously high readership so i pretty much comment to all my visiters.. i enjoy it .. sometimes though there is nothing to say so i say nothing ... if it's a new visiter i try very hard to make sure they feel welcome and appreciated:)

I don't expect everyone to comment to my comments on there post though sometimes i enjoy the responses to my responses LOL... it's fun.. sometimes a really good conversation gets started that way..

but when you have a high following *cough* autorgraph please *cough*... you do what you can do...
*phone rings...whisper*

"call me later I'm talking to the DR. A"

And the rest of us will enjoy the rising start LOL...

may said...

my comment would have been very LONG, so i posted it on my blog instead :)

healthpsych said...

I try to respond to all comments on my blog but then I don't have the extent of readership that you do, Dr. A!
My thoughts are where people have taken the time to respond to something I've written, then I should acknowledge that because I do appreciate the comments.
Sometimes there's nothing to say and then I'll just leave a general thank you comment.
As for people responding to comments left on their blog, it depends. Sometimes there's nowhere to go with a comment made, sometimes there's a point for further discussion - that's when it's nice to get a further response. Some bloggers never respond to any commenters and I tend to find I lose interest a little then.

Penrick said...

I don't comment on most comments. I visit their blog, drop a comment and move on. I love blogs and it eats up most of my free time.

I use the comments toward creating the next blog. I get cool ideas from the comments.

TheTundraPA said...

For me, it really depends on the comment. When it is a "great post" type comment, I often don't respond, unless it is the first time I recall seeing that commenter; then I'll give a "thanks for visiting" response. If the commenter has said something of substance, I think it is important to respond. Using my own behavior as an example, I think most commenters check back for a while to see if you responded. No response is a bit disappointing when you put some time and thought into the comment. And I think responses from the blogger encourage more people to comment. I just love comments! I want more! But volume becomes an issue too; when each post garners a dozen or more comments, there just isn't time to respond to each one individually. Let me say here, Dr. A, that I have total comment-envy of your blog! Only a month in the blogosphere, and you have many more comments than I do! But perhaps your posts are more "commentable" than mine.

The bottom line is that it is your blog and you do what you like, and what you have time for. Clearly, we're all happy with that! *grin*

It's me, T.J. said...

I don't have the heavy load of commenters on my blog that prohibits me from responding to them.

If there were too many comments, then I might be forced to only acknowledge that I had read everyone's comments. And maybe respond to the one that I feel needs a rebuttal or an answer.

With that being said, I use my comments section as a part of the conversational tone of my blog. My thinking out loud, so to speak.

You can't see my nuances...

a head bob

a shrugged shoulder

a grimace

or grin.


Because of that, I feel compelled to comment.

Because of the comments I feel compelled to respond.

Bottom line:

I don't think that there is a right or a wrong. But I feel there is a rudeness factor for the bloggers who never acknowledge anyone at any time; either by commenting back on their personal blog or on their visitor's blog..


later...

Dreaming again said...

Blogger's Anonymous meeting up and ready to go ...head for the Mountains!
http://pearlsanddreams.blogspot.com/2006/08/welcome-to-bloggers-anonymous.html

Tomorrow morning, I will fix my links to friends blogs (like this one.)

I had my AOL freeze with only one sentence left! I had to start almost at the top! (I had to the car picture already posted) all over again!

So, in the morning links will be to other blogs!

QualicumRN said...

Wow you certainly illicited quite the response with this one Dr. Guess that kinda of answers the question....it is sometimes impossible to respond to all comments....and like most of the posts here our readership is not as high as yours or other sites we might visit and hence we have the time to respond. I really enjoyed just reading what everyone had to say here.

psychgrad said...

As a commenter, I love receiving responses to what I write - whether it be from the blogger or other commenters. Just makes it seem like I'm communicating with real people.

As a blogger, I also love receiving comments. I'm still new to blogging, so I don't get a lot of comments, but I like hearing the feedback. I also write specific questions to readers so that I can hear other perspectives.

Sid Schwab said...

I respond to comments on a prn basis: in theory, I'd respond to them all, and at this point I still don't get huge numbers of them. Mostly, tho, I respond when a comment contains a question, or makes a point to which I feel the need...

I'm on blogspot as well: one problem is, despite proper set-up, I rarely get notified of comments. It happens about one in ten times.

Pattie said...

I try to respond to just about everyone who takes the time to leave a comment on my blog. however, I am not offended if others choose not to do this. I think it is whatever your personal preference is.

ripple of hope (DP) said...

