Last night, I couldn’t sleep, so I came downstairs to my office to look at…blog stats. Don’t laugh. Reading your blog stats is the new counting sheep.
So I’m looking at my stats, and I’m noticing an interesting thing:
Not everyone reads blog comments.
I know, right? Crazy. But there are people who just read the posts, and they think that’s it. They don’t realize that the post is just the kickoff. The real action happens in the comments. In the comments of the last post, for example, Elizabeth Shown Mills laid out her 10 Commandments for source citations. If you didn’t read the comments, you’d miss them, and you’d totally wander around in the desert worshipping a golden cow or something. That would suck.
What bothers me more, though, is people who tell me privately, “I didn’t want to leave a comment and look dumb/disagree/piss people off/whatever, but…” Folks, leave your comment. It’s fine, really. Blog posts are not articles; they’re conversation-starters. The whole point of most blog posts is to start a conversation. Your participation is key, and I can just about guarantee that someone else has the same “dumb” question you do. Even if your question really IS dumb…who cares? Use your cowboy name or something. As long as you’re not being a jerk or impersonating someone else, it’s fine. Or write a post on your own blog about the topic.
If you have thoughts on a topic, express them. Be part of the conversation. No problem gets solved if people don’t talk about it. We’re lucky to live in an age when it’s so easy to discuss just about anything from the comfort of our homes.