The Space Between My Peers: Conversations in the Blogosphere

The Space Between My Peers

From the bottom of the fashion food chain ...

Location: The Great Northwest

I'm a home-schooling, bible-believing SAHM with an annual clothing budget of about $500 American. The Space Between My Peers reveals my secret passion: analysis of the art and science of what to wear.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Conversations in the Blogosphere

The post of a wounded turkey.

Conversations in the blogosphere occur in the comments. That might seem obvious, should go without saying, but bear with me a moment. This little conversation that took place over at Verbal Croquis exemplifies the kind of treatment I have become accustomed to in the fashion blogosphere.

But recently I have been venturing outside the fashion blogs and into the "mom" blogs. (Because I want to be nice, I will not be providing links in this section of the post. Sorry.) This is the kind of reception I've been getting:


Commenters 1-6: Great post. Go you! You're the next great super-novelist.
Commenter 7 (Rebecca): Nice post. You & I have alot in common. I've been wondering (insert intelligent question)?
Commenters 8-10: Unbelievably great post. Go you! You're the next great super-novelist.
Author: Never seen or heard from in the comments.

How much fun is that?

I'm counting on my true friends to tell me if I'm out of line here.


Anonymous verbalcroquis said...

I'm of 2 minds. On the one hand, I consider leaving a comment on a blog just like writing an email or talking to someone at a party. It's not until you've built some sort of relationship with someone that you can feel comfortable giving constructive criticism. I have had people leave me criticism about my work on my blog, just not that particular post. Mainly it's the frequent visitors who say I could have worked that illustration a little better or pose the more thought-provoking questions that I try to answer the best I can.

On the other hand, I do wish more people would post more constructive criticism--I constantly urge it whenever I put up more work and I don't get much. It's not until I email a pic to a colleague I've known for years that I get that kind of feedback.

Then again, I’ve only been around for a few months, and hopefully I’ll get to a point where my readers feel comfortable with me to be more critical. I’m feeling pretty optimistic, since the conversations at my blog have become increasingly more and more interesting actual discussions and not just random praise. It’s getting there…

4:44 PM  
Blogger Beth said...

Totally depends on the blogger's purpose. I'm not sure what a "mom" blog is, but as you noted on verbal croquis your blog purpose is to meet people to talk to. That is not true for everyone.
My blog, for example, is pretty personal. It is read mostly by people I know (I assume). I don't post earth-shattering new ideas there (yet); it is pretty much like a diary.
I sometimes find too much back and forth in the comments tedious. But that is just my opinion. I do enjoy reading other people's reactions/responses to the original post (and to other comments), but not so much Q&A.
Here is an example of a post where I completely ignored the questions in the comments (guilty as charged - must be a mom blog).
Here is an example of a post with useful, fun, comments that make no additional requirement of me (which I guess is my point -- questions can be an unwelcome burden)
You, being my beloved sister, are welcome to ask me any manner of questions via any medium you desire!

7:58 PM  
Blogger dug said...

I believe that I might be considered one of your 'true friends', so here goes. I think that we of the blogsphere as bloggers should be able to choose if we reply to comments. I would consider it courteous to reply to comments, especially if posed as a question, but at the liberty of each 'blogmaster'. Now the flip side please do not waste valuable comment space and beware of people who give you empty flattery!

10:47 PM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

I'm still digesting all this.

I guess I had been thinking of comments as VC suggests, like a friendly email or speaking to someone at a party. What I find tedious is reading the same reaction to same post 15 times.

Guessing this subject comes back up again.

11:02 AM  
Anonymous vc said...

I think when you read 15 similar comments, you have to remember that they are not necessarily sustaining a conversation but responding to the blogger and just because others agreed/loved/cheered on the blogger doesn't mean they too don't want to be supportive.

When a friend wears a smashing dress to a party, all her girlfriends are going to gather around and coo, but the silent one, even though she agrees is going to look jealous. If you're in the dressing room with her, that's when you can tell her her ass looks fat.

I hoped that made sense. Interesting topic.

11:08 PM  
Anonymous blestwithsons said...

I just dunno about this one... I have been guilty myself of not responding to commenters. I do try to answer direct questions - but I'm usually too strapped coming up with my next post and visiting my usual blogs to have time to respond to each comment. I'm just unpredictable... But I worry it comes across as rude. HOWEVER - one thing I do is try to visit the blog of any new commenter. And isn't that better than a routine "Hi! Thanks for commenting." ?

3:51 PM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

vc ~ that's a good perspective, one I hadn't considered. It usually doesn't take too long for me to get over having my feelings hurt if I can understand people's possible motivations better. And I am afraid I must often be considered jealous; I'm with dug, not much for flattery.

blest ~ YES. I do think that's better. Or should I say "Hi, Thanks for commenting"? =D

Everyone ~ including my friend who sent email, thank you for helping me deal with my wounded feelings. And don't worry that you have to go out of your way to respond everytime I leave a comment on your blog. (I'm still learning my way around the blogosphere.)

4:33 PM  
Anonymous verbalcroquis said...

"And I am afraid I must often be considered jealous; I'm with dug, not much for flattery."

I think you took me a little too literally on my last comment.

10:14 AM  
Blogger Rebecca said...

I think you just used an expressive way of making a good point. :)

12:48 PM  
Blogger My Boaz's Ruth said...

I don't always respond to comments in my blog either.
I have, in fact, gotten myself in big trouble, and ended up shutting down a blog because I tried having a conversation in blog comments and it was just a really bad experience.

11:46 AM  
Anonymous Maria Palma said...

Hi Rebecca,

I may be a little late in this conversation, but wanted to put in my two cents anyways.

What I love about blogs is the idea of being able to have conversations with people. I try to respond to all comments either by simply leaving a response there, emailing the commenter (if an address was left), or visiting the commenter's blog and posting a comment on one of their posts and thanking them for commenting at my blog.

Sometimes I get "blogger's block" and can't come up with a I don't force it.

12:42 AM  

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