Reading and Writing Blog Comments

Do you struggle with comments? As in answering or even leaving them? Do you respond to all the comments on your blog? (If you have one obviously) Do you comment on other people’s?

I try to respond to every comment left on my blog and I think I generally succeed, but it’s sometimes surprisingly challenging. I just don’t know what to say. Sometimes I wrote the post a while ago and need to get back into the same mindset to properly answer. Sometimes I find myself answering very similar things to different comments and I feel boring.

evangelion bored

this sums it up perfectly

It sort of comes into play when I read posts as well. I might have the perfect comment to make, just to realize someone’s already written more or less the same thing and they might even have made the idea better. I’m not that original… And I figure that the blogger doesn’t want to have to repeat themselves to near identical comments.

The thing is, I personally don’t mind getting repeat comments. On the contrary, I find it pretty encouraging. It’s also interesting to see if a thought is popular enough to have occurred to more than one person. It can spark ideas for a future and post I also don’t mind struggling with answering it. Just because something’s challenging doesn’t mean it’s not fun, on the contrary.

So I seem to be going by two completely different rationales here. And I’m curious which is closer to the truth. Do people prefer to get comments even if they re repetitive or not that deep? Or is it a hassle and they would rather not have to deal with internet small talk?

I honestly don’t know.

anime confused girl

the return of the confused anime girl

On the one hand a lot of bloggers care about their stats and comment number is a stat. Then again people rarely mention it so it may not be one they care about that much. Although this particular bit of minicontroversy has died down, I used to see bloggers complaining that they didn’t think everyone that liked their posts were reading them thoroughly. To be honest, I didn’t follow that particular debate all that closely so I’m still fuzzy on the details. From what I gathered, it was just a feeling that likes are disingenuous and meaningless if people leave them mindlessly. For the record I don’t see a problem encouraging a blogger with a like even if it isn’t their best post of something. Personally, I even think it’s very sweet if you bother to like one of my posts even if you don’t have time to read it, so I clearly just view those things differently.

In any case, I figure someone with that view would also be a little upset if comments didn’t seem pertinent to the post and sounded a bit thoughtless. Sadly this is often where I fall. I tend to water down my personality a lot to make it a bit more palatable and I feel like I end up rather bland sometimes. Like everyone else, I still struggle to find my particular voice and I find that struggle more difficult on someone else’s site and answering someone else’s posts.

I know I have written, rewritten and finally given up on comments because no matter how I tried to phrase them they came off a little shallow or didn’t add anything of value to the subject because the author had already written it all. Just writing “great post” is a bit like leaving a star and if I liked the post, I already did that. There’s also the stigma that all those bots that leave spam comments to promote sketchy sites often leave that exact comment. You know:

Great post! http://www.getfreeviagratotalylegalweswearitwontmakeyourhairfalloff.com

joshikousei

I need to watch this

I do understand where people come from though. A lot of bloggers take their writing to heart and put a lot of effort into it. They want real feedback. So I now make sure to only leave likes after reading the post not before and try to only comment if I have something of substance to add. I also remember talking to Raistlin a few times (who managed to read and comment on an absolutely mind boggling amount of posts every day. Also we miss you Raist.) and he told me that commenting takes a pretty big toll on a person. I can understand why. Imagine having 100 conversations every single day with 100 different people and giving them each your full attention while actively straining your mind to also contribute. That’s an actual skill that very few people have.

Don’t get me wrong reading posts is a lot of fun, just as talking with my fellow bloggers is. If I had unlimited time, I would do a lot more of it. I think that applies for a lot of us in fact. But no one can be full present all the time. That’s normal.

So I would like to do a small informal study today. If you are a blogger (even if you’re not, you can just roleplay as one for today if you’d like! Boy that is the least sexy roleplay I can think of.) Are you like me, thrilled by every like and comment because you find it encouraging that someone made that little effort -or- do you prefer that people only engage with your posts if they consider them particularly meaningful because you get more satisfaction that way? Is acknowledgement enough or do you crave feedback?

anime happy typing

this is my blogger cosplay – rawr

And on the flip side, do you like posts even when you don’t necessarily agree with them or even if you think the author has written better because you still did enjoy some part of it? Do you comment just to encourage people even if you don’t really have anything to add?

In case you’re wondering, I think there really is no right answer here. As far as I’m concerned, it’s just a matter of personal preference. I’m curious to know how my fellow bloggers feel about this as it’s an aspect that I’ve really only seen come up on social media and then only when someone was unhappy about the interaction they were getting, so it’s not exactly representative of general opinion. In fact, it may not even be representative of that particular person’s opinion so I shouldn’t base my perception on that.

One last question. Are you curious about the answers? Should I do a quick follow up post if I get enough responses to let you know what I found?

Ok so this turned out to be more of a questionnaire than an actual post. In case I haven’t said it enough recently, you guys rock. Thanks to anyone that takes the time to answer any of these questions!

Rini 2020 (8)

Irina

I'm much nicer than I seem, we should be friends!

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79 Responses

  1. zurilawrence says:

    hello i understand i love reading and i read and draw mostly please respond i like your name my names zuri

  2. Dale Parsons says:

    I was in public service for many years which required that I do a great deal of public speaking. I put entirely all of my heart into each occasion. At times, the painful results were almost more than I could stand. I had placed my heart out in the open, and taken the chance others might stomp on it. And sometimes they did. Blogging, if done sincerely, is like that. It really doesn’t matter whether it’s a serious topic or not. Anyone who is writing for public consumption and casting the work to the wind, is taking a chance. When we read the comments, we might find those who totally disagree, even some who have responded with anger because a nerve has been touched. Writing is subjective. Responding is subjective. Regardless, blogging is a great means of expression. It’s natural that others may want to comment.

