Blog comment sections are odd. They’re perceived as virtual hangouts. People can drop in, strike up conversation over drinks and move on to the next party. Some commentators bar hop, going from blog to blog for a quick shot.
Comment sections are communities strengthened by people. Commentators come to know their favorite hangouts quickly and often make friends or network contacts. The comment section is a gathering, a wealth of experience, thoughts and knowledge shared by all sorts of participants.
But let’s keep things in perspective, shall we? Truthfully, a comment section is just a place where you can leave your thoughts regarding a post. No mysterious, unspoken code makes you an “in” person or an outsider. You type, you submit, you leave. Simple.
Ah, but the virtual world loves personal connections. Building a blog community creates a festival of people, and everyone loves it.
Or do they?
I’ve seen a few comments on other blogs from people who don’t enjoy blog communities. They see comments go up and they feel like an outsider, a stranger. All those commentators seem to know each other.
Integrating into the group may feel like walking into an auditorium of friends and taking the stage when no one knows you.
Bad experiences at other blog comment sections also tinges perception. Some bloggers don’t get involved with their community. The commentators don’t acknowledge one another. It’s like talking to an empty room. Why bother?
We like to think we’re different. We’ve been told time and again that our community is special. We’ve never been flamed. We’ve never been trolled. We’ve always gotten down right into the thick of the crowd to welcome people and share thoughts.
Our “regulars” do the same. They’re welcoming too, and they acknowledge each other. They notice new faces and often go out of their way to greet those people to make them feel at home.
The comments found on our blog are valuable and insightful. People speak up with great care and attention, sharing thoughts and views while openly accepting differing opinions. No one argues. No one fights. Even debates are intriguingly friendly and calm.
Everyone is interested in everyone.
I know there are many people reading this right now who have never dropped a comment. I know some feel shy. Some feel uncomfortable to join the group.
Some feel they have nothing to say – you do. Trust me, you do.
And we’d like to hear from you. Our bar is open, our doors thrown wide. No matter who you are, where you’re from, how well you write or what you have to say, we welcome you here – and our community does as well.
So, please, feel free to comment. Come on, don’t be shy. If you’re one of the people out there hesitating to join us, please do so now, even if it’s just to say, “Hi,” just this once before slipping back to quiet companionship. Introduce yourself. Shake a hand. We’re pleased to meet you.
Let me get the ball rolling to make things easier.
“Hey, everyone. I’m James, the local French-Canadian Pen Man. I like trees and rivers, loud Kid Rock, good books, fun times and soaking up the sun. I play guitar, ride horses and write for a living. I own Men with Pens with my buddy Harry. Who are you?”