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Housekeeping: New header, comment system and twitter. And a question for my lovely readers.

Hello my dears! I am back from my selfimposed hibernation! I hope everyone had a good christmas and new year! I did, I hardly left my parents house, it was ace! there was a lot of snow, but we were lucky with our travel dates so missed the icy chaos.

Today, I just wanted to do a bit of housekeeping:

blog header

1. I’ve got a new blog header and have tweaked my layout! Do you like it? It took me blumming ages to work out how to make those rounded edges in photoshop! It’s a great programme, but intuitive it is not! I’m pleased with the result though!

2. I’m on twitter, eventually! I’ve resisted for so long, but I have no idea why, because I love it, and I think it’s no more time sapping than facebook, which I’m ok at avoiding when I have other things on. I’m following some of you already, but everyone else please come and find me so I’m not so sad and alone! I’m @apple_franca.

3. I’ve installed the Disqus comment system. This means everyone commenting has to give their email address, which is what I want (fully anonymous attracts so much spam), and it has the option of replying to individual comments like on the wordpress blogs.

I do have a question here for you: Do you check back for replies to comments? Would you like individual replies? There’s been some discussion on the Friend Friday group whether it’s necessary. Lots of people love it and get annoyed at bloggers that don’t reply individually, but personally I rarely check back, unless I’ve left a comment that invites a reply.

If I’ve said something like ‘Love your dress’, I take it as given that the blogger receiving the comment is happy, and a blanket ‘thank you all’ is fine with me. I would rather the person where I’ve left the comment checked out my blog than left a reply on their blog. And that is the way I have responded myself on this blog. But I know people feel differently, and I am happy to change my approach if that’s what people want! So tell me please!

Normal blogging service will resume tomorrow, I have lots of photos and outfits in store!

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Vix 2 January 2011, 4:11 pm

    Happy New Year, Franca! I love the new layout, it looks so professional and uncluttered. I'm not surprised it took you ages.
    I don't tend to check back for replies to comments, I like to reply within my comment when I visit the commentor's blog (unless they aren't a blogger).
    Twitter scares me, I feel silly not knowing what it is. Do you need a fancy phone to be on it? My mobile is old skool (a bit like my wardrobe). Mind you other than sharing pictures I don't really use Facebook either. xxx

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 4:22 pm

    thanks!

    I used to be scared of Twitter too, but its not scary at all. if you're not in computer all the time, smartphone definitely helps though. it can move really fast!

  • MrsBossa 2 January 2011, 4:24 pm

    I'll be interested to see what responses you get to the comments question, as I've just started using Disqus. I like being able to respond individually, but I also know from reading Grit and Glamour that it's nice to see when the blogger takes time to do this…AS WELL AS visiting the commenter's blog. Bit more legwork, mind! You can also choose to receive notification if your comment gets a response…

  • TheWellAppointedCatwalk 2 January 2011, 4:40 pm

    I love the new header, Franca! It looks beautiful. I'm with you on the comment responses. I almost never check back. I always make sure to leave a comment on my commenters' blogs, but that's it.

  • Sacramento 2 January 2011, 4:50 pm

    1.-Love your blog choice much better than before.
    2.-I am follwing you on Tweeter. I am finding my way there as well, so we can go hand in hand, hehehehe.
    3- 4- I never, ever check back for answer on any blog. It would take for ever to go twice to each blog. I never answer in my blog either. I prefer to visit, and be visited.
    Mil besos my dear friend.
    XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 4:55 pm

    yeah, it is good to have the option of individual replies. I may just reply to everyone, its not *that* much more work. But am still interested in people's honest views, so please keep telling me what you think!

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 4:57 pm

    thanks for the response! nice to know I'm not completely on my own with my view!

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 5:00 pm

    thank you! the previous header was.just a photo with writing on top, its nice to have something a bit more complex!

    Ill follow you on Twitter as soon as I can get on the computer – writing this on my phone and finding Twitter app a bit awkward.

  • Linda W 2 January 2011, 5:10 pm

    I like the new header. I've never used photoshop, so I can't apprecite how hard that was, but it looks great!
    The great thing about disqus is that you don't have to check back for a reply. If you reply to someone, it will come to the commenter's email. Easy communication!
    Happy New Year.
    The Auspicious Life

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 5:16 pm

    I didn't know that! that is convenient! the main advantage ive seen so far is that theres no spam because you have to enter an email address. I did used to get a lot on Blogger.

  • Ashe Mischief 2 January 2011, 5:17 pm

    I love the new header– it's so fresh and fun.

    You know, hearing about how you can reply to Disqus via email has really made me consider switching to it…. I always find it hard to log in via new sites, but at the same time, I'd be a lot better about commenting if it was in my email box.

