So I’m a little late getting started, but I’ve decided to give the 2008 Comment Challenge a try. It is now Day six of the challenge, so I’ve got a little catching up to do. Here’s my report on the first activity.
Day 1: Self Audit
How often do you comment on other blogs during a typical week? I have to admit that I’m a lurker. I subscribe to over 40 blogs and I usually don’t comment [on other people’s blogs] at all. I think I may have once made four comments in the same week, but that was unusual.
Do you track your blog comments? How? What do you do with your tracking? I recently subscribed to coComment, a little before this challenge started, hoping that it would help me to become a more active participant in blog conversations. I have to admit that I’m still figuring out what to do with the tracking.
Do you tend to comment at the same blogs or do you try to comment on at least one new blog per week? Since I comment so rarely, I certainly don’t comment on at least one new blog per week, but I can’t really say that I comment on the same blogs either.
Now review Gina Trapani’s Guide to Blog Comments and ask yourself how well you’re doing in each of the different areas. Are there any specific areas where you think you need to do some work? What do you want to do to address these issues?
- Stay on topic. The few comments that I have made have been on-topic.
- Contribute new information to the discussion. Sometimes I add new information, sometimes I thank the author and say why it was meaningful to me, and sometimes I ask questions. I need to do a better job at this, but part of this is just learning enough to be able to contribute.
- Don’t comment for the sake of commenting. Hmm . . . I don’t really comment, so I’m not currently guilty of comments for the sake of commenting. I want to start commenting more because I think commenting will help me be a better member of the community.
- Know when to comment and when to e-mail. I have emailed people directly when I wanted to arrange some sort of collaboration.
- Remember that nobody likes a know-it-all. One of the reasons I comment so rarely is that I don’t feel that I know enough to make a valuable contribution to the discussion. I think I’m safe here.
- Make the tone of your message clear. I’m not entirely sure if the first few comments I ever made were clear in their tone, but I think I’m getting better.
- Own your comment. I own my comments.
- Be succinct. I try to be succinct in comments. I don’t think my blog posts are very succinct, though.
- Cite your sources with links or inline quoting. I do this in my blog posts, but I don’t know that I’ve ever used a source in a comment before. This is an area that I could improve on.
- Be courteous. I try.
- Don’t post when you’re angry, upset, drunk or emotional. I don’t
- Do not feed or tease the trolls. I don’t do this either.