Are Blogs That Don’t Allow Comments Really Blogs?

I know the word “blog” is short for “web log,” which is sort of like an online diary. However, it seems to me what makes a blog incredibily powerful is the ability for readers to leave comments. I mean, I can’t imagine posting articles for 2.5 years and never receiving a comment. Comments help keep me on track. Sometimes, they are complimentary. Other times, they let me know when I’m wrong or they point out a mistake in a calculation (yeah, I make mistakes).

The reason I bring this up is that I’m starting to see different “blogs” pop up that are written by gurus. One in particular is Ric Edelman’s blog. I understand his reasoning for not wanting to allow comments. I mean, they can be a pain when all they are is spam. However, I think not allowing comments really takes away from the power of the blog.

What do you guys think? I bet if I shut down comments on this blog, I would lose most of my traffic.

22 thoughts on “Are Blogs That Don’t Allow Comments Really Blogs?”

  1. Absolutely agree. Not allowing comments is like talking in front of the mirror instead of in front of a live audience.

    Blogs have become “conversation forums” for lack of a better term. A place to test ideas, ask for opinions, rant or generally provide your point of view. That said, you get very little out of blogging without the feedback component.

  2. I never leave comments on blogs.

    Kidding (obviously). Without comments, I would have stopped blogging a long time ago. It’s shouting into an empty abyss. When that abyss starts shouting back, you have a conversation.

  3. I agree.

    The Kirk Report is similar … no comments.

    Comments are great because quite frankly, I enjoy reading “some” of the comments more then the bloggers post 🙂

  4. The Kirk Report is an exception.

    Comments are great because quite frankly, I enjoy reading “some” of the comments more then the bloggers post.

    On OTHER blogs, right? LOL! I never claimed to be world’s best writer. There are times when I have wanted to say something but just couldn’t get it to come out right so I just humbly gave up.

  5. Okay, I’m going to come down on the other side ust a little bit here. If the bloggers in question are just putting out info, kind of like a newspaper does, there may be no need to allow comments. Most of the blogs I keep up with are more interested in creating a dialog than putting out stark info. Would they have even larger readership if they allowed comments? No doubt. Would it be better for all if they did? Don’t know. Personally, I welcome comments, and I’m glad for the blogs that do.

  6. LAMoneyGuy took my comment.
    It’s technically still a blog, but it’s shouting into the aether if you don’t make it a community conversation. Even old-fashioned paper *shudder* magazines and newspapers print letters from readers.

  7. Maybe he does not know he can activate his comments, LOL

    Im like you JLP, comments allow me to know if Im right or wrong. It keep the blog alive in my opinion and entertaining.

  8. I think that a blog can be a blog without comments, although most blogs are better with comments. I look to blogs for information more than for a chance to comment. If the blog comments add to the information in the blog, then they are worthwhile. Your blog is an example. On the other hand, blogs that concentrate on news and politics can have their comment sections hijacked by people that want to argue and rant and insult other commenters. Those kinds of blogs may be better off without comments.

  9. I love that you have comments and am waiting for the smart aleck to come along and say “does it really matter what it is called? must be a slow day at AFM” 😉

  10. I have stopped blogging (after a 2 short attempts) because I received no comments. I was putting out political ideas I wanted to discuss, which is impossible without participation.

  11. It’s what helps to build the community feeling. Without them it just kind of seems like a seminar, but better because I can click away from it.

  12. A blog without comments is definitely still a blog. Nothing about the definition of “blog” requires two-way conversation or the building of a community. These things help *improve* a blog, in my opinion.

    Now come over to my website and leave some comments. 🙂

  13. Don’t see it as beneficial to everyone if you can’t comment. Just thinking of some of the discussions on this site over the past few days is a perfect example of the power of comments.

    JLP, BTW, your reddit button is doing weird things to Bookmark to: section in Firefox. Let me know (to my email) if you can’t see what I mean and I will shot you a screen shot.

  14. Haha, not just on your blog, but on ALL blogs.

    It’s great to have someone knowledgeable like yourself putting the topics out there and starting a debate at times.

    The mortgage question is a great example. You presented the math and I agreed, but it’s nice to see what others do and what others think … allows the reader (me) to get several different perspectives.

    I look at comments as a way to supplement your already fantastic content :-)!

  15. I stopped allowing comments about a year ago because of all the spam. Now, some of the spammers are VERY good, and post industry-related trackbacks that pitch their products (I write about business processes & technology). So I got really sick of the spam, and decided to turn it off. Didn’t affect my traffic at all.

  16. Comments take the place of credibility, I’d say. If you don’t allow comments, you’re no different from Liz Weston or the other people on MSN money, except that you’re not writing with an editor double checking everything and you’re not getting paid. The comments help to challenge you and keep you honest.

  17. A lot of it depends on the nature of the blogger. If it’s just a bunch of “I read a cool article in ” reposts, you won’t get a lot of comments and they aren’t that interesting. If it has a somewhat slower post volume and lots of original content (ie, yours), you’ll get interesting comment threads going.

  18. Ric Edelman has a blog? I’d like to see that. Btw- he’s a licensed advisor, perhaps explaining his restrictions when it comes to posts/comments on his site/blog.

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