Remedial Blog School: Got a Comment?

by Marinka on August 3, 2009

Welcome back to Remedial Blog School. I hope that you all enjoyed your break.

Today’s topic is comments: the good and the sucky.

But first things first. If you don’t have a gravatar, go get a free one here. A gravatar is a little photo that is associated with your email address and will show up next to you comment. There’s just no good reason not to have one.

Another tip/plea, for the love of everything that is American and anti-terrorist, please enable your email address in the comments. If you don’t, I have no way to respond to you. Which may be just how you like it, but let me tell you, you’re really missing out. I like to email responses to people who leave me comments and sometimes I even give them opportunities to send me cash. So do it. Unless you like living in the 20th century, in which case, tell my grandmother I said “hi”.

Oh, and if you’d like to know how to enable your email address and join civilization, Mommy’s Martini was kind enough to explain:

Go to www.blogger.com/home and log in if necessary (your computer might have you already logged in). On the upper left side of the screen, next to the little picture that’s associated with your profile, click the link for “edit profile,” then fill in an email address on the line cleverly marked “email address.” If you don’t want your email address to show on your profile, but you do want people to be able to reply to your comments, then just leave the box next to “show my email address” (a few lines above where you actually type in your address) unchecked. Anyone who has created a Blogger profile, even if their blog is on another platform, should do this. Those of us on Blogger don’t have comment forms available like all you WordPress and Typepad and Square Space and basically everyone else in the world do, and it’s no end of frustrating that we can’t reply to our commenters easily.

With that technical mumbo jumbo out of the way–what makes a good comment?

To me, it’s a few things: It shows an appreciation for the post and builds on it. I won’t lie, the “you are pure comedic genius and extremely attractive!” comments do really well, too, but really, how many times can I read that one before it gets old?

Mostly, good comments are known for that they’re not. Here is a collection of what some of my blogging friends call their pet peeves. In no particular order:

Christy, “I absolutely HATE it when people left comments that said “dropping by from SITS to say hi” — wtf? Why leave a comment when you obviously didn’t even read my post?!”

I totally agree with this. Unless you’re here as Mary Magdalene’s personal representative, who cares where you are from. Now, I don’t mind if people mention where they’re from, as long as that’s not their entire comment. I mean, how would you like it if I appeared on your blog and left “I am from Russia” as the comment?

Jessica, “I get very turned off when it is clear someone has only written me to promo themselves and clearly couldn’t give a shit what I wrote”.

Which reminds me, don’t forget to visit Secret Spineless Whine for hours of whining fun!

Kirsten is very Zen, “Nothing really bothers me all that much about blog comments. The FIRST!! can be annoying, but since I have only the most un-annoying readers no one ever does that on my blog. “

I’m assuming that Zen means “giving responses that are annoying to the rest of us who do have comment pet peeves.”

Denise doesn’t like fancy spam, “Biggest pet peeve with commenting, when people include links to their website that is totally unrelated to my post or comment. I call it fancy spam because the person leaving the comment took time to read my post, leave a relative comment, just to get me to their random site, like how to win the lottery. ”

And then, most of the time, the lottery winning tips are totally bogus.

Kate, “I’ve already written about my distaste for acronyms – which is primarily based on the fact that I’m really a 74 year old woman and have no idea what most of them mean. So I don’t like comments that are in code. Speak plainly. But give me a minute while I put in my hearing aid.

Another peeve of mine has nothing to do with my own comments section (sadly enough). I know that some blogs are very good – but at the end of the day they are BLOGS, not the great American novel. So the truly obsequious use of hyperbole praising the writer’s amazing talent makes me cringe. It’s not like this is news to them – if they’re that good, they probably know it (or have gotten enough gushing comments to have a clue). So I try to stick with more substantive compliments about the points they made, their good grammar and their flattering profile pictures. Seriously though – I cringe when I read things like, “your writing is so beautiful – it’s like you’re writing what’s in my soul…” I mean really – get a room already.”

OMG, K8, ITFA!

Stefanie, obviously not on intimate terms with the porn industry, “”Keep it up!” What does that even mean? Obviously they have nothing to add except to let me know that they think I should continue along my blogging journey with their blessing. Thanks, I think.”

Issa doesn’t like “FIRST!” “The first thing has always bugged me. What’s the point of it? Sometimes I want to comment twenty-fifth. Just because. But the one that gets me the most, is the people who say, oh I wrote about this, please come look at my link right here.” You know, this hasn’t bothered me because I am so open minded, but now that it’s been pointed out to me that it’s annoying, it totally will.

Vicki ranks her pet peeves:

The Paris Hilton: FIRST!!!11!!
The Rush Limbaugh: I agree with your point, but you have a typo in one of the most insignificant words you wrote. Just pointing it out. Sorry to be the grammar police! LOL!!!
The door-to-door missionary: LOL!! THAT’S A GREAT POST!! hahahehehe. (not adding any value to the conversation that should take place in the comments of blogs)
The Osama Bin Laden: Oh, that sounds so much like what happened on my blog. You know, this happened on my blog, too. Here’s the link to my blog. Here’s another comment with the link, just in case you HAVEN’T VISITED MY BLOG YET!! BLOG, BLOG, BLOG!

Maura doesn’t like name calling in comments: “The worst thing that has ever happened in my comments is that someone called me a “hoe.” Being called a garden implement really got under my skin.”

Weirdo.

Anna needs to be appreciated: “The I don’t understand your joke comment bugs me. Isn’t it obvious that they need to go off on their own for a while, let the joke marinate, perhaps do a few deep-knee bends and then try again? I mean, come on, people, DIG DEEP.”

I don’t get it. Why do I have to do yoga and excavate?

OHMommy, “I hate it when people write wish me Happy Anniversary when it’s really just me talking about my sister’s upcoming wedding. Obviously they didn’t take the time to read the post. Also. Hate it when people say something like, “OMG! You are so funny. You should come and check out my blog at www.iamaloser.com.”

Thanks for the shout out, OHMommy!

Kelcey‘s pet peeves are Thanks for stopping by my blog which is the equivalent of leaving a phone message that says, just wanted to call you back. I hate comments that say, you misspelled tulle or some other word.. Just email me. No need to point out my stupidity in public.”

What are “typos”?

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