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Blog Comment Policy

One of the most satisfying and useful metrics for a blog is whether posts generate comments or not as well as the quality of the comments. With increased traffic and visibility comes increased interaction but it also attracts comment spam or comments of no value.

This blog is old enough and has enough daily visitors that a comment policy is appropriate. so here goes:

1. Comments are welcome and encouraged. There is no better metric of how much impact a post has with the readers and many times, it is the content within the comments that provides the most value. If you’re not sure whether to comment, go ahead. If you’ve crossed some kind of line, I’ll email you.

2. Comments should add value. If a comment is clearly spam, I will delete it. If the same person or IP makes spammy comments I will add their domain and IP address to the blacklist of our anti spam software. Most comment spam is caught automatically, but a few slip through from time to time.

3. I consider keywords in the “name” field spam. Is your name REALLY “SEO Minneapolis” or is it Bob Jones? Handles and nicknames are fine as are real names. When people use keywords in the “name field”, I will email them in most cases not to. Future occurrences are automatically edited or deleted.

4. Links must be relevant. For the most part, linking to another site is fine as long as it adds value to the conversation. Linking to other sites that have nothing to do with the blog post is spam as far as I’m concerned and will be deleted.

5. I am not a fan of signatures in blog comments. If you do it, I may delete it if it looks irrelevant or spammy.

I am coming out of the gate with this comments policy on the conservative side, but the need to manually police comments takes up an increasing amount of time that I would rather spend replying to comments that add value. The huge increase in readership to this blog is very much appreciated and comments are a big part of what makes a blog successful, so feel free to add your insights and observations. Comments are welcome!

Lee Odden :@LeeOdden is the CEO of TopRank Marketing and editor of Online Marketing Blog. Cited for his expertise by The Economist, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal, he's the author of the book Optimize and presents internationally on integrated content, search, social media and influencer marketing. When not at conferences, consulting, or working with his talented team, he's likely on a beach somewhere doing absolutely nothing.

View Comments (29)

  • I do occasionally use names or handles in the name field, especially when relevant to SEO Expert or SEO Podcast, which are the names I've used for quite sometime and I provide other content on my own site relevant to that.

    I know that this is a side benefit to participants in a conversation, but I guess you realize that as well. It should probably be weighed against the quality and relative frequency of a person's involvement.

    I think your comment policy is well thought out though, and overall very fair. It would be nice to have better plugins for these blog platforms that made it easier to manage spam links.

  • Some things I never will forget. This is a blog about how a blogger who works for a company that runs the Internet, (if there ever was an owner it would be Google, Sorry Bill). How did Matt get all his followers to post all these comments on only what Matt and Google itself knows?

    SEO is no longer. It is all paid for, and we all know that. The sad part is Google plays this game as if it’s it’s |Wii.

    Google did what Yahoo! said it would never do. That is, placing graphics on search result pages. I had trouble with the question SPAM blocker to make a new post, (the sum of 3+9) I thought was a trick question.

    Remember everyone, this is not rocket science. Google simply did what Yahoo! said they would do. Nothing original has come from Google. I do prefer Google because of the lack of graphics, even prefer lynx.

    2007 Predictions. Google will have less than 1 billion in cash by year end. That’s how fast things change in the infancy of a techlological revolution.

    The company most responsible for this unflattering event?

    -It hasn’t even built a website yet, has no domain, and does not care.

  • That's a neat idea to put in a comment policy. I guess there should be a general rule to what can be expected from a commenter and blogger in terms of appropriateness.... this way everyone can agree and things don't get spammed or that there will be relevance in the comment. Great idea, thanks!

  • Maybe I am naive. I do not understand why people hesitate to use their real names and identities when blogging! Please educate me!

    Zai (my real name!)

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