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L M Ashton
10-04-2006, 08:19 AM
This conversation has recently started up again in the Comment Chain #2 (http://absolutewrite.com/forums/showthread.php?t=39472), although it's taken place in various other AW Chains and such already as well.

The problem, as I see it, is that people sign up to participate in a blog chain of some kind, whether it's an AW Chain or a Comment Chain, and they don't participate fully; that is, they don't comment on all the blogs.

In the AW Blog Chain #6, with 21 participants, there were some blogs that had only 9 or 11 comments. What happened to the other participants?

Now, in Comment Chain #2, most blogs that have been tagged have only 9 comments (mainly because we set the threshold at 9 comments before we move on and tag the next participant). That's out of 18 participants.

Where are the rest of the participants and why aren't they participating?


More to the point, do you see the lack of commenting a problem? If so, why? If not, why not?

What suggestions do you have for resolving this? What can we do differently?


I put this in a separate thread because, from my point of view, it's not the problem of one chain. It's a problem with all of them.

mdin
10-04-2006, 10:44 AM
I think I've posted in every thread in the comment chain, as that's the whole point, but I don't always comment in every blog chain post. I read everything, but sometimes I just don't have a comment.

I feel silly making a "great post!" type of post because it's obvious I'm posting to just to put my mark down.

Talia
10-04-2006, 12:55 PM
I think I've posted in every thread in the comment chain, as that's the whole point, but I don't always comment in every blog chain post. I read everything, but sometimes I just don't have a comment.

I feel silly making a "great post!" type of post because it's obvious I'm posting to just to put my mark down.

I agree that sometimes it's hard to know what to say, but I try to say something because then it shows the blogger and others that you've read it and that it was interesting. And yes it is better to put a personal comment, but anything is better than nothing.

As to quid's question. I do think it is an issue. I know I am still catching up on the blog chain but I'm pretty certain I got everyone on the comment chain. I think signing up requires a commitment of active participation - that way we're all helping each other!

Marilyn Braun
10-04-2006, 04:44 PM
I've just caught up! Yay!! :snoopy:

There were four blogs which I hadn't commented on. I'll try not to let myself get that far behind again.

I think the comment chain is a great idea, as I've said before. I've discovered blogs which I might not otherwise have ventured towards - which is fantastic!

ChaosTitan
10-04-2006, 05:47 PM
I haven't finished reading the rest of Chain 6, so that's why I haven't commented there. I didn't comment on a few during the first half of the chain because either 1) I couldn't think of anything to say other than "nice post," which sounds hollow to me, or 2) I tried posting a comment and received an error in return, so I gave up and moved on.

I try to comment, I really do, but I don't always have something to add. Are "nice post" comments appreciated, or would bloggers rather I just didn't comment? I'm curious now.

Bk_30
10-04-2006, 07:59 PM
sometimes nice post is all that is needed, or qoute something that you liked..really it is just to show that the traffic is there. some have counters so they know people have been by, some don't...even a tag like BK was here will work sometimes LOL

L M Ashton
10-05-2006, 03:53 AM
For me, I know what my traffic is like, but it would be nice to know that I'm not just talking to myself. I'd like to know that others find my posts interesting or helpful or something.

nancy02664
10-05-2006, 10:11 AM
...it would be nice to know that I'm not just talking to myself. I'd like to know that others find my posts interesting or helpful or something.

I agree. A meaningless little 'nice post' comment is better than no comment at all.


...do you see the lack of commenting a problem? If so, why? If not, why not?

I think it's a problem. Not on the scale of global warming or world hunger, but a problem nonetheless: those who put in little effort are reaping the same benefits as those who put in a lot. It's not fair.


What suggestions do you have for resolving this? What can we do differently?

My thoughts are more comment chain-centric, because I don't really know much about how the other chains (the post-chains?) are run...

One solution might be to cap the number of participants in a given chain (e.g., a 10-person comment chain). That way, things don't get out of control and there's more accountability. And anyone who tried but didn't make it into the first chain (just based on whoever responds to the call for participants first) would automatically be part of the second.

