My Views On Comments

Only a quick post today as I'm in an extremely busy part of my life at the moment.

Reading the comments on my last post reminded me that I haven't really commented on comments. Here is a rough FAQ.

  1. I like reading comments, it lets me know that people are reading this site as I don't pay much attention to site statistics any more.
  2. I value almost every single comment.
  3. All comments, no matter how far back into the archives they stretch get emailed to me. I read every single one.
  4. I delete all spam, just as a matter of principle.
  5. I don't delete comments with three exceptions – If the person who wrote the comment emails me and asks me, if it breaches patient confidentiality, or if they are nothing but abuse.
  6. Feel free to disagree with me in the comments, I like having to change my mind about something I've written or having to defend myself. It gets what tiny spark of academia I still have burning again. Just try to be polite and if you can bring evidence to the discussion I'll thank you for teaching me something. (See my post on Home births for example). I may completely disagree with you, but we can still be civil. So far I am so incredibly happy and proud that almost every comment thread has been reasoned and calm, even when discussing quite controversial subjects.
  7. If you write utter twoddle then other commenters will stamp on you. I tend to ignore the trolls but others won't. The verbal beating you get will make me laugh.
  8. You cannot insult me in the comments, nor upset me, nor cause me harm. I spend my day job being verbally and physically abused. Words on a website do not bother me in the least. If I have a sleepless night it won't be because of something you've written. I have no dark secrets in my past that you can bring to light and embarrass me. If you are a fool I will laugh at you.
  9. I may use comments as inspiration for further posts. Sometimes far in the future.
  10. If comments get silly (like calling other commenters Nazis) I will shut that thread down.
  11. I try to answer direct questions, if I seem to have forgotten and it's important do feel free to send me an email – I'm awful at answering emails but I will get to it eventually. The timing depends on what shifts I'm working. Likewise if there is a good comment thread I'll get involved, but unfortunately I have little free time so please don't feel I'm ignoring you.
  12. I love comments, I really do.
  13. If you want to leave a comment you need to 'create a reader account'. This was put in place to stop the frankly astounding amount of spam I was getting (over 500 a day).
  14. If you have a long comment to make and a blog of your own, post a prΓ©cis of it here and direct me to your own site – we can continue the conversation between the two blogs, just like the good old days of blogging. I like getting comments of all sorts, but this means I can send some linky-love your way.
  15. Keep commenting I really do love it. When I was promoting the book a lot of people asked me my favourite thing about blogging, and each time I answered, “my commenters”. Really, each time I get even the slightest glimmer about packing in this blogging lark it's you folks that keep me going.

Yes, pretty much most of that list can be boiled down to, “I like comments and read them all, but don't be an arse”, but it sometimes needs stating.

All comments gratefully received.

UPDATE: And then I hit my Bloglines subscriptions ands see that Diamond Geezer has posted a much more entertaining view on the same subject.

51 thoughts on “My Views On Comments”

  1. >>If you are a fool I will laugh at you.This'll be my own weirdness showing but on reading that I pictured you dressed up as Ming the Merciless (a near exact copy of Max von Sydow), bellowing that and following it with a Mwhahahahahahaha.

    Sorry for that image.

  2. Hello! I've never commented before, despite following/reading your blog for over a year. I thought I'd take the plunge today!!

  3. 1. What a great way to get an easy ego boost, judging by the comments so far. *grin*2. The dreams for me are just gonna be even more bizarre now. Non-supernatural-being dammit it.

  4. Beer & ice cream caused him and this blog to creep into my dreams.(I've comment way more today than I would ever do so. I may just return to general lurking duties tomorrow.)

  5. Some days I think people enjoy the comments more than the blog. I hate those days. And I love those days too.

  6. no dark secrets?Tom, u are my brothers, wife's cousins sister's dog's father's owner's second cousins, college roomate! (if u don't get it see spaceballs)

  7. Oh, I read daily – but I comment rarely because, well, I'm an Accountant, Jim, Not a Doctor!!!But I do love reading. Especially after learning you're a fellow WoW'er

  8. I read your book a year ago and have been following your blog ever since, but have never commented before.Just wanted to say what a great blog and how much you (and the others who work with you) are appreciated.

