Your Comments: Who Owns Them?

comments I've madeWe all ought to own up to comments we make but who owns your comments? Some places allow editing and deletion of your own comments and some don’t. Have you ever submitted a comment to another blogger’s blog and then wanted to edit or even delete it and discovered it’s captive?

Bloggers blog to connect and discuss. Comments are valued as they energize discussions with the addition of information, observations, suggestions, wit and goodwill. By crafting quality blog comments we contribute positively to discussion,  but every comment we submit may not be our best and some we may regret submitting.

Everything posted on a blog contributes to its brand and the blogger’s reputation either positively or negatively. When it comes to comments posted on your blog, it’s your contractual obligation to remain within the Terms of Service you agreed to as set out by your blog host. Beyond that the choice of whether or not to set rules of engagement for discussion on your blog is yours alone to make and to express in your commenting policy.

Of course you should stand on your words however consider what follows.

You may make spelling and grammar errors and only discover them after you click the submit button.

You may try to express something in an awkward manner that makes you appear less than intelligent and seconds later come up with a better way to say what you meant.

You may be tired, ramble off course and then moments later want to edit and remove what’s not on point from your comment.

You may be a blogger under attack  receiving negative comments on our own posts. You may forget to keep your blogging cool and react emotionally rather than responding intelligently, and you may lash out in a comment on another blogger’s blog, forgetting whatever you post on the internet is likely to remain there for years to come.

Edit and delete comments policies

edit delet comments collage

Some sites like Blogger, Facebook, Google Plus and Pinterest do provide the ability to edit and delete comments you submit to another blogger’s blog.  There is no ability to edit or delete a comment you leave on a WordPress.com blog and it’s important to know that. Provided the blogger who received the comment will agree to editing or even deletion that may take place, but if they do not agree your comment can will captive.

Edit and delete comments yay or nay?

1. Some bloggers think that approved comments should stand as is forevermore.

2. Some bloggers believe a 5-10 minute comment editing or deletion of comment opportunity ought to be provided by the software.

I believe a 5-10 minute comment editing or deletion of comment opportunity ought to be provided by the WordPress.com software.

3. Some bloggers believe asking the receiving blogger to correct typos or spelling errors in a comment is okay and others don’t think so.

I think it’s okay and when I spot clearly unintended spelling errors and typos in comment I fix them so the commenters aren’t embarrassed.

4. Some bloggers believe asking the receiving blogger to delete a comment that no others have responded to is okay and others don’t think so.

I might consider doing that. It depends on the circumstances.

5.  Some bloggers think editing requests ought to be dealt with on a one-by-one basis.

I clearly state that I will do that in my commenting policy.

What do you think? Have you included provisions  in your commenting policy for requests for editing or deletion of approved comments that have no responses to them?

Commenting catastrophes

Maybe the time has come to ‘fess up re: your commenting faux pas or maybe not. If you are game then see below.

Have you ever submitted a comment to another blogger’s blog and then wanted to edit or even delete it and discovered it’s captive? I have.

Have you ever submitted a comment to another blogger’s blog and then wanted to edit or even delete it but lacked the courage to ask them to do so? I have.

Have you ever submitted a comment to another blogger’s blog and then asked to edit it or even delete it and been turned down? Not yet because I’m still in the gutless stage of not being able to summon the courage to ask.

Your turn.

Related posts found in this blog:
Crafting Quality Blog Comments
Comments and Discussion Settings
Anonymous commenting
How to handle negative comments
Why blog comment moderation is a good thing
Blogging: Comment Baiting
Encouraging blog readers to comment
A Comment Policy for your Blog

66 thoughts on “Your Comments: Who Owns Them?

  1. I try not to mess with other people’s comments. I constantly run behind my niece correcting her (not no is a double negative, kid!) and that is annoying enough — so I leave bloggers alone unless they ask.
    Great post.

  2. I Moderate all comments, Anonymous comments are also allowed. I guess if I found a spelling error or something minor like that I would fix it – but given my spelling skills, don’t hold your breath.

