Annoyed Reader

Annoyed posted a comment that needed a response. The response got big (and important) enough to be posted to the blog.

Annoyed’s well argued point is that if you want to have a well regarded blog (who doesn’t?) you have to respond to comments with greater frequency. I do realize that. Without responding to comments enough, one can’t create the watering-hole-of-like-minded-people kind of community around the blog. My responses are spotty (although up from none in the first 6 months!). Should I be responding to comments more?

Here’s the rub – responding to comments takes time. And comments can come in anytime during the week, not just the weekend, which is when I typically write. I run a startup – that’s my job and passion (blogging is just a passion). I travel a lot. Over the week I simply cannot guarantee a service level on comment response. I think it is best not to set that expectation.

That’s my side of it. But Annoyed’s comment raises a more interesting point. Can you be a serious blogger if you don’t respond to comments adequately? Maybe not, but I think there are no rules on this one. Seth Godin writes a very popular and well-regarded (not always the same thing) blog. He doesn’t allow any comments on the blog. Period. His explanation is here. TechCrunch has an interesting post and discussion on whether a blog must have comments. The sense I get is that there are no rules, just guidelines.

I typically post just once a week, not twice or thrice a week, which seems to be the guideline for an active blog. I often post long article-length posts (again not recommended). And I respond to comments infrequently. I have made my choices and I am cool with it. And I think as long as I am consistent with my ‘service levels’ my readers are cool with it too.

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8 Responses to Annoyed Reader

  1. Still Annoyed says:

    Thanks, Basab, for your comment.

    Just a small note: other bloggers have day jobs too. Which we do for passion. In the early days of start-ups we all have to put in hours which we would not like to put in.

    And Seth Godin can probably get away with what he does on his blog because he is a tad better known already. Would you not agree?

    Your blog after all has to be run by your rules. I suppose many wouldn’t return (as my other housemate suggested I should do too) instead of spending time, as I did, stating points of view which would be definitely unpopular.

    Like

  2. Durai says:

    I disagree with you Annoyed. Since the first time I read Basab’s, I have been visiting his blog regularly. I find his way of running his blog very insightful as well as useful. Interestingly, I and Basab dont know each other at all (We just have one connection between us – that I work for an IT major where he was working before, which even Basab is not aware of.) I just happened to land in 6ampacific someday and I keep visiting ever since (as well as suggest Basab’s to others I know).

    To me, its the priviledged information that I get to read from blogs. I am not demanding for service levels, simply because I dont pay for reading Basab’s; I just enjoy reading whats interesting to me and Basab has many things thats intersting to me. Keep going Basab; you have many visitors like me.

    Happy new year,
    Cheers,
    Durai

    Like

  3. Siddharth says:

    Mr. Annoyed or Mr. Still Annoyed — whatever your title, you are unique – you have made up your mind negatively and seem to be proud of it. Go ahead, retain your false sense of pride and your dual identity. No wonder, school is no sustitute for eduction!

    Basab, continue the good work. you are doing good. watch your steps and you will attract thousands.

    Like

  4. Neo says:

    Just joining the battle of comments.
    Firstly,(my guess) Basab’s objective of writing is to voice his opinions and thoughts and not necessarily get in to an interactive discussion.
    And if thats the case,this is the way to go.

    Like

  5. Manish says:

    There are three kinds of people in the “blogworld”. Those who blog, those who comment and those who lurk. I guess this discussion has not included the last category which should anyday account for some 80% of people in “blogworld”. I have got a fat opml from my netvibes and I rarely comment. Does that mean anything for this discussion?

    Those who blog can just blog on what they want to blog. If they get comments thats an encouragement. If there is a discussion in their comments thats a bonus for the lurkers.

    ~mks

    Like

  6. Anirudh says:

    Dear Annoyed,

    Pray provide us with the URL of your “popular” blog so that we can judge for ourselves as well.

    Regards,
    Regular reader of this blog.

    Like

  7. Krish says:

    This looks like another way of saying “me-too”. Join a popular blog and raise some dust. First don’t reveal your identity and then slowly reveal it. Draw the crowd, period.

    First of all, a blog is nothing but an online diary written by the author. If you are allowed a peep-in, that’s magnanimous enough. If you begin to claim `rights’ and define the way the author should to write – you reveal a slice of your personality…an egghead.

    Did you say you are from B-School ( IIM-A)…? Holy F.

    Like

  8. Santosh Kotnis says:

    Basab,

    I have been reading your blog ever since I got introduced to this, I was in US then.

    Now, I am in India; but first thing I do on Monday mornings is to read your blog, without fail. And I have also forwarded this link to so many of my team members.

    I am absolutely finding it ‘cool’, this is the way to go.

    -Santosh

    Like

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