  9. Just going to post a comment for the sake of posting a comment and feeling that warm bask of affectation when I click submit.

  10. Oh that was really nice of you Tom!I will continue to read you and to comment. Bear with my English. πŸ˜‰

  11. Awww, cheers Tom, I'd always been a nervous poster before (knowing how busy you are) but knowing you read every one makes me feel appreciatted.>>If you are a fool I will laugh at you. I wouldn't expect anything less, except I'd say it normally starts with a 'when' not an 'if' in my case.

  12. So, you don't like comments?That feedback is exactly what kept me writing on my blog, now I feel connected to the whole world.I don't mind disagreement, but I write such a personal blog that any attack on me, IS an attack on me, and I take it rather hard. Such a wimp I am. Good for you for being tougher.

  13. So many times I'd wanted to comment on something, if only to say “well done, you're magnificent”, but I shy away for fear of seeming like a fangirl or slobbering idiot. I'll not shy away anymore. I guess everyone likes praise, yeah?Wish I'd rolled Alliance on your server instead of Horde. Ah well.

  14. hi there. This is my first time reading your blog, having read your book for the fourth time this afternoon. That's one of the many things i love about it, its frank and realistic humour which makes it a light but fantastic read everytime!

  15. You know something Bats? You were the first person I knew of as a regular commentator.There are others now, but you were my first!

  16. I'd already read DG's post and the when reading this was already smirking – and then you beat me to it. Ah well – thank you for the linky love in the past – got me published – and I fee a post coming on about both these which will also be put up for the biritblog roundup this week.

  17. I luv reading your blog Tom and commenting gives me a chance to say thanks to all those crews (in an indirect way) that have touched my life !!Comments are good πŸ˜‰

  18. HiI think I've only posted once before but have been on here since about oct when i started my training.

    I just wanted to say thanks really because if I have a really bad day on placement, I can come home, sit down, read your blogg and feel good knowing you've normaly had a worse day than me lol…..

    But really when I'm feeling like I wanna give up you make me realise why I wanted to do this in the first place. So Thank you Mr Reynolds xxxx

  19. I was your first? Been a while since a man said that to me.I feel all special now, with a big side dish of You Know You've Been On The Internet Too Long When…

    That said, it was over a year ago when you were in my dreams, which was probably a pretty good indicator of my hanging round here too much.

  20. Hey student999 – don't give up – it is a job not many do and you “Will” be appreciated by at least ONE person !!Good luck with your training !!


  21. I love the blog – especially when you blog about a call I took!! Always wonder if I've spoken to you on the rt – so rarely swap intials now that I'd probably never know – that and I work mostly on the NW and you don't!! I blog too – good old LAS larks!

    I do the other side of the job – not quite as exciting as Mr Reynolds but we love it all the same

  22. Hey us on the other end of the calls appreciate the dispatchers etc just as much ya know.Without ANY of you there would have been alot of people who are here today who wouldn't have been !!

    Carry on the Great Work !!


  23. Tom. I have enjoyed reading your blog (and book) so much over the past few years, and it encouraged me to start blogging my own thoughts. Nothing half so good at this blog of yours but I enjoy it and even get a few comments coming my way so I know I have a few visitors but more always welcome.I agree with your list, every comment is welcomed, like taking breaths of fresh air.


  24. Getting comments on your blog is like getting 'real' letters in your morning post, rather than junk mail; you know the sort that has a hand written address, quality Basildon Bond envelope and a stamp stuck on by a person who took the time and trouble to think you were worth it.Come on in lurkers, jump in see how warm the water is, it's not as scary as it looks and gets easier the more you do it. I used to fret that I would kill a thread stone dead with my comment, I can still do that, I just don't worry about it any more!! πŸ™‚

    batsgirl, you will be getting a 'blue plaque' for your PC soon,

  25. It's a real shame that we don't talk to EOC as much as we used to before the MDTs arrived.Now we only tend to talk to you when there is a problem, which is no way to build a working relationship.

