When Bloggers Don’t Respond to Comments {Discussion}

Discussion Post

 

 

One thing I really don’t like is when bloggers don’t respond to comments made on their blog. There are a lot of different opinions about this out there, but personally, it really bothers me. That’s not to say that I don’t still love and follow blogs and bloggers who do this, but it is something that I think about from time to time.

Sometimes I’ll go to comment on a blog post and I notice that the blogger hasn’t replied to one single comment. If there are already a ton of comments on the post (say, more than 8-10) and/or the post was written a few days ago, I might hesitate to leave a comment.

 

My favorite thing about blogging is the community and the interaction with one another. If I get the feeling that a blogger probably isn’t going to reply to my comment…why even leave one? Sometimes I’ll have something I really, really want to say and leave one anyway, knowing that they’ll probably at least read it, but other times I’ll just think to myself that it’s not worth it to take 3 minutes to type out a thoughtful response to their post if I’m not going to get a reply, so I just don’t.

 

Would You Rather Get a Comment or a Comment Response?

Recently, one of my favorite bloggers wrote a post about why she doesn’t reply to comments left on her blog, and she explained that, if she has a set amount of time she’s going to spend commenting in general, she’d rather spend that time going to other people’s blogs and leave comments there instead of replying to her own because she thought that’s what people would appreciate more.

While that’s a good thought and actually a pretty decent point, I have to politely disagree and say that, at least for me, I’d rather get a response to a comment I’ve made. A response, especially if I’ve left a fairly thoughtful comment, opens up a conversation and discussion. Sometimes comment conversations give me ideas for new post ideas and even just blogging inspiration in general! And it allows you to get to know the other person and it’s how blogging friendships develop. Of course I love receiving comments of my own, too, but if it’s a choice between the two — I’d rather have the conversation.

 

How I Deal With Comments on My Blog

One good rule that I’ve put into place for myself is that I must respond to all of my own comments before I get to go visit other blogs and leave comments there. Doing this helps keep me accountable and makes sure that I don’t get the problem of letting them build up too long and then having to respond to a huge amount all at once.

Typically, I respond to comments as soon as I get on the computer in the morning, and then whenever I get an email notification for a new one during the day. Tackling them one at a time makes it an easy, fun thing to do throughout the day vs. a task that I start to resent. I know that not everybody has the ability to do blogging stuff during the day, but it’s what works for me. Another option would be to do it once in the morning and once at night, to break it up a little bit.

I don’t respond to every comment, but I do reply to about 90% of them. Sometimes I’ll get quick one-sentence comments that I don’t feel really justify a response — if I can’t think of anything to say back, I don’t force myself to come up with something. But luckily, almost all of the comments I get are pretty long and thoughtful! Thanks, guys 🙂

 

Conclusion

So, ultimately, while not replying to comments doesn’t usually stop me from following a blog or loving that blog/blogger, it does slightly annoy me and may stop me from leaving a comment. The whole point of blogging (at least, in my opinion) is the community aspect, so I really appreciate it when bloggers go out of their way to contribute comments, both in response to other people’s posts and their own blog’s comments.

One other thing I want to quickly mention is that I’m mostly just talking about WordPress bloggers here. There’s no way for me to receive comment reply notifications from Blogger blogs so, even if I do leave a thoughtful comment, I don’t expect a response, because I know that I’ll never be able to see it. In rare circumstances — if I leave a super, super personal and thoughtful comment — I might save the link to the post and check back for a reply later, but mostly I just have to leave a comment and move on. It’s not the way I’d like to do things, but until Blogger gets their shit together, it’s the only option.

 

What do you think…does it annoy you when bloggers don’t reply to comments? Do you usually reply to comments left on your own blog? Would you rather receive a comment or a comment reply?

