A Minor Rant: Feeds, Buttons, and Comments

July 20, 2007

Like most other bloggers, I’m a big fan of subscribing to feeds – it saves a lot of time because you don’t have to visit each blog, you don’t have to wait for sites to load (there are actually a few blogs that I will only read in feed-form because they have so many graphics/images/ads that the actual content takes eons to appear), and it’s really the easiest way to keep up with tons of different blogs. 

The problem is that you lose out on reading the comments if you stick with just the feeds, and sometimes, the comments and responses are the most interesting or entertaining part of the whole post.  Much of the time, I end up going to the actual blog to read the comments and perhaps add my own.  Of course, lots of sites also let you subscribe to the comment feed (for instance, the Gawker Media blog network) too, but isn’t that getting a little excessive? 

So what’s your opinion?  Are you one of those readers who only reads the plain feeds, or do you include the comments when you can, or do you just go to each site?  Or do you prefer a mix, like me?  I’m not even going to get into bloggers who don’t publish a full feed, that’s just irritating.  I clearly don’t mind going to the individual site if I want to check out the comments or write one, but don’t make me do it (this especially applies to the previously mention ad-laden slow to load blogs). 

On a semi-related note, does anyone else dislike it when bloggers have a “subscribe to my feed” button at the end of every single post?  Is it that hard to figure out how to do it?  For some reason the social media buttons – “digg this”, “add to del.icio.us”, etc. don’t annoy me nearly as much, but I still think they are a little unnecessary.  Chances are, if your readers are familar with feeds or social bookmarking, they know how to save, stumble, tag, digg, or suscribe to your site. 

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