The Importance Of Honesty In Blogging

Some time ago I did a post Defending A Blogger’s Right To Review A Product where I gave an example of a well renowned blogger who got it completely wrong when dealing with some negative feedback from a fellow blogger, his customer, who bought a reviewed one of his products. That posts showed my reasoning as to why his reactions were totally wrong and how he should of reacted.

This post will be dealing with another important subject for bloggers whether they are blogging for money or for the pure enjoyment of it all, something that is also true in the real world, that subject being honesty.

Most people already know how important it is to be absolutely honest when writing a post, especially when promoting an affiliate or a product. You don’t want to be telling people how good something is when you know it’s really crap, no matter how much commission it’s earning you. This is because once you are found out your credibility is shot all to hell and once people find out you will find that your online career will be short lived.

Liar Liar poster
Image via Wikipedia

Now, while most people tend to behave when on their own blogs they tend to forget themselves, as in the above example, when commenting on other blogs. These are those brown nosing commentators who leave you lies just so do not delete their comment or to win some misconstrued brownie points. You’re probably wondering what the heck I’m talking about so I’ll give you some examples.

  • Social Networking Liar: These are the ones that rave on about how much they love your post that they’re going to Tweet or Stumble it but never do. Would you say liar is too harsh a term? Perhaps it’s just a lapse of memory?
  • Affiliate Liars: As above these guys tell you how they’re going to join an affiliate you’re promoting but never do.
  • RSS Feed Liars: Yeah, they love your blog so much they’re going to subscribe to your feed. While you can check up on the former two, it’s harder to see if these actually subscribe or not. You can usually pick them out though because their comments usually suck big time.

I reckon you get where I’m going by now, and what these people are forgetting is that they’re only kidding themselves and there is every possibility that they may be ruining their online reputation. Personally I believe their actions may go beyond pissing off the blogger whose blog their commenting on. Say in the first example another blogger who tweeted a post and noticed that the person who said he tweeted it actually didn’t, what would they think of them. People talk and as word get’s around reputations get tarnished.

There is a very easy way not to get caught in this trap and that is to be completely honest when commenting on a blog. Don’t bullshit to people. If you’re telling people you’re going to Tweet a post, join an affiliate, subscribe to a blog or whatever do it! Whatever you do don’t promise you’re going to go through with any particular action if you have no intention of following through.

So, what do you do when you come across these guys? Personally, depending on the mood I’m in at the time, I reckon I’ll just delete the comment. What about you, does this sort of thing bother you and if it does what’s your method of punishment for the perpetrators.

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Peter Pelliccia

I'm an Aussie blogger who loves to blog and share everything that I've learned on my blogging journey, including blogging tips and ways to blog for money. I am also trying to make my way on YouTube. You can follow my progress by subscribing to My Bonzer Channel.

This Post Has 71 Comments

  1. Having had my blog for a few years, I am really good at spotting these types of post. Every one of your examples has shown up on my site at one time or another and every one of them gets put through the spam folder. I find it insulting when I spend time on a post and a drive-by leaves a crap comment.

    My favourite ones are the people who copy out a few lines from my post and use that as their comment. I hope that being submitted to a spam catcher service helps them to realise the error of their ways.

    1. So am I Ray but there are times when the commentator leaves a fairly good comment and then has to ruin it all by bullshitting. Damn shame that they have to waste all that time coz I ain’t standing for it any more.
      Sire recently posted…The Importance Of Honesty In BloggingMy Profile

      1. Exactly. My view is that it is my space and I can choose whether or not to let a post stand. If a poster will make the effort, so will I.

        I don’t if you remember the Busby challenge people but, even though their aim was to comment spam to gain points, they at least put some effort into their posts – those people usually got their URL delinked. For all crap spammers, I send their details over to Akismet. It won’t stop spam, but hopefully it’ll hurt them a little.

        Anyway, my site, my rules!

        1. Attaboy Ray, we’ll show these jerks they can’t get away with this crap on our blogs. :furious_tb: :guns_tb: :grin1_ee:

    2. Oooh the ones that swipe part of a prior comment as their own really totally irk me!! How frustrating to steal someones work in hopes of getting through the spam filter. Rather brilliant in terms of spamming but maddening to the blogger. Of course in those types I always deny and I have no concern over harming a relationship because they wont be back unless its to spam!