 

Other Bloggers Discuss Replying to Comments:

 

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40 responses to “When Bloggers Don’t Respond to Comments {Discussion}

  1. Hmmm … I’m in the camp with the other blogger. How do you know if someone’s blog is Blogger or WordPress or something else (mine is neither)? I respond when there is something to respond to, and the other blogger doesn’t get an email back. Personally I would much rather the visit back to my blog. But I do totally get where you’re coming from 🙂

  2. YES! I totally, 100% agree Miranda. This is something I’ve been thinking about a lot lately because there are so many discussion posts popping up about it. I frequently comment on quite a few bloggers posts where they have dozens upon dozens of them, and none of them are ever replied to. I’ll be honest, a lot of them time, I choose to not comment on their posts anymore because I think, “What’s the point?”. I have left very long, thoughtful responses tons of time in the past and just… nothing. And these bloggers can’t really use the reason of going visiting back either. I don’t mind when I don’t get a “return” visit, I know how hard it is to comment on posts that just aren’t of interest to you, as blog reading is a personal thing but I feel that everyone should make an effort to reply to comments on their own blog. There is one blogger, who is actually a friend, who takes the time to respond on Twitter when you comment, as she is on Blogger. I think that’s such a lovely, personal touch knowing that otherwise you wouldn’t see her reply comments. Ahh.. now I’m just ranting. Anyway, the sum of this post is, Yes I agree 🙂

    • I’m glad somebody agrees!

      I know somebody who does that Twitter thing every so often. I really liked it when she replied to my comment that way 🙂 But that’s definitely not the norm! Deciding to read blogs and comment on them is something that I do because it’s fun, so it’s not totally necessary that I get something “back” from it, but I definitely do appreciate it more when bloggers go out of their way to respond. And it also affects my motivation to comment, too. Like you said, sometimes it’s just like: “What’s the point?”

  3. Most of the time, if a blog is even hosted by Blogger, I won’t leave a response. I may enjoy reading the post, but Blogger is such a hassle that I tend to just leave it alone.

    I tend to do the opposite of you – visit blogs and make comments, then come back to my blog and reply to comments and such. Some days, when my comments have piled up, I reply to those first. I’ve noticed that I’ve developed a horrible habit of letting all my comments pile up, because I rarely get time to sit down on my computer for very long these days!

    • I’ve been getting lazy with Blogger blogs recently, too. I used to comment on them a lot more, but it’s so frustrating that I haven’t even been bothering lately. There are some blogs that I really love that use Blogger, though, so there are a few exceptions.

    • I’m definitely less likely to comment on Blogger blogs. I have a few I really like (as long as they don’t use CAPTCHA, that’s a total deal-breaker!), but as I’m out exploring new blogs, I’m sort of automatically turned off by those on Blogger, and I have to really connect with it to overcome that bias.

      And for something like Bout of Books or Armchair BEA coming up, when I go visiting through the daily link-ups… as bad as it sounds, I just skip over the ones that have blogspot.com addresses. I know that’s a lot of arbitrary ignoring, but with so many links to go through, I’m not going to hit them all anyway… might as well remove the ones that have the best chance of annoying me.

      • Haha yeah. The longer I’ve been blogging, the more and more I find myself being annoyed by Blogger blogs. Sometimes I don’t comment on them even if I want to :/ I feel bad about it, but if I’m commenting on a LOT of blogs, it’s just so much easier to do it on WordPress so I get aggravated when there’s CAPTCHA or something.

  4. I don’t really get annoyed when someone doesn’t reply to all their comments. I just feel like there are a lot of reasons behind their decision that I don’t know so it’s better for me to just leave it alone. I think whether or not they reply, they probably still do read all their comments and to know that they’ve seen my comment is enough for me. I comment because I have something interesting to say and even though I’d definitely prefer to see a reply just to have a look at what the blogger themselves think or to start up a conversation, not getting a response is not something that’ll deter me from leaving a comment.

    On my blog though, I do try to reply to every one. I just think in general, it’s good practice and like you said, interaction is one of the best parts of this community and I want to have the opportunity to interact with everyone who reads my posts. There are times though when I may not reply to one because I have nothing else to say. Like if it’s a simple sentence like, I really enjoyed this post or if it’s something like I hated this book to a review for a book I really enjoyed, I just don’t see the point in replying because there’s nothing meaningful to say back.

