Comments Are Now Open!

I’ve been having a lot of fun connecting with readers on Twitter and FB. If you haven’t already, please add me on Twitter @celestinechua and Facebook. I look forward to connecting with you more there :)

I asked and you replied! Here are the results:

<Poll results are no longer available>

Here’re some interesting comments by you:

“Hi Celes. I would say definitely keep them turned on. It’s a great way to interact with the people who are reading your blog and a great way for readers to let you know their feelings. Without them a blog seems lifeless somehow and there is no community there. I also believe, until you have around 50,000+ subscribers that you will not get the loyalty factor of readers who come to the blog all the time.” – Steven Aitchison

“It would be ideal if you have a system like youtube where people can vote up or down a comment, and flag comments as spam/racist etc… You’ll have to ensure that only people who are registered can participate in commenting/voting or the system can be abused. Not that people won’t abuse the system with registration, but it’s much more troublesome.” – bliz

“I’m guessing that your blog gets a lot of visitors and therefore you could end up with lots of spam if you have comments on for all. But for those special posts when you are interested in the opinions of others, or for personal posts where people may be able to offer advice to you then I’d leave comments turned on. Then again, you can always give it a trial run and se how things go.” – Deano

“How can I vote “No” to comments, when this comment thread itself is proving the opposite? 😀

The overall problem here is: no one is smart enough to know in advance who has valuable things to say about each topic. So you need a system that open to everyone but somehow filters the bad stuff. Blogs weren’t initially designed to deal with this problem a.k.a tons of comments from people you don’t know.” – Jack Christopher

And since majority is in favor of comments, I’m be opening up comments for all :D. Ask and you shall receive! More specifically, I’ll be doing a trial run where comments are open for all posts. Depending on how it goes, I might leave it open or scale down to opening comments only for specific posts (but then it runs the problem that Jack pointed out). Let’s see about this.

To JB and Kakynologyst who suggested having a forum, I guess Personal Excellence reader base has not reached the critical mass that makes a forum feasible (based on my past experiences, forums tend to be ghost towns until a site is sufficiently large). I’m thinking about a 5,000 subscriber count will be a good indicator to start (right now Personal Excellence is at about 2,000). It’s definitely in my future plans, so don’t worry!

I took time out over the weekend to hack away at the wordpress comment script. Here’s an overview on what to expect when you comment at PE:

  • Up/Down rating – You can now vote comments up/down. No need to register. You can only vote once for each comment, and you can vote for as many comments as you like. This is a way for readers who are too shy to comment to participate in the discussion. 😀 Thanks bliz for the great suggestion!
  • Threaded comments – Unlike before, you can reply to each specific reply. Spiffy! 😀
  • Numbering – Comment # can be seen on the top right corner of each comment
  • Avatar – This refers to the 70×70 picture that goes with each comment. The default avatar is the Personal Excellence crop. To customize your avatar, simply register an account at Gravatar and add your picture there. When you post a comment here, the comments script will automatically grab the picture from Gravatar.
  • 30 days period – Commenting is open for 30 days from date of articles. This is to limit spam on the blog. 30 days is really long though, so it shouldn’t be a problem! There are always recent posts to comment to.
  • Replies by me – I won’t be able to personally reply to every comment, but trust that I read every one of them. If there’s anything specific I have to say, I’ll reply to your comment.

So yes, feel free to comment away from now on! 😀