Wednesday, April 16, 2008

How do we carry on the conversation?

I had a comment the other day on my other blog from the Literacy Adviser. He talked about being a new blogger and said he was
Not even sure whether to reply to someone’s comments by leaving another comment or by linking through to them like this.
For me the answer lies in the content of the comment. If it raises an issue that I want to discuss further or feel I should address further, a new post on the blog linking to the post with the comment seems to me to be the most appropriate. If I want to really respond to the comment, this seems better because there is a better chance that it will be read. But that assumption could be entirely inaccurate.

If someone makes a comment that is nice but not necessarily extending the discussion, I may just comment after the original comments to say thank you. That is what Clarence Fisher does here. It is very appropriate, I think. But it would probably have been just as appropriate to write another post about the support he received -- if he had wanted to.

Another option, and the one that the Literacy Adviser used, was to leave a comment on one of my blogs acknowledging that I had commented on his blog. To me this is OK, too, but it is a little awkward as the comment and the post aren't necessarily connected. But I know I have received a number of comments like that, so a lot of people must do it.

I don't know that there is a real protocol for this. Or if there is, someone forgot to tell me. So now is your chance: What should bloggers do when they want to comment on a comment? Bill and I are both anxious to know.


Nathan Lowell said...

So many people ask this question and I've never understood why.

If the comment I want to make is only for the author of the post, and by extension, its readers, then I leave a comment.

But if the ideas represented in the post are appropriate to MY blog and my readers -- that is if I want my audience to be aware of the conversation in progress -- then I'll post to my blog and rely on trackback to provide the linkage.

Nancy A. McKeand said...

Very good explanation, Nathan. Thanks! But now that I have written about this, would you think I should just comment here or write about it again once I see what comments I get. Or both?

My gut feeling is that it isn't a big deal either way, but since Literacy Adviser was unsure, I decided to ask the question of a larger audience.