I've had this post in the works for a few days now, and by that I mean I've led in the bath planning out exactly what I wanted to say without actually typing it up. It's ironic how it comes at a time like this for me to post it, having experienced my first spam comment just now. It's surprised me so much that I turned word verification back on, so I'm sorry that will cause an extra inconvenience to those of you who comment decently.
I found it quite bewildering that a blogger's post the other day ended up in a comment war regarding whether it's acceptable to leave a link or URL to your blog at the end of a comment on someone else's blog. What baffled me most about this is even being up for debate is how any of the bloggers arguing against URL posting even got where they are today without a bit of self-promotion.
Nobody enjoys having to throw themselves out into the great unknown and hope others click on our links, but we've got to do it someday. Speaking from experience and I'm still a developing blog writer, I've found the only way to get my message across was through commenting on other peoples' posts and leaving a link to my blog underneath.
The way I justify those actions is so: I have never, EVER, left a dismissive comment such as 'nice!' or even dismissed that part and left my URL in the hope some bored blogger will click on my link and follow me. I have NEVER used someone else's blog to gain followers through spamming. In fact, I always aim to make my comments at least 3 lines long with constructive replies to the topics at hand in said person's blog post, referring to my own experiences and agreeing with the writer's opinions as and when. THEN, and ONLY then, would I include a link to my blog underneath, but not as some kind of enticement, letting it scream out to readers 'CLICK ME! MY BLOG HAS THE WORD ZOMBIES IN IT! YOU MUST FIND THAT INTRIGUING! READ ME AND LOVE ME AND FOLLOW ME!'.
To be perfectly honest with you, I treasure each and every one of my followers, because without you beautiful people, I wouldn't still be doing this. I would have given up writing months ago.
When I started out blogging, I didn't even contemplate commenting on other peoples' blogs linking to myself, I just wanted to share my opinion. For the first few months I had zero followers, zero self worth and zero motivation. I wrote short posts and took rubbish pictures because there was nobody to bounce off, nobody to work with, nothing to work FOR.
That is, until I started leaving my opinions in comment boxes and left my URL as a way of saying to readers, 'hey, I probably ramble in comments, but if you liked my opinion here, my blog's chock full of the stuff, if you want to have a ganders, I'm just one of you really, we all start off a bit desperate an demoralised, perhaps you could enjoy my blog?', nothing more.
Most of the time now I find myself putting comments with URLs so I can remind readers instantly who I am. I'm not just a name, I'm a blog writer, and I write this blog, so my opinion has a home on the Internet somewhere.
So often now I'm noticing people are changing their Blogger profile pictures, and in case someone's forgotten what I look like in that minuscule thumbnail, my URL reminds you. I'm not even asking you to click it. It's just there for ease of access if you're curious because you liked how openly I expressed my opinion in the comment above.
And as for comments on my posts, I actually prefer it when people leave their URLs at the bottom, for the following reasons:
1. I instantly know who you are by your blog name (I'm really bad with real names so please don't take that the wrong way)
2. I know you've put some thought into your comment rather than leaving a 'nice!' or not even commenting at all!
3. I know you're trying to make a name for yourself in the blogosphere (we've all been there and I'm still there now!) and it makes me feel all tingly that you would use my blog in the hope someone will notice you, it gives me false ideas about my blog's popularity but I love the self-pride for about 5 minutes!
4. You've actually clicked on my blog and scrolled to the comment box. That's a biggie.
5. You aren't scared to leave your URL as some other blogs have made it clear they block any URL comments, which is frankly censorship going a little far - I mean come on, haven't we all put our URLs out on the web already?
So in short, feel free to post your URLs at the end of a thoughtful comment on my posts by any means, but please, don't spam me. I'm a newbie, just like some of you. I don't think it's fair to spam anyone just to get your name out there. That's called desperation and frankly let's face it, nobody's going to click your link if you've shown no effort. Anyone can copy and paste.
Show a brain cell and I'll love you! After all, zombies love brains ;)
What's your view on ending comments with URLs? Have you been a victim of spamming?