I know there are a few people out there that are frustrated by the fact that I don’t allow (a lot of) comments on this blog. I mean, if you’re really steamed and really need to sound off on something I’ve written, or an opinion I’ve expressed, by all means, email me. I won’t promise I’ll read it, but it might make you feel better, I guess.
But I have my reasons for not allowing comments. Seth Godin summarizes how I feel about the subject rather nicely, so I’ll just copy/paste what he said about not allowing comments on his blog:
I think comments are terrific, and they are the key attraction for some blogs and some bloggers. Not for me, though. First, I feel compelled to clarify or to answer every objection or to point out every flaw in reasoning. Second, it takes way too much of my time to even think about them, never mind curate them. And finally, and most important for you, it permanently changes the way I write. Instead of writing for everyone, I find myself writing in anticipation of the commenters.
I couldn’t agree more. Every blog is different, every motivation behind a blog is different – you must do what feels right for YOU. For ME, and my personal SPACE, it’s all about documenting my life. The sole purpose of my blog is to journal – I want to remember the “moments” from my life. Sure. I post fluff (see the “random stuff” category for proof of that), but I do that for two reasons, 1. that stuff amuses me and 2. I think it might bring a smile to your face, or illicit a chuckle, or it might possibly be the bright spot in your crappy day.
In other words – I post that fluff to entertain myself, and you.
But mostly, this space? Is for me. For my family. Because I have a terrible memory and some day, I will look back on my life and everything will be fuzzy and I want to be able to read excerpts of my wonderful life, smile with tenderness and share my life stories with future generations.
This is why I blog. I’m not interested in making money. I’m not interested in traffic … I do it for me. And if you’re entertained in the interim – BONUS!
When I open up comments, I inevitably get the nasty. And I’m a MOTHER BEAR when it comes to my family, and their feelings. I will not allow anyone to insult my family.
Me? Go for it. I put myself out there, it comes with the territory. But my family? Is. Off. Limits. And my family reads my blog. So … you can see the problem.
I have very strong opinions. I say what’s on my mind. I try not to offend anyone in the process and I challenge myself to try and look at an issue squarely in the face and to offer my opinion fairly, but it’s my opinion – take it or leave it. I neither have the time, nor the desire, to justify my opinion to anyone who disagrees with me. Disagree away. I have no problem with that, whatsoever. But it’s my hope, by sharing my strong opinion, that I might offer just one dissenting viewpoint – or something that makes you pause and say, “Hmm … I never thought of it that way before.”
Then my work is done.
And lastly – when I open comments, I’m more aware of what I’m writing. I start customizing my opinions, and content, in order to please my readers; I feel pressure to “perform for the masses.” Again. If that is the purpose of YOUR blog, then by all means, I wish you luck. But I end up resenting the hell out of the fact that I feel like I have to censor myself, or my content and nope, it ain’t happening.
The same reason applies to ads, too. I simply don’t want to put myself in a situation where I have to be anything less than ME on my blog. I don’t want to have to answer to anyone, or any dollar amount.
So that’s it. Those are my reasons. I TRULY appreciate you visiting my little blog corner in cyberspace, but the key words here are: my little blog corner. It’s my space to do with as I please. And closing comments is just my way of keeping it that way.
By the way, I found an interesting debate about whether or not you should, or should not, allow comments on your blog. Yet more food for thought.