      1. So true Kim. I reckon the majority that do this probably don’t have a grasp on the English language, still that’s no excuse

        1. What really irritates me about them is that the first time I encountered this, I missed it. But then I was bothered all day that I’d seen the comment before.

          When I remembered I acted in an appropriate and measured way!

  2. I notice I get quite a few comments like that. They say they are going to do something and then never do.

    Perhaps, we should be replying and ‘outing’ them…but make sure you get your facts right first!

    Andrew

    1. The only problem with that Andrew is that sometimes people do forget, and I used to give them the benefit of a doubt. Now though I reckon rather than outing them I’ll do on of three things.

    2. De-Link the comment
    3. Delete the comment
    4. Spam the comment
    5. It will all depend on the mood I’m in. :devil_tb:
      Sire recently posted…How Would You Like To Win An Apple iPad?My Profile

      1. I absolutely adore the Ajax Edit Comment for the delink feature. Its helpful when we’re pretty sure they’re not coming back and the comment was so-so. It also just MIGHT serve as a warning to others. I say might because these are the same people that don’t read the post so I doubt they look around at the obvious!

        1. Yeah, I liked it for the same reason but had to remove it when it stopped working for some reason. I may just reinstall it just to see if it’s stopped acting up.

  3. Yes, I too get many comments saying I subscribed your blog or I stumbled your post but I never seen such an activity from them.According to me blogger should send this kind of comments straight to spam.

  4. This sort of thing does not really bother me. I never check to see if they actually do what they said they would do. Even if these liars don’t actually do what the tell you they are going to do in their comment they still could inspire commentators who read their comment to tweet my post or subscribe to my blog. It’s like getting a testimonial.

    1. I’m with Sire on this one. Usually it will be a content free response or badly worded, some like “Thanks! A friend was telling me about your subject and this made me come you. I have put you on a bookmark and will return.” Frankly, it’s a copy/paste job or posted by a bot. I’d rather have no comments at all, rather than let one stay.

  5. Bravo! Sometimes I catch myself out there with the joining affiliate thing. This is why you may have noticed I say something like, “if/when I join, I will use your link”

    I keep lists and spreadsheets with the persons info. :)

    1. I would much rather that Dennis. I know even when entering contests people crap on just for the sake of slipping in a comment. I’ve still left comments on those types of posts but just tell them that although it’s a good contest I’m not one for entering them, and then leave a tip if at all possible.
      Sire recently posted…Speeding Up Your Blog To Keep Your Readers HappyMy Profile

      1. Don’t I know it. ;)

  6. Other than spam comments which Akismet catches, some do escape and I usually delete them except when the commentator has taken pains to read the post and has made an intelligent and appropriate comment. In the latter case, I approve but rarely respond. I inevitably respond to all the comments in my blog and I think that not responding is signal enough. My blog is too unimportant any way!

  7. Well Sarge it’s like anything else I guess on this wonderful Internet, there are more scammers than there are honest people, bloggers like us and the ones who frequent your blog and leave USEFUL comments! One of the reasons why I am so careful to choose whose blogs I frequent is because my time is so valuable. When I comment about a post or say I am going to do something, I am committed to do it. sometimes what you promise can cause you more work but the effort usually pays off. I enjoy your no BS approach to blogging!

    1. Thanks Dick, I appreciate the compliment.

      In regards to Tweets and such, when people say they’re going to do it and then don’t it goes beyond being a lie because what they’re really saying is that it’s not good enough to Tweet but I’ll tell you it is because there’s more chance of my comment being left alone. Honestly I don’t need this type of comment.

  8. Very interesting. It is the internet though where anyone can be anyone and say anything with no accountability. I think it just comes with the territory.

    1. Ah, but there is accountability and I for one will make them accountable for it, even if it only means spamming their comment. If everyone follows my lead we may well cut back on this type of behavior.

