Why comment? Why bother?

I was happily deleting a blog from my blogroll when I successfully managed to delete the whole lot.

Readers of my dog’s blog will be aware that although we (ie the dog and I) have moved our blogs over to WordPress, we still use the blogroll on Blogger to catch up with latest blogposts.

In fact, I rarely delete a blog, which is probably why I clicked on the wrong ‘remove’.

I have – or rather – had, a number of blogs on the list that hadn’t been touched for ages by their authors. It wasn’t that I was too idle to update the blogroll, but I left them up in case people decide to revive them. In some cases they did, so I smugly stuck to my policy.

In which case – why was I deleting one? It was a good blog, well written, with regular posts about (to me) interesting topics. I would hardly read a blog with boring topics now would I?

The blog was about that uncontroversial subject of feminism. The subject that even feminists can’t agree on amongst themselves, let alone with the rest of the (non-feminist) world. I say this as a veteran of at least three feminist forums, chat rooms and goodness knows what else where a big argument at least once a week was the default.

But this post is not about specifics, rather about the generalities of blogging, using this particular example of a blog I chose to delete from my list of links.

The blogger wrote a post about something where they (note grammarians – they!) were ambivalent and their closing point asked for people’s views. There was a comment before mine, and I then drafted my not-remotely-ambivalent view up and put it in the moderation queue. A few days later I visited again to read a new post and see if there had been any discussion on the previous one. No. Not even my comment. Hmmm.

Now, on blogs where there are only a handful or even no comments on each post, it’s hardly difficult to miss a comment waiting for moderation. I went back again yet days later, and eventually the penny dropped. My comment was not going to be published. Either that or it got lost by Blogger which I doubt.

I was somewhat miffed. Apart from the fact that I had taken some time to write it, read the relevant link mentioned in the article and taken that into consideration, I’d tried to be respectful in someone else’s space. Had it been one of the above rowdy assertive (private) forums, I may possibly have considered saying; ‘Don’t be such a tosser!’

Clearly, as my comment was perceived as criticising the author, I was not to be published. I might as well have written ‘Don’t be such a tosser!’ If we are writing blogs, surely we should be able to cope with a) criticism (whether perceived or intended) and b) differences of opinion. Otherwise, my dears, quite frankly, my advice is – don’t bother blogging, certainly not on anything remotely controversial.

So why was I miffed? It wasn’t just because of that single unpublished comment. I had previously commented on a number of posts, and said – what I honestly thought – that they were thoughtful, considered, and raised important points. They were published. I had asked to link to what I thought was a particularly reasoned and informative post. (Nice blogging etiquette there – although said post on here with link is now deleted of course). Yet not once had I received a comment back. Perhaps this blogger thought my writing was poor, that I didn’t write sufficiently pretentious posts, that my choices of subject were too varied. After all, I don’t just stick to feminist topics (I’m not sure there are that many :D), but also, the only people who are going to read a totally feminist blog are feminists. And I’m not interested in preaching to the converted.

At which point, I asked myself why on earth I was bothering to visit this blog, and took the rare decision to delete it from my blogroll. Which is where this post started.

But compare this with another blog, where I had a different view to the blog author. NO! I don’t do this all the time. Just sometimes. Did they delete my comment? No. Did they continue to visit mine? Yes.

That to me is what blogging should be about. People have different perspectives, and I think that adds value to a post. If it generates discussion, great. There is nothing wrong with differing points of view so long as the comments don’t deteriorate to the ‘Don’t be a tosser!’ level of insult and abuse.

And the lesson learned from this whole episode is to be more ruthless with blogs, whether they are dogblogs or people blogs. After visiting a few times and commenting, and receiving not a scrap of acknowledgement – why bother with them any more? So I shan’t. When I put together a new bloglist, I didn’t bother with the ones who had never visited me. Ok, there’s always one exception and that’s a cycling blog that I enjoy reading.

One of the good things about importing my blogs to WordPress is that it has given me the chance to re-appraise how I approach blogging, and find new, interesting, and reciprocal contacts. People who regularly reply to your comments on their blogs and/or visit yours – and let you know they have visited, even if it’s only by pressing the ‘like’ button. It’s better than nothing.

It’s not too difficult when a new blogger introduces themselves to return the visit and say thanks for visiting my blog. Is it? As some have very recently. Whereupon, I need to disappear and show some reciprocity.

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About roughseasinthemed

I write about my life as an English person living in Spain and Gibraltar, on Roughseas, subjects range from politics and current developments in Gib to book reviews, cooking and getting on with life. My views and thoughts on a variety of topics - depending on my mood of the day - can be found over on Clouds. A few pix are over on Everypic - although it is not a photoblog. And of course my dog had his own blog, but most of you knew that anyway. Pippadogblog etc
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16 Responses to Why comment? Why bother?

  1. Mark Mathia says:

    Can’t say as I am a feminist but you do have a wonderful way with words and I appreciate your take on comments. Actually found myself giggling through your post. A good kind of “I relate” giggle not the “she’s crazy” kind of chuckle. It’s been a pleasure. (was that relatively polite?)