    I don’t get many comments on my site, Boating Safety does not seem to generate some of the problems noted above.

    Never had it happen but I guess if someone wanted a comment deleted I would delete it. All comments must be civilized and well behaved. Most of the comments are to the effect of “thanks” or “never heard of this knot, can’t wait to try it” or sometimes people will add something that I missed in my original Post.

    Comments I leave on other sites are few & quite tame, if I think a site sucks, I will just skip things and move on

      1. Thanks – I try to be civilized with things – not just with comments – however my sense of humor has been known at times to cut the legs out from under someone, but I leave that part out of the comments & Posts

  3. The recent Google/YouTube comments debacle is good reminder for me of why I limit my comments on the internet, in general. I remember back around 2005ish, I would comment freely on Facebook, blogs, forums, etc. Once I realized that the content that I placed on a site was pretty much owned by the site and not me, I cut back on my comments. I also once made a grammatical error (left out a word) on a professional social networking site and I was horrified that there was no way to go back and edit or delete the comment. I have not commented on that site since.

    Back to WordPress…I wish there was a 5-10 minute window to go back and edit. That would be very helpful.

    1. Hi Debra,
      Aha! This is what you are referring to and what some people are furious about. On November 6, Google changed its YouTube property to only allow comments from Google Plus accounts, thus de-anonymizing commenters, as the principal element of its site-wide comments overhaul.

      Thanks for weighing in here on the 5 – 10 minute editing window idea.

  4. I absolutely hate discovering I’ve misspelled something or made some other mistake and would love for WP to allow a 5- or 10-minute editing period. A preview option helps, sort of, but for some reason my mistakes rarely show up until after I click “Post”!

    On rare occasions I’ve asked an administrator to correct a mistake. They’ve always obliged, as I would, because it’s just the courteous thing to do. I would, for the same reason, remove a comment if there had been no replies to it.

    So many good points have been made here. I think it’s time to review my comment policy again.

    1. Hi there,
      I think you’re right about good points being raised in this discussion. It’s good to know where you stand so thanks sharing what you do and what you think here.

  5. I don’t think I’ve received any delete requests. I keep comment moderation on (requiring approval) for anyone new to the blog.

    I like the idea of a 5-10 minute window, plenty of times I’ve hit reply and *then* seen the grammar error or misspelling.

  6. I do try to think before I post. But I confess there have been times – after the fact – when I see spelling errors, etc., that I wonder if I was half-asleep when I hit “send.” I do like Facebook’s editing policy for that reason. Google might let you make changes on your comments, but it also is very difficult to even LEAVE a comment. I have a Google account and have posted on a good friend’s blog only to realize later that my comment was never posted. I discovered this when my friend said he hadn’t seen my comment, so I sent him an e-mail repeating what I’d left in the comment.

    1. Hi Judy,
      Oh good. It’s not only me then. I look and look and think there are no errors. Then I click submit and there they are.

      Facebook’s comment editing policy is straight forward. You can edit any comment but the time of editing notation appears along with a link to the original.

      Submitting comments to .blogspot.com blogs is maddening. I blogged about it Crazymaking Blogger Comment Settings

  7. As for deleting others from my blog, I do moderate comments. There newbies I remove immediately if I know they are trolling/spamming.

    1. I do the same Jean. When I receive off-topic comments or self-promoting comments that ramble all over the place I send them to Trash. I once spent over a month sending multiple lengthy comments a political blogger made to my posts to Trash. Not a single one was on topic. He was trying to have me approve his comments as a means of getting my readers to click into his blog. Ha!

      Those who either self promote in comments and/or who do not remain within the confines of brevity, clarity, while remaining on topic have submitted comments destined for the trashcan. That brings us back to the advice in this post Crafting Quality Blog Comments.

    1. Hi there,
      I’m glad to read that you did create a comment policy. I think it’s important to have a well thought out policy in place before things happen, rather than dealing with anything in crisis mode.

