Friday, April 28, 2006


Anonymous Blogging Part 2: Anonymous Comments

When reading a blog, it is tempting to underestimate the comments. When writing a blog, this is not the case. Bloggers love comments. Comments are party guests. Our first instinct might be that the more comments, the better. This has been called the blog conversational index. Why blog goodness cannot be measured this way was clearly demonstrated by this post at Weblogsky. First, the dude notes that this encourages comment spam and doesn't measure the thoughtfulness of the responses.

It's like the kegger in Sixteen Candles. You're inviting people to trash your blog. Edward Vielmetti adds that trying to use stats only encourages people to game the stats and that blogging is often just one component in a conversation. People often use email to respond to a blog post. Nancy White notes that we've been down this metric road before with online forums. I should also mention that comments are moderated on Weblogsky which probably has a lot to do with why the comments are so thoughtful. If anonymous comments are not moderated, good luck assembling your own Algonquin Round Table. Its the guests that make your blog.

I began moderating "anonymous" comments recently and I'm glad I did. Today, in response to this post, two "anonymous" comments were created by the same person pretending to be two different people. A year ago, I described how to detect this when I warned that there is no such thing as anonymous blogging.

See for yourself. I've highlighted the ringer.

Post #1:
Okay, for starters I'm having to log in as Anonymous because I tried about 17 times to sign up and your system kept telling me I did something wrong.

So for the record and if anyone cares my name is Rosa. Not that anyone really wants anyone to know who they are on these blog things.

Anyway, I received a postcard on this project about a week ago and I for one am delighted and thought it was real nice of the person building this building to send it.

I'm a widow who lives in this area and I plan on considering one of these condos, getting rid of my 2 story home and the stairs and all the work that goes into keeping it up and finally enjoying life and my grandkids. So that comment about all I'll get is a view is a bunch of malarky. And it DOES get expensive to bring someone in to mow the lawn -- $50 a week! I'm tired of paying that and I can't mow the lawn myself anymore. I want to live somewhere where I can see other people when I get my mail, and play cards with my friends, and enjoy a pool for the first time in my life.

And really, why does everyone
have their knickers in a knot about height? There are high buildings all over this part of Austin. They have been popping up here for years and no one asked me if it was okay, I just accepted it. Ausiting is a growing town and this is busy part of town. You don't need a degree in urban development to know that if there is a vacant lot, someone will eventually build something on it. Why not this?

And Miss Jenny, with all due respect to you dear, if you bought your house in the area that I think you are in, with highways on both sides of you and businesses all around you, why is it such a surprise that someone would eventually build on that lot near you?? I've always wondered why anyone would buy a house there!That's all I have for now.
Post #2:
I got a postcard on this building the other day and was impressed. I think this will add to the area and could even increase property values. I welcome it as there have been a lot of nice buildings going up in this area and it's made things better in my opinion.

Personally, I think the developer has both class and balls to let people know what he is doing and to ask for feedback. I actually called him, he answered the phone (shocker!) and he was polite, intelligent, friendly, and seemed to know what he was talking about. You have to give him credit because I know he probably got a lot of opposers harassing him, too. Most developers wouldn't have bothered or would have had an answering machine or even someone else taking the calls.

I just don't get why some folks
have their knickers in a knot about "another" high rise in this area. It's not the first. There are already several of them and even a few right across 183. They haven't really changed much about quality of life. Personally, I'd rather have a high rise, especially one with senior citizens living in it, in my "back yard" then a lot of other things.

And, let's face facts, this part of Austin IS another downtown, which is probably why most people choose to live and stay here in the first place. We have everything here: a hospital, hotels, tons of stores and restaurants, bars, movie theaters, lots of dentists and doctors offices. But once people choose to live here they think they can gripe about not wanting anything new built. Flawed logic in my opinion. Change and progress happens and should happen. I'm for it. Heck, I may decide to live there eventually.

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