Comments on the Web

Thanks

Thanks for your comments.

I’m grateful to all the readers who take the time to write comments in response to posts. For me, comments do three important things.

  1. They reassure me that my work is being read. Sure, there are all sorts of analytics that tell me how many people click on the post, but mechanical numbers aren’t the same as human response. So if you’ve ever taken the trouble to post a comment here, I thank you.
  2. Many comments express gratitude, which goes a long way in this solitary business. To be read is a good start, but to make a difference – well, that’s why I do it.
  3. Some comments express different information and/or different opinions than those I’ve expressed. These are perhaps the most important comments around. They expand my knowledge and those of others who read them. It’s this ability to expand our common knowledge that is one of the great gifts of the web.
Comments are the string that weaves us together in a web.

Comments are the string that weaves us together in a web.

Taken all together, what comments do is help us form on-line relationships and forge internet community. Comments are the string that weaves us together in a web.

photo: M. Shafer

photo: M. Shafer

Nota Bene: This post is scheduled to go live while I’m away and unplugged, so I won’t see or respond to comments until I return in mid-September. In the meantime, I wish you good words.

19 thoughts on “Comments on the Web

  1. Hear hear! I value any comments, because it’s wonderful to know that yes, people are really reading my posts (your #1 reason), but I especially love the ones that are more descriptive. All my posts are short stories, so it’s incredibly useful feedback to hear what parts of the story people are noticing and responding to.

  2. Thanks for your comment, which inspired me to take a look at your story ON THE WISDOM OF DISTURBING IDOLS. I love the pun in the title, and the mystery left for the archeologists to figure out: Why, indeed, an empty sledge pulled by a team of oxen?

  3. As thrilled as I am to have someone click “Like”, I value comments much more. It gives me insights into what exactly they liked about my piece, or in some cases, what they did not. Constructive criticism is just as important as positive feedback.

    • I agree that a comment is more informative and helpful than a “like” – though in this world of nanoseconds, I also appreciate that someone took one to let me know they read the post.

  4. Regardless of what we say or do, we always need to keep in mind that what we are doing is for the community at large. It is their reporting back to us that we have resonated on some level that should tell us volumes about what we are doing right and perhaps a thing or two we need to change. Regardless, it truly is the web of our interactions that make this such a vital and dynamic tool to use in building community.

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  7. Excellent post. Sometimes, we bloggers get caught up and fail to express to our readers how much their comments and feedback mean. Comments and feedback propel me forward every day to do better.

  8. Commentary is an undervalued art; and nearly every time someone taught me something was in a dialogue. Phenomenal how in today’s world you can learn something from the pithy words of a stranger far away. Thank you for the post, and the reminder on the value of our active readers.

  9. I do click a lot of likes when reading form my phone, which is often. But I will stop by on the blogs I love, using my laptop, and leave comments. Commenting is increasingly becoming a lost art. Conversations are important, it is where we live and grow, and open up our perspectives.

  10. I agree on the comment thing. I have made a post (or comment) about how I have received more likes on a post then views. I’m not particularly sure how WordPress tally’s that stuff, but it does seem odd (or like people just scroll and like without reading). A better tell on this is when I receive four likes in a row on posts that I know take a bit more than four seconds to read.

    • Your comment exposes one of the issues I missed in my post: How comments step outside the simple popularity trap of counting Likes, Clicks and Views. Quantity alone is not a measure of success! Your comment is a good reminder – thanks.

  11. Pingback: Is Blogging Worth the Effort? | Live to Write – Write to Live

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