One Thing To NOT Do When Leaving Comments

Last Update: May 12, 2017

I've been requesting a lot of comments from SiteComments lately, because I want to create engagement, and possibly help boost the rank of a few of the pages on my site. However, I keep running into one issue over and over with the comments.

There's one thing that many people are doing that makes the comment difficult to approve.

That one thing is: "I've never heard of this before".

A similar comment is asking silly questions like, "What does this thing do?", even though it's clearly explained in the post, or assumed that you know what it does since you're looking at a review.

As a one-off comment, it's fine. I suppose there's a chance that someone ran across the post accidentally, or clicked on a link in an email list out of curiosity.

But if 75% of the comments I receive on a post are similar in saying, "Wow, I've never heard of this thing before but it looks really cool", then the comment section starts to look spammy, or at least not interesting. A boring and fake comment section defeats the purpose of exchanging comments.

This makes it hard to approve some comments!

They may be a proper length, and they may be correct English, as well as 100% unique. But if they are just repeating the same thing that everyone else says, then in my mind they are low quality.

I know that there are many niches, and not everyone has experience with all topics. You are absolutely allowed to do a quick 5 minutes of research to learn a bit about an unfamiliar topic before leaving a comment so that you can write something substantive.

Remember, many people are spending money on comments! Also, many people are spending time leaving awesome comments. If you are leaving short, unoriginal, or uninteresting comments please be aware that the value you are exchanging does not meet what some others are putting into the system.

ATTN: This is just a friendly PSA for those that might not know they are doing this. It's not meant to scare you away from using the comment system or chastise anyone that left a similar comment on one of my sites.

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BrendanB1 Premium
Hi Nathaniel, great post and discussion. This is an area I struggle with. Often I am providing comments on topics which I either know nothing about or are not in my usual area of interest.

It can be difficult sometimes in providing a thoughtful comment which adds to the blog I am commenting on. I like and agree with your point about doing a little research on the topic before commenting.

Thank you. Have a great weekend.
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NeBro Premium
Hi Nathaniel, part of the issue, in respect of your mention about 'it's clearly explained in the post' is to do with something a friend of mine terms as the 'the headline phenomenon' (he is a consultant psychiatrist so I figure he can make judgement on these things to some degree) and skimming.

I think in part, journalism and spammy sites are to blame for this, with their sensationalism and sparkly headlines that pull readers interest then it turns out to be about some spammy or pointless story and you feel deflated, plus of course, people clearly like crud, look at how successful sites that show things like celebrities when they were 18 and gorgeous and now they are 50 and fat, people will read that stuff all day, cos there is no reading involved..

Plus, sometimes people are reading and making comments on things they have no real interest in, which is crazy really and they do it all the time on all kinds of things, like just having an opinion on something irrelevant of whether it makes any sense is important for social weight somehow.

Happens to me all the time in my job when I mail a customer a list of checkpoints to run past in order to try to fix their issue, they often go off on some wild tangent, never answer the question properly and then get annoyed when their issue is not fixed, it's a right bugger...

To be fair most of us do it at some time or other, frustrating though it is to the authors, when I find myself doing it, I slow down and make sure I try to read as much as time will allow me, after all why spend any time there if you are not getting any value from it, so you may as well just leave if you are not going to take in any of the content on offer. Well done if you made it this far, have a cookie.

Basically, it's about being lazy and not being focused, people do not read the article, some folks make a real habit of it too, and then start posting stupid pointless comments and questions, just had a toasted cheese sandwich myself, wasting time and energy, we see it here in WA and other forums, all the time, with people asking questions about lessons or posts.

Often, the info is actually on the same page they are asking about, which brings us back to your original point, and it is clear they have not read the instructions, the article or watched the video, and then they throw a strop because someone says, well why don't you read the instructions, do the lesson and read the article and watch the video...

Anyway, take a look at this, I found it quite amusing, and, honestly, I did read it all, haha...its a bit old now, wow 4 years, but it is still a decent little read...

http://www.slate.com/articles/technology/technology/2013/06/how_people_read_online_why_you_won_t_finish_this_article.html

The author mentions 'I’m busy. You’re busy. There’s always something else to read, watch, play, or eat.' which I suppose is just how we are now...

And here about how 'headlines' change the way we perceive things http://www.newyorker.com/science/maria-konnikova/headlines-change-way-think

Best wishes

Neil
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Pernilla Premium
Nathaniel, thank you for this blogpost. I´ve got the same opinion like you. Give a proper comment, if not then better not do it at all.

But to what extent do you edit your website comments? I thought we only edit at the most spelling mistakes, but not changing the content.
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TheOldSilly Premium
I only edit out really bad grammar, typos, things like that. If the content itself is just meaningless gibberish, I do not approve the comment.
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Pernilla Premium
Hello Marvin,

Thank you so much for your help. Good to know how you handle this. Then I will follow your example.
:-) Pernilla
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ThomasPaul Premium
Five minutes is too much if a hassle to them. That would defeat the purpose of them doing as little possible to get a comment approved.

Most of my recent comments have been pretty terrible. They had enough redeeming quality that i edited them(which I hate doing). However if half your comment is "I really like your site, it is really awesome", you pretty much know they stopped trying and are trying to move on to the next fomment as fast as possible.
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nathaniell Premium
Ya when people give feedback instead of an engaging comment I absolutely have to politely reject them!
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kmer6 Premium
Nathaniell, you are very correct in asking this question. It is happening all the time. I don't know if it is a case of ignorance, don't give a shit attitude, or stupid is what stupid does. I have come to accept the lower quality comments from what I am hoping for but with one important difference... I never accept a low quality comment "as is", I edit the comment to a more engaging, constructive comment that adds value to the post but also answers questions that another visitor may be thinking. Or at least this is what I strive for. To Your Success,
Ken
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