The Comment Section: Penny For Your Thoughts?
The comment section is, in my opinion, one of the most crucial parts of any informative post. While certain types of niches can get a pass e.g. a blog giving legal information and whatnot, some niches definitely need a thriving comment section.
Let’s set the scene: you stumble upon a new website/blog or one you’ve been to many times before. Perhaps you were searching for an answer to something and this is the place that attracted you the most. You finish reading, getting the much-needed information. What do you do next? Some close the tab, while some of us head to the comment section.
I’ve been an avid comment reader for more than 5 years. It all started with the likes of Facebook. I find that I’m a professional lurker, commenting rarely, but quietly noting happenings. Facebook started this obsession with the comment section, because you can’t simply just look at a photo or video and keep it going. Well, I can’t anyway.
This is especially the case where it’s something really funny, deep or beautiful. I always like seeing what people think, though I barely ever leave comments. I always go to the comment section – be it on Youtube, Twitter, Instagram, or a top blog like Bella Naija.
The comment section can either be the best thing ever or the worst. It can also be both. I like comment sections for the variety of opinions people share. Perhaps the topic at hand is a controversial one, we see all sorts pouring out from all corners. In the comment section, fights get started, and people drop some amazing replies. I guess this is also why I just love places like The Shade Room, Lipstick Alley, Quora and the occasional Reddit topic.
Given this background in the world of the comment section, nothing feels weirder than seeing blog posts with lack of comments. I don’t know why. I mean, comments don’t necessarily mean the post is terrible or the writer is talking trash…I’ve seen some excellent posts with not a comment in sight. Not even one from those strange spammers asking you to visit some website.
In my head though, when a comment section is empty, I feel like nothing is really happening on the blog. I mean, I don’t have direct access to stats of every blog – except where someone has a live counter of page views, but even then that is not too specific – so comments are a way I mentally assess if a blog is “popping”.
Personally, I love comments. Becoming a blogger had me having to break out of my comfort zone. At first, I wanted to just remain lowkey, having the mindset that whoever will read my blog will find me. However, I one day decided to start commenting more on blogs. I was seeing some pretty interesting posts and felt led to comment. And so, I began my long commenting spree. Looking back, this was pretty awesome. Not only did I break out of my shell, but I also brought some interested people my way. I don’t know about you, but I discover new blogs each day through comment sections of blog posts. I always look at the comment section!
What I’m trying to say is, we should encourage a commenting culture especially in the blog world. And by commenting, I don’t just mean saying ‘nice’ and keeping it moving. I want to see what you truly felt about the blog post! I want to read one of your personal experiences relating to the topic of the blog post. One thing I like doing in my comments is really being in-depth, sometimes this means my comment may be longer than the post, lol , but I tried to limit that.
I don’t know what is worse – no comments at all, or a comment section filled with ‘nice’. Honestly, the best comment sections are those with a host of personalities, all sharing their various life experiences. This is why I especially love the comment sections of Humans of New York, as well as Quora. Humans of New York has one of the best comment sections on Facebook, as new topics are covered by each subject. Check it out!
The only downside is some people take the opportunity to become trolls, spewing hate, stupidity and negativity, leading to fights in the comment sections. However, that doesn’t mean comment sections should be a complete write-off. Come on, what would my life be like without things like tv show recap websites and their comment sections?
At the end of the day, I’m saying comment! As a blogger, especially a newbie, comment on other blog posts! Leave genuine comments along with your link. Sometimes even, your comment can be so good you don’t even need to leave your link. The reader would be so fascinated by your thoughts, they’d click your profile, wanting to know more.
Go forth and comment! No, I don’t mean join those groups where you have to slave to get comments – ‘comment for comment’ etc – that stuff is stressful. If it’s your thing then I guess you can go for it too.
Do you like reading the comment section? Am I the only one who feels a bit empty when a nice post has an empty comment section?