    • Irina says:

      Thanks for stopping by. I pretty much agree with everything you have to say which makes for a bring reply…

  3. For some reason, most people who have something to say about my blog prefer to give me feedback through direct messages. Which is nice, but I like having any comment on an actual post so I can go back and read it. I feel more seen if people like or comment on a post.

    I’ll still like posts even if I don’t finish reading them as long as I’ve read something that sticks in my mind. Commenting is harder, though. I feel silly just for wanting to write, “Thanks for writing this. I enjoyed reading it.” It’s not really making conversation or providing deep feedback.

    • Irina says:

      Well I certainly appreciate that you took time to comment here!!

      People also give me feedback on my posts through Twitter which is nice but very confusing as I often have forgotten the post they are responding to.

  4. ashleycapes says:

    Visiting again to say that I forgot to mention something related – I’d love less bots 😀

  5. Auri says:

    I’m a little late here Rin-san, but yes, I think any comment is uplifting regardless of whether it adds to my post or not.
    I like posts even if I don’t completely agree with the point they’re putting forward and then continue the discussion in the comments.

    I try commenting on others’ blogs (when I’m active) but I seem to spend random periods in between hiatus months, so I don’t expect people to reply to me because honestly, it’s probably hard to remember what the original post was about.

    Likes… I think of likes more as a “Hey I saw this post” so it’s a count of people seeing my post.
    Personally however, I prefer comments. I like to think of it as a conversation. I say something, they say something I’m overjoyed.
    I say something, they smile back. I’m happy but I do sometimes wish they talked back haha.

  6. I’d prefer a comment over a like, but a comment that proves the poster read the post (generally this is because it answers the question/s I posed). If I have nothing else to add, I normally like the comment and leave it at that but then I do long comments for posts I do reply to (as in, they sometimes take hours to finish), if not outright long reply posts…I dunno if that’s hypocrisy or not, but at least I try.

  7. aina says:

    This is a great post and I would be interested to read the follow-up post if you ever do it! As a blogger, I appreciate feedback a lot. Actually, on any kind of social media platforms I have, I love receiving feedback from people. To me, it feels like that person really read what I wrote and such thought motivates me even more. Short, simple comments like “great post” or something like that, though it can be pretty discouraging at times, are still appreciated nonetheless. I still love interaction even if I’m nervous about it.

    As for writing comments on other’s posts, it’s challenging for me, most of the times. Especially meta posts, discussion posts, you know, those kind of posts. Mostly because I’m worried that I might unintentionally offend people with my comments or make a fool of myself, things like that. So I either don’t leave a comment at all or keep it short and simple even if I end up just repeating the same things other commenters had said before. I normally try to leave a comment on the posts I read, but if I feel like I don’t have much to say, then I won’t. I’d just like the post instead.

    Replying to comments is also a challenge for me too because I’m not the fun type of person who can keep a conversation going. Also I tend to worry a lot about what other people would think of when they read my reply later, so it takes time for me to write one. Oh, I think this is the longest comment I’ve ever left on someone’s post 😅

    • Irina says:

      Nice – a long comment on a post about comments! How meta.
      I know what you mean, it’s so scary when you don’t now how someone will interpret your comment and if they’ll take it the wrong way. That might be the most frequent reason I delete comments before publishing them…

  8. foovay says:

    I feel I’m more of a former blogger – someone who was doing it for money. But also a current blogger – just very infrequently. That said, let’s see if I can answer your questions.

    Q – Are you like me, thrilled by every like and comment because you find it encouraging that someone made that little effort”

    A – I really do. I feel like “likes” are meant to be encouraging. A little pat on the back, if you will. I need all the encouragement I can get 😛 Comments are even more awesome. They like me, they really like me!

    Q – do you like posts even when you don’t necessarily agree with them or even if you think the author has written better because you still did enjoy some part of it?”

    A – Basically, I give a post a like if I feel I got anything at all out of it. I read mostly book, anime, and game reviews and related stuff. I know which reviewers I mostly agree with (as in we enjoy the same types of anime/games/books) and who I sometimes agree with and sometimes don’t. You guys save me a lot of time – well, and also tempt me into more anime, books, and games. Sometimes I read the review and think, yeah, so I can skip that one, or hmm, now that sounds interesting let’s pop it on the list. This doesn’t always go along with the bloggers rating or opinion. The blogger can say “I didn’t like this” but still say something about it that makes me think “hmm, I might like that” and visa versa. Posts that are not reviews, but are essays or something, I often learn interesting tidbits from, or find interesting in themselves. I’ll for sure like that post, even if I don’t necessarily agree with it. I rarely like a post I didn’t read at all, but sometimes I admit I just skim. Now and then I will give a post a like because it’s clear the blogger really went into some in depth effort and did a great job, even though I might not be interested in that particular subject.

    “Do you comment just to encourage people even if you don’t really have anything to add?”

    No. I comment if i have something to add or say. It’s probably more common for me to read through the comments, see someone else said what I was thinking and give that comment a like rather than writing something repetitive. I basically treat it as a discussion or conversation, and you wouldn’t butt in to say ‘yeah, I agree” although you might butt in to say, “I agree with that and did you also notice blah blah blah” Also, as in a conversation, I will often comment just “Oh? Thanks for that review, I’ll look for that game as it sounds like something I would like.” I don’t know that such a comment adds anything, but it does say “thank you” for pointing me in a direction for something I might enjoy. I mean it, thank you.

