29 March 2013

Lets talk... about comments

A few weeks ago in the #lbloggers chat, the subject of replying to comments came up and I was chatting to Becky, Kaz, Jenni and Louise about the 'best' way to reply to comments.  At the moment I reply to comments by email, its something that a few of my favourite bloggers do & I personally really love it. I always forget which blogs I've left comments on, and if I'm honest I don't have the time to go back and re-visit every old post I've commented on to see if someone's replied. So email is perfect for me, I can reply directly to the comment notification from my inbox and I know that it's going to be seen by whoever left it. I used to reply to comments on the blog, but I've found that an email is far more likely to get a conversation going than a reply to a comment. I don't think I ever had anyone reply to my response when I was answering comments/questions on here, but its a fairly regular occurrence by email.

The problem for me comes when people don't have their email accounts linked to their blogger profiles. I think a lot of the time this is unintentional - if I remember correctly its the 'default' setting, but someone else on the chat (I can't for the life of me remember who, sorry!) mentioned that they felt like replying by email would be a little too intrusive for them. It made me wonder if some people don't appreciate replies by email, and if some 'no-reply' bloggers have actively made the choice to not have their email address linked to their profiles. At the moment, I don't really have a set way of responding to these people - if I follow them on Twitter I tend to tweet them a response, or I'll pop over to their blog and leave a comment of my own. Which is fine, but Twitter can sometimes feel a bit restrictive on account of the character limit and I wonder if people remember the comment they've left when I visit their blogs.

I also worry that people might think that because they can't see my replies, that I'm not replying to things. I know once blogs start to get a bit more traffic then replying to every comment just becomes too time-consuming, but for me its one of the most enjoyable aspects of blogging & most of my 'blog friendships' have started with a conversation sparked from a comment.

So I'd really love to hear from you guys, because although this blog is only really a silly little place for me to write whatever - I really do appreciate every single comment left here (unless its 'follow me and I'll follow you' - they can sod off) and I want people to know that.  Sometimes people leave the most insightful, positive and supportive comments and silly as it may seem, words like that landing in my inbox really do put a smile on my face. The blogging community can be a beautiful, encouraging and supportive place and if there's anyway that I can help to promote and develop that here then I'm all for that.

So... how do you prefer to receive replies to comments? Do you ever check back for comments you've left on posts? How do you think the best way to get a real conversation going is? 

P.S If you're not sure what a 'no-reply blogger' is (or if you are one!) feel free to get in touch & I'll let you know!

P.P.S I hope you all have a great Easter weekend & enjoy the extra time off work!


  1. I personally love your email replies. I also try to email back but many commenters have no replies so then ill just reply on my blog. You can't always please everyone so I just do what I can when I have the time to do so. You do a wonderful job and I adore you blog xx

  2. I personally don't mind e-mail responses, but I think that's because at the moment there are only a few people that reply to me that way so it's a novelty.. if everyone started doing it i'd have to become a no reply blogger, I spend a lot of time commenting on blogs I've read just to let people know I've enjoyed what they've written, and I don't ever expect a response. Of course a response is nice, but if every comment was to turn into a conversation it would become very time consuming and take the joy out of it a bit for me i think

    Personally I don't always reply to my blog comments. If someone asks me a question I'll go out of my way to get an answer to them, but otherwise I don't spend a lot of time responding- mainly because when I do so it's on my blog and who ever really checks back for a reply, but partly because when I comment I do so without expecting a response and so I guess I just don't see the response as a necessity the way some others do. Getting comments is a wonderful part of writing a blog, and I appreciate every single one I get, but when I try to put time aside to respond to everything it takes away time from the writing itself, which is the part I truly love about having a space on the web

    I think its lovely that you reply by email though, its a very caring way of starting up a chat with readers x

  3. It was me that wondered if it was a bit intrusive to email a reply. But, after following that chat about commenting for a while, you won me around. It is a lovely, personal thing to do.

    Although I DO agree with Charlotte, if everyone became an email replier then my inbox would just become so stuffed. I already get so many emails in a day, and if I got one for every comment I lfet it would just become too much.

    Personally, I do reply to comments on my blog. I see them as an extension of my blogpost, and like my readers to be able to see the continuation of the chat. And I always check back on blogs I have commented on! :-)

  4. I think it's hard because some of us are not on blogger. So I only know if someone on WordPress has replied to one of my comments. I reply to comments on my own blog. I interact with bloggers on other mediums: instagram and twitter. I like your idea about e-mail. I might even include a contact e-mail on my about page.

  5. I like the idea of email responses- definitely have had a few people respond to me like that and it is lovely- but I tend not to really expect responses to my comments as, like Charlotte above, I'm mostly commenting to acknowledge that I've liked what I've read. That said, I do try to reply to all comments on my blog- don't really know why though! I wish that on blogger there was some sort of notification thing though, like Disqus, because while I may not always check back for a reply, if I find one I always enjoy it! x

  6. I like to reply to comments by goin over to their blog and leaving a comment so they know that I read there blog and I say thanks for stopping by. I wouldn't mind receiving a email response. I started blogging to make friends and I agree that email is a great way to strike up a conversation xx

  7. I am getting better at commenting and subscribing to any future comments too. I does mean I get a lot of emails, but I don't want to miss anything! I think the very fact that we go to the effort of replying to comments is a great thing - I don't think I mind how I get the reply. We 'll never please everyone!

