Comments can be a great thing about blogging, but they can also be a source of stress. In this week’s blogging chat, I wanted to talk about whether people ever choose to turn off comments on their blogs.
First off, if you want to turn off comments on individual posts, that’s in the post settings down at the bottom section called Discussion, and there’s a tick box to allow comments. To change the settings for your whole site, go to My Sites > Settings > Discussion and turn off “Allow people to post comments on new articles”.
I’ve never contemplated turning off comments for my site; I think if it was bugging me that much I’d probably just take a blogging break. There’s been the odd time where I haven’t allowed comments on individual posts, mostly when I expect that I would get sympathetic comments and I feel like that would annoy me. When I just don’t have the brainpower to answer comments, I’m usually still okay with getting them, and I just respond with emojis rather than words.
When bloggers I know stop allowing comments, I don’t have any issue with that (a couple of them did recently, which inspired this post); however, I think if I was deciding whether or not to follow a new blog, I’d probably be less likely to start following a blog with all comments turned off. I think the issue there is that comments are a way to get to know a blogger better, and if I already feel like I know someone reasonably well, whether I can comment or not on individual posts is no big deal.
So now it’s over to you. Do you ever turn off comments, either on individual posts or your entire site? And how do you react if you come across someone else’s blog that has comments turned off?
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61 thoughts on “Blogging Chat: Do You Ever Turn Off Comments?”
I always allow comments. I’m still building a following, but I like it when people engage me. As far as other people turning off comments, I just feel it’s their blog, they can do what they want, but I feel that it IS a good way to learn something about the writer, and often about the other commentators.
Yeah, it’s a good way to get to know others better.
In the few instances where I was receiving well-intentioned comments that made me uncomfortable (eg. people thinking they were supporting me by putting down the friend I mentioned in the post, people speculating about my health), and where I didn’t feel like the solve was moderating the comment, I decided to take down the post rather than close comments. I’ll stress in these cases that the uncomfortable comments were coming from commenters I already “knew” and that I knew they meant well, but I just really felt uncomfortable with those particular comments. To me, it was a sign that the post wasn’t really conveying whatever it was that I wanted to convey, so I preferred to just take the whole post down.
I can’t imagine closing comments on a post. I have a pretty high tolerance for spam and negative feedback, and I don’t write anything that would attract trolls. Either it’s a comment worth responding to or it isn’t, but I haven’t yet felt a need to close comments.
I’ve done the same thing taking down a post when comments showed I clearly wasn’t conveying what I intended to.
Although comments are sometimes more stressful for me than writing the actual post, I feel like if I turn them off across the board I might as well not do blogging at all.
I would deifnitely be a lot less satisfied with the blogging experience without comments.
I have to agree!
I am a keep the comments coming type of blogger. But if I posted controversial topics, I may be inclined to turned them off. I do not see a point to blogging without the interaction from followers.
The interaction is a key part of blogging for me too.
I toyed with this notion on the Guy blog once around 2019 because of the banality and inaneness of some of the generic comments but it seemed pointless as a behaviour because then you would miss out on the genuinely great comments!?
I opted in one instance as you may recall by turning off the LIKE function as in visibly to me on the blog.
Comments are the very soul of writing a blog.
However l have seen variations on the freedom to comment on various blogs – l guess it comes down to one main thing – don’t bloody write something you don’t want or welcome comments or discussion to especially on a non-private blog.
Sure l know there are trolls and those who disagree, but l suppose it comes down to the commenting policy as well.
I have come across blogs with comments switched off and l find that very frustrating and usually unfollow or simply no longer read from the blog.
It doesn’t seem like WordPress is a particularly attractive place for trolls; I rarely see trollish comments either on my blog or other people’s. Maybe it’s because trolling on WordPress means investing more time in reading, even if it’s just skimming, compared to social media platforms.
That’s very true. Since 2017, l have only ever seen three trolls here, l have seen a few more arguments mostly on political and religious blogs though admittedly.
I haven’t turned off comments. Haven’t really thought about it.
It makes me sad sometimes when I can’t comment on a post because it’s like I can’t talk to a friend anymore.
Yeah, it’s a nice way to be able to chat.
No, but I delete extremist, lie-filled, vitriolic rants. My blog is no place for anti-scientific bollocks and I refuse to let someone hijack my post to share their willfully blind agenda.
I’m also quick to delete inappropriate comments.
Great post Ashley. I am not a villain who just turns off comments, I am a very open person who wants to know what my readers think of my content
That sounds like a great approach!
I haven’t had to turn off comments on the blog post itself, but I did need to turn off the comments on the Facebook post I shared it on. People were making some pretty cruddy comments without ever reading the actual blog post.
Oh that sucks.
I have never turned off comments and it bothers me when someone has their comments turned off, especially if I have a positive comment for them. However, I wouldn’t unfollow or not follow someone if they have their comments off. After all, it’s their right to turn comments off. Maybe they got trolled in the past and can’t handle it.
I’m sure most people who turn off comments have a very good reason for doing so.
Yes, I’m sure of that too.