  8. I don’t even have a commenting policy… since following your blog, timethief, I’m learning all sorts of little things about blogging that I wasn’t even aware of. You’ve got me thinking about crafting a commenting policy.

    Regarding your question, I have never edited someone’s comment, and I’ve never been asked. I would consider deleting a comment 1) if requested and 2) if the commenter seemed to really regret making it. I would prefer that all comments stand as-is, even the ones that are confrontational, as they are part of blogging in a community.

    1. Hi Ken,
      Generally speaking I agree with you on this:

      I would prefer that all comments stand as-is, even the ones that are confrontational, as they are part of blogging in a community.

      However, I have blogged for many years and have experienced times when that was not IMO the best policy. There are exceptions to all rules and only the insecure and highly opinionated folks with agendas such as primitive thinkers refuse to consider exceptions.

      You can’t go wrong by thinking deeply about the likely comment management scenarios you will face in the future and developing a policy. Creating a basic commenting policy doesn’t mean you can’t amend it if there’s a need to. As I said above;Everything posted on a blog contributes to its brand and the blogger’s reputation either positively or negatively.

      I hope you will locate the commenting policy considerations I have published in A comment policy for your blog, as I think they may be a useful guide. I have also linked to some high quality references in it.

      You will note that I refuse to approve comments containing personal attacks, defamatory and/or inflammatory statements and obscene language. It’s my experience that when those rules are in place people who are habitually inclined towards submitting long winded, self promoting, link-dropping, over sharing, rambling, off-topic and/or trollish comments head for other blogs to comment on and that pleases me.

      1. I took a look at your pages and did finally come up with a basic comment policy. Which of course led me to all sorts of other tips you have in your pages. I’m glad I found your blog!

  9. Not so sure about needing a 5-10 minute reprieve. If said blogger wouldn’t edit my comment or permit posting of a corrected version, maybe I shouldn’t be there.

    On my site, I never edit comment content, that’s despicable. Obvious spelling error by known visitors, I fix without comment. My site is older with regular readers… all a visitor need do is to create a second (near duplicate) comment sans error and they know I will swap them out and delete the redundancy. They don’t even have to email me with a request. Sometimes visitors mention a previous post or product but don’t have the link. If it is obvious they want it, I’ll add it, time permitting.

    I do delete comments tho. Any/all sock puppets, astro-turfers etc. We have occasional trolls but we either ignore them (in which case I delete after a time) or we dispassionately deconstruct their argument, it is never pretty. It’s my blog but I’m not the brainy one; my readers are much smarter than me. But above all, no personal attacks. No racism, no sexism, no polemic politics, no religion. It’s my living room, I have no qualms about setting boundaries of civility. You don’t like it, no problem. Go start your own blog and then you figure how to deal with people crapping in corners.

    Seriously tho, every blog has a culture, you reap what you sow.

    1. H Kathleen,
      I cheered out loud when in read this: But above all, no personal attacks. No racism, no sexism, no polemic politics, no religion.

      I actually agree with everything you expressed and employ the same discretion when it comes to making minor adjustments like you wrote of in your second paragraph.

      I do believe we ought to stand on our words. I’m not suggesting we become continual comment editors on request. I think there are circumstances under which editing ore deletion they can be considered and it’s up to each blogger to make the call.

  10. Fortunately, I haven’t felt the need to retract my own comments yet (knock on wood; come on, how hard can it be to find real wood…). Maybe I had some comments that I ‘should’ want to retract (hopefully not). Perhaps blissful ignorance is the way to go; forget what you wrote and move on.

    On the other hand, as a blogger, I’d be happy to remove or edit a comment by request. It seems that it would be a wise practice, in addition to just being a good host or hostess.

    Why isn’t there a 5-10 minute window? Would some people abuse this, posting one thing intentionally and then correcting it shortly afterward, or posting correction after correction in 5-minute intervals? I wonder if there is a decent reason for it being the way it is (i.e. something better than these examples).