    • I guess that I don’t really get too frustrated when I see it happening…it’s more when I leave a REALLY thoughtful comment and that person doesn’t reply at all. Of course my main motivation behind reading & commenting on blogs is because I think it’s fun and I love the blogging community, but it’s disappointing to have spent a lot of time writing a comment and get no response to it. It’s hard not to let that hurt my feelings sometimes!

      It’s good to hear that you like to respond to most of yours, too, though 🙂 I love it when bloggers take that approach.

  5. I don’t really like to respond to comments on my blog because I feel like 90% of the time the responses I get seem like they are fake or just repeating what I have said. I respond when bloggers ask questions or spur discussion, but for the most part I really just make effort to visit the blogger’s blog and comment on their most recent posts
    Missie @ A Flurry of Ponderings

  6. I usually reply to all my comments too (even though I don’t get a lot ahha).However, sometimes I feel like when I reply, the person I’m replying to never gets a notification anyways so I find it pointless to reply back. I know i’ve commented on a lot of blogs, but I have no idea if they ever replied back or not. Love the post though! 😀

    -Amber

  7. I pretty much agree with everything you said. If I see a blog, or just a post, where the blogger has not responded to any comments, I usually don’t leave one. I have no idea if the blogger even reads them, or in any way values them, if there is never an acknowledgment of their existence. Also, I often leave comments to spark a discussion or ask a question–which would obviously be pointless if the blogger never responds. I’ll still follow the blog if I think it’s interesting, but I won’t bother to interact.

    As to Blogger, I am also on WordPress and it’s hard to tell if I get comment responses. If l comment on a blog I often comment on, however, or if I leave a comment I would like a response to, I will remember I did so and check back later.

    Personally, I try to respond to all comments on my blog because I appreciate that people took the time to say something. Maybe I’m biased in some way because I don’t get a ton of comments, so responding doesn’t take a lot of time, but it still seems like the right thing to do. I wouldn’t ignore an email or a FB message or someone saying something to my face; why would I ignore a blog comment directed to me?

    • I thought about not even responding to you just to be ironic…but figured that would probably be too mean 😛

      “I wouldn’t ignore an email or a FB message or someone saying something to my face; why would I ignore a blog comment directed to me?” Hahaha EXACTLY.

      I wish Blogger would just get its shit together. Like, why can’t there be an email response system? It makes no sense. I feel like it would be so easy.

      • I actually realized when I was commenting that I was inadvertently pressuring you to reply to me, by implying that you would be a complete jerk if you didn’t. But I found it hard to give my opinion without those implications. Sorry! 😉

        However, I noticed you had replied to some earlier comments, and I remembered that you reply to my comments in general, so it didn’t seem like too much of a problem.

        Yes, Blogger drives me nuts. I had a separate blog with them once and couldn’t figure out what to do with the comments at all. As in, I’m still not sure if it’s possible (or easy) to get Blogger comment notifications even if you belong to Blogger.

      • Haha no worries 🙂 Like I said in my post, I do try to reply to pretty much all of my comments unless they’re one-liners, so I would’ve responded to you anyway. Although I literally just realized that I’m basically obligated to reply to EVERY SINGLE COMMENT on this post no matter what, haha.

        Wait, you don’t even get Blogger comment notifications if you have a Blogger blog…? That’s NUTS. Everybody just needs to use WordPress from now on lol. And, haha, I just realized we’re commenting back and forth to each other on two different places 😉 But I won’t say any more about that because I don’t want a warning!

      • Um, I’m not sure if Blogger users can get notifications or not. I was so confused by the system that I was never really able to figure that out.

        Yes! It know! It’s a little weird. Here, I’m trying to be all friendly and comment, and there I’m all “Miranda is EVIL!” 😉

  8. Ugh I totally agree about the Blogger commenting system. It’s so annoying that they don’t notify you. Or they make you subscribe to ALL comments, which is downright irritating… That’s probably the main reason why we switched to the IntenseDebate system on our blog.