    “Are you curious about the answers? Should I do a quick follow up post if I get enough responses to let you know what I found?”

    Yes, please. I think basically everyone who blogs, and those who read them as well, would be interested in the answers and conclusions.

    • Irina says:

      Awesome answers Foovay, I love how you always take the time to really make sure you bring your point across. You are commenting goals to be frank

  9. Sometimes its easy to dismiss likes. When someone likes 5 posts with thousands of words between them and their bog is unrelated to anything you posted on.

  10. I don’t struggle much with this on account of the fact that comments on my blog are harder to find than diamonds in a coal mine lol

  11. Very relatable post.

    I’m not a blogger who uploads with any regularity, but I used to have followings on other platforms several years ago. To be honest, I get kinda excited when I see a “new notification” blip on one of my pages (social media brainwashing at its finest, heh), so I find it a bit annoying if it’s just someone writing “lol”, or “good post.” If it’s someone who doesn’t have much to add but still has made some sort of visible effort, then I’m much more appreciative than annoyed, but still mildly disappointed. “Likes” offer me the same amount of affirmation without giving me that extra notification.

    What really gets me is when the person doesn’t have anything to say, but still seems interested in keeping the conversation going, and I can’t really ignore them (someone I know IRL, instant messaging tells them I saw their comment, etc). Then it just becomes a waste of time. I genuinely hate to say/write it, because it sounds super arrogant and I’m not that interesting myself, but there really are some people out there who are just… boring, and one of my least favourite social chores, online or offline, is trying to communicate with them without coming off as rude or aloof… which I often end up doing by accident anyways. Even by writing this, I might be throwing off a few well-meaning commenters. I actually like talking to most people. It’s just that I’m terrible at faking emotions, so pretending to be interested by someone can be exhausting. It’s why I like social media so much– I’m not obligated to respond. If I have something interesting to contribute, I’ll say it, and if I don’t, then nobody thinks I’m being awkward or disrespectful for keeping quiet. Sometimes I’ll comment just because I like and/or personally know the person I’m following & want to support whatever it is they happen to be doing, but usually in those cases, I don’t have to try too hard to come up with something worth writing in response, even if it means just posting a stupid joke or something that I know they won’t interpret the wrong way. Even then, whether I’m being serious or joking, it’s still a conscious effort on my behalf to make their day better in one way or another.

    But with all that said, when someone is clearly appreciative of what I’ve written, when I know I might have helped someone see something in a different way, even if they don’t necessarily agree 100% with me, I find that to be a pretty good feeling. They don’t need to write out a massive reply like the one I’m typing now to show their appreciation– as long as it’s more than 2-3 words, I’m happy. One of my best (and only) blogging moments was when I had someone contact me anonymously to say how grateful they were for the articles I’d written, as it had helped them see a middle ground to some ideas they were struggling with. It was a pretty simple comment, but I could tell they were speaking from the heart. I definitely wanted the dude/dudette to know I’d seen their message, but I still had issues replying. I didn’t even know anyone was reading what I was writing. The stupidest reply I’ve ever written in recent years was probably in response to that message, lol. I was at a loss for words and basically just gave them the internet equivalent of embarrassed babble. I still kinda kick myself over that, because they definitely deserved a more meaningful reply.

    Hopefully I answered at least one of your questions amid all this rambling, lol.

    • Irina says:

      I’ve never gotten a simple lol as a comment but I get lol as a response in texts and dms all the time when there is nothing funny being said at all and it just annoys me so much. It’s impossible to response to and just obviously random button mashing. I like to imagine it’s an in person conversation and the other person just burst out laughing out of nowhere and now I have to somehow get out of there without making them snap…
      That was a tangent. I really am bad at comments.
      You are the first person to say that comments can get grating and I find that honesty super refreshing! Thank you

      • Haha, most people enjoy my honesty much less. I tend to get called rude names. But you’re welcome.

        And I think the “lol” comments were mostly a late 2000s or early 2010s YouTube thing. I used to make “funny” videos (yes they still exist and no I won’t show you them, lol) that were fairly popular back when “fairly popular” meant having only 1000+ subscribers, which is nothing nowadays on that platform. I still use the account even though I don’t make videos anymore, and I still sometimes get “lol” notifications on my old videos, but a lot less frequently than before. It’s all just a minor annoyance to me– not like my day is ruined or anything. All I want is for folks to try to be more creative!

        • Irina says:

          It’s kind of cool that you still get comments a decade on. You have a digital legacy!

          • I think so too. Sometimes, out of nowhere, I’ll get a comment on a video that even I had forgotten about, which is kind of nostalgic, even though my sense of humour back then was, uhh… questionable 0_0

  12. Lizzo says:

    I would be interested in seeing a follow up post.

    At the beginning on my blogging journey i’d notice if someone liked my post without opening it. I’d get likes and no views. It didn’t bother it but sure confused me. Figured folks were just trying grab my attention so I’d go for there blog. I didnt occur to me that it might be for encouragement. Either way, I appreciated being seen.

    I make an effort to reply or like every comment.(Unless it’s clearly spam) I appreciate the effort and I want go show that appreciate back.
    I’m cool with a simple nice post.

    • Irina says:

      Low maintenance! I love it.
      I will definitely do a follow up post – These responses have been so much better than I hoped for

  13. For me, I’m fine if I get any style of feedback be it a like or comment. Repetitive comments also don’t bother me that much too – I’m just glad the person decided to comment if at all. Though, I’m still in that phase where I get giddy whenever I see someone drop an interesting comment so maybe that needs to change… While I carry the meaning of both on different scales, the bottom line is I’m glad I received them in the first place!