    1. Hi Chris,
      I don’t know why there isn’t an 5 – 10 minute editing window. For all I know there could be a cogent reason for not having one. I don’t even know if any official request for one has ever been made, and I never considered the aspect of using it over and over. I assumed one time use would be allowed per comment but now you have brought this up I’m thinking that could be the reason it doesn’t exist. Due to some recent events I revisited my commenting policy and and decided to leave it as is. That’s what prompted me to seek reader feedback on this issue. Thanks for wading in. Like you I would consider comment editing and removal from the point of view of a host/hostess.

  11. I let typos go, indeed I have a big soft spot for them, they are part of the conversational flow and for anyone to take the time, I am grateful. As for my typos and convolutions . . .. cringe!

    1. Hi Patti,
      It’s so interesting that we have that double standard isn’t it?
      Hard on ourselves for making small mistakes in haste but forgiving of others who do the same .
      And that’s not only when it comes to typos.

      1. I feel the same way. I Have corrected what I knew to be unintentional typos in comments on some of my sites, and I have wished to delete several of my own comments and could not, several times over the years too :-)

  12. This is an especially fascinating post. I haven’t ever wanted to delete a comment, I’ve made on another’s blog, but sometimes a chance to edit would be nice–not to change content, but just typos or things that are easy to miss when you’re in a hurry.

    Hugs from Ecuador,
    Kathy

  13. I’ve made errors of thought and asked bloggers here to remove them or asked them to take a second post instead and they were kind enough to allow the corrected version, but I believe in the constant allowance to modify statements we may have made, especially when responses would indicate that a perspective may not have been apparent from the writing initially given.

    This 5-10 minute period is not the point, when for example, it is late at night and I post and go to sleep only to realize the next day that what I had said was not what I meant.

    I think this is key, if we can write what we intended to write then fine, but language is an often complicated thing. We don’t always have the right words or words, as Heidegger implied, cannot account for the unhiddenness of being or the correctness of propositions.

    1. Hi Mario,

      This 5-10 minute period is not the point, when for example, it is late at night and I post and go to sleep only to realize the next day that what I had said was not what I meant.

      I’m visually challenged Mario. My reality is why I would like to see a 5-10 minute opportunity to edit spelling errors and typos appeals to me more than it may to many others. The time I have to spend online produces fewer comments from me because there is no preview feature and not opportunity to edit.

      I hear you when you refer to the next day. I’m an introvert living in a world dominated by extroverts.

      “According to many sources, extroverts make up 60% to 75% of the population, and introverts make up the remainder. This might explain society’s alleged preference toward extroverted behavior. We’re living in a culture that increasingly values groupthink, despite the fact collaboration kills creativity. We can’t be in a group of people without instinctively mirroring each other, and groups follow the most charistmatic person, even though there is no correlation between being charistmatic and having great ideas. – Quiet and Society’s Extroversion Bias

      I mull things over so what I state on a given subject today will not necessarily be the same as what I state about it tomorrow. Or at least what I typed in a comment today may not have been expressed as well as I could have expressed it the next day.

      Thanks so much for your comment. I appreciated it and it’s good to know you have a circle of blogging friends who do allow you to operate as you indicate.

      1. “I mull things over so what I state on a given subject today will not necessarily be the same as what I state about it tomorrow. Or at least what I typed in a comment today may not have been expressed as well as I could have expressed it the next day.” Yes, I agree with you here.

        “Thanks so much for your comment. I appreciated it and it’s good to know you have a circle of blogging friends who do allow you to operate as you indicate.”

        And I don’t have a circle of friends per se, but rather I have requested of the person on whose site I made the error to allow me a new comment and to remove the other, and they have done so. I believe it is as simple as that. Except, that long ago I had a Tribe.net account the people there were adamant about keeping what was stated, which discounted my freedom to decide. The words should always belong to the maker, who can then take them back or modify them at will. Even as a journalist, you were kind to your sources because you knew what they meant. Taking advantage of someone’s oversight is bad manners.

