My second Friend Friday is on constructive criticism. It’s a bit unfortunate that I’ve already done a post on critique this week, and have posted about this at length in the past, and I don’t want to bore you all stiff going over the same points again and again. But these questions do take a slightly different approach to what I wrote before, so it might be interesting anyway.
1. Do you allow comments on your blog? Why or why not?
Yes, of course I do, because I love the interaction, it’s probably my favourite thing about blogging. If I didn’t allow comment I’d feel like I was just broadcasting into the ether without any feedback.
2. Do you think at times people leave comments that are insincere or not well thought out? What’s the point?
I think a lot of people leave short appreciative comments on outfit or inspiration posts that don’t have a lot of substance like ‘Love this!’ or ‘You look great!’. And I love getting them and leave them myself all the time. I think of them as little bullets of niceness to shoot off into the blogosphere, just something to let people know that I like what’s going on, even if I don’t have anything very thought provoking to say.
I find it slightly annoying when people leave such a comment and then add the link of their blog at the bottom, because I feel that’s a bit spammy. I try to always visit the blogs of commenters I don’t ‘know’ yet, but adding the link at the bottom actually makes me less likely to visit that person’s blog. It doesn’t bother me hugely though.
I do find it a bit weird when people leave comments that completely miss the point, like they haven’t properly read the post. I don’t get this very often but when it does happen I always think I would have preferred for them to have spent more time reading and not commenting. I do try in my arguments and musings posts to make very clear what the point I’m trying to get across is, and randomish comments make me worry that I haven’t done a very good job!
I wouldn’t know about people being insincere. I’m not sure how I would detect any insincerity, so I mainly just assume that everyone means what they say.
3. Would you ever leave a comment that could be considered negative?
I don’t leave negative comments on outfit posts as a rule, unless the person has specifically asked for feedback, just because style is subjective and I’m hardly the authority on anything. I will write when I disagree with someone on a substantial topic they have written about though. And I wish people did this more – see question below!
4. Most people claim to like constructive criticism. Do you really and how do you offer that kind of criticism to others?
Yes, I like it! I’m not looking for it so much on my outfit posts, just because I know myself when an outfit doesn’t work out from my interaction in the real world and am therefore not really looking for advice online. I would never be upset if someone told me my outfit didn’t work for them though, and I would definitely think about what they said seriously.
I do love a bit of critique on my thinky posts though. I put a lot of thought into them and I love to know what people think, whether they agree or not. It doesn’t even have to be constructive (as in saying explicitly what I could have said differently), it just has to be respectful and coherent. Like I said, critique away, folks!
When I say something negative to others, I try to put something positive if I can to soften the blow. I don’t always though, and I think it’s perfectly valid to simply say ‘I don’t agree with you on this point. Here’s why.’ As long as it is respectful and made clear that you are not criticising the person as a person, you’re just questioning this one particular thing they’ve said.
5. Some bloggers don’t allow comments in order to cut down on negativity. Do you think that is the way to go or are there other ways to deal with the negative vibes?
I’m not massively opposed to commentless blogs but find them of less relevant to me just because I’m interested in dialogue and interaction. Though if the only reason a person turns off comments is because of negativity, I would question that. I have found a lot of fashion bloggers to be incredibly touchy about negative comments, and completely fly off the handle at the slightest bit of non-positivity. I think in general we as the fashion blogging community need to come to terms with the fact that some people will not agree with us and might not even like us. But that’s ok. It doesn’t diminish our value as persons. Just like in real life it’s important to accept the situation and deal with it in an adult manner.
Photo this time has got nothing whatsoever to do with the topic. But I like it and a bit of eye candy never hurt. Via here.
Happy weekend all!