Dr. A . . .Where are you? Are you in rehab for blogaholics? *wink*

Dreaming again said...

Did he get eaten by a BEAR????

drytears said...

I don't get very many comments so I am able to respond to them all, though as stated before sometimes there is no where else to take the convo.

I do think it is rude if a blogger responds to EVERYONES comments but one or two people (unless they were spam or something like that).

As for other people responding to their own comments, it's nice to get a comment back to yourself, but that is unreasonable on larger blogs. Though just a general thank you for the comments, so that we know they were read is nice.

I always tend to check back for a couple days to read up on other comments posted and see if the blogger responded.

But then again I don't have a life so I have time for things like this! lol

drytears

Dreaming again said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Dreaming again said...

Dr. A .. we're sending a search party out for you ... checking cars one by one to see if you're safe!


Don't worry, call him Yogi and he'll be fine. Just don't feed him.

Jon Mikel, M.D. said...

At least you have lots of comments in your blog.

Sometimes I think that I'm not doing a good job at mine.

Clampett said...

Bias: journalism is what it is

Comments: decency is important, there are people behind these little handles.

Lea said...

Doctor A, are you Okay?

We miss you.

Moof said...

Dr. Anonymous ... I have TWO admissions to make:

1) I am a blogaholic

2) You've been TAGGED!!!! You're IT!

http://moof.blogsplot.net/2006/08/04/just-when-i-thought-i-was-safe/

*ducks and runs*

Cathy said...

Dr. A.

Where, oh where, are you?

Hoping4more said...

ha! you got us Dr. A, posting an apparently "hot topic" and letting others dish it out in the comment section!! too funny; you are a great host for conversations, funny how so many meet here: you facilitate a meeting ground for others to express themselves... while this being your blog, it is funny to me that you do not state your opinions much?

i guess i'm curious: do you have a specific opinion and hold back, or are you just kinda hashing it out and checking out others' feedback? I'd say you have a great deal of self-control not to join in! just a thought.

well, we all miss you and your responses...though of course you are busy and have other priorities, unlike some of us *wink*

it is nice that you host a great conversational arena where many of us can meet, though! thanks Doc A!

jbwritergirl said...

I believe that comments should only be added when needed and on occassion just to let other bloggers know that there is actually someone there who reads the comments (unless you don't).

I also believe that it is polite to peek at blog sites who have visited yours. Don't need to leave comments because the site tracker can track you down if a blogger wants to know whos looking.

Krystalline Apostate said...

Dr. A:
Being gregarious, I try to step in & comment (& occasionally, I have to, at my blog, step in & play moderator: people get a little heated at times).
Daily Kos, as I understand it, sometimes just posts a topic, & lets people run amok.
In short, it's your sandbox: it's entirely up to you.

healthpsych said...

Is this the blogging equivalent of being punk'd? :)

Hoping4more said...

healthpsych, ha! that's about right. now who wants to vote on what happened to Dr. A??

a). he fell in love and lost all sense of the time-space continuum..

b). he is totally "punk"-ing us all by this humorous ironic post about comments in which he STILL remains out of, waiting to get us good...

c). he has been in a terrible accident and unable to get back to blogging...we hope not Doc A!!

d). he actually has a life and is either working or spending time with family/friends OUTSIDE the blogging community...what a concept (I wouldn't know) in this case we are happy for you in a passive aggessive way: how could you abandon us-we are your fellow bloggers!! we understand and we love you Doc A...come back!

e). in a mysterious alien abduction, Doc A will be transformed along with a group of lesbian nazi prostitues on a weight loss campaign, picked up just north of Sudan, into an army of even more mechanical versions of the energizer bunnies... we are sorry Doc A!!!!

f). He is on a series of dates to meet "Mrs. Right" and having too much fun, between shifts... you go, Doc A!! You rock, we're routing for ya Mr. Stud! *wink*

g) something else-you fill in another possibility

Which could it be, which could it be...everyone vote your answer or come up with something new! Let's have a little bit of fun with this (we'll getcha back, heh heh heh.)

Dreaming again said...

welll ...if it's D ...does he retain his BA status????

G ...he's checked into a REAL BA rehab unit and they've taken away his computer access so he can't blog! ...*GASP*

ripple of hope said...

Well, if it's F, I feel sorry for him because dating sucks! Hmmmmmm, I hope it's A--dating may suck, but falling in love is wonderful! ;o) [And no, I'M not in love (yet) . . .]

wolfbaby said...