  8. It makes me a little sad when I can't respond to someone because their email is blocked. Especially if they consistently comment on my posts - I would hate for them to think I don't appreciate it. Sometimes I go in search of their email address, but then I wonder if they would appreciate that. Maybe they're blocked for a reason. It's hard to tell. But I am pro email responses, I think they're lovely. In fact, I think I started doing it because you once responded to me. And I'm pretty sure we wouldn't be blogger friends if you hadn't. So yes. I vote high five to email responses.

  9. First of all, this is wonderfully written!

    I had never even considered that no-reply bloggers might actually want to be no-reply bloggers! Or that email could be considered intrusive.

    I personally love love love people who have their emails linked up because I genuinely want to engage with people who take the time to leave a comment, and I want them to know that their words are not going unread! Plus, with email, you can easily develop one simple comment into beautiful conversations. Like you, most of my blog friends have come from innocent first comments followed up by emails!

    I respect that some people maybe want to be no-reply bloggers because maybe emails are intrusive but I think if you don't link them to your phone and you go and sit down at a computer and respond then, you're in control of how often you see the responses. Does that make sense?

    I love having my emails linked to my phone because I a) read comments basically the second you send it and b) can reply when I get a spare second. Just me though!

    Thanks for writing this! X

  10. I actually fixed the no reply problem on my blog. I now get emails from people and I like it that way. I also email my replies to people now to keep the conversation going. :) I copy and paste the email response onto my blog as well, so that other readers see that I do comment back. It's a lot of work, but I feel it's important for me to do.

  11. I usually tick the "email follow up comments to..." Button if I've commented on a blog, so that I can see any replies.

    I'm not a fan of emailing replies rather than commenting, as it means as a reader I can't see what you said in reply. I prefer bloggers who respond directly to comments on the post.

    Having said that, I a) don't comment much, b) don't reply to every comment left on my blog. I use common sense. Some comments just don't need replies!

    Most of the time, if I'm friends with a blogger and feel the need to comment, I will cut it to 140 characters and send them a tweet. I'm lazy and it's easier!

  12. thank you for writing this, it really shows how you view blogging and it makes me want to be your friend or something, ha! your blog and your writing and your photography are lovely:)

    I am in the middle of changing my email and i'm trying to figure out what works best for me. I think the email account linked to my blogger profile isn't visible, i don't know... i'll have to work on that!

    i just found your blog and can't wait to follow along!

  13. I reply to every blog comment by using the reply button on the comment on my blog. I worded that poorly. Oh well. I also go to their blog and comment on one of their posts too, if I have something to say etc. I just think it's polite! I don't keep track of who I have commented back to but that doesn't bother me. I don't write a comment to gain readership or increase blog traffic. I simply do it because i want to congratulate people on their fab blogs, make them feel good about themselves and spread the blog love! Hahaha! But I totally love the idea you do of e-mailing! That is such a cute an personal touch. I may consider it! Love you blog also! Such inspiration and cuteness! XXX

  14. I think it's lovely to reply to comments via emails! If anyone leaves me a chatty comment or asks a question or gets in touch then I do try to get back to them - sometimes if there's no contact email then through twitter. I kind of feel a bit self conscious replying to every comment I get.. I don't really know if that makes sense but it feels like if you're just replying to comments to say 'thanks for the comment' then it's a bit of a waste. You can usually tell which bloggers are the ones who really want to engage and begin a conversation because they leave comments which initiate more of a dialogue than just 'nice photos' observations.. in which scenario I'm not really sure what the response would be other than thanks... Bit of a confusing one because I guess all bloggers will have a slightly different stance on it!

    Hannah xx

  15. I've never really thought about it? I personally have no idea if my email is around... not that I would mind at all. It'd be kind of nice. I'd definitely be more open to conversation via email.

    I do agree that I wish that blogger had the notification thing like disqus, I just found that the other day, and it's really handy!

    I use the like button on Bloglovin to keep track of some of the blogs that I've commented on, and if I remember and have time i'll check to see if there's a reply, but usually I don't have the time to do that.

    I'm now off to see what my profile allows... haha.

  16. I was wondering about this. I asked Twitter but no one replied :-( hehe. I always reply on my blog but never know if people go back to see what the reply is. Like you I also forget which blogs I have commented on, especially if I have done loads of commenting one day.

    I had a reply via email once and thought it was a great idea so I think I may start doing this. Sometimes all I want to say is thank you. xx

  17. I've been wondering about this lately too! I've usually replied on the blog, but lately I've tried replying by email, unless it's a no-reply blogger. I really like it when I get replies from other bloggers through email!

  18. I gotta be honest, I don't really expect bloggers to reply to my comments. I'm terrible at checking my email, and responding can become an overwhelming task so I sometimes go weeks without getting to comments. I wish I could say I feel bad about that, but I don't. I don't think that bloggers should be responsible for handing you an ice cream cone whenever you need your ego stroked. You should comment because you genuinely like a post, or have an opinion. Those though provoking comments, and honest appraisals are much more likely to get a response than the half hearted comments and responses on blogs 99% of the time.

    I'm all for starting a conversation, but I believe directly emailing the blogger you want to converse with is the way to do it, not leaving a "nice post." comment on their blog.


Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment - I love getting to know you guys and I really appreciate each and every note you leave!

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