How Do You See Blog Comments: ‘Bullshit’ or ‘Democratic’?

Jan 31, 2012   //   by Obaidul Haque   //   blogging, SEO Blog  //  26 Comments

I’ve written several articles on the benefits of blog commenting. And I couldn’t resist writing one more. Recently, a lot of debate has been going on as to whether it’s worthwhile to allow commenting on one’s blog.

There are some who think of comments as mere ‘bullshit’. There are others who support commenting as a ‘form of democracy’. Let’s have a look at what MG Siegler (a columnist for TechCrunch) has to say.

“Here’s the thing: while some try to paint comments as a form of democracy, that’s bullshit. 99.9% of comments are bile. I’ve heard the counter arguments about how you need to curate and manage your comments — okay, I’m doing that by not allowing any.”

From the readers’ point of view, commenting provides them with a great feeling of participation. It also creates a sense of belonging, around which the entire concept of blogosphere revolves. On the other hand, listening to people’s views via comments motivates the blogger to work even harder so as to deliver what the former are actually looking for. That’s exactly the reason blog comments are seen as a ‘form of democracy’.

Still, many people would call blog commenting to be nothing more than a waste of time. Let them have their own opinions. Supporters, however, don’t see comments as something worthless or vile. Though, at times, commenting tends to get noisy, you will certainly miss out on a rich experience by turning off comments or not allowing people to share those ‘little tendrils of thought’.

I think permitting readers to comment on your blog is as much democratic as it is for you to freely share your own views by publishing posts.

If Commenting is a ‘Form of Democracy’, It can be Misused
It’s obvious. ‘Power to People’ can be misused. But that’s what rules and policies are made for. Instead of shutting out people from commenting, a serious blogger should find ways to optimize the discourse so that it adds value to the conversation (which is the soul of a blog) that strikes up after a post is published.

It’s simply unacceptable or immoral to deny democratic freedom to others while you’re enjoying it yourself. If you’ve got the freedom to express your opinions publicly by publishing blog posts, you have no right to prevent others from sharing what they think about a particular topic. Not giving people the right to comment is like ‘ruling as a dictator’.

Not Allowing People to Comment is Highly ‘Unsocial’
How can you afford to be unsocial when the entire world is fast turning into a global village? Video chats are creating global classrooms. A new era of interactive advertising is about to begin. Searches are getting social. Regardless of their size, businesses are focusing more on the ‘listening’ part of the customer acquisition process. A blog is one of the best social media tools that you can use. You can never imagine to use a social media tool without being social yourself, can you?

Do you support or detest blog comments? Let us know by casting your vote in the tweet poll below and commenting.


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Obaidul Haque

Obaidul works as an SEO manager handling client projects. He focuses heavily on Search Engine Optimization (SEO) and Social Media Marketing (SMM). Also a passionate blogger and freelance writer, he shares his insightful views regularly on HelloBloggerz . You can follow him on Google Plus or Twitter.

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Comment Policy

  • Gregory says:

    A blog without comments is a soap-box, plain and simple. Not having comments says you are only interested in passing on your wisdom, without testing it against any external source.

    • Definitely, truth springs out of discussion. Nice to know you support ‘blog commenting’ as a form of democracy.

      Thanks, Gregory.

    • Mike says:

      Gregory, I agree with you.
      Of course many comments on blogs are spam or very low quality just to get the link pointing to their site but there are many valuable discussions as well and there are many times when some users give support and suggestion in comment while the article is already outdated and can’t answers question what reader had.

  • Gerald Weber
    Twitter:
    says:

    It has always driven me freaking nuts when I arrive to a blog that doesn’t allow comments. A blog is not a blog without comments in my opinion.

  • NiceBlogger says:

    A blog without comments it’s like a Mercedes without the logo. Useless ! Why are you sharing your opinions if the others can not publish their own opinions?

  • Ray says:

    Everyone is entitled to their own opinion at least in most countries or parts of the world right. Whether they allow comments or not I guess it is up to the site or owner. You could end up losing traffic if you decide to turn off comments. I like comments so yes for me.

  • Superb article…Really worthy to reach as it carrying handy information.

  • Tessa says:

    Allowing comment section helps the readers to leave their thoughts and make them to engage with our blog.

  • Marbella says:

    Many times the comments are better are the articles, the author of an article only see from their side, and readers can see from several angles, which can give a very good overall article on a subject.

  • In my opinion Blog Comments are one way of getting advice from other people to improve one’s blogs not all people are born perfect and each of us got an own point of views in many things…so I am in favor of Blog Comment is “democratic”

    Thanks for posting this very intriguing and helpful post…. it releases the opinions of the reader… you nailed it Obaidul

  • Peter Lee
    Twitter:
    says:

    Obaidul,

    I like to read comments that are of value added to the topic of my post. But if the comments are spammy that I wouldn’t like it of course. But comments are a way to show that the blog has not only visitors but readers as well. A blog with no comments is too quiet and looks dull. I’m a democratic guy, so I’m definitely in favor of blog commenting :)

    Peter

  • But comments are a way to show that the blog has not only visitors but readers as well – this is a valid point.

    Thanks for your vote, Peter!

  • Asad Umrani says:

    I’ve been experiencing this kind of sneaky spam since last year. And it has only gotten worse this time around. It’s a good thing I’ve developed a quick eye for such spam comments that look legitimate.

    What’s kind of annoying though is it seems that Akismet is slow in learning about this, a few comments still manage to get through.

  • Dan Lew
    Twitter:
    says:

    It is important that we should only accept comments that are valuable to the blog post. For the past couple of years, I always receive so many useless and spam comments from bots which flooded my dashboard. I just can’t read all of them you know? Good thing I’ve finally installed the Anti Spam Bot to prevent these stupid comments from flooding my WordPress dashboard. Blog posts with valuable blog comments is a great help for blog owners to gain more exposure and to engage with the audience.

    Cheers!

    Dan Lew

  • majidahmed says:

    Hi,

    Thanks for this great post.I’ve written several articles on the benefits of blog commenting.And I couldn’t resist writing one more. Recently a lot of debate has been going on as to whether it.Thanks for this great article…

  • angie says:

    This is interesting. To be honest i see comments a lot of times as “bullshit” because a lot of time they are spam! You can’t imagine how many spam i received as comments everyday for my blog, which i take like 5-10mins to clear! Thank god i had akismet installed, but somehow these spammers just have a way to go through it!

  • Nancy says:

    Its only shown in the individual blog posts. I don’t think there are options to display them on the homepage.