The Power of a Comment

Kristina B., Creative Commons Attribution.

It wasn’t until I joined the blogosphere that I realized the power of a simple comment. Before I started blogging myself, I would read other people’s blogs and sometimes peruse the comments that other readers had left behind, but I would never stop to comment myself. On one hand, I felt like I didn’t have anything specific or meaningfully to contribute and on the other hand, I just didn’t understand the importance of comments.

Comments are more than words on a page, particularly if it’s a page you have written yourself. Comments are symbolic, they represent the fact that a post you have written affected someone and meant something to the point that the person felt compelled to respond to you. The comment could be a challenge, a compliment, or even a question but whatever form it takes, it holds meaning. As a blogger, a comment helps to remind you that the blogosphere is a “connected community” and you are not alone with your ideas and opinions. That instead, you are part of a larger culture of sharing. This sharing is so exciting! To feel that you can start an idea, publish it, and send it out into the world wide web for others to build on, improve on, and respond to you with new perspectives or contradictions that you can learn from, is amazing.

This is why, more and more, I find myself stopping to not only read other bloggers but to comment on their posts. I hope to convey, with the power of a comment, how much I appreciated their sharing and how valuable I found their ideas. I want to let the blogger know that their post made me think and many times, that I learned something new. I’ve grown bolder in asking questions in posts and even leaving behind a suggestion or two if I have a relevant idea or resource to offer. And in this way, I feel like I can call myself a true part of the blogosphere community, because I have become a participant not just in the publication side but in the dialogical, sharing aspect that truly binds a community and builds a strong foundation of collaboration and caring.

What do others in the blogosphere community think? Is a comment powerful to you?

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8 responses to “The Power of a Comment

  1. In my opinion, comments are really useful and encouraging. I always appreciate them when I see them on my blog!

  2. Indeed, it’s being told not only “I have read your post” but also “I’m engaging in a conversation with you”

  3. Yes! Exactly what Rebecca said – it becomes a conversation. Before blogging I would write comments and then hastily delete them with an “oh my, that person is not interested in my feeble opinion/idea/query”. Then I realised that the comment can be as simple as letting that blogger know that they made you think/reflect/question/grow. So many well-worded points in your post Margaret – ‘culture of sharing’, and ‘caring collaborative community’ particularly stand out for me – as that’s exactly the kind of community I want to be a part of, and that I want to model for students.

    • You make an important point about modeling. I think that modeling a caring collaborative community that engages in sharing is so valuable for our students today, no matter what their age. Hopefully through these types of digital spaces, we can begin to set that precedent.

  4. Nice to know one’s audience is made of real people (in addition to the bots and spammers!) Comments continue the conversation we are trying to start with our writing.

  5. Pingback: Digital Spaces Are Like Virtual Silly Putty | Margaret A. Powers

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