    When it comes to me commenting on others’ posts, I find that really difficult, as a lot of people have already noted. I only comment if I reaaallly have something to say, but that’s not very often. Though, that’s only because I don’t know how to carry my words half the time.

    Also, yes! I’d love to see a follow-up post to this topic! ^^

    “do you like posts even when you don’t necessarily agree with them or even if you think the author has written better because you still did enjoy some part of it?”

    You don’t need to throw shade, if you didn’t like Pandamonium you could have just left a comment!

    • Irina says:

      FINE! I will next time.
      It’s sort of sweet how alike bloggers are. I’m looking forward to putting these responses together!

  14. Dawnstorm says:

    First, do you need to watch Daily Lives of Highschool Girls? Oh yes, you do. It’s fun with stereotypes, and it was one of my fave shows in its season.

    I tend not to reply to blog meta posts, because I usually have little to say. After reading the comments, though, I find I have a question. Mutliple people have indicated that it’s possible to see on the stats page if a like correlates to a read. Or a view? As a non-blogger, ignorant of the software, I wonder: how? What do the stats measure. Account A stayed five seconds and left a like? I’m curious, because for me the only way to leave a like is to scoll down on a blog post I already pulled up and hit the like button (where it most likely will ask me to log into some account I don’t have, whether it be wordpress, google, twitter, apple…).

    If I reply to a post, I’ve read it, even if my replies sometimes have no overt connection to the post in question. I sometimes react to them with free associations. Also, I only reply to blog posts I know I won’t forget coming back to. I have this fear of getting a reply to a reply that necessitates another reply, but I fail to check back in and never do. That’s the stuff of nightmares. (I’m bad with social media.)

    • Irina says:

      I ended up getting a HiDive subscription just because of that screencap. I may be a touch flighty….
      I answered to another comment but on my blog I can’t really correlate comments and views. We have a total view number (pre day, week, post…) and a total like, comment and visitor number, as well as where the visitor IP is from, but they don’t seem to be compiled at the same time so for me they often don’t match up at all (wow this single visitor gave me no views and came from 5 different countries???) So I take these with a huge grain of salt. They are a general indicator at best.

  15. I could easily spend my entire day just reading posts and responding. I’d never have any time to post anything myself.

    WRT “likes.” Some posts get more likes than others. Some classes of posts get more likes than others. That range of likes tells me that they aren’t all social likes. There is preference being expressed. I should probably use that as a guide as what to post, right? (Too lazy and lack commitment to do that.)

    That actual numbers of comments and likes is not meaningful. The relative number is how I compare posts and judge their worthiness. Posts that get few likes and no comments tend to disappear. Right now anything in double digits is good.

    I’ve also started noticing the looks to likes ratio. If lots of people ‘look” and few people “like” that’s bad news. If nobody looks, that tells me the premise itself was uninteresting.

    If only I then used that information…

    Comments are the best! They don’t have to be terribly insightful. I really doubly appreciate then when there’s evidence in them my post was actually read. Always try to reply but somehow I’m not getting notified 100%.

    I wish I got enough comments that they could conceivably be considered repetitive.

    • Irina says:

      Some people (without a gravatar or wp account) can’t easily like a post. I find that posts that get a lot of views from google will get much less likes/comments than ones that get their views from the reader app.

      • Wow! If the looks to likes ratio is important to you, that is a powerful argument against SEO.

        • Irina says:

          Actually I gave up a long time ago on ratios or SEO or anything of the sort. I’m very hopeless at it and it’s just not my thing. I do like data mining and trend prediction in general cause I’m just that cool

  16. Krystallina says:

    For me, the biggest thing is time. I just can’t find the time to respond to each and every post, although I try to like them as an acknowledgment that I appreciate their effort to write, even though I may not agree with them or have read the entire thing due to spoiler reasons.

  17. Owningmatt93 says:

    Irina always asking the tough questions…

    Well, I guess not really “tough”, but it’s always stuff that I don’t really think about that you bring up. I always feel like I’m looking at things in a completely different way than you are, but these posts always bring me back to those fundamental questions that help me figure stuff out, so it’s much appreciated! I’m just going to go down the post and answer these from my viewpoint as well as the viewpoint of being a co-writer for my blog (no “sexy” blogger roleplay from me this time anyway!)

    “Do you struggle with comments? As in answering or even leaving them? Do you respond to all the comments on your blog? (If you have one obviously) Do you comment on other people’s?”

    The short answer is yes, to all. I personally love leaving comments, but it comes as a huge mental investment for me as I like trying to engage with the post that I’m reading in a way that’s both respectful to the post in question, but also providing some thoughtful insight from a different angle. Because of that, my comments end up long-winded and… well, they take forever to write too, so I don’t end up writing a lot of comments in general for that reason. I just always want to be sure that I’m putting in a level of effort, similar to the person writing the post is. For some blogs, the posts are sometimes really interesting to me, but I feel like I need a Master’s in Literary Theory in order to reply in that manner, so I end up not leaving any comments on plenty of posts I find interesting! Of course, time is a constraint as well, but it’s one I’ve lately been trying to work within the bounds of.

    Answering comments… has its own set of struggles. Our blog really doesn’t get a lot of comments so we try to answer all of them that we get, which isn’t really an issue considering there’s three of us. Unfortunately, that also creates an issue where sometimes I feel that I can’t respond well to comments on my co-bloggers’s posts since I don’t understand their angle and have no real perspective to come at it from. There also have been instances where I don’t necessarily agree with certain points of posts my co-bloggers have written as well and I agree with comments debating the post, yet don’t want to respond simply because it appears that I’m debating with my own blog (even though my co-blogger’s already know my views). Most weird comment reply issues like this just come at a cost of running a multi-person blog, but it’s something I can successfully work in the bounds of nonetheless!