    As for replies to comments…. I only tend to check back if it's a post that warrants leaving a comment. If I know I'm getting a "Thanks!" reply, I don't…

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 5:25 pm

    There's a mobile app too, which I'm using now, though mainly just because I don't have laptop access tonight is quite time consuming to type on touchscreen! but will be good for 'thanks' type responses!

  • Linda W 2 January 2011, 5:26 pm

    I don't have blogger, so I've only ever used disqus, but I've never had any spam (in the short time I've been doing this).

  • Katie 2 January 2011, 6:37 pm

    The new header is gorgeous – beautiful visual flow.

    I'll check back for replies if I think I've left a comment worth replying to and am hoping that a discussion will begin. We use Wordpress, and I love that I can read comments in my email inbox and respond to them right there; I don't have to log into the blog. I enjoy Discus as a user – it remembers me and I don't have to enter my information again and again.

  • Veshoevius 2 January 2011, 6:56 pm

    Looks great! And glad you asked the question about replying to comments as the answers have been insightful for me too – I try to do this on my blog and it seems from the answers from previous bloggers that they probably aren't being read πŸ™
    So I guess it should be up to you whether you have time or not to dedicate to doing this because it is time consuming!
    I do check back on blogs I leave comments for replies but only to those I know generally reply – obviously it becomes pretty clear quite quickly who replies and who doesn't – some as they say prefer to comment directly on the other bloggers blog.

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 7:10 pm

    that's a good point, it might be more about consistency. ill try and do it for the next week and then dwcide if ill carry on!

  • Emma Clark 2 January 2011, 7:32 pm

    Love the new header. I'm thinking of swapping to Discus too as it is a great way of finding out if people have responded. I rarely have time to check back, so it's brilliant getting an email to tell me when a reply has been posted.

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 7:43 pm

    You might as well, you can always uninstall it if it doesn't work for you. I have it set so that it syncs with Blogger so that all the comments are still there and you don't even need to export them.

  • oranges_and_apples 2 January 2011, 8:13 pm

    Wordpress blogs remember you as well, and I like that. basically disqus makes Blogger more like Wordpress!

  • Tracey 3 January 2011, 1:41 am

    Love the new layout.

    As for comment replies … I love replying individually to comments on my blog, but I'll also pay a visit to the blog of the commenter and return the favour.

  • oranges_and_apples 3 January 2011, 9:49 am

    though saying that, it syncs most of the time. In have 20 comment on this thread, but only 16 made it to blogger. Still some kinks I think!

  • oranges_and_apples 3 January 2011, 9:59 am

    Thank you everyone that has commented so far! I'm still mulling it over, I'll have to see how it works once I get back to work and i have less time. It sounds at least as if people won't be incredibly offended it I only reply where I actually have something to say, rather than a million 'thanks' comments.

    A bit annoyed that disqus seems to have put my avatar in the place of every commenter that doesn't have one – makes it seem like I made up almost the entire thread!

  • MrsBossa 3 January 2011, 10:55 am

    You can also just reply to your notification email when someone comments, and it will automtaically put it onto your blog as a reply. Much easier than logging on to your blog and navigating it on a smartphone!

  • MrsBossa 3 January 2011, 10:58 am

    Ha! Mine did that at first – I had to change the default avatar in my Disqus settings.

  • Amelia Chappelow 3 January 2011, 11:04 am

    Yay! Happy New Year Franca! I love the header and I love the cleanliness! Love it all!

    As a blogger, I always go to say 'Thank you' to people (for their comments on my blog) via email, but so often people don't have that connected on blogger (I think you need to tick a box somewhere in your profile that allows people to respond to you)… but as a commenter, I don't check back for comments/answers etc, as I assume they'll email me (as I've allowed this to happen via blogger) or visit my site. Let us know how Disqus goes Franca!

    xoxo

  • oranges_and_apples 3 January 2011, 11:05 am

    *our study

  • veronicadarling 3 January 2011, 11:08 am

    So that was me, above, Franca!

  • oranges_and_apples 3 January 2011, 11:10 am

    Happy new year to you too!

    That is hardly ever on! So many times I've hit reply and sent it to the noreply email and it's just gone into the ether!

  • veronicadarling 3 January 2011, 11:17 am

    Me too! I've worked out the twitter connected to my personal account because it was open in another window, to follow you! I've got my Fashionista persona on now! It's good how I can comment on your comment, after you commented on mine! I like replies like that!

    xoxo

  • oranges_and_apples 3 January 2011, 11:53 am

    I worked that out! You don't mind your secret identity being out here, do you? I can delete the comment if you want!

  • Ceri 3 January 2011, 4:29 pm

    Yes I agree I never really have time to check posts that I have already read for comments and I would usually rather move on and read something new. Unless it is a particularly deep subject that I have a huge interest in and have asked a question.