        1. Hi Mario,
          The mentality you describe at tribe.net is one I have likewise experienced. I don’t devote any time to keeping company with such folks. My tolerance for people with primitive and rigid mindsets is non-existant.I too have been a journalist in another stage in my life and what you said rings true for me.

          The words should always belong to the maker, who can then take them back or modify them at will. Even as a journalist, you were kind to your sources because you knew what they meant. Taking advantage of someone’s oversight is bad manners.

          It’s so good to meet another blogger who comprehends how important it is to behave graciously and with understanding and kindness online.

  14. I have been known to go in to correct obvious typos for people who comment at my blog. Especially if they’re regulars. I often wish other bloggers would do the same for me, but it’s not a huge issue (except perhaps for those as obsessive as I can be at times! :) ) But actually going in and editing content seems totally out of line in my opinion.

    I can’t think of an occasion where I might have wanted to have a comment deleted (unless it were to correct a typo or some other error), but I wouldn’t have a problem deleting at someone’s request. To me it seems to be common courtesy. I have noted at other blogs (Blogger, for one) that they apparently allow deletion, but then add a comment that the thing has been deleted by the commenter. Sorry, I’m not sure I’m making sense, but I’m hoping you get the gist? My head is a bit stuffed and not firing on all cylinders. ;)

    1. Hi Gunta,

      I have been known to go in to correct obvious typos for people who comment at my blog. Especially if they’re regulars.

      Bless you! {HUGS} I will correct any spelling errors or typos that I see in your comments. The key words there are “that I see” because as we all know my vision is not the best.

      I have noted at other blogs (Blogger, for one) that they apparently allow deletion, but then add a comment that the thing has been deleted by the commenter.

      Yes, what you describe is the case at Blogger and I would be happy to see that here too.

  15. I once made a comment on someone’s site, not aware that his devoted fans would crucify any commenter who merely seemed to disagree with him. I would have liked to be able to delete that comment, but the blogger in question made it very clear in his commenting policy that he did not respond to delete requests. On the other hand, I chose to comment on his site. I put myself out there, and just like you can’t take something back you said in person, in an email or text message, and just like those things can come back to bite you, so it works with comments.

    My own policy states that as a rule I don’t delete comments because I believe one should own one’s words. In other words, think before you press ‘Post Comment’. I might be convinced to be a bit more flexible in this regard, but I wouldn’t like it if people could edit/delete their own comments from my posts, just like I won’t like it if you could block certain people from reading/following your blog (blocking someone from commenting is another matter). If you don’t want to make yourself vulnerable, don’t engage. That’s just how real life works. I like the idea you mention that you have a five minutes grace period to still edit your comment, just for those mistakes you notice right after you press post.

    (Case in point: I re-read this comment five times before posting and still caught a major mistake on the last pass.)

    1. Hi there,
      Your first sentence mirrors an experience I had when I first began to blog and it was a pivotal moment for me. My comment was on point and unlike the members of the commenting rat pack who attacked m, I had expertise on the subject being discussed. None were professionals and none had their facts straight. After that wounding I came to the same conclusion:
      There are no victims – only volunteers.
      If you don’t want to make yourself vulnerable, don’t engage.

      That painful incident remains in my memory and I have not spontaneously commented on a post since then. I don’t choose to make myself vulnerable online by sharing any deep and thoughtful responses on blog posts. On one hand, I want a 5 – 10 minute window of opportunity for superficial corrections (spelling and typos). One the other, I’m not emotionally invested in getting it as I have coped for over 8 years with out it.

      P.S. Case in point: I don’t see well and I have re-read and edited this comment 4 times now.

      1. I think you highlight another side of this question: how many people who read our blogs have something wonderful to contribute as a comment, but don’t from fear of being burned again? For them the knowledge that they can delete their comments might make it easier to take the risk. I think it might be time to revise my own comment policy.