    “Do people prefer to get comments even if they re repetitive or not that deep? Or is it a hassle and they would rather not have to deal with internet small talk?”

    Personally, I would always prefer people to leave repeat comments, and my comments probably end up repeating stuff as well since I have a bad habit of leaving comments before reading the other comments most of the time. That is, unless it’s a highly debatable topic, in which I always read all of the comments first (and then usually don’t respond because most of my points have already been stated at that point).

    As for them, “not being that deep”, I’m perhaps a bit hypocritical in this regard when it comes to our blog. Me and my co-bloggers always appreciate all the “Love this post!” sorts of comments, but at the same time, we definitely really crave those comments that are “deep”. As I stated in the first question though, I can understand why people don’t leave comments like this because of them being time-consuming, lengthy reads, and just feel unqualified to do so. While our blog hasn’t ever really been hostile or shut down discussions that have come our way, we figure that’s just yet another constraint of people’s way of thinking that we’ve come to terms with over time.

    “On the one hand a lot of bloggers care about their stats and comment number is a stat.”

    Not really a question, but I wanted to briefly touch upon that from my perspective stats are an indicator, but not something to be led by. We look at them over time and monitor them regularly to gauge future plans, but individual post stats are not really something we dwell upon.

    “From what I gathered, it was just a feeling that likes are disingenuous and meaningless if people leave them mindlessly.”

    This is a pretty funny comment, because I debated this with my co-bloggers in our first year or two of blogging and genuinely asked “Is anyone actually reading what we’re saying…” or “Do these ‘likes’ have any indicators of who’s reading?”. We found out in year 2 that the answer is always “Yes” when one of our posts took off to a crazy extent where it honestly went out of our control and we couldn’t physically keep up with the discussion anymore because of the rapid speed of its development. Anyway, lesson learned there. People that want to read will read, and people that don’t, won’t. So from that perspective, leaving “likes” seems inconsequential to us whether or not someone reads the post; we appreciate all of the support and “likes” we get!

    “Sadly this is often where I fall. I tend to water down my personality a lot to make it a bit more palatable and I feel like I end up rather bland sometimes”

    On a personal level, I have a lot of weird issues like this, where my voice isn’t consistent from my blog to my social media to my chat channels… I think things like “not having a (consistent) voice” just are something that the internet perpetuates, and it’s another aspect that we just have to live with. I try to be consistent with how I talk to people in different platforms, but it definitely can come off as a bit “bland” or “overly formal”. I feel like if every blogger was in a physical room with each other talking about these things, then that problem would be eliminated, so I don’t think this issue is something to overly concern yourself with, personally.

    “Are you like me, thrilled by every like and comment because you find it encouraging that someone made that little effort -or- do you prefer that people only engage with your posts if they consider them particularly meaningful because you get more satisfaction that way? Is acknowledgement enough or do you crave feedback?”

    I already touched on this before, but from the perspective of our blog, both are satisfying different parts of what we aim for, so I think one cannot exist without the other in some way. The most important thing to me, at least, is to give people something to think about in a different way that they may not have thought about before. If they read the post, then that’s mission accomplished for me. Everything else is just extra, so I suppose I’m in more of the acknowledgement category myself. That’s not to say that I don’t crave the feedback, but if I had to choose one or the other, that’s what I would choose, as I can get feedback in other ways beyond comments if need be.

    Sorry about the length (once again), just lots to dissect here as usual! Good post to really think about what I value personally!

    • Irina says:

      You say you struggle with comments then you leave masterpieces. Suspicious…..
      And yeah – I can completely see how comments would take a mental toll when they’re this detailed and thought out. It’s just as tough as writing a post if not tougher since you’re being forced into someone else’s narrative.
      I think it’s great that we have completely different ways of thinking. That’s what makes the conversations interesting.

      • Owningmatt93 says:

        I rather enjoy our interesting back-and-forths. Different opinions make the world go round, or something like that anyway…

        Glad you thought my insight was well-written, because I was afraid of the length after reading the other comments!

        • Irina says:

          I’m not sure why anyone apologizes about comment length. It regularly happens and I don’t think there’s any need at all.

  18. RisefromAshes says:

    The only time I don’t appreciate people leaving likes is when I get a like, but there’s no corresponding view on the post. That’s when it feels superficial to me, but then again that’s just my opinion. I’ve heard that people ‘like’ posts to make it easier to find them later to read/comment on but I’m not quite sure how I feel about that. To each their own I suppose.

    For me, whenever I get a comment I do get super excited! Yay engagement! But at times, I feel like I’m not the best at continuing the conversation. That someone might have taken the time to write to me about their enjoyment of my post, but at the end all I can muster up is a ‘thank you for reading, glad you enjoyed it’ type of thing.

    Often times when I disagree with someone, and I know I can’t form a comment with substance I’ll like a post. I tend to avoid conflict but I like to acknowledge that opinions outside my own exist and are super valid. Other times I’m so burnt out from my own life, or other comments that I’ll just like it. It’s engagement and I’ve never really heard of someone being mad that a post only gets likes.

    • Irina says:

      One thing I have noticed about my stats is that views take longer to compile than anything else. I remember having views for 5 different countries but only 2 views tracked or even getting a comment (a relevant one) on a post with no views at all… Maybe it’s just me but I no longer trust the views on my blog.
      I avoid conflict too. I think I might be cheating myself out of some really interesting discussions…

      • RisefromAshes says:

        That’s actually really interesting, and I hadn’t even considered that the views to country stats might be different. For my blog they seem to be correct, then again numbers are not my game so I’m probably very off. lol

        I think that’s the exchange of avoiding conflict. The conversations suffers…. maybe it would be worth it once in awhile to engage…. with the right blogger of course.

        • Irina says:

          That right blogger part really is key. But there’s a lot of lovely people around here, we have plenty to chose from! I say Scott, I feel like conflict with him would probably end up with compliments.

          • RisefromAshes says:

            It’s very true! I’m slowly working up my gumption to get better at commenting and saying something that makes someone think. And I think you’re right on the nose when it comes to Scott and conflict in commenting.

  19. Notes about Episodes

    It’s like a treasure hunt! You left the questions all through your post. You should give a prize to whomever finds and answers all the questions. It just shouldn’t be from that website you referenced. I don’t want my hair to fall off.

    “Do you struggle with comments?”

    Yes.

    “As in answering or even leaving them?”

    Both, actually. If someone takes the time to leave a comment on my post, I want to show my appreciation by giving them an insightful, witty, and conversational response. Unfortunately, those things are hard in the limited space of a comment.

    Okay, they’re hard for me in general.

    Leaving comments is even worse. I’m overly anxious about saying something insulting or stupid. Or stupidly insulting. When a blogger doesn’t respond or acknowledge my comment, that more or less confirms my every suspicion: I said something unspeakably evil and am even now being cursed for all eternity.

    Though I guess that’s just a day at work, actually…

    “Do you respond to all the comments on your blog?”

    I try. I sometimes miss one, but I want to acknowledge anyone who takes the time to leave their thoughts or feelings. Sometimes, all I can do is click Like on the comment because it’s thought is so complete, I can’t add anything to it.

    “Do you comment on other people’s?”

    Like I said, I try. I’ll say this: If it’s Friday night or Saturday morning and I leave a comment on a post, that’s a big deal. I try to review 350+ anime sites during that time, so I have an average of 60 seconds to sample the new posts for that week. So if I take the time to comment, it means the post stopped me dead in my tracks.

    “Do people prefer to get comments even if they re repetitive or not that deep?”

    Anyone who leaves a comment is welcome. Well, I’d prefer they not copy and paste someone else’s comment! But repetitive thoughts are fine. Shallow, deep — doesn’t matter.

    “Or is it a hassle and they would rather not have to deal with internet small talk?”

    If I didn’t want comments, I’d turn them off.

    “Are you like me, thrilled by every like and comment because you find it encouraging that someone made that little effort -or- do you prefer that people only engage with your posts if they consider them particularly meaningful because you get more satisfaction that way?”

    I seem to have a similar perspective to yours. I’m thrilled with every like and comment. I don’t even want to use terms like shallow and deep, because they’re so relative. If someone leaves their honest thought or feeling, I’m honored.

    “Is acknowledgement enough or do you crave feedback?”

    Acknowledgement is fine. There are times I read a post that hits me right in the feels, I might just click on the like button — it would be unseemly to blubber in someone’s comments…. So I get it if someone doesn’t want to leave a comment.

    “And on the flip side, do you like posts even when you don’t necessarily agree with them or even if you think the author has written better because you still did enjoy some part of it?”

    Disagreements are find. If the post is still well-written, I’ll click like. If it’s morally reprehensible, even if it’s a masterpiece, I won’t click like. But if I click like on a post, it means I liked it.

    “Do you comment just to encourage people even if you don’t really have anything to add?”

    That’s a tough question. I might think I have something to add, but it might not be interesting to others. I try not to waste anyone’s time.

    “One last question. Are you curious about the answers? Should I do a quick follow up post if I get enough responses to let you know what I found?”

    Yes to both questions. I like these Shop Talk posts!

    • Irina says:

      I overthink my comments so much as well! Will a joke translate in digital form? Wait am I correct in my comment – should I look it up just to make sure… I end up doing more research for comments than for posts…
      Follow up it is!

  20. Artemis says:

    These days, I actually get very little engagement with my posts. They still get likes and comments, but not nearly as much as, say, 5 years ago, even though I now have far more subscribers. That’s not some kind of criticism or woe is me comment or anything – just referring to general stats. For what it’s worth, I’ve also been noticing the same thing on other platforms that have nothing to do with anime or blogging – people just seem to tend to engage less in any meaningful (physical) way. When I do get comments, I make sure to respond to all of them, and have been doing so since the very beginning. Seriously, I don’t think there’s a single comment on any of my blog posts (other than the odd spam piece) that I haven’t responded to since I first started blogging in 2013.

    As for myself, I comment whenever I feel I have something to actually add to the conversation. I’ve never been one to drop a throwaway “That’s cool” or “Oh, nice,” kind of comment, just because it doesn’t feel like I’m adding any kind of value that way. (I don’t have any problem with other people who do this – it’s just not me, that’s all.) If I want to show my appreciation for the post – if I heartily agree with something, or if I can see someone put in a lot of time and effort or deep thought into a subject I’m also interested in, but don’t have anything in particular to add myself – I give it a like.

    • Irina says:

      I think engagement is down in general. I see a lot less comments and likes on pretty much all the blogs I follow compared to a few years ago.

  21. Frostilyte says:

    For a long time none of my posts got likes or comments. I wouldn’t have cared so much, but all of the successful blogs I looked up to (and still do) regularly get a whole slew of likes and comments. So in my mind getting comments and likes was a sort of validation that I’d made it. If that makes sense.

