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Like I’ve said before, I’m totally intrigued by how MG Siegler doesn’t do comments on his blog.

Sometimes blog comments are the best part of the blog post. No matter how ground-breaking your data, thought-provoking your point of view or lyrically expressed your story, your little blog post is merely like paragraphs of lorem ipsum, written in pig latin and typed in Comic Sans compared to the lively and enriching conversation from your community.

Two examples of blogs with awesome comments? Spin Sucks by Gini Dietrich and Both Sides of the Table by Mark Suster are two sites with conversations worth reading, but it’s worth noting they always begin with blog posts worth reading as well.

Yet sometimes no matter how great the content is, blog comments really suck. After a few years of online community development and marketing, I suppose I fancy myself to be somewhat of a digital people-watcher and truly find entertainment in reading blog comments. When the trolls come out to play, I love to embrace the chaos and try to find the humor in it all. So in honor of that, let’s review the 11 kinds of commenters we see most consistently on the internet.

The 11 Types of Commenters You Meet Online

1. Friends and Family

Ever since I was taking names in writer’s workshop in the 1st grade, my parents have told me I was a good writer. (Thank God! After some significant confusion about odds vs. evens, it was clear I surely wasn’t going to be a mathlympian when I grew up, so I needed to find talent somewhere. I digress.) So although they don’t know what I do on the internet all day, they’re glad it sometimes involves writing on these blog things where they can leave occasionally comments with a lot of exclamation points and x’s and o’s.

2. Capital Letters Guy

I TYPE IN ALL CAPS. IF I’M LOUDER MY IDEAS ARE BETTER.

Filed under life experiences I hate: Reading blog comments from this person, being in meetings with this person and generally existing on earth with this person.

3. “You forgot me!”

Pet peeve: You write a list of things, such as most likely recommended tools or products or something. Someone whose product you didn’t recommend, who has never engaged with you before, chimes in and says “You forgot me! Cold pitch…. *Links to their free trial*

Listen, buddy. The blogger didn’t forget you. The blogger just didn’t list you or whatever stuff you’re selling.

4. Mr. Concise

“These suck.”

Then that’s all the person writes. So whether it’s your tips, the tools you recommend, products or whatever… they blow. Or on the other hand…

Excellent? I’ll take it. In this case, you’re pretty excellent yourself, Mr. Concise.

5. The Ninja

“Idiot.”

Like a ninja, this Negative Nancy is in and out of the comment box with a one-word insult faster than you can say, “Hey, thanks!” (This tactic is wildly is popular amongst the YouTube crowd, which is a great digital people watching spot by the way.)

6. The Poet

If you can force yourself away from Buzzfeed and Thought Catalog and venture on over to the more gentrified corners of the interwebs like the Washington Post, you’ll enjoy poetry in blog comments, including gems like this. There are limericks as blog comments, oh yes.

In fact, if someone wrote a limerick comment on the Shareaholic blog I’d personally send that person a Shareaholic t shirt. That’s a fact.

7. Link Baiters

This is what a typical link-baiter comment looks like: “This was a great article about ________!!! For more great ________, go to ________.”

No. How about you go to ________. You’re ruining the internet for the rest of us! Also, you should also read this.

8. Spammers

These are slightly different than link-baiters, FYI, in that they are bots and not actual people. Use a blog comments platform to moderate the comments coming into your blog and delete the garbage. We like using Livefyre.

9. The Devil’s Advocate 

“But let’s say for instance…”

Oh well here we go. This can go either way. On the positive side, it means the commenter may have actually read your post if they know enough about your topic and point of view to disagree with it. That’s pretty encouraging stuff. On the other hand, well, some people just have way too much time on their hands. Engage your audience, but don’t get too caught up in the back and forth. Community managers, take heed: Always know when to take things offline, and when to agree to disagree. Stay classy.

10. TechCrunchers

The passion and participation from this crowd warrants a category all its own. Multi-paragraph reactions to guest posts or funding announcements are void of self promotion and truly come from a place of personal involvement in the world of tech. Political blogs and even local news stations can generate a somewhat similar response – so long as the audience really feels they have a stake in the topic – but not with the nearly the level of wit achieved by this smart and sassy crowd. The drama, the snark… it’s as time-consuming and annoying as it is hilarious and interesting. Granted I’m biased, though. It’s startups. This is my world.

11. Shareaholics

Blame it on the Shareahol – the very best comments on the internet are outside the confines of the comment box – they’re the sentence or two before a Tweet or Facebook share with a link to a blog post. It’s a range of things:

“This is interesting.”

“Are you kidding me?!”

“I love this!”

No matter what the comment – it’s all awesome – because  you’re bringing new readers (and potentially new commenters) into a blog post. These comments are how I personally discover new content and learn,  so I’d have to say they’re my favorite on the internet. I’d wager you agree with me too.

What kinds of blog comments do you love? How do you deal with the ones you hate? Let me know in the… comments…

(Or in a limerick for a t shirt!)

  • KelKelly

    this made me laugh. you hit every nail on the head and didnt miss anyone. awesome perspective. props all around.

  • Thinking of a limerick….thinking of a limerick….OK here goes.
     
    There once was girl from Shareholic.
    Who told commenters how she saw it.
    She called out link baiters
    And all the other haters
    And made the web better for all of us.
     
    Kind of a slant rhyme, but oh well :) Great post, Janet!
     
     

    •  @RavenCourts OMG I LOVE YOU

      •  @JanetAronica Issuing a poetry challenge is an excellent idea for comment participation. Look for Raven to be rockin’ some haiku competition soon. ;)

  • What are ya saying, what do ya know?
    Friends and family are one way to go.
    Idiot, stupid, side kick to the head,
    Shout it out loud with ALL CAPS IN RED!
    You say you don’t like it, now tell me who cares?
    You are the expert so no one else dares
    Interesting, I love this, are you kidding me?
    That poor devils advocate needs a kick in the knee
    So kick it and probe it 
    Give it a good poke
    But leave all your comments 
    And give me a stroke.

    •  @drjbrand Well done! Wanna email me your size and address for a t shirt? (seriously!)

      •  @JanetAronica Well thank you. I searched around, how do I find your email address?

  • AndreaFuentes

    Excellent.  
     
    ;)

  • SheBloggs

    Awesome!
     
    Just kidding… The CAPS guys annoys me most. Whether it’s comments, emails or any other form of written communication, I feel like I’m being yelled at. I’ve gotten a few resumes written completely in caps.
     
    I actually like the Devin’s Advocate (within reason of course), it gets the conversation started.

    •  @SheBloggs I like Devil’s Advocates as well :) So long as they stay classy and aren’t being mean!!

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