    Like

    • Mark. You can’t possibly be a feminist because you are a man. I’m not explaining it all in this reply, just take it from me. At best, you could claim to be a feminist ally, which clearly you aren’t doing. Sensibly. In fact, come to think of it, I can’t think of a single feminist who does read my blog(s)!! That’s ‘cos I’m a subtle sort of missionary and why I’m not interested in the converted. I’m aiming at the 98.5% of the world that isn’t feminist 🙂 I think most people do the ‘she’s crazy’ kind of chuckle, so don’t worry about that either. And to be slightly serious, it was incredibly polite unlike my frivolous reply – so thank you for visiting, commenting, liking – and now I am duty bound, given the above post to return the favour. I shall be nice. And polite. Of course.

      Like

      • pix & kardz says:

        i am politely countering your point about a man not being able to be a feminist 🙂
        in my understanding, and do correct me if i am mistaken, a feminist maybe viewed two ways – first as a noun, referring to someone who is a supporter of feminism, and secondly as an adjective referring to the support or advocacy of feminism. that does not seem to prelude men from either the noun or the adjective. just a thought – and most respectfully submitted 😀

        Like

  2. Blue says:

    As one of bloglands worst ‘Commentors’, even worse returners, feel duly chastised, though never ever have I deleted a ‘comment’ because it was not matching my take on life!
    We know each other of old, & you know all too well I blog about anything, mainly triva, just occassionally via something personal touching a nerve – while you mainly blog seriously, the ex-jounalist shines through, so much so, I often don’t respond because I lack similar eloquence or knowledge on the subject.

    Every comment I recieve makes blogging worth while, so I’m say ing TY to you here 🙂

    Like

    • Hi Blue. I wasn’t talking about you at all, so please don’t feel chastised. As I vaguely recall (over the mists of time etc), you were the one who approached Pippa initially, so many years ago. Nope, I am talking about visiting new blogs, commenting and them not replying. Different.

      Well, not sure that I don’t blog about trivia either (great double neg there) – and even for something semi-serious like the one above, I can’t resist being flippant. We all need a little bit of humour somewhere. I do try and vary the subjects. And less of the ex! One day someone may pay me again for writing!!!!!

      And thanks for your compliments and comment.

      Like

  3. Blue says:

    Knew the post wasn’t personal – it just hit a nerve as such a bad blog commentor.
    And I can be a bit of a ‘drama queen’ re issues :)))
    Re FB – didn’t know that, it is useful info 🙂 TY!

    Catch you tomorrow

    Like

    • It was one of my in the ether posts 😀 The only remotely personal stuff was against the person who never visited, rejected my comment etc etc

      Check out on Pippa’s blog I think, Skye from Moondance Huskies used her FB login and got a piccy up there 🙂

      Like

  4. Kyanite Blue says:

    Not sure why but your last 4 comments on ‘Starting Over’ have ended up in Spam but I saved them 🙂
    Am now expecting a one off colours post next Thursday!
    And TY for the FB login tip – it’s nice to have a snap up.

    Like

  5. Me? Spam!! That must say something!! Probably because Google/Blogger has blocked my account this time. Now you know why I moved to WP. So totally sick of being messed around.

    I’ve had a couple on these new blogs, but like you, I saw who they were and rescued them. If you read Pippa’s I’ve got the spam filter set very tightly to no links, so if people sign with a link in their sig, they get ditched 😀

    The pic looks great doesn’t it? I wish more people would do that because it just looks better and more personal. Given that half the world seems to be on FB (Pippa and I excluded of course!) it’s not that difficult to do.

    Don’t hold your breath for next week mind 😉

    Like

  6. Totty says:

    Please Mz, what’s a Feminist?….;P

    Like

    • A good question Totty. One which feminists have not yet agreed upon 🙂 I of course, have my own perfectly correct view though.

      Did you read the previous comments regarding your facebook login by the way??

      Like

      • Totty says:

        Yes, I read the FB log-in comment, but when I’m blogging/reading/hopping I tend to use my Google id because I’m already logged in, most places accept it, and I CBA to log out for the benefit of WP users…. ;P …anyway, you have seen my avatar and it is as trumped up as my name, even if it does bear an uncanny resemblance…

        Like

  7. pix & kardz says:

    i actually came looking for a post on regret, but i found this one instead. have tried to be relatively polite in my comment above, LOL. and i guess since i already said what i did, there is no point repeating it again here. will try to kewill try to keep the politeness in mind, LOL.
     
    anyhow, regarding blogging – i agree wholeheartedly that it is a matter of give and take, and that reciprocity is a good way to go. and yet sometimes life happens and i know that readers are not able to reply right away. at the same time, you know how it is with dead horses. sometimes it is time to stop kicking it and just get off.
     
    i may have asked you this before on one of your blogs – but i often forget to click the ‘follow comments’ button and i don’t remember where i asked this, and may have missed your answer. so this time i am clicking the box. how do you change your info on these comment boxes? mine all say the same boring ‘reply’. especially for the duotone theme. unless it’s a trade secret. then no worries 🙂

    Like

    • I replied on – er one of the duotone posts I think. But I had better come over to your blog and repeat it again. 😀 I don’t have a problem with some bloggers not visiting their own blogs often and me sitting in the queue. It’s when they have written new posts, approved others, or others are posted, and I am just nowhere. Oh, and of course, as said, they don’t come and visit and write witty entertaining replies.

      I use comments I posted on dashboard or whatever it is called. Most of which seem to be on yours 😀

      Like

I appreciate any comments you leave, so long as they are relatively polite. And thanks for reading.

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