The Art of Creating Content Online

Every now and then, I encounter a post from The Onion that makes me more than just give a little giggle before moving on. Sometimes, it makes me pause a while and think about something more than what the funny comic just shared.

That happened a couple of days ago, when I came across this long (but worth reading) comic: Some thoughts and musings about making things for the web. It shared funny and insightful messages where I ended up just exclaiming “Yes!” in certain areas. And no, not that part about refusing to wear pants, okay?

As an online content creator, a few points definitely resonated -

  • Being bothered by 1 bad comment out of 1000 excellent comments: check.
  • Finding it easier to write about an assigned topic rather than having to come up with my own again and again: check.
  • Knowing that a daily posting schedule isn’t for me: yep, check.

I won’t keep going. Just go ahead and read it if you haven’t done so yet.

And, yes, there were a couple of points that made me just stop and re-think some of my own approaches to content creation. Like this panel, for example:


It was talking about online content creators’ need to open up every single post with comments.

Is a blog – a real blog – if comments were disabled?

As an advocate for online community, not just online content, there’s a part of me that does look for engagement when I share my posts. I feel a bit bad when posts are left without even a single reply.

It’s like that “If a tree falls in the forest, does it make a sound if no one’s there to hear it” kind of thing.

The same reason I’m not a big fan of “performance presentations” – where I’m required to do ALL the talking for a solid 30 minutes to an hour. Or worse, do a three-hour lecture with barely a break in-between!

I like interaction. Engagement energises me.

That’s why I like workshops. I like interactive presentations. And that’s why I love comments.

But, do I really NEED comments? All the time?

How do I know which blog posts I turn comments off? Or, do I follow the lead of some bloggers I know who just completely shut down comments on their blogs?

The thing is, I don’t see my blog posts as a “performance”. Especially not here at ShaiCoggins.com.

I have blogged in places where I do feel like they’re performances. Mostly because they’re about work. So, there, I feel like I simply need to deliver. Regardless of whether comments happen or not.

Here, I like conversations. I like connectivity.

So, while I’m okay with some posts not getting any comments, I’d like to leave that opportunity to for someone to stop by and say something on a post that might connect with them in some way. Goodness knows how many wonderful friendships and networks I’ve created, just based on the comments sections of my blogs.

That’s why, for now, I’m okay with keeping comments open. To allow conversations happen in my blog posts. But, maybe – just maybe - one of these days, I will have a post that might end up a purely rhetorical performance by choice.

About the Author Shai Coggins

Shai has been managing and blogging here at ShaiCoggins.com for 17 years. Here, she writes about creativity, productivity, and how to recharge for a better, happier lifestyle. She is the author of Today: Life Journal, Colour Bliss: Kaleidoscopes, and a little known children's book. A serial entrepreneur, Shai also currently runs Vervely.com, a boutique digital media agency offering online content, community, and conversion marketing services. Her blogging experience and digital work have been featured in various media, including being listed in Fast Company's "Most Influential Women in Technology" list. Originally from Manila, Shai lived in Singapore and the USA before moving to Australia with her British husband. They have two children, a pet bunny, and a rambunctious rescue Labrador.

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