Blog Comments: Necessary? I Think Not

August 15, 2011
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At Digett we often debate the need to enable comments on a blog, that is, if we should allow readers the opportunity to leave feedback via a form submission.

If you don't have it, don't flaunt it

I usually take the stance that until your content is being read by enough people to yield a few good comments, you shouldn't flaunt the perception that your content is not comment-worthy.

Commenting should be restricted to rare cases when there are actually people reading the content. Extensive sites with thousands of daily readers are perfect for comment forms, but few others yield enough feedback to warrant the same.

The Digett blog

As an example, let's take a look at the Digett blog, the blog I know best. I think our statistics are pretty standard and likely resemble your numbers, or those of a blog you read.

Digett gets less than one comment per post, meaning that majority of our posts get no action, post-read. Let me be clear — this isn't a bad thing, just the way it is. Our numbers will surely get better with time, but these meager statistics do beg the following questions:

  1. Should we enable comments to indulge occasional readers with something to say?

    -or-

  2. Should we disable commenting so we're not perpetually advertising 0 comments?

I say yes to question number two. I don't want our readers thinking they're alone, it's that simple.

If a steady stream of comments were to start rolling in via our standard contact form, or Google Analytics were to reveal an increase in readership, then by all means, turn on the comments! But until then, in my opinion, it just comes across as sad :(

But maybe I'm just a Scrooge. In fact, I'd love you all to prove me wrong.

Reader Challenge

If you've read this post, leave a comment. Comment on anything you like — this post, another post, the weather outside. Let's just see how many of you are reading and how many of you are willing to leave a bit of feedback. Go on, take one quick minute out of your day and write me a note. Make my day!

Comments

Is it possible to enable

Is it possible to enable comments in some posts and not in others?
Some blog posts are more conducive of feedback than others. This one, for instance, is prompting an opinion. Some posts are purely informative...

I've read the post in my news

I've read the post in my news reader and had to come to the original to leave a comment.

It makes me wonder if the reads through rss adds up to the views counter. Afraid not and maybe a good motive not to make the whole article available for the feed, but use a "read more" link.

Another suggestion: We use

Another suggestion:
We use Facebook comments for a variety of reasons. In that case http://drupal.org/project/views_fb_like is very helpfull to expose also the number of comments. This we expose only if comment count > 0 and at the same time we do that for the number of Likes as well.

A couple of good points,

A couple of good points, lolandese, thanks for dropping in.