Book Blogger Confessions (#5)…

Book Blogger Confessions is a biweekly meme hosted by  Tiger’s All Consuming Media or For What It’s Worth

Monday – May 7th: Comments. The holy grail of blogging success! What type of posts do you leave comments on? How do you try to encourage more comments on your blog? Do you respond to people who leave comments on your posts? How do you handle negative/spam comments? Do you use captcha?

Right off the bat I want to say that I LOVE comments. Whether they’re long or short I appreciate them all, and I look forward to them.

What type of posts do you leave comments on? I usually leave comments on posts by my fellow bloggers when I visit their sites unless I just completely disagree with a review, or it’s a post that I consider offensive. For example, I don’t review books that I wouldn’t rate a 3 or above, but I’ve seen some bloggers use that opportunity to really bash a book or an author…and for me not only is it a total turnoff, but a big disappointment in a peer. I know I say this all the time, but I think it bears repeating…If you don’t like a book or an author then don’t recommend it. Fortunately that’s a rarity.

I also like to comment on author and friend sites as a show of support, and on various memes. Hey, who invented that word anyway? Meme…it’s kind of an odd word don’t you think?!? Regardless, I think as a blogger it’s a sign of respect to leave comments elsewhere if we want them ourselves.

How do you try to encourage more comments on your blog?  Sometimes I just out and out ask for people to leave comments at the end of a post. I’m more likely to do that when I’m really looking for feedback on a particular post/topic, or when an author has done a guest post, interview, etc. At other times I just try to encourage it by writing something like…now tell me what YOU think. I feel very lucky in that I have quite a few people who regularly leave comments. I’m very appreciative of that.

Do you respond to people who leave comments on your posts?  Normally I try to respond to almost all of the comments that people leave, but especially when it’s someone new. I think about the only exception is when the comment is directed to another person…for example to one of the other Bookish team members, or if it’s a “Love it” comment. It’s harder to respond to  that type. I really enjoy when a discussion gets started in the comments…people going back and forth with me or each other. That’s great fun.

How do you handle negative/spam comments?  I guess I’ve been exceptionally lucky in that I really haven’t received too many negative comments. Here are my thoughts on that…I’m fine if someone wants to disagree with me in a respectful manner on a review, OR on anything else I’ve posted. The same is true if they want to say that Bookish isn’t their thing…BUT I try hard to monitor and will delete comments that trash or bad mouth any authors, books, etc. My goal is to provide a fun and interesting place for people to come to on a daily basis. I want it to be a positive experience. Again, I have no problem if someone wants to state an opinion that is counter to mine or another team member as long as it’s done with respect.

As far as spam goes? Well… Word Press is exceptionally good at picking those out before I even see them, and depositing them into a spam folder. I check them weekly to make sure they really are spam, but so far Word Press hasn’t let me down in that regard.  Also, anybody who is commenting for the first time, or who uses a different email which WP doesn’t recognize, automatically goes into moderation. I then have the option to approve it or not.

Do you use captcha?   WP doesn’t use captcha and I cannot even begin to tell you how glad I am that it doesn’t. I’m not fond of it myself when I visit sites that use it, and I’m being very restrained when I put it that way. I wouldn’t mind so much if it only appeared the first time you left a comment, but as it occurs every single time you visit the same site?!? UGH! I’ll just be very blunt and tell you that it discourages me from commenting on occassion when I otherwise would have. I know from talking to others that they feel the same way. I think it begs a question…is it really worth it? If you use it are you really getting that much spam to justify the possibility of turning off the very people you want to encourage?!? Just a thought…

***To turn off Captcha on your blog – A Blogging 101 tutorial by Parajunkee via For What It’s Worth***

A final few words…Know what I really, really enjoy as far as comments go? When I do a feature on a book or an author, and that author leaves a comment. My readers love it too. Pssst…Hey authors! Do you hear that?!? Yeah…subtlety is so not my strong suit 😉

Y’all know what’s coming next right?!? Please leave a comment 🙂

Tamie Xo

10 thoughts on “Book Blogger Confessions (#5)…

  1. Karen says:

    I enjoy when authors leave comments too but I have heard from several that they were afraid to because some bloggers don’t like it.

    Sometimes there are all these confusing “rules” and no one knows what the heck to do anymore for fear of offending someone.


  2. katiebirdie says:

    Hi!! *giggle* I like to comment on posts that I can relate to in some way. If I don’t like the subject, I don’t comment, but I should clarify that sometimes I can’t comment because of time restraints or I need time to think about what I want to say, and try to come back later.

    When I am invited to do a guest post, I always contact the author(s) I am featuring, in hopes they see the post and comment. I guess I am hoping that they like the review, and “feel the love” from other fans of their work. 🙂


  3. ChocoMG2112 says:

    Hi dee ho!

    I’m pretty much right there with Katie. I want to comment if I feel I have something to contribute, but if I am short on time (like today!) I am late or don’t get around to saying much. I love this place and try to do my best.


    • Tamie says:

      Another one of my favorite peeps to see here 🙂
      I always look forward to what you bring, and your contribution is always appreciated!


  4. Current read (actually, listen – book on CD) – “LIfe of PI” – loving it so far!


  5. When I took Kristen Lamb’s course on blogging, one thing she taught was to leave your blog with a question that begs for comment. As for responding to every comment, that can be difficult or not, depending on the subject matter. If the responses are all similar, how many different times can you say, “yeah, thanks, I agree.” And leaving comments – a great thing for the reasons you mentioned – respect and support.

    All of this is a social media art, a skill that becomes refined with each post. It helps to have a great voice and enthusiasm (of which you have in spades, Tamie) to attract a crowd, a balance of give and take.

    And captchas? ugh…count me out.

    Bottom line…you rock.


  6. Kristin T. says:

    I’ve started ending my reviews with a question and I am finding that I get more comments because of it. I think it lends itself to a discussion.

    I love, love, love when authors comment on my blog…I get all giddy!!!

    I try to visit and comment on at least 5 blogs a day…and each day I go to different blogs. I’m hoping eventually this will lead to those bloggers coming to my blog to comment.


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