    So old Bravo Kilo here does try to be a *little* entertaining on the radio (I worked many times with Bravo Delta – who was a diamond on the RT). Although sometimes I guess I sound like a prat…

  26. Thanks for taking the trouble to write 'cos it's no trouble to read , and to know the comments matter makes it even better !

  27. You book brian is brill to read when on boring stanby it's almost as though it's me writing then i realize it can't be cuz i'm blonde lolol

  28. Commenty commenty comment!More seriously, I regularly look for your blog to read it because you're wise, thoughtful and entertaining.

    Even if you do use Windows Vista.

  29. Not any more I don't – Bootcamp +XP now with my shiny new Macbook Pro.Gotta play those games somehow…

  30. “If you are a fool I will laugh at you”There was an excellent example of foolishness on here when I forgot to close an italics tag. I still feel embarassed by it which is stupid really.

    I don't comment on here much as I never know what to say (whether I will say the wrong thing/make an ass of myself/mis-interpret the situation and annoy everybody or just post junk! But I suppose as I am commenting now I would just like to congratulate you on your writing skills. Some of the posts you have made about uncomfortable situations have been very moving and very engaging so it feels like the reader is actually there with you. It gets a thumbs up from me.

    If you would like to visit my blog it is

    Apologies for the out-right advertising but 2 readers is hardly encourgaging but I still post!

  31. I'll have to start commenting again then. I stopped because I worry I'll turn into one of those people from “spEak You're bRanes” who are delusional that their opinions matter!But now I know you like getting comments I'll just stop and in and say hello.

    (The other reason is that I'm scared of some of the other commenters, people get awfully angry in comments).


  32. Tom, this one is completely off subject. I need you to email me at concerning DAoC. Sorry if it sounds crazy but I went to an old message board and found you as the administrator for it, I just need to ask a few questions concerning KoA. I would really appriciate it.Respectfully

    F. D. Venegas

  33. Hi Tom,I've read your blog daily for a few years now and would gladly comment more often but my pc at work blocks commenting software. It's nice to hear that you genuinely appreciate what us plebs have to say about what you write.

    BTW, I read both yours and DG's commenting posts – although DG's was undoubtedly clever/witty, it was your post that left me smiling.

    Right, on with the weekend. Have a good one.

  34. l couldn't find an exact place to put this but TR said comments so…When in UK does an ambulance on its disco lights and sirens rate a police escort?.

    Just one went past us today and l do not recall seeing an escorted one before in our area, l am sure they are about just as rare as hens teeth l guess.

  35. My experience of police escorts is that they usually occur when one police officer is in the back of the ambulance with the patient (probably because the patient is suspected/known to have commited a crime) and the other officer, who is driving the police car to hospital, gets carried away!I have never requested, or required, a police escort and don't really see why one would be necessary – we have our own lights and sirens for a reason!

    Usually the police are quite happy to follow the ambulance, and they don't always use their blue lights either – just depends whether their colleague will need their assistance to get the patient out of the ambulance at the other end.


  36. I also use Windows Vista, does that make me a bad person *sob wail* Bloomin' bane of my life at times…Anyway. COMMENT! *warm fuzzily cosy feeling of affection* Awww. :o)

    I've been reading for a while and do big catch up sessions once or twice a month, hence being a bit late with this post… Never posted before but I have read Blood Sweat and Tea :o) loved it! Made me want to throttle every self-righteous, irritating, obnoxious, rude, worthless *insert synonym here* excuse for a human being who has ever had the temerity to hurt one of you Guys In Green… but I still enjoyed it, lol!

    By the way, I was in Waterstones on Tuesday and overheard someone asking where to find Blood Sweat and Tea. It made me smile. :o)

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