Top 10 Commenting Tips for Students
Are you teaching a blogging unit? Commenting is a new social skill. Often people make mistakes because they do not know the rules or etiquette for how to communicate. Have your students be good digital citizens. Here is some advice on “how to comment” that you can pass onto students:
- Think before you comment. In a face-to-face conversation what you say is not recorded for everyone to hear later. However, your comments can remain on the Internet for a long time and anyone can read them. Avoid regret! Think before you type.
- Say something meaningful. What you write should add to the conversation. A comment should offer encouragement, make a connection, ask a question, offer advice, or state an opinion.
- Be polite. You should not swear, hurl insults, act mean, or take over the conversation. If you do, you are likely to have your comments deleted or you will be banned from commenting.
- Only write something you would say in person. When commenting, it is easy to forget that the blogger and fellow readers are real people because you cannot see their face. It is a good idea to write as if the person can see you.
- Write comments that reflect you in a positive way. Your comments tell people about who you are. For example, if you write something encouraging, people will think you are kind or if you offer some advice, people will think you are helpful. But if you write something mean, insulting, or hateful, people will think you are a bully or rude.
- Stay on topic. Your comments should be about the blog post. If you write something unrelated to the topic, it shows that you did not read the article.
- Be clear. Write exactly what you mean. In a face-to-face conversation tone of voice, facial expressions, hand gestures, and body stance help convey meaning. When you comment visual cues are not available. For this reason, make sure readers understand your message.
- Avoid sarcasm. You do not want people to think you are rude. Even if you add to your comment LOL (laugh out loud) or JK (just kidding) your comment may still be hurtful to another person because they misunderstand your tone.
- Be concise. A comment should only be a few words or sentences. If you have a lot to say, write your own blog post then include a hyperlink to it as part of your comment.
- Assume everyone can read your comment. You might think your comment is private and it can only be read by your friends or the people in your school. However, since your comments are digital they can be copied and shared with others, without your permission. For this reason, never write anything that you do not want to be public.