All this blogging and reading and commenting on other blogs has brought up a question about etiquette. Most comment sections identify the commenter by name only (whatever they’ve signed in as). My instinct (as Karen Syed has trained me now) is to always include a link to one of my sites after my name or some kind of reference, such as: Author of The Sex Club. If someone likes what I’ve said and wants to know more about me, my blog, or my novel, it seems logical to let them know where to find me.

But I wonder: Is this socially acceptable in the blogosphere? A random survey of the blogs I visit indicates that most posters do not even include a full name signature, they just let the comment box identify them. So it uncool to post a url? Does it depend on the blog site and how well you know the person? What is your practice? What is your opinion?

  1. To me, posting a tag line like 'author of such-and-such' seems like self-promotion more than anything. (Unless it's directly relevant to your comment for whatever reason — like you've commented about the best way to unstick a stuck widget and you have written a book about widget-unsticking, then you ought to link to your book.)

    If you have a Blogger profile, people can click through to that if they want more info about you; that seems adequate to me & it makes sense to make sure your profile has the info you think people might be interested in. If you're commenting on a non-Blogger blog, a lot of those do give you a space to put in a URL.

    That's just my opinion for whatever it's worth. 🙂

  2. I don’t mind people posting a link on my comment section, unless it just seems as though they’re not really commenting, but advertising something.

    But it seems like somewhere I heard that posting your link was crass. On the other hand, with the problems I’m having with Blogger (who has blocked my profile for no reason), I sometimes will put a link, but most times I hesitate to do so.

  3. It’s actually just a greatly overlooked tactic, more from ingnorance than knowledge. Yes, of course giving a link is better for your reader. It also makes your blog easier to pick up by search engines. Don’t leave it up to the blog profile page, a cheesy set-up at best. Definitely give links in each post or in your side columns. Or both. Don’t leave anything to chance if this is a professional blog.

  4. I’m going to go with the others who said a lot of depends on relevance. There is a lot of people out there who will leave some pointless comment just so they have a reason to mention their own website.

    I do totally agree with your comment about giving the person something to follow-up on. If I was writing a blog about music or something and some musician gave me some input, I think it would useful to have a way to get in touch with the other person.

    If somebody writes an intelligent response to my blog, it makes me interested in what they do, and having a link to their blog or website would be nice.

    I’m also a person who looks to return the favor of a read-for-a-read so if somebody comments on my blog and leaves a link to their blog, chances are I will go read some of their blog and see what it’s all about.

    To people who are dead against having any other links on their blog, I think they have issues with a fear of losing readers. Quality will always bring people back, so if you have a decent blog, somebody posting a link in a comment really shouldn’t make a difference.

    That’s just my opinion. Anything is better than getting some junk response from an anonymous person.

  5. There is nothing wrong with self-promotion as long as it is done respectfully. I almost always include a link to either my site or my Blog. Is this crass? Of course not! How will anyone know they want to know more about me if they don’t know where to look?

    From a writer POV, we are networking. It is the key to our potential success, and yes that means hoping for sales. We are not putting buy links, we are offering a road map to more information and that is what Bloggin is alla bout.

    From the reader POV, if no one ever tells you that they have a book, how on earth will you know? If I don’te tell you how to ger to my Blog, how will you ever know I have something to say?

    I have found many wonderful authors and books to try by reading the tag lines of those few who are smart enough to put them in.

    On an e-mail or BOard post, I’ve heard four lines is the max, I make a point to never go over two lines in a blog. My name and a simple link. Respectful and to the point.

    Karen Syed

  6. Great feedback everyone. Thanks for sharing and keep it coming.

  7. I don’t see anything wrong with leaving a link if you leave a sincere, interesting and relevant comment. I love to check out the blogs and websites of people who leave comments on my posts. It doesn’t have to be a mini-bio, just a simple url will do!

  8. I with those who don’t think there is anything wrong with it as long as it’s done respectfully. I post it and then let others decide if they want to go to it or not. Maybe if they like what I say then they’ll check it out. I don’t believe it’s being disrespectful. I also think that if the blogger wants to follow up with me, it may be an easier way to do it.

    Teagan Oliver

  9. Sure someone can click to your blog, but will they? Some do, some don’t, but I know I don’t mind a name and link if they comment too. At least you can see who the person is at a glance before you go to their blog.

  10. I’ve wondered about this myself and have been watching other comments to see what people do and when.

    A couple of times I’ve been curious about who a commenter is, clicked on their name and it leads nowhere. It made me wish they had a link in the comment.

    On the other hand, comments that seem completely self serving, then include a link, are very annoying. So, what’s a commenter to do?

  11. I have to say, that when people don’t put a link, and I like their comments, I get frustrated. It sometimes seems like the most interesting comments are signed by just a first name and no link.

  12. i left a url once on a blog i’d been reading for a while (because i didn’t know how to do the url thing on a strange blog) and the blogger didn’t put up my comment. i was genuine and felt quite hurt. so i stopped reading her blog. i did think of contacting her and explaining but decided i didn’t like her. sad, isn’t it? x

  13. I think stating that you’re so and so is obvious self promotion/kind of feels pretentious. As long as you make sure that you have your website/blog url as a signature line or your name links there I feel that’s enough.

  14. Obvious added links (as opposed to what’s embedded in the name) come across as self-serving or naive. Commentblogging is verboten as are aggressively self-serving non-topic-related comments. Blogger reduces everything to a poorly-designed profile but pretty much everyone knows the links are embedded in the commenter’s name. If the comment/name is interesting enough, people will be curious.

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