    I do find it a bit sad when people don’t reply to their comments. It does make you feel a bit like you’ve been ignored. It especially makes me sad when the blogger seems to have replied to every other comment except yours…I get that it might be difficult to reply to every comment when you’re a reallly popular blogger who gets a ton of comments though.

    To be honest, not sure whether I prefer replies to comments or comments back on my own blog. So…why not have both? lol.

    • Honestly I don’t use the Intense Debate system, so that’s why I will probably never comment on your blog. I hate that, but I just really don’t like that set-up. I really dislike the fact that you have to log in and that it makes you set up a profile and won’t link directly back to your blog. It’s just kind of annoying. But I get why people would much rather use that than the Blogger commenting system.

      Haha why not have both? Exactly 😀

      I can definitely see why, if you’re getting hundreds of comments, you can’t take the time to personally respond to every one. I guess I should’ve been more clear — this post was directed towards MOST book bloggers — people who get between 1-30 comments on a post. But even if you’re getting, like, 40 or 50 comments, a lot of those are probably one-liners that don’t really need a response, and you should probably still try to reply to at least the ones that ask questions or are longer and obviously thoughtful. I don’t want to be ignored!

      • IntenseDebate automatically logs you in with WordPress though? So if you have a WP account you should already be logged in. There’s also commentluv which links directly back to your recent blog post. So maybe you’re thinking of Disqus?

      • Oh sorry, yeah, IntenseDebate logs you in…it’s Disqus that doesn’t. But I feel like the commentluv never works for me with IntenseDebate, though! Maybe I’m just the only one that has problems with these programs 😛

    • Oh — I meant to respond to your thing about how when a blogger replies to every other comment except yours. I don’t know if that’s ever happened to me personally, but I feel like I might’ve done that a few times on my own blog. I feel bad about it! But there are some circumstances in which a blogger will comment on a post that’s WEEKS old and basically reiterates stuff that’s already been said by the first 20 commenters and I just kind of ignore it or leave a really short response. I always feel so guilty whenever that might (very rarely) happen, but sometimes it’s hard to force myself to respond to something that I’m kind of “done” with talking about, or don’t feel like I have anything to say to without completely repeating myself over and over again. I don’t know if that makes sense? But that almost never happens, and I pretty much reply to almost every single comment if it’s a post that’s only 1-2 weeks old.

      • Yeah, to be honest, sometimes I feel like that as well lol. I still reply (I reply to every comment on the blog except those stupid one line ones like “great review!”), but it does feel like you’re just repeating yourself over and over, or just repeating what you’ve already said in the post.

      • You know what would be cool? If you could “like” comments! It’d be like saying, “Hey I read your comment and it was cool…but I don’t really have anything else to say” haha

      • You can actually do that with both ID and Disqus 😛 (you can also vote down comments)
        Don’t know if people get notified about it though

      • When a blogger replies to every comment except mine, I assume it just got missed. Which stings a little… but I’d still rather see some replies (yes, even if it’s to everyone but me) than no replies. It shows that interaction is important to them, even if my particular comment slipped through the cracks.

        Unless it happens a few times in a row, then I start to think they’re weirdly cliquey and only respond to their friends or something, and stop following.

        (I also don’t feel too bad about repeating myself in comments because I think a lot of people don’t always read every comment and all it’s replies. So while it might feel weird for me, a lot of readers probably don’t even notice how repetitive I’m being, they just see my reply to their comment and it’s like our own little conversation… that other people can read if they want.)

      • Yeah that’s another good point about being repetitive. A lot of people don’t read those other comments, so it’s only repetitive to you not to them. I guess it’s just something you have to get a little used to.

        Ugh I’ve totally had that “I’m not responding to you because I’m cliquey” thing happen before. That SUCKS.

  9. I actually completely agree. I think that if people can take the time to leave a thoughtful comment, then I can make the time to reply. In saying that, I don’t normally get a crazy amount of comments, so It’s not hard to keep up. But I love the conversation and interaction!
    But if someone leaves one of those spamy comments? I’m likely to ignore them or leave an equally lame, one sentence comment back – as bad as that sounds, I just don’t have the patience for that nonsense.