        1. I’m not suggesting that we create an environment where we are into continual editing or deletion. That said, I do think there can be exceptions made and it’s not a good idea to be closed minded. Black and white thinking is never enlightened thinking. It’s important to keep a safe environment for discussion on your blog. We accept and forgive errors others make in our offline lives and I think that should also exist online lives too.

          1. You’re welcome. I don’t want to live in a cyberworld where there is no possibility of expressing regret or being granted forgiveness. I want to create a healthy and safe commenting environment and that means I must moderate every comment so inappropriate comments are not approved the first place.

            When I had a political/environmental blog I emailed bloggers who submitted comments that were untoward and asked them to rephrase what they submitted and submit a new comment because I had deleted the first one. I gave them a second chance and that’s where I drew the line.

  16. I’m in two minds about being able to edit or delete comments. What happens if the comment has been replied to or there are follow-up comments?

    As to your questions:
    Have I ever commented and then noticed a typo or evidence of my lack of brain cells? Oh yes.

    Have I ever lacked the courage to ask a blogger to delete a comment? Nope. Plenty of other things for which I have lacked the courage, but not this.

    Been turned down? No again, but then I think I have only ever requested a deletion once or maybe twice, so it hasn’t been hard to get a high score of success.

    Now my question: Have you ever written to a blogger and asked when, if at all, he/she is going to get around to replying to comments? I have. And the best reply I had was something along the lines of ‘apologising’ for taking a long weekend off. That’s when I felt really small…. ;-)

    1. Hi David,

      Now my question: Have you ever written to a blogger and asked when, if at all, he/she is going to get around to replying to comments?

      Oh my, I have never done that and I cringed when I read what the response to you was. There seem to be legions of people online who don’t have a heck of a lot going on in their lives offline. Well, I do. I have a business to run and contracted work to do. I have close friends and family who would prefer that I spend more time with them. They have been there for me for years on end and through thick and thin and I want them to always speak freely to me. Over the last year I have listened and acted on that by cutting the number of personal development blogs I read and comment on down to a bare minimum.

      Getting back to your question, I do hope none of my readers ask me why it takes me so long to respond to their comments after I have approved them. I multitask and if I didn’t then I wouldn’t even have the time to blog at all. I do tend to prioritize helping bloggers in the support forums above blogging and maybe that’s a mistake.

    2. Hi again David,
      I’m sorry but somehow I failed to respond to this yesterday:

      What happens if the comment has been replied to or there are follow-up comments?

      If we are referring to a lone comment no one has responded to and the blogger wants it deleted I may consider doing that but not if there is a response to it. If we are referring to a no change in substance and only spelling or typo corrections in a comment that has been responded to than I’m okay with that.

      I’m not okay with changing the substance. If it proves that you did not express yourself well and someone replied to your comment then comment again to clarify where you were coming from and what you intended to convey in your first comment.

  17. Have you ever submitted a comment to another blogger’s blog and then wanted to edit or even delete it and discovered it’s captive?

    Yes, and probably will continue to do so. I try not to give to much away, but want to leave authentic comments as I feel straight after reading a post.

    Have you ever submitted a comment to another blogger’s blog and then wanted to edit or even delete it but lacked the courage to ask them to do so?

    Never thought it important enough to ask for a deletion… hmm.

    Have you ever submitted a comment to another blogger’s blog and then asked to edit it or even delete it and been turned down?

    Never thought about it or been bothered. If I think it’s a problem I post a reply to my own comment to clarify the previous comment.

    If someone wanted to change something it wouldn’t be a problem, If they asked I’d probably go ahead. Nobody has yet, and I’ve never asked or thought about it so for me it’s a non-problem. Grammar and looking stupid, it’s an occupational hazard, I try to proof read but after a few glasses of wine, hey, what the hell it just gets put out there.

