It’s amazing to me how sites and apps seem to be created, conceptualized and programmed by people that don’t actually use them.
Here’s how commenting works..
- There are people that want to read the comments but not say anything themselves.
- There are people that want to say things but not read anyone else’s comments.
- There are people that want to do both.
- There are people that want to do neither.
- There are people that change their minds.. They wanted to follow comments before and now they don’t, or they didn’t want to follow comments before and now they do.
I handle this on my blog, billcammack.com very simply, by enabling all those options.
- People can read my blog posts without commenting.
- They can comment without subscribing to comments (which would send them an email every time someone commented on the post they contributed to.
- They can subscribe to comments without writing anything (they don’t have to contribute in order to follow the conversation)
- If they comment without subscribing, they can subscribe later. If they subscribed and want to end their subscription, there’s a link for that in each email that they receive.
Essentially, this are two tiers of options. Your desire to speak on a subject does not obligate you to receive correspondence on that topic. Your lack of desire to speak doesn’t exclude you from following the conversation by subscribing.
One Choice Is No Choice At All
OTOH.. Facebook has been retardedly programmed so that if you click “like” on a status or link, you automatically receive every single comment anyone ever makes from then on if your account is set up to email you when there’s activity on a thread you were active on. These are the options you have on Facebook:
- “Like” or comment on something and receive updates forever.
- Don’t chime in and relieve yourself of a flood of Facebook bacn emails.
- Block the flood of emails by telling Facebook not to send you emails about that type of activity on your account.. and never receive ANY indications when ANY of the threads you commented on or “like”d are updated.
Why It Matters
Why does this matter to me? 🙂 Because I’m missing out on a lot of comments my 2,235 Facebook Friends WOULD make if they didn’t have to be subjected to the flood of comments that came behind them.
*MY* conversations are being stifled on Facebook because people that would LIKE to give their opinions are avoiding getting spammed for the rest of the day until one of my threads goes out of style.
While they’re doing all the stupid updates they do, like changing the photos section so there’s no tab where you can see ONLY the new pictures that your friends were tagged in, all they have to do is implement a way to OPT THE **** OUT of comment streams and they’d see a lot more activity on Facebook and serve a lot more ads.
This is why I’m amazed at some of the “updates” Facebook does. It’s as if the people programming it don’t have any friends and don’t have any conversations and never have it happen to them that they just WISH they could opt out of something so they could comment on a hot topic and then be completely done with it.
I’m only approximately halfway to the maximum of 5,000 FB friends and I’ve had this problem for more than a year already. There are lots of people that hit the max limit ages ago and must have been pinging FB about this forever already. I don’t see why implementing OPT-OUT COMMENTING isn’t seen as an OBVIOUS WIN by the Facebook strategists.
EDIT: August 09, 2010 (10 days after I wrote this article)
Thanks to Dock Drumming for pointing out this article that was posted on 08/09/2010
“Tired of getting updates every time someone comments on your popular friend’s status update because you were the first to comment? Worry no longer! Facebook has begun testing a feature which lets users opt-out of those notifications. By clicking a simple “Unsubscribe” link (as pictured below), you can turn off notifications from stories that you comment or like. It’s a useful feature that can help you instantly reduce the noise.”
Looks like Facebook might be getting on the case! 😉