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Why You Should Never Comment on Blogs. Ever.

This guest post is by David Hartstein of Wired Impact.

I’m sure you’ve heard well-reasoned, logical arguments for why you should be commenting on blogs:

  • “You can be a part of the conversation happening out there.”
  • “You can build your own authority.”
  • “You can drive traffic to your blog.”

But, while there may be a burned, unpopped kernel of truth in these statements, none of them take into account the many reasons you should never comment on a blog.

Well here are some of those reasons for your consideration.

First of all, you shouldn’t even begin to think about commenting unless you have something really profound to say.  If you merely express agreement, it is likely judgment will rain down upon you.  As, to be fair, it should.  There is no room for mere opinions in the comment section of a blog.  It is a blog after all.  No feelings, just facts.

Plus, there’s a good chance you don’t have the authority to be commenting on a post.  I mean, if someone is writing a post, they are certainly held in high esteem by all of the peers in their field.  The Internet won’t let just anyone publish.  And if you’re not an expert, you likely don’t have much to offer.  Sure, maybe you have some ideas, but are they the kind that are best kept to yourself?  Unless you have a graduate degree in the subject at hand, they should probably be filed away in your journal.

Additionally, if no one else has commented yet, you’re essentially lowering your head onto the chopping block.  You could write the first one, but doing so opens you up to being the minority opinion.  It’s very possible that just after you finish singing the praises of a particular post, a series of users will go on an angry tirade ripping the author apart.  You’d look really dumb.  Who cares what you thought?  Those other commenters probably know more than you anyway.

Also, don’t forget that browser spellcheck leaves something to be desired.  Sure, it will catch a word that you’ve butchered, but what about something more minute?  And forget any kind of oversight on your grammar.  Plus, there’s a very good chance that a misspelled word will leave whatever you have to say incomprehensible, leading to angry comments about the spam you are leaving behind.

Once you’ve waded through the murky waters of actually drafting your comment, you’re still faced with giving away your personal information.  If you’re anything like the average web user, you probably haven’t given out much personal info online before, perhaps with the notable exception of some obscure social networking site.

If you do feel the need to comment, you have the requisite authority to do so, and other people already have commented, consider taking the following action:

  1. Draft the comment in a word processor.
  2. Check the comment for spelling and grammar mistakes, both with the built-in tools and manually.
  3. Re-check.
  4. Send it to a family member or a friend for their thoughts (pick someone smart).
  5. Print it out, sleep on it, and revisit it at breakfast the next day.
  6. If you’re still feeling the urge, go ahead and publish it.
  7. Deal with the ensuing fallout.

If, after reading this, you are still wont to publish a comment from time to time, go ahead.  But consider yourself warned.  It’s a dangerous game. 

And, whatever you do, don’t you dare write a comment on this post!

David Hartstein is a partner at Wired Impact, a web design company that builds websites for nonprofits. You can connect with David on Twitter and the Wired Impact Facebook Page.

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Comments

  1. Look at all the comments you got :-)

  2. Oh, c’mon. I didn’t even get why you wrote this.

  3. It’s like a huge controversial mess, using inverse psychology to actually get people to comment.

  4. I agree. :-)

  5. Simon says:

    Omg I expected something completely different from that post – my heart was almost pounding.
    Spell and grammar mistakes can be an impossible demand – I agree that every comment should be checked, but seing as there are soooooo many people using the internet – for whom english is a second language(myself included) – it can be an impossible demand. I know I’m not going to spend 10 extra minutes spell and grammar checking – though there might be mistakes – getting the point across is the most important thing.

  6. Shane says:

    I think the title on this blog post should have been “Be very careful when commenting on blogs” although I understand that it was named this way because of the shock factor, it was afterall the reason I found this page.

  7. Manesh says:

    My principle is simple. If you feel to comment on a post, just comment it. I hate more thinking . For me commenting is a way to learn more and more. Nothing about ego… what do you think?

  8. Amanda de la Torre says:

    A valuable post. I should follow your advice and not post this comment until tomorrow, or better yet, not at all! Will you forgive me if I promise to follow your advice from this point forward? I hope so.

  9. kt says:

    The merits of this post do not outweigh its deciencies, being a.o.

    - scaremongering free speech, speaking your mind
    - giving a free ride to all moronic opponents up and above
    - contributing to a culture of silence except when called for support

    Poster, you seem in agreement of USA style communism…

  10. “No feelings, just facts.”

    Lol, almost every post is based off his or her own interpretation and opinion (with facts as a supplement). =P

  11. This is very clever, however I completely disagree with this. The more blogs you comment on, the more people will know about your blog, the more will follow you back if they are interested in the topic you are talking about in your blog. The more people you have following you, the more money you make from advertisements every time someone looks at your blog that has just been updated. Once someone has followed they are repeatedly bringing traffic to your blog. I don’t care if I look like an absolute fool. I don’t care if I have bad grammar and look like an absolute IDIOT in my comments or if I completely didn’t understand their post. People are curious and some will always look back at my blog and that means more money.
    +followed by starcraftdinner.blogspot.com

  12. Loved the post and the comments. Reminds me of non-birthday parties. This is an April Fools post taken oh-so seriously by the commentators. Thanks, folks, for the entertainment.

  13. DoktorThomas says:

    Profundity is in the eyes of the reader. That is true with all writing, not just blogs. That you make get hacked at the knees for commenting is no reason to be intimidated into obscurity. The Internet is, after all, about communication. So communicate with tack, flare and originality–but leave your anger on the mouse pad.

    Realize above all else, that just because some one can use the WordPress framework, up load it and proffer some posts makes him an expert not. Even if it appears somebody is reading the content, do not be impressed by the type on the screen alone. Consider the message and weigh it. It may be like the above guest post, without value. Comment if you must. Remember even cow pie writers further true authors’ careers.

    BTW I’d like a refund on this David Hartstein post.

  14. Denys Yeo says:

    271 comments as I write this. Not a bad hit rate. I guess it shows that those of us who like to comment will not be intimidated!

    upi:dyd-dgyeo

  15. Say says:

    Reverse psychology. But you, David, annoy me and should never guest post. JG Visual LOL!

  16. Dave Baldwin says:

    I agree. Commenting on blog posts is a bad idea every single time. But I’m pritty shure the brouser spel chek wurx evry time.

  17. DMC says:

    ” I mean, if someone is writing a post, they are certainly held in high esteem by all of the peers in their field. The Internet won’t let just anyone publish.”

    That’s a joke, right? Right?
    Please tell me that’s a joke…

  18. Tina Wright says:

    I never comment on blogs. With the exception of this one, I never ever do. So with me, you’re preaching to the converted.

  19. Sylmobile says:

    This is a classy troll. ;-)

  20. Hayes says:

    No feeling, just facts? BORING!

    LINKBAIT!

  21. Eric Brooks says:

    I agree! You’ll never catch me commenting someone’s blog.

  22. Vanessa Wu says:

    Hahaha! Nice try, Mr. Gradgrind but your argument lacks logic. My instinct tells me your advice is very wide of the mark.

    Besides, feelings are everything!

  23. Julie Larson says:

    I love this post! It’s perfect for the video tutorial I’m doing regarding posting comments on blogs!

    Thank you! :)

  24. LOL-I agree completely. No point in commenting if you have nothing to say. Just rambling is useless and speling errors and grammar mistakes are the worst, especially run on sentences that just keep going for no apparent reason. No, I agree and I never add a comment unless I have something valuable to contribute. Thanks for this important post and for the laugh.

  25. Nice tactics! Writing debatable post to attract community participation. And I’m just hooked!

  26. I’d comment but I have nothing to say!