Last week I wrote the post On Limits and Promises and it made me think about something I’ve struggled with ever since I started blogging. Comments and the proper etiquette when it comes to them. For years now, I’ve asked myself questions on the proper way to handle them because I always feel like I’m letting someone down by not doing it all.
Do you respond to each and every one of them?
Do you comment on the person’s blog that comments, even if you have nothing worth saying?
Do you leave your link in the comment or do you omit it?
Do you comment on the commenter’s blog, even if you have very little in common?
Is there a certain amount of time that you’re expected to respond in before your response becomes irrelevant?
There’s no rule book here. Nothing that tells me to do this, this, and this by x date. So that tells me that it’s up to every blogger to decide how their blog will work. How the comments they receive will affect them. How the comments they leave will be received by others. It’s up to every single person with a blog to decide what’s right for them, their blog, and their time/effort.
So here are my “rules” that I’ve set for myself, in a way that works for my life right now.
Know that I read every comment, but I can’t always respond to them (especially in a timely fashion.) Every comment comes into my inbox and I love seeing what you have to say, I promise. But sometimes time is short when I’m running two blogs, a shop, two networking sites and going to school on top of trying to maintain an active role in my personal life. And when I can’t figure out much more to say than “I agree” or “thank you,” I’m just hoping you’ll know that I do appreciate you taking the time to say a few words here and will do my best to stop by your blog.
Know that me leaving my URL isn’t trying to spam your blog, and instead is my way of making it easy for you to find me. I’ve had my share of times where I’ve tried to get to a person’s blog but the comment box for the URL didn’t work, or it wasn’t included in the way the commenter logged in. By having a URL in the signature of the comment, I was able to find them and return the comment. This is my way of doing that for you if you wish to visit my little corner of the Internet, nothing more.
Know that I won’t say anything if I can’t figure out a decent comment, and it’s not because I’m not reading or dislike your blog. I do my best to leave worthwhile comments on blogs and if I can’t do that, sometimes I just don’t say anything at all. I may agree with your point or entire post, but if I can’t add much beyond that, I usually don’t even say a word. Good or bad, that’s how I’ve always been.
what works for you? how do you decide how you respond to comments?