Another would be to change the structure of the chain. For instance, instead of tagging blogs, we tag people. Say there's a list of 15 blogs participating -- person A has to comment on all 15 on the first day of the chain (Wednesday). Then person B comments on all 15 on Thursday. So you know ahead of time when your day is, and every participating blog gets a comment a day for two weeks.

Talia
10-05-2006, 12:45 PM
Another would be to change the structure of the chain. For instance, instead of tagging blogs, we tag people. Say there's a list of 15 blogs participating -- person A has to comment on all 15 on the first day of the chain (Wednesday). Then person B comments on all 15 on Thursday. So you know ahead of time when your day is, and every participating blog gets a comment a day for two weeks.

that's an interesting idea. can't see any reason why it wouldn't work, and it would soon be evident who is/isn't fully participating. plus it means comments would be "spread". as it is, you get 15 people commenting on 1 blog entries and the rest have nothing. this way you could get comments over several (assuming you post new blog entries and people comment on the latest)

food for thought... of course all food provokes me into thought, or does all thought provoke the need for food? (or something anyway)

DTKelly
10-06-2006, 12:45 AM
Just keep in mind that some people don't have the time to comment on fifteen blogs in one day.

Talia
10-06-2006, 01:40 AM
another option is for the tagger or poster to send a PM to everyone on the list either:
- announcing that they have posted to the chain
- stating who is next to be tagged

this would be time consuming but it has the advantage of reaching people who haven't logged into AW for a while and don't realise that the chain has progressed without them. there are some people who are conscientious commenters but for one reason or another haven't checked into AW for a while.

it does mean that people will get inundated with PMs...

on the plus, those of us that do comment get to read interesting stuff and learn new things, so it's not all bad. occasionally i get to a blog that is hard work to read but most are interesting and have something that i enjoyed reading or learned from

also, thankfully the commenting hiccups on blogger beta are (mainly) fixed so it's not as hard as it was a few weeks ago when i kept losing my comments when i tried to submit them. i still find that there are some problems with the hybrid blogger commenting system

DeniseK
10-06-2006, 01:40 AM
For me, I know what my traffic is like, but it would be nice to know that I'm not just talking to myself. I'd like to know that others find my posts interesting or helpful or something.

THEY ARE.

How do sign up for this chain gang?

nancy02664
10-06-2006, 01:40 AM
Just keep in mind that some people don't have the time to comment on fifteen blogs in one day.

It doesn't have to be fifteen -- it could be 12, 10, 8, whatever. Or, it doesn't have to be one day -- maybe each person gets a window of 2, or 3. I was just brainstorming.

Talia
10-06-2006, 01:43 AM
Just keep in mind that some people don't have the time to comment on fifteen blogs in one day.

agreed. for that system to be workable you'd either need a smaller number of participants (up to 10???) or bloggers with short, easily readable blog entries. people who post chapters of their WIP have long blogs that take longer to read, as do blogs with a lot of facts or technical data. it takes much much longer to read those and make meaningful comments

L M Ashton
10-06-2006, 04:56 AM
Denise, check out the thread for AW Comment chain #2. It's still going on, about halfway through. Not sure if we're accepting new participants for it or not - that's up to the dude who's running it.

And, um, thank you? :)


Another idea I had last night was, again, with a limit to the number of blogs, say 10, and have a one week period where everyone comments on everyone else's. No tagging, no turns. Just a rampant free for all for one week. Short enough that people aren't as likely to forget, but long enough that it shouldn't be too difficult.

Talia
10-06-2006, 08:22 AM
that sounds workable. We could commit to a set period of time and say we will all do it in the first week of November, or something like that.

