Discussion

The Obligation of Returning Comments

So today I’m back with one of my blogging discussions! I haven’t written one of these in a while and I was just thinking of a topic when suddenly this came up, and I realized that I’ve felt strongly about this issue throughout my blogging journey, though how I deal with it has eventually changed.

So, if you didn’t know, for a lot of bloggers, blogging is about the community. It is about the people you befriend, the people who share your love for the same thing, and the people who accept your crazy fangirl side without judging. When it comes to the etiquettes of this community, there’s aren’t a lot of them but by far, one of the most important (probably the most important) is : comments.

Now firstly, I’d like to differentiate between replying to comments and returning commentsReplying to comments means when someone comments on any of your posts, you acknowledge it and send it a reply. Returning comments is basically when someone comments on your blog, you reply to that person, then you visit the commenter’s blog and comment on one of their posts.

I do agree that replying to comments is a basic form of courtesy , because after all someone made an effort and took out some time to appreciate/criticize/talk about something you posted, and it’s kind to at least acknowledge the comment by liking it. I’ve heard tons and tons and tons of bloggers who make replying to comments a priority, and it is such a big factor in blogging relationships.

But when it comes to returning comments, I slightly differ. There are tons of bloggers out there who follow this policy – whenever someone comments on one of their posts, they visit the commenter’s blog and comment on one of their posts. It’s kind of like a one-on-one thing, since this person commented on your blog, you have to return the favor and comment on theirs.

Personally, I’ve never done that. As long as I can remember, at least. Maybe I might have done it back in my early blogging days when I felt like following this policy, but the more time is passing, the more I feel independent to do things my own way. I love the idea of visiting new blogs, but I usually tend to do that for my followers. So every time someone follows me, I’m more than likely to check out their blog and follow it (if I like their blog, of course).

I feel that there is this weird sense of obligation attached to this policy – the one which demands that you visit your commenter’s blog and comment on one of their posts too. This compulsiveness attached is what really bugs me, and I cannot follow it. I do not get the point of compulsively visiting other blogs just for the sake of commenting and doing so.

I consider commenting to be a special, personal affair. It’s only when a particular post moves me or inspires me or evokes me enough to actually say something about the post. Even if it’s a well-written book review, if I like it enough, I definitely make sure to leave a comment, if only it’s a simple one line of appreciation.

Likewise, I like to receive comments on my post which mean something. I don’t care whether bloggers whose posts I comment on return comments on my blog or not, what really matters to me is whether people connected/liked what I wrote or not. When I receive a comment, it really bugs me when it’s evident that the commenter sent a comment as an obligation. I like genuine comments where people actually have something to say, even if it’s just a single line to acknowledge a well-written post. 

It’s just difficult for me to understand this notion people have of always returning comments out of compulsion – I feel like commenting on blogs should be a matter of choice. If someone comments on my blog, I might not like their blog. And nevertheless trying to find a post where I can leave a sad little comment is really stupid to me. It bugs me, and it’s something I still haven’t wrapped my head around.

What are your opinions? Are you a dedicated commenter who returns every single comment? Do you selectively return comments? Or are you like me, who doesn’t indulge in returning comments at all? :P Talk to me below!

 

 

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11 thoughts on “The Obligation of Returning Comments

  1. I definitely agree with you, Anushka! I feel so much pressure to comment on others’ blogs if they comment on mine. I almost always respond, but more often than not, I have next to nothing to say about the posts on their blog, and I begin to feel so bad! I absolutely feel like commenting should be a genuine choice. Great post!😄

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    1. Thank you! Yes, commenting should definitely be a matter of choice and not a compulsion. If I genuinely like something on someone’s blog, I definitely make sure to leave a comment. But other than that reason, I do not see the point of visitingother blogs just to leave comments as an obligation. Once you get into that kind of thing, the pressure is too high :)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I don’t think I’ve ever gone to a commenter’s blog and commented on one of their posts before out of courtesy, either. However, I do always reply to people’s comments on my posts as I really don’t like when I write a long comment only for the writer to like it and nothing else. Community is a major thing for me in blogging and while I agree there shouldn’t be any pressure to return comments, I do think it should be more common to respond to long comments, at least. I understand liking one liners but if someone’s put thought into a comment, it’s nice to reply. Sorry if this was a little bit of a rant, haha. This topic has been on my mind a lot recently, as well.

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    1. It wasn’t a rant, it was actually a good insight into commenting :) I definitely agree that replying to comments is a courtesy, and yes, especially long comments. Long comments show that people put effort and thought into your post and I feel like if someone posts a long comment on your blog, then dismissing it with just a like or just one single line is a little rude. The reply should be something substantial too. But I feel like having to compulsively visit other blogs just for the sake of commenting is taking it a bit too far, and makes the whole deal an obligation, instead of a matter of choice.

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  3. I differ from you in this point of view. I pay no attention to who follows me so following them back is difficult. But if someone comments, especially if they agree with me review having read the same book, I immediately head to their blog and read posts and comment. For me it means I’ve found someone with similar tastes and that could make or break my next book haul. Haha. Sounds so serious.

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    1. Wow that’s an interesting POV. I hadn’t thought about this before. I think it’s so true that when someone comments on your book review agreeing with your opinions on the book, it shows a similarity of tastes which could lead to the discovery of new book! Thanks for your comment :)

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  4. I agree with you completely!! No one should ever feel obligated to like or comment on things. Obviously, as bloggers, we all know how much time it takes every week to keep up with our content. And we all have lives outside of our blogs. So to go through every post of every blog and make a comment is just insanity. I too think that comments are reserved for posts that I relate to, but if someone takes the time to make a comment I will always reply or like that comment. For me I feel that it’s only polite to at least acknowledge that I’ve read their comment and are thankful for their time. No one does things the same and that’s not a bad thing – if people don’t follow me back or comment back, I’m not offended.

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    1. Yes exactly, it’s polite to reply back to comments or at least acknowledge. But commenting on other blogs as a compulsion is taking it a bit too far. I mean, obviously if the other blog has good content which relates/connects to me, I have no problem in leaving a comment. But if I don’t like the blog or the posts, then forcing myself to comment is insanity. Even I never get offended if people don’t follow/comment back. Everyone has different choices :)

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