  9. I totally agree with your post here (am I being a brown noser now as well? lol). I don’t understand why people have to lie in blog comments. If you aren’t going to join under a person’s affiliate link or you know you aren’t going to tweet their post, why waste the time and say you are. You just come across looking shady. Find something else to say in your comment or do what you said you are going to do!

    1. You are so right Tiff, after all it’s not hard to do so do what you say you do is always a good motto.

      1. Yea are right they do not really make money…. I have tried a junk blog system….. Made me like $10-$20 a month per blog. If I replicated it could make a little spare change I guess. But not what I was into man.
        Brian P recently posted…Looking For Blogs With Free Giveaways?My Profile

  10. If I’m going to tweet a post I just do it. Well, unless it’s a giveaway, then I post the link to the tweet. I can say I joined MyLikes under John since I heard about from him first, but I did make several Amazon.com purchases from you prior to that and a few more from Holly when I bought her books (double win right there). I figure it all works out in the wash.

    Honestly, we know who we can trust and who are full of it pretty early on. I know most people who subscribe to my feed are trying to win a giveaway and will not be around unless there is something in it for them. I know others visit regularly, but don’t always comment. And I know some only visit and comment when I visit them or vice versa. There is a mixed bag of others as well, and that is cool, too. I do a little of all of the above. It’s fine just as long as we don’t think we’re really fooling anyone.
    Anne Bender recently posted…All the art of living lies in a fine mingling of letting go and holding on.My Profile

    1. Nothing wrong with any of what you’ve said Anne as I also use a lot of those methods. In regards to tweeting and such these days it’s so easy to do because most blogs have a button installed that does it automatically there’s no reason not to follow through with a promise.

  11. I used to play that game and watch people and was confused to take it a step further in my opinion MOST bloggers must be some kind of social misfits. Anyone can write some blogging tips crap as we all know but seeing a blogger go out of there way for another is sadly a rare event.Personally I don’t put myself in a position to care anymore I see what people do and don’t do but what really IRKS me the MOST is when I see my so called “friends” sucking up and tweeting sc*mbags that I know don’t give a damn about them and most don’t even say Thanks cause I used to do the same thing try and RT someone to get some response etc trust me MOST of the social media Gurus are retarded I know cause I spoke to plenty :)
    I must stop now LOL :P
    Check my most recent post about HOW to GET FAMOUS Blogging it’s about a book I’m writing that Shines a LIGHT on the whole shannigans LOL :P
    One chapter is called SNOBS
    that has 100’s of names only of people that I do not think are worth even caring about yet they are well known usually for the dumbest things like I worked at Apple in the early 90’s and so on.
    Peace keep your chin up like always :)
    We going to rock em all SOON
    I don’t start a war until I know I will win :) Just like I don’t call checkmate and slip right to CHECK
    We’ll be in touch Sir :)

    1. Don’t worry about me John, it’s not like I let this sort of thing get me down. I just wanted to do a post about it to make people more aware of what’s actually going on so that they may take a stance about it, if they so wish.

      You know me mate, I’m not the sort of person who wants to get the attention of the so called big boys. Sure I used to visit their blogs and leave comments but that wasn’t because I was trying to get their attention or anything.

  12. Wassup Sire, Long time no commnet!
    I find the more quality in information the better the comment. As you know I tend to stay on point with tech info with “The Bloggers Market” so the comments are usually pretty good.
    They were weak only in the beginning as people were just looking for “Link Juice”. But so far so good.
    Now ……… Comment Spam, man, that’s another story. Akismet is really good at removing it, but still, some of these people are really good at it! Some have me convinced that their my grandmother writing in!
    What’s really tough is when you have someone who comments in a truly negative way and you realize they have a point. It’s all I can do to approve them!

    1. Actually approving negative comments when they have a point is a good thing as it points to a strong character.


  13. Twitter:
    I usually just assume all those posts are spam, and since Askimet catches most of them I don’t worry about it all that often. But you know how I feel about liars and people you can’t trust.