    Happy New Year and looking forward to lots more colourful outfits in 2011.

  • Kelly 3 January 2011, 11:37 pm

    I usually subscribe to comments while I'm commenting – so I don't really "check back" because I'm not visiting the page again, but replies go straight to my email inbox. If I'm just saying something like "nice dress" or whatever I don't usually subscribe because I know the reply is likely to just be "thanks!"

    I like when people reply but I'm not offended when they don't.

  • eyeliah 5 January 2011, 2:39 am

    I don't usually go back to comment threads. If I have a specific question I try to ask via email. πŸ™‚

  • madam0wl 5 January 2011, 10:17 pm

    Happy New Year! I like your layout, also I like that I can kind of remember when you were first starting out (maybe? like back after you'd been on w_r for a while?) and seeing how far you've progressed.

    I've wondered about this DISQUS thing as I've seen lots of blogs switching over to it in the past year or so. One thing I don't like about blogger's commenting is that you can't reply directly (I was used to that after being on livejournal.com originally). I've tried email replies but I'm the type of reciprocal emailer that would feel weird if I didn't get a reply email to my reply email, ya know? Which is just crazy but anyway. Because of that, I sometimes will just leave a blanket response to comments on my post, or an @username to people with questions. Though I don't do that as consistently as I should. I try to be more consistent with blanket or @ replies on flickr. I've always wondered how many people in blogland actually check back or subscribe to comments, both of which seems like too much trouble to me. I rarely subscribe to comments, but there are times when I will check back for replies after I have left a comment. It depends on how much time I'm burning online that week and/or if I've asked a question or tried to make an impression of some kind.

    I think if I end up using DISQUS I probably would reply to each comment, even if it is just a thank you (but I don't get a ton of comments so it wouldn't be that hard or redundant).

  • pullyoursocksup 6 January 2011, 8:39 am

    I was so glad to read your thoughts on returning comments. I rarely respond to comments on my own blog because like you, I make a point of returning the favour by visiting the commenter's blog and saying hello. Like I am now!:)) xo

  • madam0wl 6 January 2011, 4:50 pm

    Now see, wasn't I supposed to get an email when you replied to my comment? Maybe I didn't confirm my DISQUS subscription yesterday, which I've only done just now. Don't mind me, just testing how all this works… πŸ™‚ And yay for me being an early commentor!

  • oranges_and_apples 9 January 2011, 5:49 pm

    This comment came through on blogger only, for a different post. I think it must have been meant for this one though, so i am posting it here It was by Lydia A/Chic on the Cheap:

    No, but is simply saying 'thanks' necessary? Would you take the time to return to a post in hopes of seeing a simple thank you?

    I mean more in terms of answering a question, or if you have a response to a comment that you really want/hope the person reads. I follow too many blogs to remember to go back and look for a response and I wouldn't have even seen this one if I hadn't happened to log into this disqus dashboard (for the first time ever)

  • oranges_and_apples 28 January 2011, 8:14 am

    Yes, I thought you would get an email too! Let me know if it works now.

  • oranges_and_apples 28 January 2011, 8:14 am

    Happy new year to you too! and thank you! When I moved over to disqus, I
    actually looked at the very first posts to check all the comments had moved
    over ok, and my first ever comment was from you I think!

    The thing with individual replies isn't only the time (not as bad as I
    thought) but also the pressure to say something witty and not just write
    'thank you' five times over. Which is hard and *does* take ages! I probably
    will try to do individual comments for a little longer at least – although I
    already left a blanket thank you for a few people yesterday, so not the best
    start!

  • oranges_and_apples 28 January 2011, 8:14 am

    Thank you! I'm so pleased people like it, makes it worth the effort!

    I totally agree with what you're saying about a discussion starting, and I
    will definitely respond individually if I have something to say, as I have
    done until now. If the person asks a question, I will email them as well.
    I'm only really dithering about what to do if I don't have anything to say
    except thank you! I have covered these off with one comment aimed at
    everyone until now, I was asking because seems some people really
    expect individual thank yous! I know that has really worked for you, but I'm
    just not sure it's the best use of my limited time, when I could be off
    commenting on other people's blogs or working on content.

  • oranges_and_apples 28 January 2011, 8:14 am

    Thanks, that seems to be most people's view. I'll definitely do my very best
    to reply to proper comments anyway, my question was only ever about the
    thanks! type responses.

  • veronicadarling 28 January 2011, 8:15 am

    HI babes! Does this email get to you? Yep, perhaps it would be good to
    delete it? I did look and I can't delete from my side (something that was
    good on blogger, for when I made a spelling mistake etc)

    xoxoxo

  • oranges_and_apples 28 January 2011, 8:15 am

    Aaaah, trying it now! the only reason I was using the phone yesterday
    was because we were reorganising out study so I had no proper computer.