    • Haha no I totally don’t blame you. Pointless short comments are the worst. I mean, I guess I’m glad they commented? But, like, what am I even supposed to do with that? 😛

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  11. I pretty much feel the same as you. I am less likely to leave a comment on a post that does not even have ONE reply because I feel like the blogger cannot be bothered to reply to the comments I receive. I know that some bloggers only reply to certain kinds of comments, like ones that ask a question, and that’s fine. I understand that not every comment NEEDS a reply, because the blogger might just end up repeating themselves.
    I personally reply to every comment I receive (bar ones that are just one sentence that makes it obvious the person did not even read my post so why would I reply to them). I just feel like it’s a courtesy. They’ve spent the time writing the comment, so I should spend the time replying. I might not reply until a few days later (because I’m busy and immediate replies are not always possible) but they will all get one. Because I like getting one.
    To me, a comment shouldn’t just be a shout into the void of the blog, it should be a way to interact and converse with the blogger, like you said. And I believe that the community is the biggest part and point of the book blogging community so where does the community start if not in the comment section?

  12. I used to be kind of bad at this, but now I try to reply to every single comment – even if the original commenter hasn’t made it easy to reply to. Something like ‘Great post!’ or whatever is tricky to reply to, so I ask them questions in connection with the post e.g. if it’s a review and that’s all they’ve put, I’ll ask if they’ve read the book, favourite bits of it etc.

    I reply to comments on my own blog first. I pretty much reply to them as soon as I get the notification (or sometimes if it’s late, I’ll mark the email as unread, let a few pile up and reply the next day). I prefer to leave comments on other people’s blogs in one big go – like now, I’m spending an hour or so browsing other blogs and commenting =)

    It doesn’t annoy me as such when someone doesn’t reply, but I do like seeing responses and sometimes reply again – it’s great when you can keep a conversation going. For example, on one of my posts I have 60 comments, the majority of which are me and Ana from Read Me Away talking about video games!

    • Haha yeah I love when one comment turns into a conversation with somebody 🙂 It’s so fun and that’s how you build friendships in the community! I like what you said about how you reply to really short comments, too. I didn’t really think of asking them questions before…that’s a good idea and is another way to help start more conversation.

  13. Yes! Thank you! I totally agree! And while I try to remind myself that we all have different opinions and priorities, it really is a big factor for me. Interacting with others is why I blog. It’s frustrating to put my words out there and get nothing in return… whether it’s a post on my own blog or a comment on someone else’s.

    I’d much rather have a reply than a “comment back.” I really don’t care about that “quid pro quo” kind of stuff around the internet. I’m like you; I want the conversation.

    The other thing I seem to hear often is “I wouldn’t have the time to keep up my posting schedule,” which… again, no wrong way to blog and all that, but… I have to work really hard not to be insulted by this. To me, it says they care more about putting their own words out there than interacting with their readers. I’d much rather follow a blog that posts once a week and has great conversation in the comments than one that posts every day and never returns to a post once it’s published.

    After reading so many posts lately from the other point of view, it’s nice to read one that tells me I’m not alone after all.

    • Yay! I’m glad that you agree with me 🙂

      That was a good point you made, too…the whole “not having time” excuse. I almost talked about that in my post, but figured that I’d gone on long enough and didn’t want to be rude. But I agree with you. And my feelings are this: it’s not that you don’t have enough time, it’s that you’re not making replying to comments a priority! And that’s fine if that’s how you want to do things, but don’t sit there and say that you don’t have time to reply to comments. Why would you be a blogger if you “don’t have time” to participate in all of the blogger-related things? How about maybe, instead of sitting on the couch and watching American Idol for the 5 millionth time, you get off your ass and reciprocate to all of the people that spent their own precious time trying to start a conversation with you?! I know that I’m probably generalizing and being kind of mean…but I do feel like, in most circumstances, that excuse is bullshit. And, like you, I’d much rather follow a blogger who is actually interested in the back-and-forth part of it than somebody who isn’t.

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