I'm flexible, so long as everyone participates. Sometimes a short burst is better as people lose enthusiasm or get sidetracked, busy, etc etc

asorum
10-06-2006, 08:37 AM
Denise, check out the thread for AW Comment chain #2. It's still going on, about halfway through. Not sure if we're accepting new participants for it or not - that's up to the dude who's running it.

nancy02664 started Comment No. 2 and it looks like 18 people signed up. A limit of ten might work, but there always seems to be more interest than that. I try to comment in all the blogchain posts, I don't track how many others do as well. The latest Blogchain No. 7 seems to be moving fairly well.

nancy02664
10-07-2006, 04:32 AM
Another idea I had last night was, again, with a limit to the number of blogs, say 10, and have a one week period where everyone comments on everyone else's. No tagging, no turns. Just a rampant free for all for one week.

This could be fun.

asorum
10-07-2006, 08:26 AM
Blogforall No. 1

L M Ashton
10-07-2006, 08:38 AM
Yeah, pretty much. I think it's worth trying at least once, at any rate. :)

Talia
10-07-2006, 10:42 AM
Sure - worth a go. If there is a time limit we will soon know if it works...

Although it doesn't solve the blog chain problem as we have to wait until each person puts their post up. I guess we could have a few days at the end to review all the post and make comments

Peggy
10-07-2006, 11:37 AM
Although it doesn't solve the blog chain problem as we have to wait until each person puts their post up. I guess we could have a few days at the end to review all the post and make comments If I'm understanding right, it quid's idea doesn't really have that limitation, because people could comment on an existing post. Do I have that right?

L M Ashton
10-07-2006, 12:09 PM
Yup. I'm thinking along the lines of, unless a participant requests a specific entry, it's a free for all on whatever entries are already there or may be posted that week, and if a participants wants a specific post commented on, then it better be there by the time the free-for-all starts, or they're sol.

Talia
10-07-2006, 12:50 PM
BUT... we are meant to comment on the specific entry that is made e.g. for blog chain #7 we comment as people put up the next blog entry in the chain. I guess it would mean changing the "rules"

L M Ashton
10-07-2006, 03:24 PM
Talia, that example was specifically for a Comment Free-For-All chain, not a blog chain. Sorry I wasn't more clear. :)

Talia
10-08-2006, 03:26 AM
ok got it!

Forbidden Snowflake
10-09-2006, 04:01 AM
I've been slacking big time with the commenting, I know, I feel bad. My only excuse is, vacations and shiz, I told myself I will get back to commenting, because I think it would only be fair to comment.

L M Ashton
10-23-2006, 07:48 AM
I have another idea for another type of Blog Participation Thingy. Thingy being the proper terminology and all that. ;)

I'm too busy at the moment to organize it right now, so I'm spitting it out so someone else can use it if they want. :)

Have a themed blogging event, say, chocolate. Have a deadline for signing up and a set time period for posting. No chain, no order, everyone posts as quickly as they can on the theme, say two or three days. Then it's a comment free-for-all, no order, on everyone else's post with a deadline of commenting say within a week of the posting deadline.

It's not a chain - it's a different breed entirely. Call it a, um, Blog Free-For-All or something? I dunno - if y'all got a better name, spit it out. :)

Talia
10-23-2006, 09:32 AM
sure i know what you mean. there's lots of those around. there's one called wordless wednesday where everyone posts a photo on wednesday, that sort of thing.

good to toss new idewas in the pot. i'd be keen if i can find a way to fit the theme with my website. i don't want to do anything that's too far away from the other content on my blog but it could be a good way to get me thinking in different directions.

good idea quid. maybe we could do 1 a mth on different themes. perhaps start it after xmas as i think everyone gets busy this time of year??? well they do here because of course it's spring (not that you'd know it if you looked out the window right now)

L M Ashton
10-23-2006, 09:50 AM
Sure, people get busy, but really, people are busy all year long. And, if you limit the number of participants, you're going to get a different set of people each time depending on who's busy and who has time. It's self-selecting, ya know? ;) So really, I don't see a point in waiting until the right time... Unless you're busy, in which case you personally don't have time to start it. Then someone else can. :)

And if you're starting it, you pick the theme that works for you. What would work with your blog?