    Eventually I started to get a little more traction with my posts and I saw more likes coming in. For a while that was great. It was as if I was finally successful! But the feeling died off relatively quickly. It didn’t really seem to matter how much likes a post did or didn’t get I just…kind of didn’t care. Not in the same way I did back when I wasn’t getting any.

    What I’ve found more and more now is that I appreciate getting comments. I struggle to leave comments on other people’s posts, so I know that it takes a lot of effort to actually articulate something in response to someone’s written work. As such, whenever I get a comment on my blog I really appreciate it. Doubly so if that starts an additional dialogue which adds to the post. I feel a lot more accomplished in my writing when that happens.

    This was probably a bit long winded. Hope it makes sense.

    Also, count me as another vote for “would read a follow-up post”. This wasn’t what I expected based on the title, but I’m glad I read it and would gladly read a follow-up post. 🙂

    • Irina says:

      It was a great comment! And it seems we do have interest in a follow up post. I’ll put something together soon!

  22. Inskidee says:

    For me, I’m fine if I get any style of feedback be it a like or comment. Repetitive comments also don’t bother me that much too – I’m just glad the person decided to comment if at all. Though, I’m still in that phase where I get giddy whenever I see someone drop an interesting comment so maybe that needs to change… While I carry the meaning of both on different scales, the bottom line is I’m glad I received them in the first place!

    When it comes to me commenting on others’ posts, I find that really difficult, as a lot of people have already noted. I only comment if I reaaallly have something to say, but that’s not very often. Though, that’s only because I don’t know how to carry my words half the time.

    Also, yes! I’d love to see a follow-up post to this topic! ^^

  23. Anonymous says:

    If i do get any comments or emails from my readers i’d be happy with what i get no matter how long or short it would be.
    -k(rogueotakugamer)

  24. Kapodaco says:

    I believe it was a post by Seasonprattle that said that if a post doesn’t receive any comments despite getting a lot of likes, it’s not worth looking at because it doesn’t incite conversation or something like that. As a common victim of this, their words worried me, lmao.

    “Are you like me, thrilled by every like and comment because you find it encouraging that someone made that little effort”

    Yes.

    “do you like posts even when you don’t necessarily agree with them or even if you think the author has written better because you still did enjoy some part of it?”

    Depends on how much I don’t agree with. A different opinion on a topic is fine, but if I find it morally wrong or of ill taste, I won’t. With lesser writing than normal, that’s too vague, I think. Writing technically? Emotionally? In what they say or provide or ramble or what? As long as their voice comes through and I understand them, I think that’s worth a like.

    “Do you comment just to encourage people even if you don’t really have anything to add?”

    Not usually. I comment if I have something I want to say.

    “Are you curious about the answers? Should I do a quick follow up post if I get enough responses to let you know what I found?”

    Yes.

    Final note: I never read other peoples’ comments before commenting myself, lol.

  25. alsmangablog says:

    I personally am happy with any comment I receive on my posts, even short or simple feedback is encouraging for me. When it comes to leaving comments on other people’s blogs though, I also feel pressure to come up with something clever or meaningful to say and might end up not leaving a comment if I can’t think of anything, even when I really enjoyed the post. I’ve been trying to push past that instinct and comment more on other people’s posts lately though, since I know how much I appreciate the comments I receive.

    As for Likes, the thought that someone might be leaving a like without reading all, or any, of my post doesn’t really bother me. Leaving a like just to be encouraging is a nice gesture, so I’m not to concerned by that possibility.

    I would be interested in reading a follow up post on this topic if you feel like writing one.

    • Irina says:

      I don’t now if I just have a specific type of reader but these responses are all so great and understanding. I will write a follow up post if for no other reason than you guys are great to read

  26. AK says:

    These are some issues I’ve thought of as a blogger, and they’re worth bringing up. I’d definitely prefer that people read a post I wrote and leave a meaningful comment with more substance than “great post” or something. I like the encouragement, so I really don’t mind getting those comments, but if the reader/fellow writer has something more to say about what I wrote and we can have a conversation about it, so much the better.

    Some bloggers do obsess over stats, hits and all that. I understand that if your blog is monetized and you’re relying on it for part of your income, but if you’re not doing it for profit or advertising dollars then I don’t really get it. I could get ten thousand views on one post and if none of them leave any feedback, what’s that to me? It’s great that so many people are reading that post, but I find more meaning in one interesting comment from one reader, even if they’re disagreeing with what I wrote.

    As for the like thing, it doesn’t really bother me. If someone’s going to not read or merely skim my post and leave a like, that’s up to them. In any case, there’s no way for me to tell whether they skimmed or read carefully — the only possible way to tell is if they don’t leave a comment, and maybe they simply didn’t feel like commenting at the end or had nothing to say about what I wrote. I guess I could go to the stats page on WordPress and try to match views to likes, but if I had that much free time I’d find something better to do with it.

    Thanks for raising these issues! I’d also be interested in seeing a follow-up post if you feel like it.

    • Irina says:

      I don’t think I could take the pressure of monetizing my blog.
      My readers are super relaxed so far. I like it!

  27. Pinkie says:

    Since I made a post related to this I guess you cam imagine what side of the fence I am on. Yet there is a lot of nuance there.