    1. Yep I sure do, something along these lines :furious_tb: :nono_tb: :guns_tb: Not necessarily in that order.


      1. Twitter:
        Yup, and we can add :annoyed_tb: :dry_tb: :yell_tb: and :tongue2_tb:

  14. One recent personal experience has something to do with a guy (which I later found to be a spammer) who made a comment about how he liked the post and then asked to link exchange with me. I obliged and immediately put his blog up on my links page, after replying to his comment on the affirmative. Well, I gave him a total of 3 months, taking into account ‘memory lapse’ and thinking perhaps he’s just busy or whatever. It never happened. I soon discovered that his comments are actually copy-pasted from some other blogger’s comments from some other blog with similar subject matter. I promptly removed his comments and flagged him as a spammer.

    Well, I could do that now since I only get a handful of commenters. I don’t know if I still can do the same tracking in case I receive comments in numbers like wassupblog’s.

    Hey, is it just my browser, or have you somehow set the default language of this comment box to Italian? I found all my words being found mis-spelled. Right clicking, I found two languages, Italian and English.

    1. Strange it should be Italian me being from Italian background and all, even though I can’t read it at all, but no it’s still in English.

      As to that spammer, three months! Man you were being ultra nice to him weren’t you? At least you spammed him in the end.

  15. We basically delete them, similar to what you do.

  16. What kills me are the folks promoting and selling the value of how great a WordPress theme is, but they are not using the theme themselves! Honestly is pretty obvious. Sire, you are one of those guys that presents things honestly. Good for you! :)
    Colleen recently posted…West Pasco Washington Homes For SaleMy Profile

    1. You know what Colleen, someone had a go at me for doing just that because I was promoting my theme on my BS blog which uses Thesis but if they read the post properly they would have seen that I was using Thesis as an example saying how this theme was better.

      Say, did anyone ever tell you that in your avatar you look a lot like Dr. Phil’s wife?

  17. My favorite saying “Honesty is the best Policy”! Nice post Sire. Personally, I am not as hugely successful as some of my fellow MMO bloggers mainly because I do not lie and project bloated up numbers. But I do not care. For me it’s about writing what I know and have experienced personally.
    Ajith Edassery recently posted…MaxBlogPress Ninja Affiliate Plugin Review & $30 Discount CouponMy Profile

    1. Thanks Ajith and keep doing what you’re doing, you may not make as much but at least you can sleep with a clear conscious.

  18. The ‘commenting crap on blogs’ scenario has hit me as well. I often get a list of such irritating comments that leaves me enraged. I am glad to come across a post like yours. I do agree with people who take out valuable time in sharing their views and opinions on the concerned topic.

    1. No point getting mad Tom, just get even and delete the comments.

  19. In today’s day and age, I wonder if the original spiriting of blogging is still alive.

    There are dozens of spam blogs out there promoting the latest and newest product, hoping to get a commission.

    Thanks for bringing this out to light

    1. Sure it is Ted and it’s not all that hard to find them.

  20. Sometimes I get busted for the will digg/stumble/syndicate. The problem in my case is that I use onlywire and as with free services it has a high failure rate. Some days it works good and some days is poops all over itself! I try to syndicate posts that are really strong and well headlined to get some additional traffic for the blog. I also try to return the favor for those that I know use onlywire or another mass syndicater on my blog. Its the same concept behind comment-for-comment. Syndication-for-syndication is just applying it to more social networks. However technology failure sometimes can bite my butt! LOL

    1. Best then not to say you’re going to do it Kimberly, just do it and if it doesn’t work no-one will ever know.

      I believe if you use Digg through Onlywire it requires you to manually enter a code to sho you are human. That being the case you may as well manually Digg it.

  21. Normally if I say I’m going to do something I do it. I hope that I have never said I was going to stumble one of your posts and not done so.

  22. Dear Sire,
    You highlighted an important factor in life and that’s honesty and I think that is as much streamlined through real life as it is streamlined in blogging. The two mirror each other well. Honesty lies in who we are, and how we interact and connect with people on a daily basis and is expressed in that.
    I think everyone has the freedom to be as they are, and behave in whatever way they desire because it is their life, and the choice is theirs. If someone is not honest, they will know and that will fall back on them, and I don’t think it’s fair for someone else to judge them.
    I am open to all comments, and I appreciate people as they are and I respect them for speaking their thoughts. :)

  23. I think that honesty is very important for bloggers – especially when they talk about the efforts required to earn money online and indeed how much money they actually make. A little bit of honesty goes a long way in building up credibility.
    Bill

  24. Blogs are the best way of expressing opinions. I think they belong to a group of websites that can’t be any more honest (am I right?). Therefore, I think bloggers deserve honest comments.

