On Wednesday night I attended the Media 2010 Blogging Conference: How Blogs Shape the New Conversation. It was held here in Albany at the college of Saint Rose and two-hundred people attended, most of them bloggers. The panel consisted of popular bloggers for the Albany Times Union, which has more than 150 blogs at timesunion.com. When you think of it, that is an overwhelmingly large amount of blogs for one city newspaper. A majority of the blogs are citizen run and unpaid, and their presence proves just how “with it” Albany is when it comes to social media.
I view blogging as just another thing that distracts me from my real passion, Creative Writing (more on this later), but I was hoping to gain more insight to the world of blogging through the conference.
Unfortunately, I found it very disappointing.
The problem I have always experienced with TU blogs is that the commentors are nasty, mean, and often spend most of the time picking fights with one another. This was discussed extensively at the conference. The most that the panelists had to say about it was, “Yeah, the comments are nasty and unrelated, but at least we get commentors.”
For me, this has always been a big “no no”. The very first thing that I learned about blogging before I even started my first blog, is that comments do not matter. Sure, they are a nice validation that what you’re writing gets read, but that’s not important to me. I fell into blogging because of the community and the opportunity it gives me to meet new people and form new like-minded groups. I’ve met many fellow writers and book lovers and we have been able to consolidate our ideas into new projects. That is what the “new conversation” should be about, conversing with a global network of people and forming relationships. It is called social media after all.
I am lucky to have never had a negative comments on any of my blogs. I know this will not last. But I will tell you now, I will not approve them. The blogs I read and my regular readers all focus on positivity and encouragement, and that is all I plan to gain from this blog.
The issue of “anonymity” was also discussed Wednesday night, and whether anonymous comments should be allowed. I understand that many people who only casually comment on blogs don’t like to give out their information, so I don’t mind anonymous comments unless they are particularly nasty. To me, anonymity is not as big of a deal as it was made out to be Wednesday night.
It’s kind of my fault for not asking a question, but what I would have liked to see Wednesday night:
- Tips on how to write blogs that draw in readers
- How to keep readers once you have them
- Keeping your blogs interesting
- Should you try to make money from your blogs?
- Staying on one topic, picking a blogging “niche”, or not?
What do you think when it comes to nasty comments on blogs? Do you think they should be allowed? Am I being somehow dishonest if I ever choose to delete a nasty comment?