The best part of the social media revolution is the ability to communicate with thousands of other interested individuals. One of the best ways to do this is through the use of blog comments. Leaving a comment can further the conversation, add content, and even brand you as an expert. If you aren’t careful, however, you can be branded as something entirely different ...
There are a few rules that we should follow when leaving comments on blog posts. Actually, there are more than a few, but common sense should help you through most of them. Let’s focus on the major do’s and don’ts of commenting.
Don’t be a know it all. Leaving a comment is your chance to establish yourself as an expert or an interested follower, but that doesn’t give you permission to be the end-of-discussion authority on the topic. Be open to other opinions, and be polite when responding.
No personal attacks. There is never a time for personal attacks when commenting. If another commenter posts something nasty about you (and eventually, they will), take the high road. Your credibility will remain much stronger if you avoid mudslinging and name-calling.
Don’t sell anything. Nothing irritates readers more than stumbling upon an advertisement in the midst of a rousing discussion. Even if you have something of value for the audience, avoid the temptation to use the comment space as a billboard. If you’d like to link back to your Web site or blog for further enlightenment on the subject, that’s just fine. But the general rule is to avoid the hard sell on someone else’s real estate.
Shorten your URLs. If you must leave a link to a relevant article, Web site, or other piece of information, be sure to shorten the URL. Addresses with 120 characters take up valuable space, make reading more confusing, and are just plain annoying. If you can’t figure out an HTML link, shorten the URL at a site like bit.ly or tinyurl.com. These sites will provide you with a free, shortened version of the site that you can use on comments or social media posts.
Don’t sign your comment or leave personal info. People will see your name or handle right at the top of your comment, there is no need for a virtual signature. Many people also include e-mail addresses with their comments ... bad idea! Any personal information you include will leave you open to SPAM or even identity theft.
As always, if you need help setting up a blog, upgrading your system, or just need help troubleshooting a bug, give Computer Problem Specialists a call at (928) 468-0000. We’re here to make sure you have all the tools to make your computer experience the best it can be.
Take these suggestions to heart and you will have a great experience while participating on the Web. You have something great to say ... just make sure you say it the right way.
Daniel Taft is the senior network administrator and member/owner of Computer Problem Specialists, LLC with a degree in applied computer science. His career spans more than 20 years.