  25. Hi Sire,

    Recently I received a comment praising my post and the comment included a promise of this person coming back and giving me all their thoughts about what my post brought to their minds. With four exclamation marks in the comment and empty praise and promises there was zero value in it.
    I deleted the comment, which is what I always do when it’s clear that no honesty is involved.

    As for the promises of tweeting, bookmarking or subscribing which people sometimes give by themselves I find that on occasion they do attempt to do it even when it looks like they were just giving a lip service. There are times when something fails, like an email or a re-tweet or a bookmarking site. I’ve had cases where after a week or more the promise was fulfilled and sometimes even received and explanation what the difficulty was.

    So it’s a good idea to give people the benefit of a doubt at least for a while until it becomes apparent that they never meant what they promised.

    And let’s face it, once in a while it happens to most people that they honestly aren’t able to deliver in spite of their honest best intentions when something unexpected comes up.

    It’s always a judgment call. In case of first time offenders I tend to be quite lenient and strive to give them the benefit of a doubt.

    In case of repeat offenders giving the benefit of a doubt makes little sense.

    Being honest is the only way to be that works in the long run and it baffles me why some people don’t get it.

    Vance
    Vance recently posted…Internet Marketing Tool, Should You Get Apple Mac Or Windows PC ?My Profile

    1. I have no problem giving people the benefit of a doubt Vance, because being human we all make mistakes. I also understand about there can be times when you may forget but honestly when someone finishes a comment by saying ‘Tweeted’ and then doesn’t follow through, especially when they button to do so is usually at the top of the post, that to me is a little hard to swallow.
      Sire recently posted…Looking For US Citizens Who Buy Alternative Milk ProductsMy Profile

      1. Yes, that’s hard to swallow. I must say though that it happened to me once that I tweeted someone’s post and their monitoring plug-in or software which shows the number of tweets right on the post did not register it. But I didn’t notice it right away because I didn’t wait to make sure it appeared and when I revisited the post there was no tweet showing and the blogger noted that too.

        It took three separate tries before the tweet finally showed up. Until then I felt terrible and like a cheat because I said I tweeted the post. I’d never do that unless I actually performed what I say I did. So the next time and ever since then I always make sure that the tweet registers.

        Of course if someone says they did something repeatedly and there is no evidence of the action then it is most likely not some technical problem but dishonesty.

        Vance
        Vance recently posted…Internet Marketing Tool, Should You Get Apple Mac Or Windows PC ?My Profile

        1. Yeah, I’ve noticed a few times when a Re-Tweet button doesn’t seem to work but when that happens I do it manually. I’m not sure if it updates the button doing it that way but I reckon the tweet itself is more important than the button count being updated.
          Sire recently posted…Blog Save The Akismet, Long Live The AkismetMy Profile

          1. It’s true that the actual tweet is what really counts but for most people if the button count is not reflecting it they will think no tweet was made which is only natural. In the case I mentioned the blogger only looked at the button number as the proof too.

            I’ve seen on one occasion when someone bookmarked my post and it didn’t show up anywhere for a number of days. I began to believe that they made a mistake somehow but didn’t say anything and then it appeared like 3 or 4 days later.

            Vance
            Vance recently posted…Internet Marketing Tool, Should You Get Apple Mac Or Windows PC ?My Profile

            1. Welcome to the wonderful world of modern technology :drunk_tb:

  26. When I see comments saying only “the post is good and will come back next time” or “will subscribe, tweet” and whatsoever, what immediately come into mind is crap. I don’t think these are really true. Although others really do what they say, but most often it’s just a lie. Like what you do, I just delete them. Hopefully, they’ll realize what a crap the comment was when they check back to see that their comment were not approved.

  27. I wonder if the original spiriting of blogging is still alive.
    Dozens of spam blogs out there that are promoting the latest and newest product, hoping to get a commission.

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