KellyC
10-23-2006, 02:58 PM
I sponsor Pass the Torch Tuesday each week, where people talk about catching kids being "good" (or responsible, empowered, helpful, smart, etc). It's a great way to stay positive about children (most people write about their own, although people can write about any kids).

There's no signup, you just link to my site on Tuesday and leave a link on my current post so people can find your's. Then you can comment on other participants as well. I do it every Tuesday, so you can participate whenever you want.

Gillian
10-23-2006, 03:11 PM
If you theme chocolate we will all participate, instantly. And I would post on *both* my blogs, so important is this topic.

I'm still a bit puzzled as to why some of us comment and others don't, but I suspect it is one of those deep human nature things that are beyond my ken.

Marilyn Braun
10-23-2006, 03:17 PM
Have a themed blogging event, say, chocolate.

Would this particular suggestion apply to the comment chain or to the other chains? or both?

I'd like to participate in the next comment chain, however, if we do some sort of a theme (and I know we're bouncing ideas around at the moment and I have nothing better to suggest), such as 'chocolate', people with set subjects on their blogs might not be able to post about that. I think it's a great idea but I can't think of a single thing royal to tie in with chocolate. Just thinking of some other people's blogs, others might have the same issue of trying to tie the theme word to their blog as well.

L M Ashton
10-23-2006, 04:49 PM
Would this particular suggestion apply to the comment chain or to the other chains? or both?
As you said, we're bouncing ideas around at the moment, and in all honesty, what actually happens is up to the person who organizes the event. Anyone can organize anything, any type, any theme (or not) with whatever parameters they want whenever they want. We're not limited. :)

For theme ideas, it can be anything you can think of, and it certainly doesn't have to be a one word theme. It could be about... employment. Animals. Costumes. Food (in general) or desserts more specifically. What about... Travel. Happiness. Peace. Idiots. Writing (gosh, that sounds out of place for this site, doesn't it? ;))

And you could always organize the next one yourself, which would guarantee that you'd have something that would work for your blog. :)

Marilyn Braun
10-23-2006, 07:36 PM
And you could always organize the next one yourself, which would guarantee that you'd have something that would work for your blog. :)

Okay the theme word is royalty - discuss amongst yourselves! ;)

No, I'm not volunteering. :gone:

L M Ashton
10-24-2006, 05:24 AM
Wuss! ;)

Talia
10-24-2006, 06:37 AM
If you theme chocolate we will all participate, instantly. And I would post on *both* my blogs, so important is this topic.

I'm still a bit puzzled as to why some of us comment and others don't, but I suspect it is one of those deep human nature things that are beyond my ken.

Yes, I'm inclined to agree that blogging on chocolate is very appealing. Of course I'd have to do some research first *munch munch*

Not convinced if it's a deep human nature thing. I think it can be summed up in one word "conscientiousness". Some people are high on this attribute and some are low.

Anyway I say ban the poor commenters ;)

OK so on November 1 we are all posting on chocolate - right?

L M Ashton
10-24-2006, 07:22 AM
Does that mean you're organizing it? :tongue

Talia
10-24-2006, 07:26 AM
I love the way you've mastered the art of volunteering everyone (except yourself) to organise this!

the answer is i'm thinking about it. the problem is that every time i do something like this i only procrastinate doing all the stuff i "should" be doing. I'm seriously thinking I should turn off my internet connection so i'm forced to write something for my book and GTFF (get the f*cker finished)

L M Ashton
10-24-2006, 07:39 AM
Hey, I've run at least one chain, plus I run Flash Fiction Friday. I'm doing my part! So, you know, BACK OFF!!!!

:D

I hear you on the procrastination bit...

Talia
10-24-2006, 08:50 AM
rofl!!!

yep and i'm still procrastinating... better get back to my word document which has sat open all day and so far i have done 4.5 mins work on it. how do i know it's 4.5mins? because i had a music video playing in the background to motivate me. but then well heck 4.5 mins seemed like a really big effort, and dr phil was just starting on tv so there went the rest of my writing effort. then the sun came out so i had to go outside and soak in my daily vit d quota, and and and...