H) this one would excuse Dr. A from all sensor... Extremly VIP patient that he has spent the last three days working to save his life and in a bit of heroic ness unique to Dr. A he just barely manged to save said patients life with no devastating consaqueses and has been granted a super dooper wonderful award for dcos and now has gotten bogged down with yet more well wishers and autograph seekers........

*deep breath.. wow that was long*

We hope your ok Dr. A!!!

Hoping4more said...

there you go, our hero! "H", there's a good one. I vote H with e very close behind...tee hee

Cathy said...

I think he moved to "Denmark"! Wasn't he just telling us how wonderful life was in Denmark? Yep, he talked himself right into it.

Actually I hope it is "A"...Falling in love. Are you in love Dr. A.? If so, push that woman aside for a moment. We are your fan club and we demand equal time....:)

Cathy said...

Also, If I wasn't genuinely worried, I would think it hilarious that he dissapeared, for awhile, after writing "THIS" post.

Dreaming again said...

You know Cathy, I was glad to see Hoping4more put in C ...at least i knew I wasn't the only person genuinely worried about him.

It BETTER not be C!!!!

I'd seriously considered starting something like this last night to try and get my mind off of worrying.

Hoping4more said...

ok, dr. A...we are worried...we need to each have a blog-tag buddy so we can make sure everyone is all right!

so now you know you are truly missed when you are "off the blog"... and you thought this was just a hobby...

well when you come back we are all ears!!! are we all one big happy blogging family or what?

huh...Dr. A, how did you elicit this big of an audience? it's AMAZING. You are TOO GOOD.

Dreaming again said...

Yea. well my blog tag buddy (wanda's wings) is MIA too. grrrr

Dr. A .. I have incredibly good news on my blog! How can I tell you if you won't come out of hiding????

wolfbaby said...

ok so maybe we could all dedicate a post ot him on our blogs so taht when he comes back he knows just how missed he was and that he is not allowed to do this again!!!!! and must of course check in even if it is a one liner...t o let us know he is alive and well...

ladybug said...

c'mon, doc!
peek your handsome face in here and say hello and let us know you are OK!

we miss you!!!

Hoping4more said...

I dedicated a post...think it'll help? Who else's in on the post dedication? good idea wolfbaby! all in good fun, but...what if something DID happen to Dr. A? uh, boy...we would never know!

Cathy said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
ladybug said...

i'm in for the dedication for the doc!

Anthony said...

Since that I am able to leave a comment at this very moment, I can tell that you have discovered how to utilize the comments. Excellent work!

I love comments. It allows me to know what people think of my writings, and I get a chance to see their blogs also.

Angela Ferreira said...

Hello Dr A! I am Angela and my opinion on the comments is: don't think too much...
Nice to meet you , I shall visit again!
Cheerio!

Moof said...

Dr. Anon ... there's been discussion on all of your friend's blogs about what could so suddenly have become of you. We're rooting for you - whatever is going on ... even if you just suddenly felt as if you didn't want to blog anymore.

Do wish, though, if it's possible for you, to let just go squeak ... let us know you're OK.

At this end, we're imagining everything from car wrecks to heart attacks ... :o(

The really scary thing about blogging is that you get to really care for people, and when they suddenly stop blogging and vanish with no warning, you worry even more than if it was a regular friend ... you can find out what happened with a regular friend.

And then, of course, we as your blogging friends ride a fine line between being friendly and worried like crazy about you ... and being over-friendly and pushing up against your privacy.

Whatever - were here, and we miss you ... and we've very, very worried about our friend ...

alessia said...

I personnally tend to respond to comments to my blog by going to the person's blog and commenting there, unless the comment was a specific question (and even then I sometimes add the answer in the comment on the other person's blog as well, in case they don't come back). Sometimes if the comment was pertinent enough, I make a whole new post to respond.

kim said...

Wow - I'm the fifty-eighth commenter here....All my comments go automatically to my email, so if I answer the comment, it is in an email back to the person who made the comment.

I feel guilty, too, that I don't answer every comment on the blog.

If there is something that I wrote that needs a major clarification, then I will comment on it in the comment section, but mostly I respond by email.

And if the person has a link, I check out their blog and if it is medical/nurse or patient related I'll link to it.

What I feel guilty about is not READING blogs. I spend so much time blogging and writing that my reading goes to heck.

I'm proud to say that I have read almost all my "doctor" links and am going to set up my RSS with all my blogs so I know what's goin' on in the 'hood!

karla said...

blogging person must be patient..