If you care about your readers, you probably want to build your community in such a way that the most loyal ones develop a feeling of belonging, of pride that they are all members of the same group, that each time they arrive to your blog, they can exchange comments and start conversations, like they knew each other since centuries. Your blog can be like a party, with you, the host, being the connection between all guests. However, it is your blog, so it’s up to you who’s invited to the party and who’s not.
How can you make a selection? An option would be to allow only subscribed members to post comments. Or, like in the case of Lifehacker, in order to be allowed to post comments, you have to register and send one first comment. If the moderators like your comment, you’re in. Even so, posts on Lifehacker usually have a lot of comments, and you are not even allowed to put a link in your signature.
Community Appreciation Poll
I’m challenging you now to look at this from a reader’s angle:
– Do you feel that you are more appreciated, or more valuable if you are part of a community which has an entry barrier (be it only a simple, free registration)?
– Given the fact that you are lazy (who isn’t at least a little bit?), which would be the “stimulents” that would make you subscribe to a blog, in order to be able to leave comments there?
Thank you for giving us your thoughts in this matter.