Monday, May 23, 2005

Comments - Open or Limited?

Those close to me know that I am a self proclaimed blog junkie -- especially when it comes to those who have devoted their time to providing valuable information to help novices and seasoned veterans get the most out of their blogs like that of DefineBlog and ProBlogger.

While lost in my daily fix on DefineBlog, one particular topic stood out and prompted my wondering if I was doing more harm than good by restricting my comments on some of the more "controversial" blogs I maintain.

Since I am one of those people that can't make up my mind without debating both sides fully, I asked someone far more knowledgeable than myself what they would recommend.

Here's what Ryan over on DefineBlog had to say:

Members only comments are a very gray area to me, as I have never had any experience with them. My ideologies are kind of conflicted there. First I feel everyone should have an equal right as everyone else when it comes to the information, and voicing their opinion on the web. On the other hand, if a person really wanted to they could always register for free to comment. Just depends on how important it is to them. Personally I would never go that route.

I think a blog should always have full commenting capabilities. However, on some controversial topics I could see how it could lead to some problems. Whilst it may be of best intent of you, it could also diminish your blogs reputation by having visitors comment and say something that is inappropriate. I might give it a try, and if you are able to keep comments open with very little moderation than I suggest sticking with it. But, if it does lead to too many problems; it would be in both yours and your visitors best interest to have it so you must approve a comment first.

I've chosen to take Ryan's advice and see what happens. He does have some very valid points on comments adding to the overall content of your blog!

I'll be keeping everyone posted here on how the open comments sections go!


Angela said...

I've been leaving my comments open for anyone to place a comment. During the political season I had to change that to registerred users only because it got quite ugly at times.

Overall I think it's ok to have no name comments and it gives people a chance to decide if going through the registration process is going to be worth it.

Baby steps is good IMHO,