Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Comment Masturbation

Just a quick thought here . . . is there a line between friendly, constructive back-and-forth commenting and comment masturbation? And if there is . . . at what point is it considered crossed?
To be continued . . .


Anonymous said...

Looking forward to more on this...Define "comment masturbation"

Pythia3 said...

Self-gratification . . . whether it is sexual, mental, emotional, whatever - indulging in an activity for one's own personal stimulation. I have known people who love to play mental masturbation games like focusing on the semantics while completely skirting the truth - the real issues.
On blogging sites, there are those whose comments don't contribute anything that is of value - anything that is honest and REAL. I feel they comment like some people talk and talk . . . just to hear their own voices (read their own blurbs). I call that verbal vomit for the reader and comment masturbation for the writer.
There are also the "anonymous" types who I call the high-tech version of: "Do you have Prince Albert in a can? Well let him!" Click! commenter. They seem to get a rush out of spewing out some words, hitting that publishing button and escaping into cyberland.

Anonymous said...

Okay, let's talk masturbation.

I post comments to different blogs in different ways. A lot depends on my moods or how different blogs strike me. A thoughtful posting will usually get a thoughtful response from me.

The responses I have left on your friend Michelle's blog are an
example. In some ways I was critical of her and of some of the people posting to her blog. You know my concerns in her case, so I won't repeat them here.

I think that comment masturbation, a term I adore, happens all the time. There are people who cruise blogs seeking a way to have others zip to their blogs to comment. They measure success by how many comments they can rack up, regardless of substance.

I surf blogs and comment often. I do it because it keeps me off the streets, but also because I, too, want too see my blog network or community expand.

I think bird on a wire has a good point..define what you mean by comment masturbation and give us a sense of what led to the comment. I think I know, but it may help people respond.

I don't mind simple responses. One person whose blog I visited sent me a comment stating: thanks for visiting my blog. I have no problem with this, although I don't understand why they don't just drop me an email.

The most annoying comments for me, usually not found on my blog, are the meaningless one liners that you will find between members of the opposite sex that usually amount to the equivalent of a wolf whistle.

Anonymous said...

Wow..we obviously posted at the same time...hmmm...reading your post let me offer this suggestion: Why not use another person's blog as a form of expression? Isn't that what the person is doing with their blog in the first place? And if someone posts to post, whether it is a photo, or a rambling rant, isn't that a form of masturbation?

The great thing about blogs, and about some of these comments, is that they serve as a form of a journal. In a writer's journal, we don't try editing work..we write..we get stuff down indiscriminately.

Anonymous said...

One last thought..an addendum...

Isn't it different as well if you know a person and communicate outside the blog? Sometimes people who know one another communicate in shorthand. Sometimes a post is just a wink and a wave hello. When I made the simple post:

Dear God I always love the art on this page.

Have a good thanksgiving Lindy..someday we shall have to talk metaphysics.

was that masturbation? Or was that a person reaching through cyberspace to just make contact, even in a small way.

I don't know, just thinking out loud here, but I think a detailed post on commenting on blogs would be interesting.

Pythia3 said...

I agree with you Stewart, it all comes down to the meaning behind the comment. When I visit a new blog, I give the blogger the consideration of reading the posting and commenting in an open, honest and complimentary way. When I visit bloggers with whom I have a personal relationship outside of the cyber world, I often use the shorthand technique and the "touch base" approach.
I guess only the person commenting knows for sure if he or she is doing it just it for the hell of it or to get some weird attention out of it.
I enjoy reading the comments left by others and so far I have not received any weird ones.
And as for you, Stewart, only you know if you were committing "comment masturbation" in regards to my posting. LOL Now I need a cigarette! And I don't even smoke!

Karen Carp said...

Speaking of weird, Pythia3, how is my old professor, Mr. Pinka? You're more his size than Michelle, aren't you?

Alvy Singer said...

Hey, don't knock masturbation. It's sex with someone I love.

Pythia3 said...

Hey, in no way am I knocking masturbation . . . just opening a door for discussion, that's all. Isn't that what blogging is for - opening doors, pushing buttons, touching hearts, expressing opinions, sharing ideas and thoughts, creating, laughing, communicating, and of course writing, writing, WRITING?

Michelle's Spell said...

Hey Lindy,

This is a great topic! I take it all seriously (unless it's really offensive), but I don't get too upset about it because I believe one of the great things about the internet is that it's democrat in a way that no other form is. Everyone gets a forum -- and for a writer, what a great audience in that it's immediate! I've known bloggers to take away comments, and big portions of their audience drops off -- most of your audience will never leave a comment, but the idea that they could if they chose is the thing. Love the direction of your blog! I enjoy checking in for what's next!

Jon said...

Lindy, I think you're mostly having a problem with "cheap comments." Toss-offs. Silly gushing one-liners that don't illuminate the original post or previous comments. Stewart, you were quite right to call them "wolf-whistles." They make it difficult to write a comment appreciating the erotic nature of a post...or a photo.
You say, "-indulging in an activity for one's own personal stimulation." Yeah. There's something wrong with that?
I'm writing the words that I'm writing now because it does something for me. The cool thing about writing is that I can try to do it such a way that it does something for you too. Comment foreplay?
Look, even cheesy comments show that someone has thought enough about you or your post to make an entry.
I am frankly thrilled beyond words when a reader drops a comment on me. It's so rare. My posts get an average of two or three comments. (Comment envy here?)