On the issue of allowing comments on articles, EzineArticles Expert Author “Joe” writes:
First, thank you for promoting me to Platinum status. It’s been a long time coming and I’ve worked hard for it. Next, I have a complaint, not against you guys, but against people that are able to post comments on our articles.
Theoretically, anyone who is a member here can go to any article they wish, post a comment with their name as a hyperlink and basically steal not only my potential traffic, but yours as well. I say “yours as well” because your Adsense ads and affiliate links don’t reside on their sites. I have a total of two comments on my articles and both provide a link to a competitor’s site. It seems as if it’s easier to divert traffic from our hard work than to write the articles.
I’m just putting in my two cents worth here, but do you understand my point? That’s not right that someone should put in the research, time, effort and shared expertise only to have someone post a short comment with a link AWAY from our own article. What do you think? Please share your view on this.
Joe, thanks for sending me your thoughts and agreeing to allow us to post your question so that I can provide an in-depth response:
First, an opening statement: Allowing users, readers, fellow authors, students, competitors, or anyone to post a comment on your article engages the user, provides more unique and exclusive content which then adds more value to the article and allows for a market discussion along with more pages of unique and sometimes valuable content to be found by others.
You may not be aware, but we don’t approve all comments submitted. This site is not a democracy. We will not knowing allow comments on articles that are submitted with anger or malice towards anyone and our guiding rule is that we only want to accept article comments that makes the author look good, adds value or depth to the article topic, and would be well received by any of our advertisers.
In addition, YOU have the power to delete comments on any of your articles that are approved by our comment moderators at any time. Sorry, we can’t know who your competitors all are or are not, so if you don’t like the comments, delete them within your members interface.
We only encourage the search engines to index what we call the “COMMENT VIEW” of an article only if there is (1) or more comments on the article. When indexed, articles with comments are able to attract more traffic by themselves, further giving you a chance to snag another reader of your full article if they land on a comment view of one of your articles.
Some of our members even promote their EzineArticles to their clients or email newsletter subscribers and encourage them to comment on the articles because it expands the FOOTPRINT of each of your articles ability to attract traffic and readers. [side note: I’d caution our members to NOT encourage readers of your articles to post a comment on them by asking them to do this in your article because that becomes a problem when or if your article becomes syndicated on a site that doesn’t accept comments on your articles.]
Next, if you use FireFox with the add-on that allows you to see which links have the rel=”NOFOLLOW” attribute turned on, you’ll notice that all article comments have links with the nofollow attribute on them… meaning, we don’t bleed or encourage search engine spiders to follow the links left by those who comment on articles. This discourages SEO-commentors from trying to get high value links with thin comments…and encourages only honest comments by those who are posting the comment for the value of the comment and discussion and not the link itself as the motivator.
I think sometimes having a competitor who posts a comment on your article actually validates YOU as the better expert when perceived by a 3rd party but I would completely understand if you didn’t agree and wanted to delete the comment by any competitor.
Would be interested to hear how other EzineArticles members feel about this issue? Agree/Disagree? Why?