    Jim

      1. As you know I’m visually challenged and make many spelling mistakes and typos I cannot see until after the submit button has been clicked. That has made me more accommodating and I may accommodate you so just say the word if you need to. ;)

  18. A good idea could be a ‘5-10 minute comment editing or deletion of comment opportunity’ provided by the software. It happened to me a couple of times – in English comments – to find out that what I wrote wasn’t exactly expressing my thoughts, and even if I take my time to write down proper comments… In these cases – the ones I’m aware of anyway – I’ve written another comment trying to clarify it.

    1. Well, then we are in agreement. I was thinking only of my visual issues and I hadn’t thought of the language issue, but now you have brought it up I do think it’s a strong supportive reason for WordPress.com Staff to consider making that possible.

    1. I’ve done that many times. I’ve composed a comment with blogging tips type advice because a blogger is doing something to their blog’s detriment, example spamdexing ie. assigning way too many categories and tags to posts to get attention. Well, that results on their posts ending up in search engines listing them in supplemental results, where the sun don’t shine, but just as I was about to click submit I recalled something that made me stop.

      There was a time I did this and the asshat, a knuckle-dragging type of sports blogger, edited my comment (edited the substance – there were no spelling errors or typos) in an attempt to make me me appear to be foolish to his readers.

      Also one day a humor blogger on the old discussion forums freely admitted he edited comments readers submitted to his posts to make them funny. He didn’t consider that to be censorship and his readers liked it. Not me! I say flat out that’s censorship and it’s not funny from my point of view, at all. I will never do that.

      Settings those incidents aside, I used to use the Topics search to find blogging tips posts here at WordPress.com. What I found was blogs in all sorts of genres wherein the blogger chose to publish on blogging tips posts for their readers. That would have been cool, if in fact, they had their facts straight but so many didn’t and were spinning tall tales.

      I stopped browsing that tag after I posted a comment to a blog post on a knitting blog politely correcting absolute nonsense and was personally attacked by the blogger who knows sweet muck all about what they posted on. What they published was misleading and if followed would be harmful. As I have answered support forum questions for over 7 years I’m more than acquainted with support docs. They did not even exist when I began answering support questions and many of my answers are incorporated into them now so I thought I’d lend a hand by providing clarity. Bad move!

      Lastly, can you imagine anyone being so dull of wit as to believe that every blogger should disable comments, pingbacks and trackbacks because they allegedly suck the traffic away from and pagerank out of their blog? Ridiculous, I know but no I’m not kidding. That is the latest BS being spieled. I visited the blog of the blogger who boldly made that asinine statement and found they were blog scraping and splogging so I reported the blog.

      Geesh! Can you tell I feel a lot like ranting, lately? :D

    1. I’m sorry I wasn’t clear. No it is NOT available and that’s why I posted this thread. We cannot edit or delete comments we made on another person’s blog. We can only do that on tour own blogs.

    1. Comments we submit for approval are received by blogger who may choose to either approve them or not. I approve all on topic comments and try to reply to every comment I approve. However, I get backlogged on responding to them because I work in my business, do contracted work and answer support forum questions. Blogging is my lowest priority at this time but in the new year there will be a change in that ranking.

    1. I think it is one of the limitations too. I believe a 5-10 minute comment editing or deletion of comment opportunity ought to be provided by the WordPress.com software. What do you think of that?

      1. This is a fascinating thread. I’ve had the urge to reply to at least a half-dozen comments from your readers. Instead, I’ll consolidate my thoughts here.

        You wrote: “I believe a 5-10 minute comment editing or deletion of comment opportunity ought to be provided by the WordPress.com software.”

        I hope if Automattic implements that feature they make it optional – the decision to use such a feature or not should only be made by the blogs’s owner. If it were available I would disable it.

        Mostly I agree with Ken Ranos. I too lack a ToS re commenting. It’s on my to-do list but far down. After reading this thread it’s moving up. I believe comments should stand on their own, warts and all. If you want to amend what you’ve written, write another comment. That is especially relevant where the controversy-content is high. You comment, read other’s comments and realize you have more to say. Even if no one has replied to one of yours, you realize you could have said it better. Make another comment. It will add to the sense that the issue is controversial. Typos and spelling errors are a part of life. We all make them and some people seem to place too much emphasis on perfection. That’s ego and vanity at work. If we were all in a room together having a discussion, who among us would get every sentence perfect and empathetic people make allowances for non-native English speakers? Life is ugly and richer for being so.

        I don’t have many commenters at my website/blog. Lots of visitors – my Google webmaster account attests to that – and tons and tons of spam – Akismet catches most of it. My blog is not topical or an opinion blog. It’s a place to get feedback about and to promote my fiction, a “writer’s platform,” in the publishing industry’s jargon. Some things I must be doing right (high Google PR for my name) but on the whole I must be making grievous errors because of the few commenters I’ve attracted. I would love more and I would delete nothing, even if those comments were hostile or uncivil. Anyone leaving a comment would be responding, perhaps viscerally, to my writing, not to me, so I want it with the bark on. I’m a big boy so I can handle the intellectual combat, the more the better, since I will learn from even those that hate what I’ve written or the way I’ve written it.

        Do you think the lack of a ToS statement re comments and especially that email addresses will be kept private discourages commenters? You must think this 5-10 minute buyer’s remorse feature is important enough to lobby for it. Do you think a lack of such a feature in WP.com itself inhibits comments? Why is this so important to you?

        Recently I got into a pissing contest with the owners of software for OS X on their support site. I am trialing the software before buying and it did not behave for me as advertised. I reported what I thought was a bug and ran into a flurry of pushback. Lots of weasel words and finger pointing. Further investigation proved to me that mostly what they were advising me to do was BS and in one case would have been destructive. All software has bugs but it’s a developer’s attitude about reported bugs that sets the good ones apart from the bad. Turns out the software did have a bug but I was wrong too. I failed to RTFM and sounded off before I did my homework. They were wrong too. They can’t spell customer service. Who was more wrong? I can’t say but I fess up to my part. After the dust settled I wanted to add another comment apologizing for some of what I said and add more insight into the nature of the bug itself. Too late. They closed that thread. Now, if I want to add more commentary I’ll have to open another bug report. I would have liked to amend what I said. Not retract it or delete it, just add additional commentary and a partial apology. I think the give and take between them and me was healthy and should be transparent and out in the open. They apparently don’t. From their comments, some of your readers don’t either. Such is life and I’ve moved on but it was a good lesson to RTFM first. I’ll find some other way to apologize.

        So, after reading your post and all the comments thus far, I say, let it all hang out. It makes for a richer dialogue.

        Thomas Docheri

        1. Do you think the lack of a ToS statement re comments and especially that email addresses will be kept private discourages commenters?

          I don’t speak for others. Speaking for myself I look for About pages, a Blog Description and a Commenting policy on all blogs I visit. My time is limited and I don’t want to invest any time at all into reading blog content and comments only to find that the blogger is not clear on the foregoing and the discussion section of the blog is full of distasteful haranguing, fallacious arguments, personal attacks and other such unpleasant stuff. Of course I don’t expect to see such development in most new blogs but I do look before I comment.

          As for email addresses, many bloggers don’t provide their personal email addresses. They reserve the use of their primary personal email addresses for friend and family use only. I use throwaway email addresses for all my blogging.

          You must think this 5-10 minute buyer’s remorse feature is important enough to lobby for it.

          Thinking you can read the thoughts of others isn’t a good idea and as it leads to leaping to conclusions it’s not recommended. :) If I were to lobby Staff to make this change I wouldn’t be doing that in my blog. I would take the direct route to the top. This issue isn’t an important enough one for me to do that.

          Do you think a lack of such a feature in WP.com itself inhibits comments?

          No one has ever said to me that the lack of that feature has inhibited them from commenting.

          Why is this so important to you?

          It’s of interest to me because I am visually challenged and it probably has more import to me than it does for others. However, if it truly was “so important” to me then I would go directly to Staff and management to make my request at the top levels. I wanted to know what my readers thought about this, that’s all.

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