Why do some bloggers feel a need to lock their posts up in a pretty little untouchable package by closing blog comments or forcing people to register with a site before being able to comment? How stupid is that?
Yet I see more and more bloggers going this route; especially people with any kind of prominence in their field. They’re using blogs as a marketing / publicity tool without grasping the fundamental idea that blogs are meant to be interactive. They’re not a bulletin board; they’re a communication tool and being able to interact with your audience is a pretty important part of that.
I won’t name names, but I’m a little bit baffled by this lately because two rather prominent writers that I’m acquainted with have taken one of these routes… one with a somewhat popular blog with almost no comments because she requires people to register first and the other an author on writing and marketing issues who opts to simply close comments on his blog posts.
I have to admit I was a bit amused with the second case. While I was familiar with the author’s books, I wasn’t aware of his blog until he actually commented on one of mine to promote it… so obviously he understands the promotional value of discussions and comments in blogging.
Now I can’t be too harsh with them. Some people are just naturally protective, are afraid to open their posts up to criticism, or they’re just paranoid about blog spam. But I guess here’s the way I look at it… if you aren’t willing to let your posts be fully open for criticism and discussion, you probably don’t belong in the blogosphere but rather on an old school content site with non-interactive articles being posted. As for blog spam, it’s really not a good excuse anymore as plugins can catch a good bit of it. It’s just a reality if you want to use the tool effectively.
Let’s do our own part to nip these problems before they spread by encouraging our own clients to avoid these kinds of behaviors if they really want to get into blogging (corporate or otherwise) as a promotional or communication outlet for their companies. Seriously, I feel like I’ve been bitch slapped every time I find a post worth commenting on just to find out that my comments are neither welcome or appreciated.