Has twitter killed the art of blog commenting?

keyboard shenanigans

Image used under creative commons licence.

As a blogger there’s nothing I love blog comments. Short comments saying ‘right on,’  long rambly comments tearing apart my arguments, thoughtful comments, comments with links, comments from friends, comments from people I’ve never met.

The comments section is what makes blogging so addictive.

Through commenting I’ve struck up friendships and often use the comment section on other people’s blogs for inspirations for my own posts. Commenting takes your thoughts and ideas to whole new level.

Yet these days, my posts don’t seem to gather as many comments. To be fair my writing is a bit flat these days, yet I’ll often have people retweet or respond to a post on twitter which leads me to wonder.

Has twitter killed the art of blog commenting?

Could social media channels like twitter and facebook be killing blogging?

Certainly there’s a lot more outlets competing for my online attention since I first took up blogging in 2003.

I’m sure I’m not the only one who can spend hours clicking through wikipedia entries, I literally wake up in the morning and check my Twitter feed. Facebook, although not as addictive as it was in the early days, has its uses and I’m getting mildly obsessed with pinterest. All these social media channels for content leaves less time to respond thoughtfully to content.

A lazy retweet here, a like, a repin.

While content may be the catalyst, it’s the conversations by the community that often make the content. Maybe it’s just me, but Twitter seems to be taking more of the conversations from the initial blog and making them 140-character bites.

I’ve seen some amazing posts be tweeted, and the conversation remain on Twitter. Points and questions raised in the post start the conversation rolling, but instead of via the comments section on a blog, they take place in the little blue bird’s nest.

There’s nothing wrong with this. After all, Twitter is the king of instant feedback and interaction.

Nevertheless I can’t help but wonder if the limitations of 140-characters are leading to less thoughtful reactions to blogging. Imagine how opposing views could be better fleshed out without the word limit. Comments serve as inspiration for other posts, a way to build community which make blogging so engaging.

Of course, you could say that it’s down to the blogger to make the content as open as possible, to encourage discussion – and this is true. Yet at the same time, maybe we as reader need to take part more as well? Maybe we need to encourage bloggers  by being part of their community, as opposed to lazily sharing content on our social media channels.

There are a myriad of ways for conversations to take place. Sometimes little snapshots like Twitter and Pintrest are ideal, if you’re pressed for time.

But isn’t it nice to give proper feedback beyond a pin, a like, a retweet?

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About Stephanie

Stephanie is a teacher of a fabulous class of year 7/8 students (11-13 year olds). She bakes, goes to the gym and geeks out in Wellington, New Zealand.

Posted on November 14, 2012, in blogging and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 20 Comments.

  1. A very good point, Stephanie. If I wasn’t finishing reports I would make a comment longer than 140 characters ;)

  2. I’m writing reports too. So I like and a comment saying I can’t comment is all I can do.

  3. Interesting idea that, upon reflection, makes sense :) That being said, I prefer commenting on a blog through because the pesky 140 characters does not seem long enough and I still don’t ‘get’ twitter. I want to … I know many of my colleagues find it an invaluable way to share ideas, but I can’t seem to check it frequently enough to ‘stay on top of’ what is coming through. I’m sure it is just a matter of developing a system but I’m still searching for a system that ‘fits’. . However, I do like the threaded conversations that happen on the linkedin groups; comments can be longer, reflective and easily followed as a continuous conversation.

  4. I’m still quite new to the blog/twitter world. What worries me about this, is that the ideas that get sparked from a blog post can now only be seen by those who are in the twitter stream at the time the blogpost is in the feed. So if you’re a late-comer to the post – you are, in essence, missing half the conversation because it occurred in another media sometime earlier. Blogposts obviously don’t need to record every like minded initiative or idea that they connect with – but a trail of crumbs, for those of us wandering in the cyber-forest, is really quite a treasure when we find it.

  5. You’re so right. I also find that I’m more likely to get a retweet or a comment on twitter (or facebook when I promote my blog there) than I am on a blog. I would LOVE to receive more comments on my blog. I know that some of my posts really aren’t as good as others, but even an indication that my questions/thoughts have made people think would be nice. Keep blogging, Stephanie. You’ve got a lot of great things to say and share!

  6. As a blogger there’s nothing I love {more than} blog comments- edit?
    I agree! I love connecting, networking with and learning from bloggers! It isn’t just a chance for us to stand on our soap box ;p

  7. I recently discovered teachers blogs and am hooked but rarely do I comment. I have facebook and an obsession with pinterest but have never found a great use for twitter. I’ve lately been thinking about starting my own blog but it feels a little daunting! After reading your post I will endevour to comment more and be less of a lazy liker/pinner! Thanks for your words :)

    • Hi Kate
      I have a mild pinterest obsession but I think I will forever be a blogger.

    • I think that comments are a great first step into the cyber conversation. They get your creative communication skills flowing and help you find your blogging voice before you take the leap (although I have to admit I am still developing my online voice too!!).
      I have written a few blogging posts for educators over on my blog if you wanted some advcie about starting a teacher blog :)

  8. I agree with Nathaniel. While it is great to get the feedback on Facebook and Twitter, the excitement you get when you open your blog up and find comments is another thing altogether. Luckily I got to experience that this morning on one of my own blogs. ;-)

  9. I wonder if our lives online reflect our personalities offline. I tend to prefer blog comment conversations because blogs feel more like a warm conversation over coffee. Twitter feels like a really bit party where I make some connections, but get overwhelmed by the number of people and conversations after a couple of hours.

    I’m not sure blog commenting is dead, but there are definitely people who prefer the fast pace of Twitter. then there are introverts like me who like to interact, but in a more quiet environment. :).

  1. Pingback: November byte counting – blog stats « Teaching the Teacher

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