A few months ago, I stumbled upon a new blog I thought was really cool. The writer was starting to home school her kids for the first time.
“Ahhh, this woman is creative and has a great plan,” I thought. “I can really relate to her.”
It turns out we had sooooo much in common.
I mean, she had published several books, and I had thought about writing a book.
She has like 2,000 subscribers and I have, well… I have some.
She lives in a house in a place with a beautiful climate and awesome scenery. And I live in a house.
With all the common traits we share, we were destined to become the best of bloggy friends. I started reading her faithfully. I commented on every post. I subscribed. I was devoted to our relationship.
But, alas. As often seems to happen in this big bloggy world, I never heard from her. No visits. No page views. No comments. Nothing.
“I’m sure she’s just busy,” I told myself. “No big deal.”
But then she did it.
She wrote a post asking each of her readers to post a comment to introduce themselves.
“I HAVE BEEN COMMENTING FOR MONTHS!” I thought in my completely mature, non-sixth graderish, not-the-least-bit-hormonal, I-have-an-actual-life way. “If she wanted to know who I am, she could have clicked on my profile a long time ago. No way am I going to respond to her request.”
So, I dumped her. We’re through. That’s it.
(I’m sure I really showed her a thing or two.)
Just by chance, there seemed to be a trend going around the blogsphere that week. Everywhere I turned, writers were asking their readers to post a comment with their basic info: Name, city and sometimes even age.
I have done the same thing several times. And I’m sure I’ve annoyed a few people who were sitting at home, lashing out at me with the same passive-aggressive fervor I unleashed on my bloggy ” new best friend” who had no clue I even existed.
But it made me really start thinking about why people leave comments.
The main reason I leave comments is to spread some love. I know. Plain and simple. But if people take the time to visit me, I try to reciprocate. (And I know I don’t always do a good job, but I do try!)
For those bloggers I know and like in real life, I leave comments so they don’t feel like they are just talking to thin air. If they are taking that time to express themselves, I feel I should take a second just to say, “I’m listening.” (Again, no one has time to do this all the time, but I try when I can.)
And, of course, I comment because people write things that stir something up in me… an emotion, a thought or a memory. Sometimes people write about a topic about which I feel very strongly, and I can’t resist leaving a comment.
I always think it’s interesting to see what generates the most comments. It’s usually what I least expect. Shoes seem to be popular, while life and death… well, I think sometimes we let things sink in but don’t have the words to comment.
I know that MOST people don’t comment. Lots of people have visited my blog on a regular basis, but have never left a comment. Knowing that, I feel good when even one or two people respond with a nice word or reaction to what I’ve written.
All of this makes me wonder, what does it for you? Why do you comment? Or why DON’T you comment?
And when you comment do you have an expectation that you will get a response? Do you like to hear from that person by e-mail or in the comments section?
I want to be more caring toward the people who are so nice to comment. I know you don’t have to, so I don’t want to take you for granted.
Oh, and by the way… it’s perfectly fine if you just want to say: