Turning OFF Comments Is The New Black

March 28, 2015

We saw a trend of big name content sites disabling their comments in 2014 and I am jumping on the bandwagon in 2015. (I am not the only one.)

There is a long list of “why’s” that led me down the turning off my comments path, but I will just go over the three main reasons why I did and why I think other content sites, big and small, should do the same.

User Enjoyment Suffers From SPAM

Now, for most sites the biggest reason for turning off comments has to do with SPAM. We have all experienced it, from our inboxes to our blogs — SPAM is EVERYWHERE and it sucks.

spameverywhereSo, with SPAM lurking around every virtual corner — it should come as no surprise that it is hated by most bloggers.

Akismet caught a lot of the obvious offenders for my sites, but with every system comes the people that have found the loopholes. From smart spam bots to serial commenters, there really is no efficient way separating the good comment, from the bad.

So, SPAM ultimately becomes annoying and might even force readers to never return.

I hate how it looks.

SPAM sucks, and I totally hate that it also took so much time, but a bigger push for me was just that I don’t like the user system of comments. I think even the “prettiest” comment forms just look bad and often take away from the content anyway.

I agree that the conversation takes a slight hit, but all in all. I want people to enjoy coming to the site and look forward to reading the content.

But, what about social proof?

Don’t get me wrong, two years ago, I would’ve told each and every client.

Keep those comments turned on! That’s where your readers engage!

Times change and so do best practices. I personally value user experience (UX) over the potential conversations that could be had in the comment sections of my sites.

The conversation shouldn’t stop on the blog

So conversations can live in the comments section, but often times they just aren’t the optimal place to have them.

In my opinion, the third and most important reason to turn off comments on your blog is because your content should be showcased on other platforms.

Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and Google+ are all chock full of people wanting to consume your content. To think that you are getting maximum reader velocity from just your blog is short-sighted.

Social platforms will not only help you reach more people, but because of the stricter “real person” sign up practices — the conversations will be more valuable and less “spammy”, not to mention shared more readily as well.

So, instead of filling out a comment — Tweet your thoughts on Twitter!

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