    From people like you I know when you leave a like it means like.. so your like is genuine. Even if you just skim over and it’s not great.. it is an encouragement. If you like a post I know it isn’t always a great post but I am happy you acknowledge it.
    However when someone leaves a like on say my post on Tengen Toppa and the next day they ask me if I like that anime or I see in the stats people havent even read my post.. they just saw my work pass by in reader because it shared some tags with their blogs It doesn’t do nearly as much.

    Before I had a person who kept liking my posts but than on discord kept asking me for stuff they already liked on my blog.. stuff I extensively talk about. Sometimes even the very same day. That is basically the opposite. It’s a testimony of.. your posts do not matter to me at all I click the like button because it shows up in reader.. I don’t even read the title. This makes it a bit harder to appreciate those who mean well admittedly.
    I even had like spams.. where people dislike and like a post just so I get announcements and hopefully visit their site to check what going on.

    A comment no matter who the reader is shows you probably at least read the title. The post I made today has 50% more likes than it has views at this time. Because I intentionally chose some very generic tags. A comment feels just a bit more as an effort.
    I do not want people to just leave comment because of social etiquette or my hapiness though I want it to be genuine.. a genuine like is just as nice… kind of .

    Compare it as if you are walking down a convention or a street. In one scenario people will all wish you good morning and wave at you, in the other they just give yo a small nod.
    Social anxiety aside the second scenario will make you feel less present.
    Good morning Irina.. or Good Morning Peach haired girl .. feels personal.. a smile and a nod feels like etiquette.

    Like I said in my post, the numbers game is something I feel more compelled to enjoy.. like big numbers means highscore… but a comment gives me that sense of community I really hoped to find here. Given my poor health.. it is a bit of an irrational fear to “not be seen’ Raist is a good example of someone we all see and miss. He is remembered.. HE himself is liked.. and that is something I wish to achieve… Should my heart fail I’d want there to be at least someone.. who says.. Awww Pinkie died.. that is sad I liked her blog… instead of saying someone Oh Pinkie died , who was that again… oh apparently I “liked” that blog.

    • Irina says:

      I get people telling me to watch an anime I’ve reviewed and they’ve liked at least once a day… This said, I get that sometimes people get posts mixed up. For a while I use to switch two bloggers in my mind all the time. I would read something on one of their blogs and then try to talk about it with the other. It took me so long to figure it out and I’m sure they both think I’m crazy now. So I get that if someone read 20 posts today or 100 posts this week, they might not remember that I was the one who reviewed a specific anime. It happens… a lot…
      Also I’ll miss Pinkie. I’ll miss Pinkie very much and I’M just going to say a lot of people would miss Pinkie and I’m very sure about it.

      • Pinkie says:

        Aww thanks that sweet the ending of your message I mean.

        I get what you mean with mixing it up and I am also not saying rules universally apply. I for example could not stop confusing Inskime and Iniksbane for a bit even though they are completely different.

        I mean people I can specifically name who I know just pretend to read my posts but than accidentally show it. There is nothing wrong with an honest mistakes but that is fine.
        I have no problem with such a comment either.. or nom comment or even a like.

        I just have an issue with people who like your post because its “the right thing to do”.. you know like a kid that is showing their new drawing to mother and mother says wow it’s amazing well done.. while even the kid sees she isnt even looking at it. To busy with her phone. .. That is the type of reaction I really hate.. and that is a lot easier to reach in likes.

        I don’t think I have much of those type of followers anymore, but in an ideal world, I would just like my content to be noticed.
        I’d rather have a “I noticed your post” button and we leave our appreciation open to the comments. To me it feels more universally sincere.

        I also think this feeling will diminish in me a bit as the blog grows bigger. Right now at around 20 regulars, the deviation stands out really much.

        You, Scott, Mega, Raist Fred, Mallow, Lynn so many people are awesome followers that the ones who do it for the wrong reason stand out.

        Again I just feel really deflated if I worked on something for hours and someone would say oh nice.. before even looking at it.. perhaps it’s because my father always acted like that in the past..but it is a huge peeve of mine.

  28. ashleycapes says:

    I’m happy with anything, I reckon – ‘like’ or ‘comment’, both, or even seeing a few views here and there is cool with me 🙂

  29. This was an interesting topic. Let’s see if I can a) answer all the questions, and b) provide a longer comment than I normally do on stuff :p

    In terms of my own habits, I’m similar. I try to respond to every comment left on my site, though a lot of the time, I don’t really know what to say. I’m also aware that pushing that too far can be an issue; like, if someone comments and is inclined to respond to everything, you may end up both just trying to reply to each response to each other, and get stuck in a loop.

    With other sites, I don’t comment as much as I should. Sometimes, I just don’t have anything to add. Other times, someone else has already said the same thing as I was thinking – in which case, I may respond to their comment with an agreement, but not always – and with some others I simply forget.

    I like both likes and comments on my own stuff. Whether it’s a short agreement, a long counter argument, or even just a ‘great post’ it’s all appreciated. Repeat comments too don’t bother me. I like them. I’d rather have them than not, to be honest. Internet smal ltalk is something that I find hard, but still easier than real-life small talk, so it’s a good thing for me, I think.

    I’m happy to receive likes. I’d like more comments and interaction, but I’m fine with likes. They’re still a sign that someone cared enough to acknowledge the post as far as I’m concerned. Same with post shares on social media. Appreciation is appreciation.

    I do like some posts as a sign of appreciating the effort to write them too. There are plenty of good posts out there that I disagree with in terms of the opinions expressed etc., but I can still appreciate the work. I don’t know if I’ve read a psot that made me think ‘that’s not their best work’ at all though; I don’t think I look at posts that way if that makes sense? I kinda try to take them for what they are rather than compare them.

  1. May 18, 2020

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