February 5, 2010

New Conversation-Friendly Comment System, plus thoughts on Free

Ok, it’s a fact: I am a terrible blog host when it comes to comments.  I love getting them, as all bloggers do, but I just suck at responding, so I’ve done something to change that!  The main reason I’m awful at replying is that the way my wordpress commenting has always worked made it so email-replying was the way to respond… so the comments get mixed in with the rest of my emails and I just can’t keep up with it all… excuses, excuses…

So I’ve installed Disqus comment system!  The most significant thing that this means is now I (and you, and everyone) can reply to individual comments right here on the blog!  Replies automatically get emailed to the original commenter, and show up for all to read, and you can subscribe to get notices about comment threads you want to follow… it’s fabulous!

disqus commenting

I’d thought about doing this for awhile, figuring it would be more work to get set up than it actually was (easy peasy!)… I finally made the switch partly because of the issues I’d been having with wordpress comments not getting emailed to me lately, but mostly because of the excellent conversations that have been happening on Make & Meaning, started by Alice’s post here.  Just scrolling through the comments on that post shows how these kind of threaded disqus comments can turn single blog posts into conversations, really turning a blog into a community!  Rad!

disqus commenting

And speaking of great conversations, and Make & Meaning, I have been super inspired following Diane + Paul‘s talking and writing about Free.  I highly recommend the latest episode of Craftypod, especially if you are a blogger and/or trying to make money off of handmade things (or anything like that), and then there’s Diane’s follow-up post here, Paul’s original post, and Kim’s fantastic response post here.

A few excerpts… Diane:

In the creative community, because information is abundantly shared, we all learn more. We grow in skill, yes, but we also grow in interconnection to each other. Because of Free, we know more about each other, and this knowledge helps us to respect and help each other – despite geography or personal differences.

That interconnection has way more value (and future potential) than mere money transactions. In the podcast, in fact, we talk about the idea of there being different kinds of currencies in the online community. Web traffic is a currency. Goodwill is a currency. Connection is a currency.

Kim, writing about how the money part will “work itself out”:

The money doesn’t really just materialize, though. There’s one thing you have to do to get the money: seize (the right) opportunities when they come around. You don’t need to have an air-tight business model if you don’t want one. Free involves deliberately winging it. With a good emphasis on the deliberate AND on being comfortable winging it.

I, like Kim, started putting things out into the world for free (and some for no-profit cheap) without any plan to make a living and without thinking about the money end of it much at all, and it’s kind of magically transformed over the years into a rent-paying career.  I try never to stop with the free, and sometimes I do find myself distracted by the money part, realizing it’s been awhile since my last free pattern, for example, but there is plenty of free coming your way this year, I assure you!  “Woo-woo” for free, I say!

Filed under: lots of links,random stuff — leethal @ 3:17 pm
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