The discussion provoked by the topic “When Bloggers Ignore Comments” proves that commenting on blogs is no simple matter. Want more? There’s at least ten more fascinating points of view on Prompt(ly).
What I’ve gathered: it seems like there are two different types of bloggers, who have different motivations.
1) The Conscientious Commenter: This can be a blogger, like Stumbling Gracefully, who responds to every comment they receive, whether they respond to a comment on their own blog, or whether they go to the commenter’s blog and respond there. This can be a blogger like Mel or Lori who are both inundated by comments but who try to do their best to involve their readers in conversation in some way, whether by email reply or re-tweeting someone’s post. This can be a blogger who responds to some comments, but not all. This can be a blogger who FEELS there is a reciprocal relationship between themselves and their readers, even if they don’t do a lot to engage their audience.
But, as I suspected, a few have confirmed to me that there is, indeed, another type of blogger.
2) The Connoisseurs: these are bloggers who blog for themselves. They write because they want to clear their heads and make sense of events. They write to keep an online record of their writing, trace patterns in their lives through their writing. They want to perfect their writing. If they receive comments, that is a plus, but getting comments is not their raison d’être. Now, when this particular type of blogger DOES comment on someone’s blog, it’s not because they feel obligated to, or want to reciprocate. A comment from them is the ultimate compliment: it’s their way of saying you’ve done something to kick ass. They appreciate your post like they would a glass of fine wine or an object of art or a piece of s’more pie. Or because you really are that damn funny. Among the big bloggers, I’d probably classify Julie of A Little Pregnant in this category. Do you agree? FoxyPopcorn has confirmed that she is this type of blogger, and has asked for peace between the two categories 😉
There should be room in the blogosphere for both type of bloggers, obviously. I think there are also bound to be misunderstandings between the two categories. I think I assumed that all bloggers were bound to reciprocate my admiration for them. Why? That’s not the way things work in the real world. Chris Martin may think that Thom Yorke is an unparalleled genius, but that does not guarantee Thom Yorke’s affection. In actuality, Thom Yorke doesn’t much care for Chris Martin. The unnamed bloggers who provoked the original post (neither of whom are Julie or FoxyPopcorn, BTW) probably liken my writing to Rebecca Black. They are not wrong.
I’m sure I’ve grossly oversimplified these categories. Maybe many people are a hybrid of these categories? I don’t want to set up some stereotypical buckets to put people into. I hate that. I don’t fit into any particular category myself as a human being.
I think maybe it’s MOST important to understand that there are different INTENTS behind blogging.
From Foxy Popcorn:
I think that acknowledging that my motivation for blogging could very well be different from someone else’s (is important). Maintaining a flexible set of guidelines that allow for and celebrate those differences is important to me.
My hope is that understanding this can lead to maybe better relations between bloggers? Now that I wrote that, I’m cringing a bit. I sound pretty grandiose. I AM listening to the “Inception” soundtrack right now 😉
There’s more! These bloggers have written great food for thought:
1. Hannah Laughed, Sarah Wept (Part One)
2. Hannah Laughed, Sarah Wept (Part Two) Complete with the most hilarious photo I’ve seen in weeks
3. Beyond the Wallpaper
4. Project Progeny
5. A Separate Life
Have you been writing about commenting? Let me know in the er, comments, below. I am reaching Blog Within a Blog Within a Blog levels…and Stumbling Gracefully and Bodega Bliss know that I take my Leo movies VERY seriously. BTW guys, he’s 36 !?!
Do you agree with all this? Or is this all a gross oversimplification? Do you hear “Friday (…comes before Satuuurdaay)” as your read this post?
Next time: Do you want to have an easier time replying to your comments? I have talked to some smart people, and therefore have some ideas…